Does what you feed them affect their health?
It’s a good question.
I think most of us agree that what we feed to our canine companions definitely affects their health. The real question here is how much does it affect their health? If we feed a good quality dry kibble is that enough to keep them healthy? If we then supplement with table scraps how does that factor in? Or raw hide chews? What about an occasional pig snout? Or jelly beans?
There are a few items that all dog and puppy owners need to be aware of that should not to be fed to a dog. Some of these include chocolate, grapes and raisins, onions and ibuprofen. There are many places on the internet to get information on what not to feed your puppy and dog. One site is here. There is also a new post on the Puppy Tips page of TrainYouNewPuppy.com that has a list of items for dogs and puppies to avoid. You can read that article HERE.
But what about feeding them our other everyday food items? Can you feed table scraps safely? When I was growing up we fed our pups just about anything we ate. The pups sat in the corner during mealtime and if they were good they got treats from the table. Of course back then we, as humans, were eating just a little differently too. People cooked their own meals from scratch more than they do now. Fresh food was used instead of frozen or canned foods with preservatives and additives. There was no such thing as genetically altered foods.
Just the other day a friend told me a story about a pup that their friend has. This pup had to visit the vet for an acute stomach/gastrointestinal problem. After much testing and a stay in the vet office it was determined that the pup had ingested some pizza and that it had highly upset his entire digestive tract to the point of needing intervention. That vet visit very well could have saved his life. The veterinarian informed the owners of the hazards of tomato sauce for some dogs and the fact that pizza dough can be toxic to dogs for several different reasons. Now, some dogs would be able to eat the occasional piece of pizza with no repercussions and others will get the same reaction as my friends pup had. It pays for us to learn a bit about the breed of dog we have and it also pays to be observant as we feed our pups things that they don’t normally consume. I am glad that this particular story had a happy ending and the pup got to go home. He is on a pretty bland diet for a few days, but he is on the road to recovery.
The pup in the story is a Rat Terrier. The vet said that the terrier breeds in general can have a propensity for digestive upsets. As your puppy’s caretaker you may want to do just a bit of research to find out if your puppy’s breed has any specific things to watch out for. A bit of time towards finding out specific dog breed information can go a long way towards a happy, fulfilling and long life for your canine companion.
I’ve noticed that several of my pups in the past have gotten loose stools from eating raw hide chews so I feed raw hide very sparingly and I always monitor when the pups are chewing on the raw hides. One day I had fed a raw hide twist to each of the pups and they had happily consumed them and went on their merry way to play in the yard. After about a half an hour one of the pups threw up. I observed them all for awhile and the pup threw up a couple more times before one of the other pups started to vomit also. Then the third one started. Upon close inspection, there were just the raw hide chews in their systems so I went to the package in question to see what the ingredients were. I found no out-of-line ingredients, but I did find that these particular chews were manufactured in China. I usually try to avoid dog treats made in China and Mexico. They don’t seem to have the same standards as we have here in the States. Sometimes the manufacturing process is different and it can affect the end product to the point of upsetting the digestive systems of my pups. This package had gotten by my scrutiny and look what had happened, all three of my pups were ill for a few hours after eating those rawhide chews. Needless to say, I threw them right in the trash.
I have found it harder and harder to find good quality raw hide chews for my dogs but I am always looking for new ones to try. My last raw hide purchase was a bag of the C.E.T. Chews. The C.E.T Chews are often recommended by Veterinarians for dog dental health. My dogs LOVE them and they are very good for their teeth! Let your pup try them today, she’ll be glad you did.
As always…if you have a new puppy…or if you know someone who does…or if you want to learn more about puppies…check out my new website! Go to: www.trainyournewpuppy.com