What can I feed my dog?

Posted by Cyril. November 2nd 2017.

It’s really tempting to feed your dog snacks and treats from your plate. Remember, though, that as long as they have a quality balanced diet, they don’t really need them.

Puppies eating dog biscuits

Human food can be hard for dogs to digest, causing vomiting and diarrhoea. In the worst cases, human food can actually be toxic to dogs.

Below are some common questions we get asked about what to feed your dog:

Can my dog eat peanuts?

While regular peanuts aren’t toxic to dogs, they are very high in fat, which dogs have a tough time digesting. Too many peanuts can give your dog an upset stomach, including diarrhoea and vomiting, so saving them as a rare treat or opting for healthier options is best. The same goes for peanut butter – make sure you go for the jars meant for dogs, which are low in sodium, dairy and xylitol.

If you do decide to give your dog nuts, stick to regular unsalted peanuts. Many common nuts, including almonds, walnuts, pistachios, macadamia and pecans are toxic to dogs and can cause digestive upset. Like humans, dogs can also be allergic to nuts.

If you think your dog is ill from overeating or consuming the wrong type of nuts or may be allergic, please seek advice from your vet immediately.


Can my dog eat chocolate?

Chocolate contains theobromine. Theobromine is poisonous to dogs if large quantities are consumed. It is similar to caffeine and found in different concentrations depending on the type of chocolate. Dark or baking chocolate and cocoa powder contain the largest amount.

If your dog eats too much chocolate, symptoms can include vomiting and diarrhoea, rapid breathing and heart rate. In extreme cases, it can cause seizures and death.

Here’s what to do if your dog eats chocolate:


Can my dog eat fruit?

Dogs break down foods differently to humans, meaning that they can eat some fruits in moderation, but not all. Apples are a healthy example as they are high in fibre and low in fat, making them the ideal choice for older pets with a lower metabolism. They are also packed with vitamins that will help your dog maintain healthy bones and tissue. The same goes for oranges and pears, but remember to remove the pips. Give your dog oranges in moderation as they can cause gastrointestinal upset if too many are consumed.

Do not give grapes and raisins to your dog, as they are toxic to your pet and can cause life-threatening kidney failure.

When feeding your dog fruit, make sure you remove any core or seeds. Apple seeds contain very small amounts of cyanide, which is poisonous to both humans and animals.


Can my dog eat meat?

As appealing as it may be, a Sunday roast is not a nutritious option for your pet (though your dog may disagree!).

Dogs are naturally carnivores and meat contains tonnes of protein. Be aware, however, that excess consumption can cause stomach upset and pancreatitis.

Cooked chicken and fish are best. Give meats in small amounts and replace some of your pet’s normal daily diet. If you think your dog has been eating more than he or she should be as part of their daily diet, then it is worth checking to see if your dog is overweight.

If your dog becomes ill after eating meat, please seek advice from your vet.


In the event that your furry friend eats something they shouldn’t, make sure they’re insured for any vet visits. Visit www.argospetinsurance.co.uk to find out more and to get a quote.


Argos Limited is an Appointed Representative of Home Retail Group Insurance Services Limited which is authorised and regulated as an insurance intermediary by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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