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What Are The Best Types Of Dog Treats & How Do I Pick The Right One For My Dog?

Find out what experts and researchers think are the best dog treats to buy for your beloved pup!

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Imagine eating “healthy foods” all day, every day. You’d probably feel like you’re missing out on one of life’s greatest pleasures. Most people love eating ice cream, chips, or even a protein bar once in a while to bring some excitement to their taste buds. Now, if humans love the occasional treat, then you can bet your dog would too. After all, life can get pretty dull by beating the same meal every day for the rest of your life. For the most part, unlike human treats, dog treats are pretty healthy. They contain vitamins and nutrients that can help your dogs live the healthiest version of themselves. Although dog treats are healthy, it is important to note that treats can never replace a balanced diet in the long run. A good rule of thumb is to never exceed 5%-10% of the number of calories that your dog eats on a daily basis.

With that being said, let’s move on to why giving treats to your dog is important. Firstly, treats are very important when it comes to teaching your dog some new tricks. This will give your dogs the incentive to behave and try their best to learn what you are trying to teach them. The treat also acts as a reward, letting your dog know that what they are doing is right and that they are being a good doggy. Giving treats to your dog is also a great way to strengthen the bond you have with your dog. Giving treats to your dog lets them know that you are happy with them. It is a display of affection that they really appreciate. If for any reason you don’t have the time to give your dog treats during the day, consider getting a Furbo Dog Camera. This dog treat dispenser with a built-in camera can be connected to your phone and you’ll be able to speak and give your pets a treat anytime you want! This will surely help with your dog’s boredom during the day. Another great option is a treat-carrying toy also called an enrichment toy, these will let your dog “work” for the treat inside and provide them with mental enrichment!

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Article Summary

What Are The Different Types Of Dog Treats And What Makes Them Good?

  • Crunchy: Biscuits, bars, cookies, and even kibbles are considered to be crunchy. These treats have a lower moisture level than others and often require a little more time for your dog to consume as they can break into smaller pieces when eaten.

  • Soft & Chewy: These treats come in a variety of shapes and sizes and are excellent for dog training. The soft texture allows them to be broken into smaller pieces which are desirable when giving frequent rewards for training. These treats are usually the favorite for picky eaters. They also have a higher moisture level, therefore, making them “stinkier” than other treats.

  • Dehydrated or Freeze-Dried: These treats such as jerky are highly desirable for dogs as they are very appealing and appetizing making them a great choice for training as well. Compared to soft & chewy treats, jerkies are almost always made out of 100% protein such as meats and fish. This is great if you're looking for minimal amounts of ingredients with no fillers or preservatives.

  • Long-Lasting Chews or Functional Treats: Long-lasting chews are great for many reasons, they give your dog something to chew on for a long period of time. This can be a great way to distract your dog when you leave the house if your dog has separation anxiety. They can also be great for cleaning your dog’s teeth! High-quality functional treats will also support digestion, joint health, and also the immune system.

  • Human Foods: Human foods such as fruits and veggies are a great source of nutrition. Just keep in mind that some fruits and vegetables can be poisonous for your dog!

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What Ingredients And Treats To Avoid For My Dogs?

Don’t be fooled by cheap ingredients in nice-looking packaging. There are many companies out there that oversaturate the market with cheap treats made with low-quality ingredients.

Instead, look for locally made companies that are using natural, ideally organic ingredients to guarantee the reduction of unhealthy and modified ingredients.

You should also avoid treats such as rawhide & animal bones. Raw hides should be avoided at all costs, they can be very hard to digest for dogs as they are generally consumed in big chunks.

The large chunks can also obstruct the esophagus or intestine, cause a wide range of gastrointestinal issues, and often lead to surgery and even death.

The same issue applies to animal bones, while they are very appealing to your dog, they can be very hard to digest, animal bones can also be sharp and cause internal bleeding if consumed the wrong way.

Always ask your veterinarian before offering your dog animal bones. Antler chews are also something you might want to stay away from, they are very hard, which can cause your dog to break their teeth on them.

Just remember, if it's too hard for you, it's too hard for them as well!

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How Do I Pick The Best Dog Treats For My Dogs?

According to JoAnn Morrison, director of veterinary science at Banfield Animal Hospital, “Many human foods, even in small treat-sized amounts can take up too many of your dog’s daily calories and quickly add up to extra pounds.” For example, she mentioned that a beef hotdog can equate to as much as 30 percent of a 30-pound dog’s recommended daily calorie intake. As mentioned above, the best rule of thumb is to never give treats that exceed 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake. An expert veterinarian by the name of Kristen Nelson also recommends dog owners keep an eye out for the amount of fat in a treat, as they can add up very quickly, making your dogs gain more weight than they should. She also mentions that dog owners should look to avoid potential allergens and artificial sweeteners such as xylitol in the dog treats they buy. Giving fruits and vegetables to your dogs is a great source of nutrition but there are certain foods such as grapes and raisins that can be poisonous and fatal to your dog so make sure to keep an eye out for that! Take a look at this list of dog treats recommended by experts! Keep in mind to always look at the ingredients list when buying treats for your dog, if the treats don’t have an ingredient list, then it is best to stay away.

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