Can I Give My Dog? Answers for Dog Owners Fri, 24 Oct 2014 05:59:11 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Can I Get My Dog Chick Peas? Tue, 14 Oct 2014 04:48:40 +0000 Can Dogs Eat Chickpeas?Chickpeas are considered a health food because these legumes contain fairly high levels of protein. At first glance, it seems that chick peas are a good snack for any 4-legged […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Chick Peas?Chickpeas are considered a health food because these legumes contain fairly high levels of protein. At first glance, it seems that chick peas are a good snack for any 4-legged friend. But is this really the case?

Since we often use chickpeas for special recipes, especially for making hummus or in salads, our dogs naturally want a taste. But a potential problem for dogs arises when other ingredients are mixed in with the generally bland garbanzo beans as part of a yummy snack.

Let’s examine the benefits of this delicious and healthy food. We’ll also discuss situations where chick peas would be appropriate for your dog as well as times where it is just not recommended.

Can I Give My Dog Chick Peas? Answer: Yes, cooked & plain only

As long as you are feeding your dog cooked chickpeas only, you will likely have nothing to worry about.

A occasional serving of these creamy beans is fine but they shouldn’t be a substantial part of a healthy canine diet. Perhaps chick peas can even help aid your dog’s digestion and work in much the same way a pumpkin serving sometimes helps.

Unfortunately, many folks like to buy chick peas in the form of pre-made hummus which isn’t well suited for dogs. Instead, consider feeding your them straight chickpeas and do so in moderation. Store bought hummus should really be avoided for reasons we will discuss.

It’s best to purchase the dried or canned variety and be sure to fully cook those beans for Fido. It should also be noted that the canned types usually contain a lot of salt, so you may wish to thoroughly rinse the chickpeas off before serving them as a snack.

Chickpeas & Hummus

People like to literally spice up their foods. This is especially truth for a healthy but bland tasting food like chick peas. While your dog will surely appreciate anything you throw at them, you should definitely hold the hummus. A careful look at the label will reveal a long list of questionable or processed ingredients, besides it’s a fairly expensive way to reward a canine.

Making your own hummus, mashing it up but keeping it totally plain, would not only be safer for your dog but also much cheaper than buying it from your local supermarket’s perimeter isle.

Another danger associated with this legume is what people like to complement it with. If not hummus, it’s garlic and onions which are known to go well with chickpeas, for people. But serving those to your dog could be a terrible thing. This is why we can’t stress enough that you should stick to the basics and serve it in basic form.

How do you serve chickpeas to your dog?

Source of Protein & Fiber

Chickpeas contain a good amount of both protein and fiber which could benefit your dog. It may also serve to aid their bowel movements in the case of canine constipation. Further, you’ll be happy to know that the beans are without any saturated fat, cholesterol or sodium. Do watch for added salt on the canned labels, however.

Of course, as with most beans, the most common downside of your dog consuming these would be some excess gas. This is one reason why we always start out by serving a small portion when introducing any new food to our dogs. Everyone knows that beans can have the effect of increasing flatulence and your dog is not immune.

Conclusion on ChickPeas

Plain chick peas can make for a wonderful supplement to a healthy canine diet when served in moderation. We can’t find any valid reason why you cannot feed chickpeas to your dog. The main point is that they should consume this snack in a pure form which you, yourself, may not enjoy as much.

But just because you probably don’t eat it plain doesn’t mean your dog won’t enjoy it. Yes, chickpeas can seem quite tasteless for humans but that’s exactly how you should serve it to your dog. Often this means keeping the store bought hummus all for yourself.

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Can I Give My Dog Calamine Lotion? Mon, 29 Sep 2014 02:04:29 +0000 Can I Give My Dog Calamine Lotion?Dogs are vulnerable to skin allergies. Many people are asking about using Calamine lotion as a treatment option. These types of questions tend to pop up when the weather gets […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Calamine Lotion?Dogs are vulnerable to skin allergies. Many people are asking about using Calamine lotion as a treatment option. These types of questions tend to pop up when the weather gets nice because most dogs are spending lots of time outdoors.

If your dog has a skin irritation you’ll want to treat it because they may make it worse by scratching at it. Calamine lotion has been around forever and works well for many people. It would be nice to be able to use it on a dog as well rather than having to buy some other expensive medicine. Going to a vet is expensive.

We need to find out exactly what’s in this famous lotion in order to know if it’s okay for canine usage. And if Calamine isn’t safe for dogs then what are some alternatives?

