20 Natural Treats For Your Dog

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Since dog owners want what’s best for their dogs, they usually spend a lot of money on manufactured dog food and treats. However, there is a number of healthy and delicious human foods that you can share with your dog without spending a lot of time, money or effort.

Here are 20 great ideas for natural dog treats that will definitely leave your dog wanting more:

 

1. ICE POPS

Ice pops are, without a doubt, one of the best summer treats you can prepare for your dog. Apart from being super tasty, ice pops will help cool down your furry friend during hot sunny days and keep them safe from dehydration.

Since man’s best friend is covered in fur and some pooches have an especially hard time in hot weather, frozen ice pops will really mean the world to them. Of course, we all know that dogs enjoy eating (and could delight in their favorite foods for hours on end), and ice pops are bound to become their favorite treats.

If you really want to spoil your pooch, give them ice pops made from leftover meat or try peanut butter pops. The possibilities are endless, and all you have to do is use your imagination and watch your pup happily chew on their delicious summer treat.

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You may think that carrots are reserved for bunnies, but man’s best friend is likely going to enjoy them as well. Keeping in mind that the majority of dogs would eat anything despite the fact that many human foods are poisonous to dogs, you can surprise them and give them an occasional carrot.

Not only are carrots perfectly safe for dogs, but these delicious veggies are also natural toothbrushes that will keep your pooch’s teeth healthy. Understandably, just because carrots are full of vitamins and minerals doesn’t mean your dog should eat excessive amounts of them. Treats should always remain treats – they should never replace your dog’s meals.

Most importantly, when you introduce new food into your dog’s diet, give them small portions and make sure they are fine with dietary changes. Some dogs can show signs of discomfort after eating carrots, including stomach aches and diarrhea.

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3. FROZEN BANANA

When it comes to foods, dogs are not that different than humans. Of course, we cannot feed our furry friends human foods because the majority of foods we eat are toxic to dogs, but there are some exceptions. Luckily for pooches, bananas are one of them.

If you really want to make a super tasty dessert for your best friend, one of the easiest treats you can prepare them is frozen banana mixed with natural yogurt. Needless to say that you should never go overboard with doggy treats, but an occasional frozen banana is an amazing nutritional boost for your pup.

Frozen bananas won’t make your dog sick or overweight, and there’s basically nothing to worry about if you give them treats in moderate amounts – just remember to opt for fat-free yoghurts that don’t contain sugar or harmful artificial sweeteners.

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4. PLAIN POPCORN

The next time you watch a movie and your dog desperately wants a bite from your popcorn bowl, feel free to share the delicious snack as popcorn is another favorite dog-friendly food. Since plain popcorn contains various beneficial minerals that will keep your dog healthy and satisfied, don’t hesitate to surprise your dog and give them a bowl of popcorn of their own.

However, there are a few things you need to pay attention to. For starters, when giving your dog popcorn, make sure that it contains no butter, sugar or salt. You might have heard that salt is poisonous to dogs and you should really never ever feed your furry friend foods that are high in salt.

As far as butter is concerned, you should be aware that some dogs have a hard time digesting milk and other dairy products. Finally, sweet popcorn is off limits because processed sweets are also dangerous to do

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5. BERRIES

Many dog owners are uncertain whether to give berries to their furry friends or not. We hate to break it to you, but there is no definitive answer. Some berries are dangerous to man’s best friends, while others are perfectly fine and could become your dog’s next favorite treat.

The problem with berries is that some of them contain pits and should be avoided because there’s a risk of chocking. In addition, some pits are high in chemicals that could harm your dogs. In a nutshell, you should never give your dog cherries, holly berries, baneberries, mistletoe berries, and the like.

However, the berries that are safe for dog consumption will do wonders for your furry friend’s health – they may lower the risk of cancer, heart disease, and other serious health problems.

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6. BEEF OR CHICKEN STRIPS

Cooked beef or chicken strips are amazing for dog training based upon rewards because they will give your pooch a reason to try their hardest and to comply with all your requests. Understandably, you can prepare them a special treat for no apparent reason, but if you are looking for ways to make your dog perform at their very best, you cannot go wrong with beef or chicken strips.

Whenever you are introducing new foods into your dog’s diet, make sure to do it slowly because canines may experience problems with human foods. Also, buy meat without visible fat and never give your dog foods with seasonings and sauces.

As far as the nutritional benefits are concerned, lean meat is an excellent source of protein that will boost your dog’s energy levels and keep them healthy and fit.

