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'People' Foods Your Dog Can Eat

As a rule, keep your food to yourself. But as a rare treat, these foods may be OK.

About Home-Cooked Diets

If you're thinking about giving your dog people food that you cook for its regular meals, you have your work cut out for you. 

Home-cooked diets can be tricky, because most general practice veterinarians have little nutrition training. Weeth says she has no problem with human-grade food, as long as the animal is getting a complete and balanced diet.

But many recipes in books or on the Internet by nonveterinarians and nonveterinarian nutritionists are “too general and vague,” Weeth says.

There’s plenty of room for error if you select the wrong foods. In a growing animal, this can be life-threatening. In adult animals, it can cause nutrient deficiencies that can take months or years to show up.

Canine Cravings?

Do dogs crave “people” food more than dog food? Or is that human projection?

Cruz says canine taste buds are so well-developed that “I’m sure many of our foods are much more exciting. But if they never knew there were barbecued hamburgers out there, they would probably be very happy with what gets put in their bowl on a regular basis.”

And, Cruz says, remember this: “A dog will be just as happy with a pat on the head, playing ball, or going for a walk in the park as he will be for getting people food as treats.”

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Reviewed on September 13, 2010

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