2001-Sun Mar 26 13:07:23 EDT 2017
Vetstreet. All rights reserved. Powered by Brightspot.
Vetstreet does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. See Additional Information ›
Whether your pet is in tip-top shape, carrying an extra pound or two, or outright overweight, you may consider switching from high-fat, high-calorie pet treats to something more healthy — and inexpensive. If your pet is already eating a quality commercial diet designed for her breed, age and stage of life, the addition of fruits and vegetables is not necessary to balance her nutrition. However, as treats or snacks, fruits and veggies offer tasty, low-calorie options. The key is moderation. Many excellent treats can be found in the produce aisle, but any fruit or veggie may be harmful if eaten by a pet in large quantities.
Before changing or adding anything to your pet’s diet, consult with your veterinarian. This is important not only to ensure that what you plan on feeding is safe for your pet and that the changes are noted in your pet’s medical record, but also because some foods may interfere with a medical condition or prescribed diet or medication. Always inform your veterinarian of all foods, supplements or other over-the-counter products you give your pet.
Dogs are naturally omnivores, tolerating a variety of foods. Cats, on the other hand, are obligate carnivores, having evolved on a diet excluding fruits or vegetables. Cats also lack the ability to perceive sweetness, which potentially reduces the appeal of some fruits and vegetables. However, there may be flavors or textures associated with these types of foods that certain cats find attractive.
Do not offer too many fruits or vegetables to your pet. Such treats should make up less than 10 percent of your pet’s diet. Ease the transition from your usual treats by starting with small amounts and consider steaming or boiling raw vegetables — especially for cats (see below). Even the best fruit or veggie options, if eaten by your pet in huge amounts, can result in gastrointestinal disturbances. Also, be sure to wash all fruits and vegetables, and remove rinds or pits before feeding.
Offer only in small amounts:
More on Vetstreet.com:
Take our breed quiz to find your next pet.
Get all the best pet news and information sent right to your inbox!
Thank you for subscribing!
Bartonella is a type bacteria that can be transmitted to cats, dogs and humans from exposure to infected fleas and…
Want to give your pup yummy, low-calorie treats? We’ve got the skinny on which foods are OK to feed him.
Not sure about food puzzles? Our veterinarian reveals why the payoff for your pet is well worth any extra work.
With these simple dental care tips, you can help keep your canine’s adorable smile shiny and healthy for life.
The friendly and inquisitive LaPerm has an easy-care coat that comes in a variety of colors and patterns.
Check out our collection of more than 250 videos about pet training, animal behavior, dog and cat breeds and more.
Wonder which dog or cat best fits your lifestyle? Our new tool will narrow down more than 300 breeds for you.
If the video doesn't start playing momentarily,
please install the latest version of Flash.
Thank you for subscribing.