How Many and How Often Should You Give Your Dog Treats?
Dogs love treats as much as we do, probably even more. The incentive of a delicious dog biscuit when displaying good behavior always gets those tails wagging. Just as too many treats aren’t good for humans, they aren’t good for your pet pal either. Too many treats can lead to weight gain which can cause a multitude of health problems. They can also spoil your pup’s appetite for their proper meal. Treats aren’t entirely bad, but it’s important to know when to give them, how much to give, and what to give. Below, we are going to discuss the ins and outs of dog treats.
How Many Dog Treats Can a Dog Have?
Your pup shouldn’t be getting more than 10% of its daily caloric intake from dog treats. For instance, if their daily calorie needs amount to 450 calories, a maximum of 45 calories from treats is acceptable. This is one reason it’s not a good idea to give dogs table scraps — you can handle a lot more calories than your pup can.
When it comes to training, you don’t have to give your pet the entire treat at once. They’re more excited about getting the treat than the amount they are getting. Depending on the treat size, you can break it in half or even quarters so their daily stash lasts longer.
The Best Time to Give Dog Treats
Treats are an important part of reinforcing good behavior, especially when you are training your pet pal. This is why you should save treats for training time or as a post-run nibble. If you give your dog too many treats, they may begin to disregard any training based around using treats as a reward.
Which Treats Are Best for My Dog?
Training treats are a great choice for your furry pal because they only contain a few calories each. If the treats are on the bigger side, we recommend that you cut them up into smaller pieces so you have enough treats for an entire training session without overloading the calories. Always check the ingredients for preservatives, artificial additives, fat, and calorie content.
Certain fruits are also wonderful treats for dogs — some dogs absolutely love bananas. They can also safely have blueberries, strawberries, and apples among other fruits. If it’s the first time you’re giving your pup fruit, start with small amounts and see how their digestive system reacts.
Keeping aside a portion of your pup’s daily kibble is another good way to have treats on hand without piling on calories. Save some extra tasty dog biscuits for when they’re working on something that requires a bigger effort and reward.
Plain, unflavored, unsweetened Cheerios or popcorn are also suitable low-calorie treats.
Foods That You Should Never Feed Your Pup
While there are a lot of healthy foods you can share with your pet, there are also many foods that are toxic to your dog. Before giving your pup anything to eat, you should always make sure it is safe for dogs to consume (even if it is considered healthy for humans).
Foods that are an absolute no-no for dogs and that can cause serious complications to include garlic, onions, macadamia nuts, chocolate, caffeine, grapes, raisins, and anything containing xylitol (including human toothpaste).
Your dog will most likely gobble up anything you provide, so make healthy choices to ensure a long, happy, and healthy life for your furry friend.