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Do you feed your dog table-scraps?
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Will Draper, DVM posted:
Dogs should eat dog food. "People food" is not generally recommended for them. Like us, canines are omnivores, meaning they can eat both animal- and plant-based foods. However, our canine friends have difficulty digesting some things that we do not, including carbohydrates. Dogs' saliva doesn't carry the same enzymes for digesting carbs that our saliva carries.

In addition, some human foods can cause serious illness -- possibly death -- in dogs. For example, grapes can cause kidney failure in dogs. This also applies to their "angry cousin", the raisin. Chocolate and some coffee-based products include ingredients that can cause cardiac arrest in dogs. So they should never be part of a dog's diet. Onions and garlic can cause the destruction of red blood cells, resulting in severe and life-threatening anemia. Macadamia nuts, which are great for us, are not so great for our dogs. Even some of our favorite fruits can cause illness in dogs. Apples, peaches, tomatoes, cherries; all of these can be detrimental to your furry friend's health. There are also spices and seasonings that can wreak havoc on your dog's bodily systems -- the gastrointestinal system, his skin, and even the circulatory system, in some instances.

Bottom line: it's best to stick with dog food for your dogs. Your veterinarian may recommend homemade diets for pets with certain medical conditions, like allergies or kidney disease. But unless this is the case, it's better to be safe than sorry.

Has anyone out there ever given human food to a pet for any reason? If so, what was the reason? What was the result?
Dr. Will
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ponyrun2 responded:
I have, on occasion, given my large dogs (50 pounds) a small taste of my meal if there's a bite or two left I'm not interested in finishing... I don't think I have a real reason why, I guess sometimes I'm a sucker for those puppy-dog eyes....

I can actually leave a plate of food unattended when I go briefly to the kitchen and the older dogs won't touch it... can't do that anymore with the new puppy

People-food, in our case, probably makes up less than 1 or 2% of their total diet.... it's not an everyday occurence...

I also make sure they stay out of the kitchen while I'm cooking so they don't pick up anything that might have dropped on the floor (and so I don't trip over them)....

Over the years I have probably given my dogs a taste of most things... meat, rice, mac & cheese, saltine crackers, carrots, green beans, cheese (they'd kill each other over a slice of cheese), fast-food burgers (making sure they don't get the onions - I had one dog that loved the pickles), french fries, etc.... On the rare morning I've run out of dog food I've even made them plain popcorn to hold them until I could get to the store... just this morning I realized I was out of dog biscuits (they get 1 a day when I go to work) so they each got a slice of American cheese instead...

The only times we've had to deal with "dietary indiscretion" is on the VERY RARE chance they get into the kitchen trashcan... and, even then, it's only resulted in a short bout of diarrhea.... this is the only time (diarrhea) I will ever cook for my pets and they get boiled chicken & rice for a couple of days...
 
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FISHINAT7 replied to ponyrun2's response:
some times we share a steak and a taste of what ever I may be drinking. nothing to bad though.
 
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FISHINAT7 replied to FISHINAT7's response:
I always drink bottled water.sometimes strawberry flvrd.
 
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delight203 responded:
I have given my dog people food too. As others have stated not very much or very frequently. It is so hard to resist those eyes....it is like they are say "Please mom? Just a little taste?"
 
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121sweetie replied to delight203's response:
Don't freak out-- but as a child we had a dog who lived on nothing but table scraps. Keep in mind this was the 60's-70's, and he lived to be about 15 years old, so I guess it didn't kill him, he actually died as a result of falling down the stairs in his old age. I wouldn't do that today, but think about it, before the invention of commercial dog food--what did people feed their dogs?
 
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Will Draper, DVM replied to 121sweetie's response:
I hear ya, 121sweetie. It's like seat belts when I was a kid...we never wore them, yet we felt safer in the car then than we do now! Times change, and so do we.
Dr. Will
 
