What Do Dogs Eat? The Best and Worst Foods You Can Feed Your Pooch

A dog is one of the greatest additions people can make to their families. Whether you live by yourself or already have a thriving family, a dog can substantially improve your quality of life.

However, dog ownership comes with a certain level of responsibility and accountability. You must commit to educating yourself about the basics, including:

  • What do dogs eat?
  • How do you crate train a dog?
  • What shots do they need?
  • Should you spay or neuter your dog?
  • Are dogs safe around young children and infants?

Your number one priority as a dog owner needs to be providing a safe, secure, and loving environment for your new family member, as well as making sure they fit in with your pre-existing family. It is essential to put a tracker like GoFindMe on your dog to keep an eye on him.

For example, a dog that doesn’t have all of its shots could be vulnerable to Parvo, a deadly disease that can hang around for decades in the ground or within homes. Alternatively, an unneutered male dog could be aggressive or get out and impregnate a female dog.

But there’s another threat to your dog you might not expect – you. Many people feed their dogs whatever scraps are leftover from their meals. They think they’re doing their dog a favor, but could actually be endangering their health and well-being.

Keep reading for a list of all the human foods you should and shouldn’t feed your dog.

What Do Dogs Eat That Won’t Harm Them?

It’s nearly impossible to resist your dog’s loving eyes as they gaze up at you from the ground, wishing so intently that you’ll share some food with them. While sharing your food in a moderate amount isn’t a bad thing (assuming they don’t adopt bad habits), the type of food you give them is vital.

What do dogs eat that won’t harm them?


Not all nuts or legumes are good for dogs to eat. Cashews, however, are perfectly safe. Although, make sure the cashews you’re allowing your dog to eat aren’t heavily salted.

While these nuts provide vitamins, minerals, and a decent amount of protein, they’re also full of fat, so be careful not to feed your dog too many to avoid unnecessary weight gain.

Bread and Other Grains

There’s a number of people out there who advocate that dogs should eat as they do in the wild – completely grain-free. However, grains provide fiber and essential fatty acids and barring any allergies, aren’t bad for dogs.


Coconut juice and oil have great benefits for dogs. These include promoting healthy skin and fighting against viruses and harmful bacteria.

However, while it may be fun to watch your dog play around with a coconut, the fibers and hairs on the outside of the shell can be harmful to them if swallowed.


Almost everyone’s seen the movie Rocky or is at least aware of the early 90s fitness craze of drinking raw eggs. With the threat of salmonella, however, people have grown cautious about ingesting eggs without cooking them first.

While your dog has stronger bacteria-fighting saliva and gut flora, they too can be vulnerable to salmonella. Eggs are great for dogs but cook them first.

Bird Meat

Bird meat such as turkey and chicken provides a substantial lean protein source for dogs. There are a few precautions to take, however, before feeding your dog meat.

First, while they can handle raw meat, it must be prepared properly. Secondly, chicken and turkey bones can create blockages or damage to your dog’s intestines. Finally, avoid feeding your dog seasoned meats, as they don’t typically handle salt, garlic, or onion very well.


Fish can also be a great source of protein for your dog. This includes everything from tuna to salmon. However, unless you’re feeding your dog sardines, make sure you remove all the bones and always cook the fish fully.


Finally, you may wish to let your dog snack while you’re snacking. The next time you’re watching a movie and plowing through popcorn, it’s OK to allow your dog to have some too. Remember, however, that they should only have unsalted and unbuttered popcorn.

What Should Dogs Never Eat?

As you probably know, there are certain types of food you should never feed your dog. Their digestive systems simply aren’t made the same way ours is. The wrong food can create serious issues in your dog.

What do dogs eat that can harm them?


Most people know that dogs shouldn’t have chocolate. Theobromine is a compound in chocolate that can lead to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and even death in dogs.


While softer nuts such as cashews don’t pose a physical threat to dogs, almonds can be dangerous for dogs to ingest. They can tear and otherwise damage their esophagus and intestines. However, unlike the macadamia nut, they are not toxic to dogs.

Salty Foods

You should avoid feeding your dog foods high in salt. Higher levels of salt can lead to sodium ion poisoning, which can lead to a myriad of symptoms. These include bloat, vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and death.

Fatty Meats

While we all know deep down that fatty meats aren’t good for us, it can be even worse for our dogs. Meats high in fat can lead to pancreatitis in dogs. If you want to feed your dog meat, stick to lean meats, bird meats, and fish.

Dairy Products

It’s adorable to watch a dog share an ice cream cone with a child. However, dairy products are made from “breast milk” designed for baby cows – that’s why most dogs (and humans) are lactose intolerant to some degree. It can lead to gastroenteritis in dogs, as well as diarrhea, vomiting, and pancreatitis due to the diary’s typical high-fat content.

Raw Animal Products

As we mentioned above, feeding your dog raw lean meats (excluding raw fish) isn’t necessarily bad. However, you must exercise caution to avoid salmonella poisoning and other forms of harmful bacteria, such as e. Coli.

The fact is, raw meat diets do have great benefits for canines, but there is always an underlying risk. You can lower these risks by freezing the meat first and learning how to handle raw meat.

Want More News?

What do dogs eat? The simple answer is – nearly anything you put in front of them. That’s why it’s your responsibility that you’re only allowing your dog to ingest foods that are safe and good for their health. If you don’t know, ask or research it.

However, if you’re looking for news and advice, be sure to check out the rest of our articles before you leave!


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