Can I Give My Dog Calamine Lotion? Answer: No

If your dog licks off any Calamine lotion they will likely get an upset stomach.

Unfortunately, the use of Calamine lotion for canines is very similar to the problematic application of Neosporin for pets. Because it’s applied topically, it’s likely your dog will end up consuming some which is definitely not good. This lotion is among the most widely used topical applications but it was specifically designed for people only.

There are, however, many alternatives to Calamine lotion which are most likely even more effective. We’ll discuss those further down the page.

Calamine Lotion Ingredients

Zinc oxide is the primary active ingredient in Calamine lotion or Caladryl. This metallic element is common an many household products and even lots of foods. However, too much can have negative effects on dogs. Calamine contains a relatively high level of zinc. It certainly shouldn’t be tasted or swallowed by anyone.

Unless you can control your dog’s actions, at all times during treatment, then we would recommend against using Calamine lotion.

Potential Side Effects

The most common side effect of a dog consuming some Calamine is an upset stomach. This can be accompanied by vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration, discoloration of the gums and a general sense of being lethargic.

It’s unlikely your dog would ingest an amount which would trigger more serious symptoms. For your information these can include liver damage, anemia, kidney damage, heart problems and seizures.

Zinc is highly toxic for pets but, for example, swallowing a penny would be much more of a concern than tasting some Calamine lotion. In any case, if you’ve already witnessed your dog licking at some of this lotion then you should closely monitor them. If your dog takes a turn for the worse, then bring them to the vet as soon as possible.

Alternatives to Calamine

A veterinarian may recommend the use of a steroid or antibiotic for treating a wide variety of canine skin problems. But there are many natural remedies which may be just as effective.

Lemon has anti-inflammatory properties which can cut down on itching. This is easy to apply to the affected area and doesn’t make a mess. Several teas, such as basil and mint varieties, can alleviate skin discomfort by acting as a type of anesthetic.

You can also try bathing your dog in either oatmeal or baking soda. Mix either of these into their warm bath while paying special attention to the areas most affecting them. If you see results, you can apply either as a paste throughout the day using a mixture with water.

All of these can be more effective and safer than Calamine lotion. There are over-the-counter options which may help your dog as well. Some people use Benadryl but we don’t because we consider it too dangerous for pets. If you use it please be extra careful with the dosage.

 K9 Calamine Conclusion

With so many alternatives to Calamine lotion, you shouldn’t use it for your dog’s allergies, itchiness or any other skins problems. The zinc content, if licked, won’t sit well with them which could cause more trouble.

If your dog is experiencing recurring rashes, hives or some other persistent issues then you should find out why. Sometimes we put too much effort into treating symptoms rather than tackling the underlying problem.

It could be that you may need to take them to the vet for a closer look. Certainly using calamine for an ongoing outbreak won’t cure your dog.

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Can I Give My Dog Onions? Sat, 13 Sep 2014 23:57:31 +0000 Can Dogs Eat Onion?Most people know that onions are not something you should give a dog. Since they’re so dangerous we are going to cover this topic. Just because it’s common knowledge that […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Onions?Most people know that onions are not something you should give a dog. Since they’re so dangerous we are going to cover this topic. Just because it’s common knowledge that your dog shouldn’t eat an onion, doesn’t mean there isn’t anything to learn.

The danger is in the details. Onions can be very toxic for canines but do you know why? All pet owners should learn more because most households are using onion as an ingredient in many of their most common meals.

It’s also important to know the symptoms and health effects when it comes to onions. This popular vegetable ranks up there among the worst things you can feed to a dog. Pets can get gravely ill from it.

Can I Give My Dog Onions? Answer: No Way!

Your dog’s immune system could be seriously harmed if they eat onions. It’s poison for them.

A tiny amount of onion probably won’t harm most dogs. But, in truth, your dog could easily suffer from eating just a regular serving of onions. Since it can be so deadly, we advise that you never allow your dog to even get close enough to taste any.

Onions along with garlic, leeks, shallots and chives belong to the Allium family. Most of these foods should be avoided when it comes to our 4-legged friends.

Fact: It doesn’t matter what variety or how you serve onions, cooked or raw, they are off limits to your pet. Even onion powder is a no-no.

Onions are a K9 Killer

Onion ranks up there with grapes, raisins and chocolate in terms of toxicity for dogs. It’s difficult to know how much can put a dog in serious danger but let’s not find out in the first place.

