Gastro Issues in Pets
Wondering what gastro issues your pets can have if they consume human foods? We investigate the foods that could be causing your pet harm.
Do you often find yourself helpless to resist the “puppy dog eyes” of your dog while you eat and end up giving out bits and pieces from your plate? Well, sometimes this simple innocuous act of love can be downright dangerous for your pet. There is a reason that animals don’t eat human food – they might get sick.
But you might argue some pets seem to love human food instead of their regular food. The texture and taste of human food might entice their taste buds, but the same cannot be said for their gastrological system. However it’s good to know that not all human foods are dangerous for your pet, and you can safely treat them with the occasional tidbit now and again.
The problem begins when you make a habit of it, and your pet starts to follow a human diet.
What Can Happen If Your Pet Consumes Human Foods?
Pets have a different digestive system than humans. If you give your pet a fat-rich food, they will have problems digesting. Fat rich foods can also lead to pancreatitis in dogs.
Additionally, some elements that are safe for human consumption can be toxic to pets. Check out Animal Fate to learn about species-specific pet diets, and read on to learn about common symptoms in dogs who have consumed human foods.
Just like it is your natural reflex feel sick when you eat something unpleasant, dogs can also vomit when they eat something bad. Dogs tend to eat very fast, particularly when devouring something super tasty, and more often than not it ends up being a human food that is heavily processed and seasoned. When a dog eats too much, too quickly, they tend to vomit.
Certain human foods are sure to trigger their gag reflex. For instance, your dog can throw up within a few minutes of consuming a greasy hamburger or any protein. Eating chocolate, raisins, or nuts can also make them empty their stomach and cause serious illness.
A change in diet can cause diarrhea in your dog. Usually, fatty foods and dairy products cause diarrhea. A food allergy might cause flatulence. Too much fat consumption might even lead to pancreatitis- a condition when dogs can’t digest normal foods.
Obesity and Nutrition Deficiency
Weight gain is common in dogs that have a habit of eating human foods regularly. Just like with humans, pet’s can suffer from various diseases for being overweight. Dogs can also develop diabetes, joint pain, or even fatal heart condition due to increased weight. If you are giving your dog pet food as a regular meal, make sure not to feed your pet table scraps.
Human foods also do not contain the correct nutrition to keep your pet healthy. If your dog is living on human food he or she might not get proper protein, carbohydrate, or fibre needed to live a healthy lifestyle. Nutritional deficiency can lead to behavioural changes, shedding, and muscle malfunction.
Unless your canine consumes something poisonous, he is likely to only suffer from diarrhea and vomiting. But if your pooch eats something toxic like chocolate, grapes or macadamia nuts, this is a whole new scenario. From trembling and seizures to panting and paralysis, consuming poisonous foods can be fatal to your pet, so it’s important to know what they definitely can’t eat.
What Foods Are Dangerous For Your Pet?
Some human foods can be downright toxic for your dog. For instance, Xylitol, avocado, peach seeds, macadamia nuts, chocolate, raisin, citrus food, alcohol, caffeine, and salty or sugary foods or drinks are a big NO for your dog. It is strongly advised to stay clear of these foods to prevent a very sick pet.
Xylitol is a chemical used to sweeten foods like gum, candy, baked products, peanut butter and even toothpaste. While you might find it appealing it can cause blood sugar failure, seizure, vomiting, or can even lead to liver failure in your dog.
You might start your day with a healthy avocado sandwich, but the same can be dangerous for your dog. Avocado contains a compound called persin which can trigger vomiting or diarrhea in your dog.
Chocolate has two compounds- theobromine and caffeine which are difficult to metabolize by dogs. Consumption of chocolate, especially dark chocolate can lead to diarrhea vomiting, dehydration, seizure, internal bleeding, or even death.
If you’ve ever found yourself tempted to share your ice cream with your dog on a sweltering summer day, you should know all dairy products can be harmful to them. It can cause diarrhea, vomiting, or even trigger an allergic reaction. Sticking to pet only milks and specially formulated doggy dairy products is advised.
What Human Foods Can Your Dog Eat?
Now, it might look like you can’t share many of your favourite foods with your dog, but not all human foods are toxic to your pet. There are some foods that they can consume but in moderation. Human foods that are safe for dogs include carrots, apples, plain white rice, boiled unseasoned chicken and fish, cooked unseasoned turkey and pork, unsalted peanut butter (just double check it does not contain Xylitol), cucumber, seedless watermelon, banana, green beans, and some other foods.