By: Dr. Clayton Greenway, B.Sc., DVM | Nov 4, 2016
Dr. Clayton Greenway discusses what to look for when choosing treats for cats and dogs that is healthy and safe to eat. Other topics covered in this video include human food, rich treats, high fat and protein, pancreatitis, low calorie treats and obesity, raw vegetables, trialing a treat and monitoring the response, safe treats, and your personal attention.
I get a lot of questions from clients about what treats to feed their pet and I think it’s really interesting. We love our pets so we want to give them something really tasty and flavorful. It’s actually very typical for us to give them human food and this is one of the worst things we can actually do.
Some of these foods that we feed them off our plate will be very high in fat or protein and it’ll be very rich compared to that general diet that the pet typically gets. This is not good for their system, in fact, their pancreas which is an organ beside the intestine that helps digest fat and protein can become inflamed when you give them such a rich treat like that and they can get pancreatitis. This is very typical in cats and dogs so what I tell people is to try to think about a treat that’s very simple and also not very calorie-dense because we don’t want to contribute to obesity as well. I really like raw vegetables for that reason, particularly chopped-up cauliflower broccoli, or carrots into very small pieces and you want to offer them this and if you find another treat that you want to use, a general idea about treats is you want to feed just one or two of them, just for that first day and then monitor how they do on it. Watch their stools, make sure it doesn’t cause any vomiting or diarrhea. Then that treat becomes a safe treat and now you can use that.
Keep in mind that a lot of pets, they really just like getting a treat from your hand. They actually think of it as a reward, that interaction, so it doesn’t have to be that flavorful. It can be something healthy, something that’s low calorie and that’s going to be a lot better for their health because that’s what we care about here at healthcareforpets.com.
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