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7. CHOPPED LIVER

Chopped liver is yet another exceptional treat used in reward-based training. Not only will your dog be motivated and eager to listen to you and obey commands, but they will also delight in one of the tastiest dog-friendly foods out there. Dogs especially like liver because the treat is super smelly and they can’t wait to get their paws on it after a hard day of training.

Though liver is cheap and easy to prepare, you need to be careful when giving your dog this delicious treat. Namely, liver is packed with vitamin A and can, therefore, be toxic to dogs. You should be careful not to feed your dog too much liver – experts recommend no more than 1 g of fresh liver per kg of body weight per day.

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8. EGGS

We have all heard stories about how eggs are harmful and should be avoided as much as possible, but science says eggs are not bad for us; on the contrary. We now know that eggs do not raise cholesterol levels, and that they are one of the best sources of healthy fats and protein in the world.

Doctors and nutritionists have started urging people to include eggs in their diets, and the same goes for dogs. Of course, this does not imply that eggs should replace healthy dog food, but make sure to feed your dog eggs from time to time.

Also, eggshells can benefit your dog’s health and have a particularly positive effect on their bones and teeth. In case you’re worried about salmonella (though research says eggshells are not a source of the infection), boil the shells before placing half a teaspoon of them into your pooch’s meal.

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9. SQUASH

Believe it or not, dogs are absolutely crazy about squash. Owners have reported that their pups especially like cooked pumpkin and we know for a fact that homemade pumpkin pies are amazing for the canine digestive system.

If your dog is suffering from constipation, give cooked pumpkin a shot and watch all their troubles go away. Besides from helping their digestive system, cooked pumpkin is a treat your dog will never forget.

Of course, there’s more to squash than cooked pumpkin and all you have to do is show some creativity in the kitchen and surprise your beloved pet with a delicious dessert. We advise you not to feed them raw squash since dogs may have problems digesting raw foods. Instead, cook the squash and rest assured that your dog will enjoy the healthy treat.

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10. GREEN BEANS

Even though your dog will be thrilled to eat all the green beans they can, there are a few things you should do in order to ensure your pooch’s safety. Don’t take this the wrong way though – ASPCA says green beans are perfectly safe for dogs, but you don’t want your furry friend to experience stomach problems after eating the veggie.

Give your dog a few green beans as a treat, but make sure not to overdo it; dogs should be fed larger quantities of green beans only if the veggie is grated in a food processor. You can even grow your own green beans and give your best friend a treat straight from the garden, but don’t forget to thoroughly wash the beans before giving them to your pup.

More importantly, avoid overripe green beans as they are not easy to digest and may harm your dog’s digestive system.

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11. RED APPLES

Apples are one of the healthies and most popular fruits in the world and they are, luckily, not only reserved for humans. The next time you want to reward your dog with a delicious snack, don’t think twice about serving them an apple.

It would be best to opt for organic apples in order to keep your dog safe from dangerous pesticides or waxy coatings that could cause mouth or stomach irritation. Moreover, don’t give your dog apple seeds and stems as they could also lead to stomach upset, or worse – if eaten in large amounts.

Since there are so many ways to prepare apples, we leave it up to your imagination to surprise your dog with an outstanding dessert, but we do have to warn you not to feed them large quantities of dried apples as they could result in digestive problems.

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12. KALE

Despite the fact that not many humans would list kale as their favorite food, it seems that dogs adore the healthy veggie. As a matter of fact, they like kale so much that they don’t care whether it’s raw or cooked. Understandably, this leaves you with open hands as to how you will prepare and serve the delicious treat to your furry buddy.

Kale is one of the healthies food in the world, and feeding your pup the leafy green will have a positive impact on their health. One of the most important things you should know is that eating kale on a regular basis significantly lowers the risk of cancer in both humans and dogs.

We advise you to include kale in your dog’s diet – and give it a go yourself.

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13. FISH

When your dog looks at you with those big eyes in order to eat some of your food, and fish happens to be in your plate, don’t hesitate to share a meal with your best friend. Fish is one of the best human foods you can give your dog, and the right type of fish can significantly boost your pup’s health.

Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, fish will keep your furry pet’s joints working properly and their fur healthy and shiny.

Although fish will undoubtedly have a positive impact on your dog, there is something you have to do before feeding them fish: never give your dog raw fish as it can contain bacteria that could cause food poisoning – this is especially important when serving them salmon. On the other hand, if you cook the fish, there’s no way the parasite will harm your dog.

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14. PUMPKIN

We have already mentioned the fact that dogs can’t keep their paws off cooked pumpkin, but our furry friends actually enjoy eating the fruit in all shapes and forms. Pumpkins are packed with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients and your dog will greatly benefit from eating the bright orange fruit.

