Can Dogs Eat Human Food?
Yes, dogs can eat certain human foods. However, they need to be carefully selected and served in moderation.
The dog’s digestive system is different than that of humans. Also, dogs have different nutritional requirements, which is why they need specific diets.
Therefore, dogs can eat some human foods and can’t eat others. As pet owners, it is important to know which human foods agree with the dog’s gut. So, wondering what human food can dogs eat? Keep reading.
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What is the Best Human Food to Feed Your Dog?
Meat and some fruits and veggies are safe and beneficial for dogs. They contain nutrients dogs need and can boost their immune systems and overall health. Let’s take a look at the different human foods dogs can eat.
Are Apples Safe for Dogs?
Can dogs eat apples? The answer is yes.
Apples for dogs are an excellent source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and dietary fiber. However, the peel and apple seeds must be removed before serving. The peel is hard to digest and often has pesticide residues, while the seeds contain toxic cyanogenic glycosides.
How Much Apple Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can eat up to an apple a day. It is important to introduce apples slowly into your dog’s diet. Start by feeding your dogs small amounts of apples (no more than half a day) without the seeds and peel.
Are Bananas Safe for Dogs?
Yes, bananas are safe for dogs.
Bananas make healthy treats as they are rich in potassium, copper, biotin, and prebiotics. However, before serving, the banana peel must be removed because it is hard to digest. If swallowed, the peel can cause intestinal blockage or upset stomach.
How Much Banana Can Dogs Eat?
A medium-sized dog can eat up to half a banana a day.
The serving size needs to be limited because this fruit is high in sugars and, if fed too much or too often, may lead to weight gain. Also, it is not recommended to give bananas to diabetic dogs.
Is Bread Safe for Dogs?
Yes, bread is safe for dogs.
Bread is made of grains that are rich in vitamin B. However, for the bread to be safe for dogs, it has to be thoroughly cooked and cooled down before serving.
We should note that bread should not be given to dogs sensitive to grains.
How Much Bread Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can safely eat and digest moderate amounts of bread. It is advised to give your dog bread every once in a while, in small amounts. Too much bread causes weight gain and obesity, just like in humans.
Is Broccoli Safe for Dogs?
Yes, broccoli is safe for dogs.
Broccoli are rich in dietary fiber, antioxidants, vitamin K, potassium, and calcium. Since broccoli can be hard to digest, it must be well-cooked (steamed or baked) before serving. Also, we should note that broccoli can make dogs gassy.
How Much Broccoli Can Dogs Eat?
Broccoli should be consumed in moderation. As a rule of thumb, veggies should not exceed 10% of the dog’s daily food intake. Too much broccoli can cause upset stomach and diarrhea.
Are Blueberries Safe for Dogs?
Yes, blueberries are safe for dogs.
Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and support the dog’s immune system. They also boost cognitive health and prevent brain aging.
Frozen blueberries make a refreshing treat for dogs. They can also be served fresh and mixed into homemade healthy treats. Just wash the blueberries to ensure they are pesticide-free.
How Many Blueberries Can Dogs Eat?
As with any other fruit or vegetable, blueberries should make up no more than 10% of your dog’s daily food intake.
Are Carrots Safe for Dogs?
Yes, carrots are safe for dogs.
Carrots are a fiber-rich, low-calorie treat. Plus, carrots are packed with vitamin A and are naturally sweet and delicious. Chewing on raw carrots strengthens the dog’s teeth and promotes oral health and hygiene.
However, carrots can pose a choking hazard for voracious eaters. In such a case, it is better to serve them sliced into bite-sized chunks.
How Many Carrots Can Dogs Eat?
Start introducing carrots to your dog’s diet slowly, with a few pieces only. If your dog seems to digest it well, increase the portion, but don’t exceed more than 10% of the food intake.
Is Chicken Safe for Dogs?
Yes, chicken is safe for dogs.
Chicken is a good source of lean protein. However, the meat needs to be adequately cooked as raw chicken can contain harmful bacteria (such as Salmonella).
Also, the chicken bones must also be removed – they are brittle and splinter easily (pose a choking hazard and an intestinal blockage/injury hazard).
How Much Chicken Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can consume chicken daily for their meals in moderate portions. Protein-rich diets are often desirable for dogs.
Is Corn Safe for Dogs?
Yes, corn is safe for dogs.
Corn comprises fiber, digestible carbohydrates, and vitamins B such as biotin, thiamine, and riboflavin. Before giving your dog corn, remove the kernels from the cob. The cob must not be given to dogs as it poses a choking hazard.
How Much Corn Can Dogs Eat?