We do know that onions can cause condition known as Hemolytic Anemia which can be fatal, not to mention expensive to treat. The toxic elements of an onion, specifically Thiosulphate, can destroy your dog’s red blood cells. These important cells deliver oxygen to your dog’s organs as well as the brain.

The liver is particularly vulnerable in a K9 case of Heinz Body Anemia.

Symptoms or The Lack Of

To make matters worse, you may not even see any effects after your dog eats some onions. Days could go by at which time you may notice a loss of appetite. Many dogs appear to be lethargic as well.

Higher amounts of onion consumption may result in dogs displaying more noticeable symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, a pale appearance, increased heart rate, a change in the color of their urine, heavy breathing, abdominal pain and/or yellowing of the gums, eyes or skin. Frustrating as it is, these can also show up as onion poisoning signs only days later.

If your dog is small they are at increased risk of reacting badly to an onion. Larger and heavier canines may be able to better tolerate such a mishap. However, no dogs should be allowed it consume it.

Onion Poisoning Plan

If you’re lucky enough to catch onion poisoning early then your dog may need some form of detoxification. Unfortunately, due to the lack of early symptoms, it’s quite possible they may require some costly blood transfusions or oxygen therapy.

In any case, onion poisoned dogs need specialized care and then close monitoring for signs their anemia is under control. By all means reach out to your vet when you’re dealing with such a serious situation. Don’t try to treat a dog, that’s consumed onions, at home because you simply can’t.

Conclusion on Onions

Never give a dog onions, either as an ingredient or by itself. Lots of dogs have died from this food. It is troublesome that such a common food can be so deadly for our beloved pets.

Serving dogs table scraps is the most common way canines come into contact with onions. Due to the seriousness of canine onion poisoning it may cause you to think twice before providing people foods to your dog in general.

If you suspect that your dog has consumed more than a small amount of onions, visit the nearest vet as soon as possible. While your pet may be fine, they will give your dog proper testing and detox treatment that only a veterinarian can provide. Prevent a tragedy by keeping your onions away from the dog!

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Can I Give My Dog Dinovite? Sun, 31 Aug 2014 03:51:52 +0000 Can Dogs Benefit from Dinovite?Dinovite is a well known health supplement because of all the aggressive marketing campaigns they run. We get asked a lot about using it to improve health or treat pesky […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Dinovite?Dinovite is a well known health supplement because of all the aggressive marketing campaigns they run. We get asked a lot about using it to improve health or treat pesky K9 conditions. Should you give your dog Dinovite? It’s time we finally address the issue.

Their products claim to boost the immune system, reduce allergies, improve skin and coat as well as enhance digestion in dogs of all sizes. Interestingly, since Dinovite contains bacteria and digestive enzymes we actually consider it a type of dog formulated probiotic in addition to being a supplement.

One problem is that Dinovite tightly controls who can sell their products. They aren’t found on PetSmart, Petco or Amazon which makes objective reviews more difficult. So here’s what we think!

Can I Give My Dog Dinovite? Answer: There are cheaper & better options

While your dog may benefit from Dinovite, we believe there are products out there which are a better overall value.

There is nothing very special about Dinovite’s most popular product which is a powder formula. The primary ingredient is ground up flax-seeds followed by kelp and various yeast cultures. Their liquid version, pictured here, contains a lot of fish oil and chicken parts.

Dinovite does seem to work for many dogs and most of the reviews are positive. Of course, you can’t go by any review on the company’s website since they aren’t going to showcase anything negative there. The truth is that Dinovite relies on their brand name recognition to drive sales for what’s become an overpriced product line relative to similarly effective canine supplements.

Dinovite Hit or Miss

First off, dogs with serious medical problems should see a vet. There is no way around it. No supplement is going to turn around a serious condition.

But most dog owners going the Dinovite route are trying to treat issues like allergies from grass pollen, for example. It may help your dog but based on my research, lots of folks are reporting mixed results after using Dinovite.

Their products do contain a lot of healthy elements such as vitamins, trace minerals, Omega-3 fatty acids and antioxidants. The problem is that Dinovite’s price point creates very high expectations for dog owners.

Dinovite Downside

Nobody wants to spend a significant amount of money for something they aren’t blown away by. If the product doesn’t cure their dog’s issues, you end up with some very unhappy customers.

People are also reporting cases of diarrhea after giving their dogs Dinovite. Other dogs, particularly fussy types, don’t actually like the taste of Dinovite. Another problem is that the liquid version smells really awful (people and dogs both agree).

