Believe it or not, dogs actually can have certain foods that us, humans, enjoy as well! You don’t always have to venture out to the pet store to find healthy snacks for dogs; you can look right in your pantry because chances are you already have at least one of them!
Top Healthy Snacks for Dogs
#1 – Salmon
If you’re planning on cooking salmon for dinner anytime soon, remember to count your dog in too. Salmon is very beneficial to your dogs’ health, and here’s how! Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, and just in case you didn’t know, salmon is typically the type of fish used to produce fish oil capsules for our pets. Salmon also adds a sufficient amount of protein to your pets’ diet that lasts them longer, so they feel full for a longer period of time. There are just a couple of easy rules to follow if you decide to feed your pooch a sliver of salmon; never feed it to them raw, and always feed it to them plain (unseasoned.)
#2 – Vegetables
Various types of vegetables make great healthy snacks for dogs! Raw carrots, celery, cucumber, zucchini, and bell peppers are all excellent examples of vegetables that you can chop up and throw right in their food bowl, or package and serve later as treats. You can also try steaming green beans, broccoli, asparagus, and cauliflower! However, you must keep in mind that dogs are just like humans and probably won’t always enjoy every type of vegetable you give to them, so try some new foods on and off and see what your pup thinks is tasty to them! Vegetables are low in calories as well, so they make for the perfect treats if you are trying to help your dog lose a bit of weight.
#3 – Popcorn
You probably wouldn’t think that popcorn is one of the top healthy snacks for dogs, and you’re right, if you add butter and salt to it, but, as long as you keep it plain and simple, it’ll be safe for your pooch to consume. If you do add salt and butter to the mix and feed it to your dog, it may cause serious complications such as pancreatitis. Popcorn is an excellent treat that is easy to make (and probably sitting in your cupboard right now), but the biggest key for serving it to your dog in the safest way possible, is to air-pop the kernels. Unpopped kernels become a choking hazard or may get stuck in your dog’s teeth, and nobody wants that. So, if this is something you are willing to try, be sure to cover all of the bases and serve it in the safest way as possible.
#4 – Watermelon
On a hot summer day, who doesn’t love a nice, juicy slice of watermelon after being out in the sun all day? Watermelon is a great (and healthy) treat to hand over to your pup, as long as it doesn’t contain seeds or the rind, your dog will be sure to love it! Watermelon is naturally low in calories, and sweet at the same time, so your pooch can enjoy themselves a little bit without adding the extra calories and weight! Watermelon is packed with vitamin A and vitamin C which adds a slight bonus of nutrients to this summertime snack.
#5 – Most Berries
Most berries such as strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries, are all incredible examples of healthy snacks for dogs, and can be given to them in moderation! Berries include antioxidants that help support your pup while providing them with nutrients, and a yummy treat in the mix. Keep in mind that you probably don’t want to fill an entire bowl up with berries and then feed it to your dog, because that would more than likely make them sick. But, what you can do is add some berries to their regular food or give your dog berries as treats when you’re training them a new trick or they’re being a good pup altogether. Berries are low in calories, so you can feed them to your pup guilt-free, and they won’t gain any extra weight. The only thing to look out for with sweet fruits is monitoring the sugar content that your dog is consuming. If they overeat sugar, it could upset their stomach.
#6 – Peanut Butter
Most people already know that peanut butter is a satisfying treat for most dogs, but we’re going to tell you why. Peanut butter is naturally packed with protein which makes it long lasting and helps your dog feel full for a longer amount of time. Peanut butter is one of the top healthy snack for dogs not only because of its’ nutritional benefits, but because it’s sweet and creamy, which ensures that your dog will get a kick out of it. It is not recommended to feed copious amounts of peanut butter to your pup at one time because it could make them severely ill. Also, be aware that dogs have allergies just as humans do, so watch out for allergic reactions to peanuts from your pooch. It is a good idea to have them taste test it before you go ahead and feed them more, just to be sure they can tolerate it in their system.
The Bottom Line
There are endless possibilities of different grains, fruits, vegetables, proteins, and meats that could benefit your dog(s) (in some ways better than just plain kibble) and as long as you do your research to make sure that the foods you want to serve your canine aren’t poisonous, you’ll probably be okay. However, NEVER assume that every type of food humans eat, dogs can eat too, because that is not the case and if your dog gets ahold of the wrong food they could end up in the animal hospital with severe complications! That is why it is essential to educate yourself about what your pooch can and can not eat and make sure that you prepare each of their food items correctly.