This is a must to know for dog owners.

Treats should only be 10% of your dog’s daily intake and it should be in healthy form.

I believe the following article also can help you to determine what is considered healthy treats or how to provide a healthy treats.

Dr. Peter Dobias is a very well-known and respective vet who I strongly support and follow his advises on dog care.

12 steps to safer treats for your dog

Based on what I know about people and dogs, giving a treat is an extension of love. I completely get that, however, with global food sourcing, many treats are often not the best from the health point of view and other can be seriously unsafe.

For example, sardines canned in North America may come from a Japanese distributor.

That is why I put together 12 steps to safer treats for your dog

1. Avoid fish-based treats (with the exception of locally sourced/made salmon treats). I have repeatedly seen elevated mercury and strontium levels in dogs that are on fish based diet.

2. Reduce or stop feeding liver treats as they have overall higher concentration of toxins. Over feeding liver treats can also cause vitamin A overdose.

3. Milk based treats are not optimal for dogs as most dogs are lactose intolerant. Milk products often compromise the digestive system and cause overall immune system depletion.

4. Avoid grain and rice in treats as dogs do not have a good ability to digest these and are often gluten intolerant. Grain is also one of the causes of pancreas inflammation. Rice is often high in arsenic because it is usually grown in polluted waters of third world countries.

5. Cured meats such as ham, sausages and jerky contain nitrates and other preservatives, which should be avoided.

6. Avoid dehydrated duck, chicken and turkey breasts as they are often infused in glycerin and chemical preservatives. Some sources report an increased incidence of liver and kidney disease in dogs on such treats.

7. Avoid any treats made in China and third world countries because they usually have no quality controls when it comes to pet foods.

8. Carrots are one of the least digestible foods when it comes to canine digestive tract. They may be fine with some dogs but it is always better to reduce the amount given or stop them if your dog has a tendency to diarrhea.

9. The best you can do with treats is to make them yourself from chunks of meat – dehydrated, backed or cooked and frozen.

10. Bully sticks, rawhide and other bulk products that sit in store bins are likely preserved with chemicals. Remember that manufacturers do not need to claim preservatives on labels and often do not.
11. Do not give treats too frequently as your dog’s digestive tract needs a rest; fasting periods are needed in the canine species. Your dog will love you anyway.

12. Buy local, buy organic, non-processed treats such as chunks of dehydrated meats or baked grain free products. When you go around stores and places that give dog treats, carry your own to avoid junk.

© Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM