While there are some foods that are not safe to feed your dog (link to other blog) there are lots of delicious and nutritious human foods that you can safely give to your dog, either as part of their ongoing diet or as a special treat.
Some of the most common are:
Apples: Apples are full of Vitamins A and C and are a good source of fiber, all important to a dog’s health.
Bananas: A great source of magnesium, bananas, in moderation, can be healthy for dogs especially in terms of bone health.
Blueberries: High in fiber and antioxidants, blueberries are a great human food for dogs.
Carrots: A good source of vitamin A, carrots help a dog’s immune system, skin, and coat. Chewing on carrots can also help to remove excess plaque from your dog’s teeth, promoting good dental health. (But be aware that too much vitamin A can be dangerous to dogs, so be sure to moderate their consumption).
Chicken: Chicken is a healthy and nutritious choice for dogs as long as it’s boiled and doesn’t contain any seasonings.
Cucumbers: Low in calories and high in water content, vitamins, and minerals, cucumbers are a great treat for dogs (especially those who are overweight).
Dairy: In small amounts, dairy products like milk and cheese are safe for dogs. Just be sure that they don’t contain sugar (plain yoghurt is healthy, flavoured yoghurts are not) and be aware that some dogs can be lactose intolerant and suffer the same ill effects of eating dairy as humans.
Fish: Rich in protein and Omega-3s that are beneficial to a dog’s immune system and help keep their skin and coat healthy, salmon and tuna are a great dietary choice for dogs. Shrimp also contain vitamin B which can help maintain their digestive and circulatory system. But don’t forget that any seafood your give your dog should be cooked thoroughly as uncooked fish can contain parasites.
Green Beans: Cooked or uncooked, plain green beans are a great doggy snack. Make sure they are chopped, though, to avoid choking.
Peanut Butter: With Vitamins E and B, as well as niacin, healthy fats, and protein, small amounts of peanut butter is healthy for dogs, provided that it doesn’t contain any added sugar or salt. Be extra cautious that any peanut butter you give your dog does not contain xylitol, a common sugar substitute, as this is highly toxic to dogs.
Popcorn: Unsalted, non-buttered, sugar-free popcorn contains magnesium, phosphorous, and zinc, all important parts of a dog’s diet. Unpopped kernels are a choking hazard, though, so keep these away from your dog when giving them this treat.
Pork: Like chicken, plain, boiled, unseasoned pork is safe for dogs, but only in small amounts as the high levels of fat in pork can make it difficult to digest.
Rice: Cooked white rice is easy to digest and can help to bind stool for dogs with an upset stomach. It can cause a spike in blood sugar levels, though, so be careful giving it to your diabetic dog.
Turkey: A good source of protein, turkey (plain, boiled, unseasoned, and with the fat removed) is a healthy food for dogs.
Watermelon: Provided it’s seedless (seeds can block a dog’s intestine) and rindless (watermelon rind can cause upset stomach in dogs), watermelon can provide lots of needed hydration, especially in the hot summer months, and is a great source of Vitamins A, C, and B6.
Make sure you always check with your vet or a dog nutritionist before adding or removing foods, or changing your dog’s diet, as there are a number of factors that should always be taken into consideration including underlying health issues, dietary needs, size, age, and breed of your dog.