It may seem like preparing pumpkin is hard and takes a lot of time, but all you really need is canned pumpkin to make your dog happy. Doctors and nutritionists agree that canned pumpkin has the same amount of nutrients as fresh pumpkin, so there’s no need to go to the trouble of preparing the treat yourself.

Since canned pumpkin is basically puree, you can also experiment and mix it with other ingredients to create the perfect doggy treat.

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15. APPLES

Like humans, dogs can also be lactose intolerant, which means that they cannot properly digest milk and dairy products. Understandably, if your dog suffers from this condition, avoid feeding them cheese. On the other hand, if you are certain that your furry friend is perfectly fine with eating cheese, you have just found another delicious dog-friendly snack.

Always choose low-fat types of cheese and never give them too much dairy products as they could cause digestive problems. Generally speaking, the lower the fat and lactose level of the cheese, the more likely it will be for your dog to consume them without experiencing stomach upset.

You should not give your dog cheese on a regular basis as treats should be reserved for special occasions. Moreover, as delicious as they may be, human foods should never replace high-quality dog food.

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16. CANTALOUPE

Cantaloupe is by far the most popular melon in the United States, and humans are not the only ones who could eat this healthy fruit non-stop.

Though dogs would probably eat any human food, we cannot deny that they seem to know which foods are especially good for them. Take cantaloupes as an example – they are packed with vitamins and minerals that keep your dog’s eyes healthy and they may apparently reduce the risk of various types of cancer. On top of it all, they are absolutely delicious and you might have a hard time explaining to your dog that enough cantaloupe is really enough.

These superfoods are also excellent for your pets because they are non-allergic, meaning your dog will have no problem digesting their favorite treat.

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17. LEAFY GREENS

We have already pointed out that kales are extremely healthy and safe for dogs, but we failed to mention that you should definitely include more leafy greens in your dog’s diet. Not only are leafy greens beneficial to humans, but they can also do wonders for your best friend’s health.

Loaded with minerals, vitamins and antioxidants, leafy greens are powerhouses when it comes to health and they will have an enormous impact on your dog’s well-being. Besides, you won’t have to force your pooch to eat their veggies – they will enjoy every second of it.

If we haven’t persuaded you to incorporate leafy greens in your pup’s diet, you should also know that these super-vegetables may significantly reduce the risk of many cardiovascular and inflammatory problems, as well as keep your four-legged buddy safe from cancer.

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18. WATERMELON

Despite the widespread misconception that watermelons are basically only water and sugar, these tasty fruits are actually one of the best foods you and your dog could possibly eat. Apart from being an excellent source of lycopene, a chemical that prevents cardiovascular disease and cancer, watermelons are loaded with many beneficial vitamins that will boost your pup’s health.

Of course, if you are looking for a delicious treat to give your dog during hot summer days, there’s no need to look any further. Not only will watermelons keep your pooch safe from dehydration, but these super fruits will also refresh them and keep them happy in hot weather.

Besides, watermelons are easily available and affordable, which means you won’t have to spend a lot of time and money to prepare the perfect summer treat for your four-legged friend.

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19. BRUSSELS SPROUTS

If you have been reluctant to include Brussels sprout into your diet, now is the perfect time: the leafy green is one of the best veggies you and your dog could possibly eat together. Like the majority of vegetables, Brussels sprout is also super healthy, packed with vitamins and minerals, and serves as an excellent protection against all sorts of diseases.

When preparing Brussels sprout for yourself, feel free to share some of it with your dog as canines can largely benefit from both the cooked Brussels sprout and the raw veggie. How you will prepare the veggie is solely up to you, but be certain that your dog will enjoy both versions of the nutrient—loaded Brussels sprout. Of course, don’t feed your dog large quantities of Brussels sprouts as they can cause diarrhea in canines – the perfect amount would be three Brussels sprouts per day – or less.

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20. SWEET POTATOES

Apart from being an outstandingly healthy vegetable, sweet potatoes are also considered tasty desserts and your dog is bound to fall in love with them. As a matter of fact, sweet potatoes are so delicious that your furry friend will probably beg for more every time you decide to reward them with this superfood.

Packed with vitamins, minerals and other nutrients, sweet potatoes will definitely benefit your dog in more ways than one and we recommend giving them a shot and incorporating them in your pup’s diet. Canines should be given dehydrated sweet potatoes, but they also enjoy eating regular mashed sweet potatoes.

When it comes to portions, everything depends on the size of your dog, with smaller breeds eating half and larger up to one whole dehydrated sweet potato. Another good ideas is to mix two tablespoons of mashed sweet potatoes into your pet’s dry dog food.

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