Sometimes it seems like a dog will eat almost anything. It can be very tempting to share what you are eating because of those big eyes that follow every move that you make. Supplements act as a nutritional BOOST for dogs of all shapes, sizes, and levels of health. It’s at times when dogs need it the most—after a long run, being outside in summer heat or winter cold, or recovering from a surgery or illness—that supplements can be a vital ingredient to boost health and wellness. Adding nutritional toppers like bone broth to kibble, dry food, or even to raw food helps dogs thrive and strive toward being their best PAW-sible self. Bone is essentially the broth that is made after simmering bones (in our case, beef bones) for 10 plus hours. Like with Ketogenic food, people nowadays talk about bone broth as if it is a fad, trend, or “fringe diet” that popped up out of the blue. In reality, bone broth has been around for centuries if not longer, popping up at the hearths of Victorians, in the ramen of the Japanese, and in the pots of the very first people to simmer a stew. All over the world, people have been making different variations of bone broth for hundreds, if not thousands, of years. In the process of making bone broth, collagen and cartilage are boiled down, releasing anti-inflammatory nutrients like chondroitin sulfate, glucosamine, and other compounds that help joints stay strong. Additionally, bone broth contains amino acids like glycine, proline, and arginine that all have whole-body anti-inflammatory effects. Finally, the abundance of collagen in bone broth helps structure and strengthen bones.
You may find yourself tempted to slip your pal some scraps from the dinner table. Before you do, however, you should know that there are some foods you should never feed to your dog. Some of them may surprise you!
- Almost everybody knows that chocolate can be harmful to dogs and is widely known as a food you should keep away from your dog. Chocolate can also cause increased urination as well as vomiting and diarrhea It can speed also up their heartbeat and in high enough concentration, lead to a heart attack and seizures. Chocolate + your dog = a medical emergency. As soon as you realize that your dog has gotten hold of chocolate you need to take it to the animal emergency center. Your vet will most probably induce vomiting and may even want to keep your pet for a short time for observation.
- Caffeine on any kind is not good for your dog. Anything containing caffeine, such as coffee or tea can negatively stimulate their system can have a bad effect. Your dog’s heart might race which can lead to seizures or heart attacks.
- Try to avoid grapes and raisins because they simply do not agree with a dog’s digestive system. There is no exact measurement of how much they can handle so it’s best to keep all grapes and raisins away. If you don’t, you may find yourself dealing with increased urination, vomiting, and diarrhea.
- Avocadoes may be great for humans to eat but they are toxins to dogs. They contain a chemical that can damage many of the body tissues in dogs. Don’t forget that guacamole dip is made from avocadoes, so avoid it also. Symptoms of toxicity include difficulty breathing, abdominal enlargement, abnormal fluid accumulations in the chest, abdomen and sac around the heart. The amount that needs to be ingested to cause signs is unknown.
- Be extremely careful with any food that has a pit. The pits have cyanide in them making them extremely dangerous. It has the potential of overtaking the bodies of smaller dogs and can lead to death. Signs of toxicity include apprehension, dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, hyperventilation and shock. If the cyanide doesn’t harm your dog, there is still the danger of choking on the pit itself. .
- Macadamia nuts are another food to be avoided. There is a substance in the nuts that can result in a number of unpleasant effects. Dogs that have consumed as few as six to 40 nuts can show severe signs of toxicity. Dogs develop weakness, depression, vomiting, difficulty walking, tremors, abdominal pain, lameness, stiffness and/or pale gums.
- Onions, onion powder and garlic are some other foods that can wreak havoc. All forms of onion and garlic are a problem. This includes raw, dehydrated, cooked, powders or those in foods. They can break down a dog’s red blood cells and drastically decrease the oxygen that gets in to its blood. While the problems might not show up right away, they can accumulate over time. Keep an eye out for symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and a general malaise.
- Never give your dog raw fish. When fish is not cooked it can contain parasites. When a dog swallows these parasites they will attach to the wall of the intestines. Unfortunately, this is something you probably wouldn’t notice right away. It is a tricky thing to catch when your dog has these parasites. If you must feed fish to your dog, you should make sure that it’s thoroughly cooked and be sure you have removed all bones.
- Avoid bread dough. Its soft consistency may cause the dog to think that it can swallow the dough whole. The dough can then rise in your pup’s stomach and cause bloating and nausea. Pets that’ve eaten bread dough may experience abdominal pain, bloat, vomiting, disorientation and depression. As the dough rises, it expands in the stomach making it almost impossible to “vomit”. Some dogs have to have the dough removed surgically in some unusual situations.
- Dogs and alcohol are a bad combination. Their bodies simply cannot handle it. Giving a dog alcohol can very easily lead to alcohol poisoning, Signs of alcohol poisoning may include odor of alcohol on the animal’s breath, staggering, behavioral changes, excitement, depression, increased urination, slowed respiratory rate or cardiac arrest and death.
- Beware of products containing xylitol. Xylitol is a sugar-alcohol sweetener found in sugar-free human food products such as chewing gum, candy and baked goods. If a dog eats significant amounts, it can develop a sudden drop in blood sugar, which can cause weakness, lethargy, loss of coordination, collapse and seizures.
- Avoid vitamin supplements containing iron. Toxic levels of iron cause damage to the stomach and intestinal lining. It can also cause severe liver damage and heart damage. Even small amounts of iron, given over time can be harmful as dogs do not have a way to excrete excessive iron from their bodies. The best preventative care is to give your dog supplements only if directed by your veterinarian. Medications and supplements that may be safe for people can be fatal to pets. Be sure to always store supplements and medications out of reach of children and pets.