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happyhorseman responded:
As usual the truth lies somewhere in the middle. we know what is toxic to our dogs and cats, and give them a high quality food along with "table scraps". I had a vet tell me not to give our dog raw hamburger, but in the next breath tell me how they will eat rotting meat and that their digestive system is geared to that. Whaaat?? Do some in depth research on what goes into commerccial dog food and you will be amazed and probably sick! there is a lot of truth to feeding a high grade dog food in that your pooch will get much more nutrition and eat less along with less health problems in the long run.
we live in upper north east North Dakota, have a purebread Siberian Husky female. She is allowed to roam free,as we are on a farm and have wide open spaces for her to run. A dog's heaven so to speak. We also have four cats... the dog is a better hunter than the cats are. she kills and eats mice, digs up pocket gophers and eats them. dogs have been killing and eating their food for quite some time now, along with eating the rotting flesh of dead animals, and we think we need to improve on that??!!! many of the commercial dog foods today are a menace to their health. Again I urge you to check out what is in most dog foods and how they are processed. You will be sick at the thought of feeding it to your pet. I am not trying to sell any product, or push anyone toward a certain food or feeding program, but I will say we buy a high quality dog food that is around $30.00 a bag and is aprox 35 lbs. she is allowed to eat free choice and one bag will last us close to two months; believe it or not. Now as i said she kills and eats a lot of fresh meat, mostly mice now that we are in the middle of winter here. A short time ago we had to put our male Sibe down due to kidney failure. he was only 8 years old and we fed him a well known brand name cheap dog food. He was not a hunter as our female is, so he only ate the dog food. We did a huge amount of research on commercial foods and found that is was very possible that is what caused his demise. Although we can't prove it, what we learned from our research, the dots connected in an uncanny way. Good luck!
 
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Heidi1938 responded:
Having had 7 dogs and all have eaten table food. Back in the 50's and 60's dog food was not on the market that much. Our first dog was a Terrier who never ate dog food. Her diet was whatever we were having for supper. It included meat, vegetables potatoes and salad. She lived to the ripe old age of 18. So all this about no people food is very confusing to me. I am aware of some of the few foods not to feed her such as chocolate grapes and raisins. I am care full but it seems like the list in the article I read is excessive.
 
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rockjdog responded:
yes I do feed my dogs scraps. Also I have had vets tell me to feed them apples as a treat or to get them to take a pill.
I also had a vet suggest putting vegetables in their food for weight loss.So we added green beans and carrots.

is there a link to a list of foods that dogs cant eat ? Choc, coffee, grapes I already knew but apples I did not know and it seems at least one vet did not know either.
 
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MikkieKim responded:
I do give my terrier a few people items in tiny quantities, in addition to regular, no-preservative dog food which I keep fresh in the fridge: apple, green veg, plain (no sugar) yogurt, cheese, peanut butter in his Kong, rice. He absolutely adores them all, and at 10 years old, he is a mean, lean barking machine with too much energy for his own good. (Probably largely genetic.) I of course avoid the toxic items that you listed. I keep him slim; obesity is a real enemy to man and beast alike. So far, so good. I do know, however, that my pooch has rising liver enzyme values and an enlarged heart, so I know his robustness won't last forever.
 
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EmilyTeacherHealer responded:
We have had dogs my whole life, most of them big dogs. We have always fed them table scraps along with a good quality dry dog food. Every dog I have ever owned (except for the door dasher that ran in front of a car) has lived well into its teens (12 -16) with no major health problems. I'm sticking to a winning formula.

The dog I have now nearly died from eating a pan of overcooked onions rings that the teenagers fed her. She had to be treated with cortisone for hives all over her body and down her throat that were compromising her breathing. Up until then I did not know about onions as a problem.

As for commercial food, please be aware that our pets should not be eating corn or wheat, both of which are a major ingredient in most supermaket foods and even in some foods you get from the vet. Buying a high quality food with meat (not meat by-products) as the major ingredient makes a huge difference. No one believes my 60 pound dog is 7 1/2 years old. She looks and has the energy of a 2 year old.

Switching from corn/wheat based foods virtually eliminates gas problems caused by the body trying to digest the undigestible. The amount of waste to clean up is so much smaller, and a 30 pound bag lasts us 2 months at 2 level cups of food per day supplemented with table scraps.

I had my last dog, a great dane mix who weighed 120 pounds at his prime, for 16 years. God willing I will have my current dog, a pit mix, for at least that long. She is the nicest dog I have ever owned and well worth the premium food.
 
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greenpat responded:
My first dog lived until he was 15, and I often fed him leftover meat mixed with his dog food. Didn't seem to adversely impact him at all. My current dog is 7, and every day she gets meat / fish / poultry left over from our dinner mixed with her dog food. I've also on occasion added rice and cheese. No apparent ill effects, except that she's just a little overweight (but not obese). In fact, she now won't eat her dry dog food (at supper time) unless there is some kind of left over meat mixed in with it. Maybe we have created a monster?
 
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MoonBaby80 responded:
I am totally against giving cats or dogs human food. My in-laws give their golden lab human food. I tell my husband that its wrong to do it. He tells me that its fine. He disagree all the time about this subject.
 
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DPinon1959 responded:
Dr. Draper:

I give my small dog boiled, skinless breast of chicken every evening because he does not like to eat the dog food in the evening. Is this type of food just as bad as the other human foods?


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