Is People Food Bad for dogs?
23 July, 2012
My friend, Denise, tends to feed her dog table scraps on a daily basis.  When I was over at her house last week, I told her that the occasional piece of chicken is OK for her dog, but that overall, it is best not to get in the habit of feeding her dog ‘people’ food.
There are some negative effects and/or consequences to feeding a dog human food.  Like everything else, moderation is the key to a healthy and happy dog.   Below explains why it is best to avoid table scraps or human food on a daily basis.
Dangerous Foods
People food needs to be given to dogs with extreme caution because many foods are dangerous for or pups. While many of these foods are very healthy for humans to eat, some can be toxic and possibly lethal for dogs. Some examples of these foods include grapes and raisins, onions, garlic, walnuts, chocolate, and caffeine. Further, sharp bones can puncture organs or cause problems with digestion.
People Food Can Add Weight to your Dog
Feeding your dog too many human food scraps can lead to obesity in some dogs. This is especially true if you feed table scraps to your dog(s) that are high in fat or carbohydrates. A dog that carries too much extra weight can develop problems with its joints or heart.  Most commercial dog foods are designed with a dog’s dietary needs in mind. While portion control and regular exercise are still necessary, these foods are usually a better fit for a dog’s diet.

Behavioral Issues
Feeding table scraps can lead to behavioral problems such as begging. If a dog begs for people food and you constantly give in (I know how hard this one is), this only reinforces the begging.  It can also make the dog more likely to steal food from your dinner plate or try to get food out of the garbage. Feeding our people food to our pups can also make them more selective about what he or she eats, so they will be less likely to want to eat the dog food you leave out for him or her.
Medical Issues
There are other problems that could arise from feeding people food to your dog. Human food could cause a dog to have stomach problems, such as diarrhea, and even to develop food allergies. An improper diet can cause a dog’s coat and skin to become dry. Digestive disorders can result from feeding different types of people food and the dog may experience bad breath or gas.\
Good People Food
There are some good sources of people food that are OK for dogs. Some foods, such as carrots, sliced apples, green beans, lean meats, and plain cooked rice, can be fed to most dogs safely and are even good for them. These foods should still be fed with care; discuss your dog’s diet with your veterinarian to see how these extras can fit into your dog’s diet.
As always, moderation is the key to your dog’s livelihood.  If you balance your dog’s diet, make sure he or she gets some exercise on a daily basis, your dog will be happy, healthy and thin!  

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