Corn can be used as an occasional healthy snack now and then for dogs. Don’t feed your dog corn daily as it has high calories, carbohydrates, and fibers. Excessive amounts of any of these will lead to obesity and stomach upset in dogs.
Are Cucumbers Safe for Dogs?
Yes, cucumbers are safe for dogs.
With over 96% water, cucumbers are refreshing and hydrating. They are also rich in vitamin K and munching on cucumbers supports oral and dental health. Since they are low in calories, cucumbers make an excellent treat for dogs on weight loss regimens.
How Much Cucumber Can Dogs Eat?
A medium-sized dog can safely have half a cup of cucumbers as a snack. Before serving, remove the cucumber peel (it is hard to digest and may be contaminated with pesticides).
Are Dairy Products Safe for Dogs?
Yes, dairy products are safe for dogs, as long as the dog is not lactose intolerant.
Dairy products are rich in calcium and promote teeth and bone health. They can also be used in homemade recipes, and cheese chunks make excellent pill pockets for dogs.
However, not all dairy products are equally good for dogs. In general, you should opt for low-fat yogurt and low-fat cheese options like mozzarella and cottage cheese.
How Much Dairy Products Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs should consume dairy products in small amounts and only if capable of digesting lactose. We must note that dairy products are unsuitable for dogs with pancreatitis and sensitive stomachs.
Is Fish Safe for Dogs?
Yes, fish is safe for dogs.
Fish is rich in amino acids and lean protein. It also contains a large amount of healthy fats such as omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA). Fish is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals.
Fish meat must be thoroughly cooked before serving. Also, the bones must be removed to avoid choking and GI tract injuries.
How Much Fish Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can eat fish for their daily meals. Protein from fish is low in fat and good for building lean muscles.
Is Popcorn Safe for Dogs?
Yes, popcorn can be safe for dogs.
The emphasis is on the word can. Namely, you must observe the dog while snacking and use only unsalted and unbuttered varieties.
How Much Popcorn Can Dogs Eat?
You can give your dog a few popcorns every now and then. Popcorn does not have any nutritional value for dogs, meaning it only accounts for an occasional fun snack.
Are Green Beans Safe for Dogs?
Yes, green beans are safe for dogs.
Green beans contain various vitamins (vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin C) and minerals (calcium, iron). They are also rich in dietary fiber and has a healthy amount of plant-based protein.
When serving green beans to your dog, make sure they are well-cooked (steamed or boiled) and avoid canned versions since they are often heavily salted and with seasonings.
How Many Green Beans Can Dogs Eat?
Green beans and veggies should be fed in moderation to your dog. As green beans are fiber-rich, excessive amounts can lead to indigestion, gas, and bloating.
Are Mushrooms Safe for Dogs?
Yes, mushrooms are safe for dogs.
Mushrooms are packed with protein and represent nutrient-dense food. They boost the immune system, lower blood pressure, stabilize blood sugar, lower cholesterol, and promote weight control.
Same as with humans, dogs should only be served non-toxic and well-cooked mushrooms.
How Many Mushrooms Can Dogs Eat?
Mushrooms shouldn’t make up more than 10% of your dog’s daily meals. Also, they should not be given to dogs sensitive to mushrooms (they are a known allergen).
Is Peanut Butter Safe for Dogs?
Yes, peanut butter is safe for dogs.
Peanut butter contains healthy fats and makes an excellent treat for dogs as they love its taste. Just make sure you use unsalted peanut butter and peanut butter that is free from artificial sweeteners and added sugars (such as xylitol which is toxic to dogs).
How Much Peanut Butter Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can have a teaspoon of peanut butter every now and then. You should not give peanut butter to dogs allergic to peanuts, obese dogs, and dogs with diabetes.
Are Bell Peppers Safe for Dogs?
Yes, bell peppers are safe for dogs.
Bell peppers are loaded with vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin C, and vitamin B6. They are also rich in antioxidants such as lutein and beta-carotene, thus boosting the dog’s immune system.
All bell pepper types (yellow, green, and red) are dog-friendly as long as they are served correctly (washed and sliced into bite-sized chunks).
How Many Bell Peppers Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs shouldn’t consume more than a quarter of bell pepper a day. Consuming more than this can result in an upset stomach.
Is Pork Safe for Dogs?
Yes, pork is safe for dogs.
Cooked pork is a great source of protein for dogs. Pork is also rich in vitamin B1 or thiamine, which is essential for normal cell functioning.
For safe feeding, the pork needs to be thoroughly cooked and the brittle bones removed,
How Much Pork Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can eat pork in moderation. Pork is relatively high in fats, and for that reason, it should not be offered to obese dogs and dogs with a history of pancreatitis.
Are Potatoes Safe for Dogs?
Yes, potatoes are safe for dogs.
