Giving Your Dog Table Food – What Not to Do

As you begin to dig into your food, your dog gives you the look. You know the one – where he stares mournfully at your food, then at you, then back to the food, whining quietly. But as much as you want to share the wealth of your plate, feeding him table scraps is not the way.

Table food is too fatty for the digestive systems of most animals and can lead to severe stomach upsets (and occasionally trigger a possibly fatal pancreatic inflammation). In addition, you encourage your dog to beg even more to get his way. Reinforcing this behavior can lead to problems down the road.

To keep your pet safe this season, remember the following:

  • Bones are highly dangerous to dogs; they can splinter and puncture the stomach or intestines. So think twice before throwing your dog a T-bone; he's better off with those made specifically for dogs.
  • Don't fill your dog's (or cat's) bowl with table scraps. Most are too fatty for an animal's digestive system.
  • Don't give your cat or dog chocolate; it is toxic to animals.
  • Make sure to put garbage into tightly covered cans – to prevent your dog from giving into temptation and making a meal of your discards.
  • Call your veterinarian if your pet shows signs of stomach upset – diarrhea or vomiting.