What Every Pet Owner Should Know About Pets and People Food

Pets and people food can be a threat to pet nutrition

There’s no question that a high-quality, nutritionally balanced, life-stage appropriate pet food is the ideal diet for any pet. Although our companions don’t need quite the same range of foods and nutrients that we do, adding some variety to their diet can be fun and easy (and healthy!).

While pets and people food are generally a recipe for disaster, there are some foods that are just fine for animals to eat. The trick is knowing which ones are safe and which ones to avoid. Let the team at Rocklin Ranch Veterinary Hospital offer some guidance!

Sharing the Harvest

Many fruits and vegetables are safe for pets to eat and can add valuable micronutrients to their diet. Options include:

  • Apples
  • Berries
  • Melons
  • Bananas
  • Kiwi
  • Pumpkin
  • Carrots
  • Spinach
  • Zucchini
  • Sweet potato
  • Peas
  • Winter squash
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach
  • Green beans

In many cases, small pieces of peeled and deseeded fruit or steamed and sliced veggies (skip the butter and salt) can be a wonderful replacement for high-calorie, processed treats. Try blending up a fruit and veggie combo and freezing the liquid in ice cube trays for a fun, frozen pet snack!

A Little Goes a Long Way

Certain other people foods, such as lean cooked meats (never processed meats, as they’re too high in salt and other chemicals), peanut butter, and low-fat dairy products are safe for pets in moderation. Be aware that for some pets, even small amounts of fatty foods can trigger a bout of pancreatitis, a dangerous and potentially fatal inflammatory condition, so skip the bacon, gravy, and other high-calorie foods.

When Pets and People Food Don’t Mix

By now, most pet owners are aware that chocolate is poisonous to pets, but this isn’t the only food that poses a risk. Never let your pet eat or gain access to any of the following people foods:

  • Xylitol (found in sugar-free candy, gum, baked goods, peanut butter, toothpaste, and more)
  • Onions/garlic
  • Grapes/raisins
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Avocado
  • Rhubarb
  • Uncooked dough

If you’re concerned that your pet has eaten something they shouldn’t, please don’t hesitate to contact us or bring them in to our hospital. If an emergency occurs after hours, please see our website for recommendations for the nearest veterinary emergency hospital.

Bon Appétit!

Remember, the bulk of your pet’s calories and nutrition should come from their regular pet food. If you have any questions or concerns about pets and people food or if you’d like to schedule an appointment, please give us a call. Our team is always happy to help!