Despite popular misbelief, potatoes are more than fillers. They contain digestible carbohydrates and are also rich in certain vitamins (vitamin C and vitamin B6) and minerals (magnesium and iron).
Before serving, the potatoes need to be thoroughly washed, peeled, and then cooked (plain).
How Much Potatoes Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can eat potatoes as a part of their everyday meal. However, since they are high in starches, it is advisable to limit their intake in dogs prone to weight gain.
Is Rice Safe for Dogs?
Yes, rice is safe for dogs.
In fact, rice is one of the most commonly used human foods for dogs. Different types of rice have different benefits for dogs. For example, white rice is excellent for calming upset stomachs, while brown rice is loaded with nutrients like antioxidants, calcium, phosphorus, and vitamin D.
How Much Rice Can Dogs Eat?
Dogs can eat rice daily. Since rice has a high glycemic index, it can cause spikes in the blood sugar level. Thus, if your dog is diabetic, avoid or minimize the portion of rice.
Is Spinach Safe for Dogs?
Yes, spinach is safe for dogs.
Spinach is naturally rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants and can be a healthy addition to your dog’s daily meals. Raw spinach should be thoroughly washed and boiled for 5 minutes and then served without any seasoning to your dog.
How Much Spinach Can Dogs Eat?
Spinach should be given to your dog in moderation and only a few days a week. Spinach contains oxalates which in large amounts may lead to kidney issues.
Are Sweet Potatoes Safe for Dogs?
Yes, sweet potatoes are safe for dogs.
Sweet potatoes are classified as a superfood. They contain high levels of vitamin A, vitamin C, and vitamin B6. Sweet potatoes are also rich in calcium, potassium, and iron.
Same as with regular potatoes, sweet potatoes need to be washed, peeled, and cooked.
How Much Sweet Potatoes Can Dogs Eat?
You can feed your dog moderate amounts of sweet potatoes (up to a couple of times per week). When well-boiled, sweet potatoes have a low glycemic index, meaning they can be given to dogs with diabetes.
Is Turkey Safe for Dogs?
Yes, turkey is safe for dogs.
Cooked and deboned turkey is an excellent source of lean protein for dogs. Turkey contains zinc and magnesium, which support skin and coat health. It is also high in phosphorus, thus promoting strong teeth and bones.
How Much Turkey Can Dogs Eat?
Turkey can be given as a regular part of the dog’s diet. To ensure safe feeding, it is advisable to remove the turkey skin, especially in dogs with pancreatitis.
Is Watermelon Safe for Dogs?
Yes, watermelon is safe for dogs.
Watermelon is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, certain vitamins B, potassium, and dietary fiber. It is also hydrating and low in calories.
For safe serving, the rind needs to be removed as it is undigestible. The same applies to the seeds, which are likely to cause a blockage if ingested in large amounts.
How Much Watermelon Can Dogs Eat?
Watermelon should be given in moderation only once in a while to dogs. Give them no more than a quarter cup of chopped watermelons or a small bowl of watermelon juice. Too much watermelon is likely to cause diarrhea due to the high water content.
What Foods are Toxic to Dogs?
We already answered what human food can dogs eat. With that part covered, it is time we say a word or two about the people foods dogs can’t eat.
Are Avocados Safe for Dogs?
No, avocados are not safe for dogs.
In fact, avocados are among the most toxic human foods for dogs. This is because they contain a chemical called persin. Dogs cannot metabolize persin, thus developing intoxication when exposed.
How Toxic are Avocados for Dogs?
Avocados are very toxic to dogs. We should emphasize the fact that all parts of the fruit contain toxic persin. In case your dog ate avocados, call the vet immediately.
Are Citrus Fruits Safe for Dogs?
No, citrus fruits are not safe for dogs.
Citrus fruits feature essential oils and chemicals that are irritating and toxic to dogs. These harmful ingredients are found in all parts of citrus fruits (tree, plant, skin, pulp).
How Toxic are Citrus Fruits for Dogs?
Citrus fruits are moderately toxic to dogs, meaning a dog would have to consume large amounts to develop intoxication and clinical signs.
Are Cherries Safe for Dogs?
No, cherries are not safe for dogs.
Cherry pits contain high levels of cyanide – a dangerous and potentially lethal toxin. They also pose a choking hazard and may cause intestinal blockage.
How Toxic are Cherries for Dogs?
If your dog ingests any part of a cherry pit, stem, or leaf, take them to the vet immediately and get them treated to avoid any dangerous repercussions.
Is Chocolate Safe for Dogs?
No, chocolate is not safe for dogs.