The good news is that there are now so many dog treatments for shedding, itching, stinkiness, joints, allergies and general health. We’ll make some suggestions here.

Best Dinovite Alternatives

The Missing Link has a highly rated line of supplements which are much cheaper than Dinovite. You can target your dog’s coat or skin with their Ultimate Skin & Coat Dog Supplement or try their joint health and digestive solution called Ultimate Hip, Joint & Coat Dog Supplement.

Our dogs have benefited from both of those and so we highly recommend them. Our neighbors swear by Nupro Dog Supplement by Nutri-Pet Research for their Pug.

Some say Dinovite’s products are more fresh than other supplements because they don’t sit in third party warehouses. This is no longer true since Missing Link’s products sell like hot cakes!

Better K9 Probiotics

If you are looking for a probiotic to improve your dog’s digestion and stomach health then try one of these instead of overpriced Dinovite:

Veterinary Diets Fortiflora by Purina

Probiotic Everyday Bite Size Chews or Vetri-Mega by Vetri-Science Laboratories

These 3 products have a proven track record. You can read unbiased reviews about them on third-party websites like Amazon unlike Dinovite. All of them are also much cheaper.

Conclusion on Dinovite

There are quality supplements or probiotics that don’t break the bank. Research the recommendations throughout this article. Dinovite seems to work for some dogs but it doesn’t offer the best overall value in today’s competitive market. Save yourself an expensive disappointment.

You may also consider changing your dog’s diet. Doing so could dramatically improve canine health. Avoid dog foods containing worthless corn-based fillers or chicken by-products. Instead, get your dog a quality brand with real meat listed as the first ingredient.

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Can I Give My Dog Zucchini? Sat, 16 Aug 2014 01:01:30 +0000 Can Dogs Eat Zucchini?Zucchini is a type of squash that’s very healthy and super low in calories which makes for an attractive combination. Your dog is sure to want to partake in your […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Zucchini?Zucchini is a type of squash that’s very healthy and super low in calories which makes for an attractive combination. Your dog is sure to want to partake in your zucchini recipes. Since it is healthy why not give it to your dog, right?

We are always hearing that people foods shouldn’t be fed to dogs. As such, folks need to know if zucchini falls into that category. We are here to help.

Whether you consider this healthy food to be a fruit or vegetable, it is easy to cultivate and can be incorporated into many great cuisines. It has so many uses as an ingredient in your favorite dishes. Do you want to give your dog some zucchini? We will discuss if it is appropriate for dogs to put your mind at ease.

Can I Give My Dog Zucchini? Answer: Yes

When feeding your dog zucchini, as with all people foods generally OK for K9s, it is important to use good judgement and moderation.

The simple way to give your dog zucchini is by picking up a great product called Steakhouse Beef and Zucchini Entrée Dog Food.

Zucchinis are a great source of vital nutrients especially potassium and vitamin C. If the dog food your canine routinely gets is lacking in either, perhaps this squash can compliment and enhance your dog’s diet. The low calorie count, 2 or 3 calories per slice, is a nice bonus.

Zucchinis are Great

Like cucumbers, zucchini can make a great healthy snack for your pup. The difference is that cucumbers are usually served raw where as zucchini can be served to your dog cooked. Zucchini is prepared boiled, steamed, grilled, barbecued, baked, fried or simply eaten raw.

Obviously frying any food is not as healthy as baking or most other methods of preparation. Those culinary principles hold true for your dog’s health as well.

The possibilities are really endless with zucchini but we favor keeping it simple. Some people foods served along side of it may not be good for dogs such as onions. Others like eggplant are fine but you really need to know for sure, including the spices, before feeding your dog a zucchini dish.

How would you serve it to your dog? Please share your recipes at the end of this article!

Argument Against Zucchini

Unless your dog is allergic to zucchinis there really isn’t a strong case against feeding it to them. One can argue that dogs should be on a strict K9-formulated diet and should never be eating people food. When talking about something like zucchini bread or muffins we tend to agree.

There’s nothing wrong a strict dog food diet, a top quality brand, but we occasionally feed our dogs foods like zucchini which really can be beneficial for them. We do so in moderation and view it as a nutrient which may not be available in their dog food.

Of course, always observe the effects of any food you give your dog which deviates from the norm. A severe change in their stool is a sign that a particular food doesn’t agree with them. This is especially true when you first start out giving them something new.

Too much zucchini certainly can be a bad thing.

