Before delineating the human foods that are safe for pets, itís important to define what we mean when we say that these foods are safe. Some people choose to put their pets on raw food diets, which entail regularly feeding a variety of human foods. These diets are growing in popularity- but remain controversial due, in part, to the difficulty in regulating the diets properly.
When feeding human food to your pets, it is extremely important to consider your petís nutritional needs and their digestive capabilities. Dogs and cats with certain medical conditions require special diets and may not be able to consume some of the foods that appear on this list. It's important that you discuss your petís medical condition and dietary restrictions before making any decisions that affect your pet's diet.
The following list details the foods that are acceptable to give to your pet. Keep in mind that each of these items should only be fed to your pet in small amounts and as part of a balanced diet.
A beloved snack that you and your pets can both enjoy, cheese is an acceptable food for your pets when served in small quantities. If you remember to serve your cat or dog only small amounts of cheese- it can actually serve as a fine source of calcium. Though a bit of cheese wonít seriously harm your pet- it should definitely not be served in large quantities and may still make them a bit gassy. This can be solved by finding lactose-free cheese products, though even lactose-free cheese should only be fed in moderation.
Canned salmon is a safe snack that both cats and dogs can enjoy. In fact, it can even provide a range of health benefits. An excellent source of Omega 3 fatty acids, salmon can help keep your petís coat healthy and helps support immune system function. Despite the many benefits of feeding your pet fish- you should avoid feeding them any raw fish, as it can cause a vitamin deficiency that can put their life in danger.
Like salmon, eggs make a great snack for pets- but only when they are cooked properly. Raw eggs and salmon both contain the enzymes that prevent the proper absorption of certain essential nutrients; however, raw eggs also carry an added risk of salmonella contamination. Cooked eggs, on the other hand, can be a great source of protein, selenium, and riboflavin.
This snack along with other legumes and leafy greens are safe to feed your pet in small amount. Cats can enjoy a small vegetarian snack- but because they are primarily carnivorous, their intake should be considerably more limited than their canine counterparts. Dogs' digestive tracts allow them to better enjoy these vegetables and the vitamins and minerals they offer.
These are particularly good snacks when frozen- though freezing the fruit may cause it to lose some nutritional value. This shouldnít matter, however, since you shouldnít feed your pet more than a small amount of banana in one sitting. Though not the best thing for your pet, they can definitely provide a quick and easy sweet treat.
As stated, cats and dogs have considerably different dietary needs. This means that there are types of food which may be more acceptable to feed to your cats than to your dogs and vice versa. Hereís a short list of additional food items that can be fed to each animal in small quantities.
Lean Deli Meats
For more ideas on what to feed your pet, check out this list of pet-safe recipes or this article on picking the right food for your cat.
Disclaimer: This article is for entertainment purposes only. Consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your pet's diet.