We here at Cockapoo Crazy know how much all of you love your dogs. Sometimes this love is shown through treats and food. This is always a fun way to show you love your pet, but we need to make good choices on treats that are healthy for our dogs. Here are a few tips on how to choose the right treats for your pooch.

Remember that there are many things in nature that dogs like to eat. Some are okay for them, others are not.  Try to find treats that have meat as the first ingredient or at least in the first three. Try to find treats that dont have processed ingredients, but are high in protein. These are closer to the natural state of food dogs should eat, and will help your pooch feel full longer.

If you would like to go natural with your dog treats, you can give fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, bits of banana, or small pieces of lean meat. Meat should be cooked to be safe, and remember that most dog’s stomachs are sensitive to red meat, if they are not used to eating it. Go with cooked chicken or fish pieces, small ones. When it comes to fish, this seems to be especially attractive to dogs as a treat when it is freeze dried. Do not feed more than a few pieces of any of these treats per day, as many dog’s have sensitive stomachs that can be upset by too much variance or rich food.

Most vets, when asked, will give you suggestions of natural treats your dog can have, but always ask your vet before starting any new treats or food that you are unsure of. Many dogs love apple, but the seeds must be avoided as they can be toxic. It is best to be safe and remove the seeds from anything you give to your dog, actually.

Other choices are melon, carrot, pumpkin pulp, and green beans. Dogs can get away with eating any of these, but all dogs may not like all choices. You are the final judge of what is best when giving food choices to your pup, but be vigilant and check if a food is toxic to dogs before giving it as a treat.

If you like, and as an added benefit to your dog, you can look for treats that have immune support and other things of that nature. There are many treats out there that boast healthier skin and coat, better breath and clean teeth, and even probiotic supplements for your dog. Just remember, whenever you are looking for any kind of treat, check all the ingredients and make sure there are no ingredients that you dont recognize.

Some things to remember about supplementing your dog’s diet with treats are; never use treats as a replacement to your dog’s food. Many treats have added sugar, which your dog loves, but has no benefit to him. Pets are becoming more obese through eating foods that are low in nutritional value. If a dog eats too many treats and table scraps, they may not want to eat their regular dog food. The problem with this is, most of the health benefits that your dog gets daily, are from his regular dog food.

In general, treats are fine for dogs and your pup will love you for them. Just make good choices when at the pet store and everyday when giving the treats to your dog. Dont overfeed and always try to stop giving too many treats or scraps if your dog is turning up his nose at his dog food. Avoid using treats in conjunction with your dog’s food, and try to use them more as a reward to good behavior and training. Also, remember that your dog will beg more if rewarded for doing so. Read the labels on any treats you buy and go natural whenever possible.

Remember, a couple of pieces of your dog’s regular kibble can always be substituted for treats, when thats all you have or in general if you are the type of person that worries about your dog’s health. Many dogs have sensitive stomachs so introducing too many different kinds of treats can be bad for your dog’s digestive health. In any case, treats should make up only a tiny portion of your dog’s daily caloric intake, around 10% at the most.

Keep in mind that no matter what choices you make for your dog, he will likely be happy with them. Your dog will love you whether you give him frozen peas or carob-covered cookies, although he may choose one over the other