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Doggy Treat Do’s and Don’ts

Did you know that Fido’s favorite holiday is just around the corner? February 23rd is National Dog Biscuit Day! Snacks are actually a great way to keep that furry tail wagging! Just be sure to choose your four-legged friend’s snacks wisely. Here, a Thorold, ON vet discusses doggy treats.

Choosing Snacks

You’ll find dozens, if not hundreds, of different types of doggy treats in stores. No doubt your furry pal would happily sample all of them, but unless you can devote an entire room to storing pet treats, you’ll have to narrow it down a bit. Get into the habit of reading labels. Meat should be the first thing listed, and it also should be mentioned much more than any other ingredients. Try to steer clear of brands with unidentifiable ingredients.

Training

Treats are a great training aid! When teaching Fido, you want to use smaller snacks, like cut up pieces of hot dogs.

Begging

We know, that furry face can be hard to refuse. However, if your pooch gets a snack every time he fixes you with that soulful stare, well, Fido may just have you wrapped around his paws. Choose specific times for your pup to get his snacks, and don’t go overboard.

Tricks

Don’t be afraid to make your pup work for his snacks! Before teaching your furry buddy cute tricks, make sure Fido knows basic commands, like Sit, Stay, Come, Heel, and Lay Down. Once your canine pal has those mastered, have some fun with him. Teach him to Shake or Roll Over for his treats!

Homemade Treats

You’ll find dozens—if not hundreds—of dog treat recipes online. Homemade snacks can be very beneficial, because they let you control what Fido is eating. You can also customize your dog’s snacks to suit his tastes. If you like cooking, go ahead and make something special for your canine friend. Just be sure to use only safe, suitable ingredients. Ask your vet for recommendations.

Safety

We recommend choosing snacks made in North America: not all foreign countries regulate the quality of pet products. It’s also not a bad idea to keep up with recalls. Set up some email alerts, or follow updates at the FDA or AMVA websites.

Do you have questions about your pet’s health or care? Call us! As your local Thorold, ON veterinary clinic, we are here to help!

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