Flowers and Plants

Zucchini comes from a flowery plant. We don’t recommend giving the plant or flowers to your dog. In fact, let’s remember that dogs shouldn’t overly depend on a food like zucchini because they need a meat-based diet much more than we require it.

The carnivorous nature of dogs, over many thousands of years, means that meats are the most important component of a healthy K9 diet. Your dog is not a vegetarian so let’s not get carried away with the vegetables.

Common Sense Conclusion

Yes, you can give your canine some zucchini, either cooked or raw. Moderation is the key as with broccoli or kale or any other safe fruits and veggies.

If the zucchini is part of a meal, make sure there’s nothing else which could be harmful to them before they chow down. Monitor them for changes or negative reactions, especially in their bowel habits. Assuming they agree with it, this people food could help keep your dog healthy. As such, you and your canine can enjoy it together!

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Can I Give My Dog Tomatoes? Sat, 02 Aug 2014 02:25:37 +0000 Can Dogs Eat Tomatoes?Tomatoes are one of nature’s most popular human foods. Naturally, dog owners wonder about the safety and health effects of occasionally feeding their K9s a tomato or two. There is […]]]>

Can I Give My Dog Tomatoes?Tomatoes are one of nature’s most popular human foods. Naturally, dog owners wonder about the safety and health effects of occasionally feeding their K9s a tomato or two.

There is an aspect of this nightshade fruit that is poisonous which creates a lot of confusion around the suitability of tomatoes for dogs. We will cover this and many other aspects here so you can make up your own mind.

This savory food is so common, from salads to subs to classic dishes, that we had to address the debate surrounding tomatoes. If your dog enjoys eating a juicy tomato then you’ll be glad to learn they may also benefit from it’s many healthy qualities.

Can I Give My Dog Tomatoes? Yes, moderation is key

There is nothing harmful about sometimes feeding your dog a ripe tomato.

In fact, the widely known health benefits derived from tomato consumption could help your dog live a healthier and longer life.

This assumes you’ve monitored them afterwards and they don’t seem to have any issues. Dogs who experience either an allergic reaction or, more commonly, digestive problems such as diarrhea after eating tomatoes should steer clear of them in the future.

Health Benefits of Tomatoes

Tomatoes could benefit your canine by providing a defense against cancer and many degenerative diseases. Just like other reddish colored fruits like watermelon and papaya, tomatoes contain something called lycopene. Preliminary research shows that this wonderful carotene promotes good health. There is no reason why this can’t work, in theory, for dogs as well.

Separately, tomatoes provide a great source of vitamins, especially vitamin C, and a variety of important antioxidants. These elements may be lacking in the dog food you are providing on a regular basis. This is not to say you should regularly feed your dog tomatoes but occasionally doing so may make sense.

The Unsafe Aspect

Because tomatoes are of the nightshade family, the tomato plant is extremely dangerous for dogs. Tomatine and Solanine, both of which are found in the tomato plant, are seriously toxic for dogs. Any part of the plant is dangerous for them!

For this reason, do not ever let your dog eat anything other than the actual tomato. This detail is very important and could have implications for the garden in your yard and how you manage it!

Symptoms to watch for in case of a big accidental indigestion of this toxic tomato element include upset stomach, vomiting, muscle weakness, increased heart rate, difficulty breathing, drooling, dilated pupils and a lack of coordination.

That is quite a scary list but it is likely the amount eaten needs to be significant to seriously harm your dog. In any case, it is always wise to consult with a vet if you are concerned following such an incident.

Red, Ripe, Right

Even unripe tomatoes contain a degree of these potentially harmful components. Your best best, if you want to feed your dog a tomato, is to give them a red colored ripe one. Ripe tomatoes contain a much lessor concentration of Tomatine making them safer for canines. Often small green tomatoes are not yet ripe. The motto “Red, ripe, right” makes sense.

Conclusion on Tomatoes

Tomatoes are a generally safe food for dogs to eat in moderation after they have properly ripened. Do not allow your dog to get into anything but the ripe tomato itself. The plant including the vines, leaves and even their stems are always off limits to canines. This seems to be the source of doubt among those questioning the merits of feeding this food to their dogs.

It should be noted that it matters what you combine with tomatoes when considering whether you can feed it to your dog. Of course, your dog shouldn’t be eating pizza!

As with all human foods, especially those in the nightshade family, you should learn as much as possible before feeding them to your canine. Some foods are truly harmful, even fatal, and the only effective preventative measure is research and the attainment of knowledge.

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