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What dogs can and can't eat: FAQs

Can dogs eat fruit? What about eggs? Here's what your furry friend can and can't eat.

Dog enjoying apple 

If you’re like most other dog owners, you’ve probably wondered which types of foods your dog can eat outside of their standard meals. 

In some cases, it may be perfectly fine to give your four-legged friend human food. However, some foods can make them seriously sick.

To help you avoid a trip to the vet and a claim on your pet insurance, we’ve worked with Monica Mizzi from Pet Life Today to put together some FAQs about what dogs can and can’t eat.

Give it a good read, as it could save your dog’s life!

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Can dogs eat apples?

Yes, dogs can eat fresh, coreless apples in moderation as a healthy treat. We recommend no more than one or two slices. In fact, they may quickly become your dog’s favourite snack! Many dogs love the crunch and sweet taste of apples.

They are a good source of fibre, carbohydrates, and vitamins A and C. They are also a fantastic low-protein food. While dogs typically require a high-protein diet, a vet may advise you to switch to low-protein dog foods if your dog suffers from liver or kidney problems.

Before feeding apples to your dog, it is vital that you core them. Apple seeds contain cyanide, so your dog may fall ill if they digest them


Can dogs eat bananas?

Yes, dogs can eat fresh bananas in moderation as a healthy treat. Just as with apples, a couple of slices is the maximum recommended serving size.

They’re a nutritious, energy-boosting snack that are also super-tasty for dogs. They’re packed with potassium, fibre and carbohydrates.

However, they’re also quite high in sugar, so it may be best to incorporate bits of it in other food rather than give them a whole banana.

A word of warning on banana peels: while they’re not toxic, it’s a good idea to bin them. As they’ve got a very high fibre content, banana peels are difficult for dogs to digest. If your dog eats one, it could lead to a case of the runs or even vomiting.


Can dogs eat strawberries?

Yes, dogs can eat fresh strawberries in moderation as a healthy treat. The recommended serving size is a couple of cut up strawberries. Bursting with antioxidants and vitamin C, they are one of the best fruits you can offer your dog.

Be sure to remove the leaves, though. They can cause an upset stomach if ingested. Avoid giving them canned or dried strawberries, as they are far too high in sugar.

Chocolate-dipped strawberries are also a huge no-no. As you probably already know, chocolate is toxic for dogs and it can cause health complications if they eat it.


What other fruits can dogs eat?

Dogs can safely eat lots of other fruits too. Coreless pears, blackberries, watermelon, kiwis, and fresh and dried cranberries are all great options.

There are also quite a few stone fruits, such as apricots and peaches, that dogs can eat. Make sure they’re fresh, not canned, and that you remove the stones first.

Even if fruits are dog-friendly, you should only ever give them to your dog in moderation as a treat.

Make sure you look into a particular fruit and the recommended serving before handing it over to your dog.

If you’re still unsure whether a particular fruit is safe to serve your dog or not, it’s always a wise idea to consult your vet.

Puppy owners and people who have dogs with pre-existing conditions should always check with their vet, as certain fruits could throw off their nutritional balance.


Can dogs eat eggs?

Yes, dogs can eat eggs – as long as they are cooked. Eggs are not only a great source of protein, amino acids and fatty acids, they also boast solid levels of fat-soluble vitamins. But you should never give your dog raw or undercooked eggs.

If you do, you may unwittingly expose your dog to salmonella. Another danger is that regular feeding of raw egg (particularly egg whites) may lead to biotin deficiency.

Needless to say, both salmonella and biotin deficiency can lead to a whole host of serious health problems.


Why do dogs eat grass?

If you catch your dog eating grass, don’t worry. Dogs often do it. There are a number of theories why they do, such as:

  • Improving digestion
  • Treating intestinal worms
  • Getting nutrition they’re not getting elsewhere, such as fibre
  • Enjoying the taste and texture
  • Wanting to vomit when they’re unwell, because vomiting will help them feel better.

In most cases, your dog occasionally eating grass isn’t too much of a cause for concern. If you suspect it’s related to their diet, you may need to modify it a little. Or, if you think it’s boredom-related, find some new ways to engage them.

If they’re getting sick from eating grass and there doesn’t seem to be a solution to the problem, make sure you talk to your vet.

One final point. Your dog could get seriously ill if the grass they eat has been treated, so be sure to keep a careful eye on them if they’ve taken an interest in eating grass.


Can you give dogs paracetamol?

You should never give dogs paracetamol under any circumstances. Paracetamol can be poisonous to canines, particularly in high doses. After all, it is a pain relief drug that is designed for humans, not for dogs.

If your dog is suffering from pain, you should take them to the vet. They’ll be able to prescribe pain relief that’s designed to be safe for dogs.

Remember, when it comes to pain relief, it’s best to leave it to the experts i.e. your vet! 


Are there any more foods that could be toxic for dogs?

We’ve already touched on a handful of foods dogs should steer clear of eating. That's why it's important to read up on the many other foods you should avoid giving your dog