Ask a Vet Archive

When it comes to your pet's health, there's no such thing as a dumb question. Search questions real clients have submitted to our popular Ask a Vet Q&A series, and then submit a question of your own.

  • What people food can I feed my dog or cat?

    High-quality pet foods are the best thing to feed dogs and cats. As difficult as it is for compassionate pet owners to understand, it’s important to remember that pets do not require variety in their diet the way people do. In some cases, people food can be extremely dangerous to your pet’s health.

    This is why it’s important to consult with your veterinarian about your pet’s unique nutritional requirements and special medical needs before feeding them any people food.

    That being said, we understand that sometimes those adorable faces at the dinner table are hard to resist. Here are some basic guidelines on what people foods you can and can’t feed your dog or cat.

    People foods you should never feed your dog or cat
    The number one rule for people food is-if you wouldn’t eat it, don’t feed it to your pet. This includes raw meat, fat or grease from cooked meat and questionably fresh or spoiled food. On the other hand, common human indulgences like chocolate can also harm your pet.

    People foods you can feed your dog or cat in small quantities:

    Veggies: Cooked fresh is best, but if you are using canned veggies, find cans with no or low salt. Stay away from gas producers like cabbage and limit dark leafy greens and broccoli. A great choice is green beans; most dogs love them. Green beans are loaded with vitamins, low in fat/calories and available in cans year round. Small amounts of raw carrot is another well-liked veggie.
    Fruit: Fresh fruit is best, but do not serve grapes or raisins, which can be toxic to your pet. Apples are great since they are healthy, available year round and reasonably priced.
    Cooked grains like rice and barley: Leave out the butter and salt. Watch the quantity, as grains are relatively high in calories.
    Lean cooked fresh meat: Don't serve lunchmeats since they have a lot of salt and other additives. Good choices are chicken and turkey without the skin.

    Related Articles

    State of Pet Health: Human Food for Dogs & Cats is Not a Healthy Pet Diet Choice
    Chocolate Really Can Kill Your Dog
    Keep Your Pet Safe from Household Toxins


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Behavior