Even though we generally think that treats are just a ‘once in a while affair’ they actually add up to a large part of our pet’s diets. So, when you buy dog treats online or in person, you should check carefully to understand if you are buying healthy treats for dogs. The following is a list of some superfoods for pets and others that pack a big nutritional punch:
Honey: Natural, raw and unprocessed honey has a host of benefits for your pets. The flavonoids in honey are antioxidants that improve the immune system. It also has plenty of vitamins and minerals (including A, E, C, D and B-Complex ). It is said to soothe coughs and sore throats and are often included in the treatment of Kennel Cough. It should be noted that puppies should not be given honey at all. Dosage of honey for any dog should only be prescribed by a vet.
Turmeric: Turmeric has not been given the ‘superfood’ tag but it is extremely beneficial for both humans and pets. It has antiseptic, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. It helps to soothe the tummy and is also very good for external scrapes and wounds.
Coconut: Coconutis very good for your pet’s skin and coat.It contains fatty acids that are excellent for cognitive functioning as well. Coconut oil is said to help digestion and is both anti-bacterial and anti-fungal.
Carrot: Carrots contain Vitamin A, which is excellent for strengthening your dog’s immune system. It also contains Beta-carotene, which is an antioxidant and prevents the degeneration of eyesight later in life. When given raw, dogs love to gnaw and chomp on them, this also promotes dental health by keeping the gums and jaws strong.
Bananas are great for the stomach as they protect it from ulcers and also get rid of bacteria present in the stomach that could result in ulcers. Often called ‘nature’s energy bar’ these are a great for an energy boost.
Besides these vegetarian ingredients, some fish (like salmon) are also considered to be superfoods. Chicken liver is also nutritionally dense and has plenty of benefits for your pet. As an added benefit, pets love the taste of liver and will gobble them down without a fuss. But remember that anything, which is nutritionally-dense, needs to be fed in moderation.
So why should superfoods be included in treats?
Superfoods are nutrient dense and offer your pooch a host of benefits but they need to be doled out in moderation. Too much of these can be just as damaging as too little. Including them in pet treats is a way of ensuring your pet gets them without giving them too much. Make sure that you check the packaging for the recommended quantities to be fed to your dog and never overfeed your pet.
It is always a good idea to check with a vet before you include a superfood in your pet’s diet. Depending on factors like age and breed (among others), the vet will be able to tell you how much you need to feed him/her. If your pet has never had these before, then it is likely that the quantities will start very small and then gradually increase
The pet market is burgeoning with dog treats online including vegetarian dog treats. There are plenty of healthy dog treats available that include nutrient-dense ingredients. So, whether you are looking to buy dog food or treats, you should look at the contents and the health benefits of the ingredients. For example, dehydrated coconut chips for dogs are enjoyable for pets to chomp on and are great for their health as well.