Chocolate contains theobromine which is essentially a stimulant that dogs cannot metabolize. In addition, chocolate also has caffeine which also has stimulatory effects.
How Toxic is Chocolate for Dogs?
Chocolate is very toxic to dogs. Interestingly, not all chocolate types are equally toxic. Namely, dark chocolate varieties are more dangerous than milk chocolate.
Is Dough Safe for Dogs?
No, dough is not safe for dogs.
Dough rises in the oven due to the hot environment. The same happens in the dog’s stomach. The dough rises and eventually ferments which results in the release of ethanol. Ethanol is alcohol and causes alcohol poisoning in dogs.
How Toxic is Dough for Dogs?
Dough is very toxic to dogs. Ingestion of dough results in stomach bloating and alcohol poisoning. Depending on the type of dough, there can be additional risks.
For example, cookie dough can also have added sugars, artificial sweeteners, or even chocolate.
Are Grapes and Raisins Safe for Dogs?
No, grapes and raisins are not safe for dogs.
The exact toxic ingredient in grapes is unknown, but it is suspected to be tartaric acid. Additionally, grapes and raisins contain high amounts of tannins, flavins, and monosaccharides that dogs cannot metabolize. In dogs, they are associated with potentially lethal kidney damage.
How Toxic are Grapes and Raisins for Dogs?
Depending on the dog’s size, even one grape can be lethal.
Interestingly, grapes and raisins are not toxic to all dogs. Namely, some dogs genetically lack the enzymes necessary for breaking down the nutrients in grapes and raisins. Sadly, there is no way of knowing whether a dog has or does not have those enzymes.
Is Nutmeg Safe for Dogs?
No, nutmeg is not safe for dogs.
Nutmeg contains myristicin – a compound that is toxic to dogs. In smaller amounts, it causes upset stomach, abdominal pain, and dry mouth. In larger amounts, it leads to neurological signs such as disorientation, hallucinations, and seizures.
How Toxic is Nutmeg for Dogs?
Nutmeg is very toxic to dogs. It can be found in pumpkin pie fillings and other sweets. Therefore, it is important to read the label before giving human food to your dog.
Are Nuts Safe for Dogs?
No, nuts are not safe for dogs.
There are several reasons nuts are not safe for dogs. Namely, some nuts like hazelnuts are not dog-friendly as they are high in fats and likely to cause an upset stomach or pancreatitis. Other nuts like walnuts and macadamia nuts contain chemicals (juglone) that are directly toxic to dogs.
How Toxic are Nuts for Dogs?
Some nuts are directly toxic to dogs, while others are hazardous. If you are not sure which type belongs to which group, it is best to refrain from giving your dog nuts altogether.
Are Onions Safe for Dogs?
No, onions are not safe for dogs.
Onions, same as all members of the Allium family (garlic, leek, chives, shallots), are toxic to dogs. This applies to all forms – raw, cooked, and even powdered spices.
Onions contain N-propyl disulfide – a toxic substance that damages the dog’s red blood cells. Once damaged, they are removed from circulation, which may result in anemia.
How Toxic are Onions for Dogs?
Toxicity from ingesting onions can result in pale gums, decreased appetite, and red urine. Your dog may also experience lethargy and dizziness, leading to anemia. Contact a veterinarian immediately if you see any of these symptoms.
Are Raw Eggs Safe for Dogs?
No, raw eggs are not safe for dogs.
Raw eggs are not dog-friendly because of two main reasons. First, they are likely to contain the bacterium Salmonella. Second, raw egg white coagulates in the dog’s stomach, which will wreak havoc and trigger a gastritis episode.
How Toxic are Raw Eggs for Dogs?
Raw eggs are not toxic for dogs, but they are still dangerous for the above-explained reasons.
Is Xylitol Safe for Dogs?
No, xylitol is not safe for dogs.
Xylitol is a sweetener added to sugar-free human foods. It is commonly found in products like peanut butter, soft drinks, and toothpaste.
Sadly, xylitol is toxic to dogs and causes sudden blood sugar drops (hypoglycemia), liver damage, and seizures.
How Toxic is Xylitol for Dogs?
Xylitol is extremely toxic to dogs. If your dog consumes anything with xylitol in it, call your trusted vet immediately.
Can I Feed My Dog Human Food Instead of Dog Food?
You can use people foods to prepare homemade meals for your dog. However, in such a case, you will need to use supplements to ensure a complete and balanced meal.
While using human foods for dogs can be safe, it is highly inadvisable to give dogs table scraps as they are too high in sodium, fats, and may contain spices and ingredients that are harmful or even toxic to dogs.
Bottom line, when it comes to feeding your dog, it is best to stick to pet food and use certain dog-friendly human food as occasional and healthy treats.