Giving treats to your dog is one of the many joys of having a pet. They are also a very useful tool in training. Make sure you are making healthy choices for your pet when it comes to quantity and quality of treats.
Treats are an important part of the human-animal bond, Rutter said. Rewarding your pet for desired behavior, distracting them from stressful situations, and using food to entertain high-energy pets are all good ways to use treats. In many ways, treats can be used to enhance the relationship between you and your pet. But, how much is too much?
“Just like our own snacks, treats should probably comprise no more than 10-15 percent of your pet’s diet,” Rutter said. “If you are training and anticipate needing to give your pet a lot of treats, giving them bits of their own kibble diet can be just as effective.”
Additionally, Rutter said giving too many treats can lead to pet obesity. Obesity is a problem in pets, just like it is in the human population. Many pet treats can be packed with calories, so if you aren’t careful, you could be giving your pet the human equivalent of eating a piece of cake, Rutter said. She recommended talking with your veterinarian about your pet’s caloric needs and how to choose a healthy treat for them. Additionally, Rutter said some “people foods” are okay to share with your pet.
Gresham Animal Hospital is equipped to provide the service and treatment your pet needs—all under one roof. Keep Gresham Animal Hospital in mind next time your dog or cat needs a checkup, shots, or vaccines. Give us a call at 503.666.1600 to schedule an appointment today.
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