List of Human Food for Dogs – The Good and Bad

dog confused

You’ve probably encountered this several times in your household. Table scraps following a meal. Do you give them to your dog or not? Some dog owners do, others do not. Typically the ones who do not give human food to their dogs are not doing it specifically to break a begging at the table habit.

They know that there are many foods we consume that are not good for their pet. However, there are also many foods that are safe for Rover. Confused? That’s okay. This list will take a detailed look at what human foods are harmless and harmful to your dog.



Not only is this a favorite fruit of many four-legged pets, it is also a healthy snack. Apples contain concentrated amounts of vitamins A and C and are perfect for rewards, sharing sliced in a container or just as a special treat. Apples are also good for Rover’s teeth.


There is no doubt that your dog has tasted beef before. That’s because it is a regular staple in dry dog food. However, what makes beef even better for your pet is that it contains all the healthy fats your dog needs for weight control and increased energy levels.


If you are looking for a simple homemade dog food solution, breads may be the answer. Plain bread has little nutritional value for your dog but won’t harm him or her either provided you control the amount they eat. Read labels to ensure that preservatives are not present.


The calcium, proteins, magnesium and antioxidants found in cashews make them a great puppy food or treat for older dogs. Do not serve them too many as these nuts can lead to weight control issues. Also, refrain from giving your pet salted cashews to avoid dehydration.


While most dairy products are not safe for dogs, a little cheese is fine. That is, of course, if your dog is not lactose intolerant. Read labels and choose low-fat cheeses as an occasional treat. Try not to mix cheese with any other food opting to serve it as a standalone treat or reward.

chicken meatChicken

This is considered a lean protein. It’s also one of the main ingredients in your pet’s dry food so you know that it is not bad for them at all. Chicken prepared with vegetables, oils or wines should be avoided. Also be sure to remove any bones that may be present as brittle chicken bones can create irritations in the esophagus and can cut the inside of your pet’s mouth.


Lauric is the main ingredient in coconut that is beneficial to dogs as it builds the immune system. This helps your dog to fight off sickness. Coconut can also combat bad breath and will clear up skin conditions like hot spots. This fruit is certainly a healthy dog food treat.


Corn is a regular ingredient in dry dog food so it’s alright to feed your pet. Be sure to not let your dog eat the corn cob as that can create an intestinal blockage. In other words, as a sensitive stomach dog food, you won’t want to get in the habit of serving corn unless it’s off the cob.


Cooked eggs are a high protein dog food. Provided they are thoroughly cooked and not prepared with oils or sauces that may be fatty or acidic. Cooked eggs can also aid with upset stomach issues. Remember to serve them without any other kind of garnish or seasoning.


Fish are good for your dog. Sardines are a good choice simply because they contain small, chewable bones which contain calcium. As a dehydrated dog food, fish makes a great snack or reward. Salmon is also a good choice (more below). Fish contain good fatty acids for your pet

green beansGreen Beans

Green beans are perfect for adding low calorie and healthy nutrients to your dog’s diet. They also contain concentrated amounts of both vitamins C and K. As a power-packed vegetable, green beans are an excellent treat or reward that can be offered with or without a meal.


Due to the high volume of sodium and fat found in ham, you will want to carefully control how much you give your dog. It’s not a perfect dog food by any means but small amounts are okay. Meats are generally safe to feed your dog but ham is one you will have to monitor closely.


Although honey is not really a hypoallergenic dog food, it contains several nutrients that can help with allergies. Honey has vitamins A, B, C, D, E and K. It also contains copper, calcium, potassium, magnesium and antioxidants. Honey is a great treat that can be added to other foods.


Milk and other dairy products are not good for your dog. Excessive amounts can cause havoc with their digestive system. This is simply because dogs do not have as much of the enzyme humans do that can breakdown the lactose found in milk and other dairy products.


One of the best energy boosters you can feed your dog is pasta. You can choose from either plain or whole wheat pasta as both are equally good for your pet. Refrain from including any kind of sauce as they tend to be fatty or acidic in nature which is not good for your dog. The energy boost in pasta comes from the carbohydrates contained in the noodles.

green peasPeas

Peas are an excellent extra to any pup diet. That’s because they contain potassium which is good for your dog’s health. Plus, peas are filled with healthy, low calorie nutrients. Peas are also an easy home garden vegetable that can provide your pet with tasty treats throughout the summer growing season.

peanut butterPeanut Butter

Read the labels and be sure to purchase all-natural peanut butter that does not contain xylitilas, which can be dangerous. A tablespoon of peanut butter is good for your dog as it contains protein and fiber. Peanut butter is also a handy tool if you have a dog that won’t take medication. Hiding a pill in a small lump of peanut butter can get the medication into your pet easily.


Peanuts are good for your dog as they contain good fats and proteins that are beneficial to the health of your pet. Too many can result in pancreatic issues but in moderation, peanuts make a great low protein dog food treat. Be sure to stick to unsalted varieties to prevent dehydration.


As long as the popcorn you feed your dog is unsalted, unbuttered air-popped popcorn, you will be giving your furry friend a special treat. That’s because popcorn has thiamine and riboflavin which aids in digestion and eye health. Plus, there are traces of protein and iron in it as well.


As a highly digestible protein, pork is an excellent food source for your dog. It contains high concentrations of amino acids and actually has more calories per pound than any other meat. Pork is also easy on your pet in that it will not likely result in an allergenic reaction.


To aid with digestive health, pumpkin is a good choice. It contains beta carotene and vitamin A – both of which are key to keeping your pup’s stomach and intestinal tract working well. Remember to remove the seeds and pulp from a pumpkin to prevent your dog from getting sick from them.


You could probably refer to quinoa as an organic dog food ingredient as it is often found in higher end dog foods. That’s because it is a much healthier alternative to soy, wheat and corn which typically are used as ‘fillers’ in budget-priced dog food recipes.


If your pooch is in need of an energy boost, one of the best ways to do this is by feeding him or her some rice. Plain or whole wheat varieties are both okay. You do need to be sure that the rice does not contain any kind of sauce that would be considered fatty or acidic.


In addition to being a good source of protein, salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients are especially good for the health of your dog’s skin and will bring a shine to his or her coat. All kinds of fish are good for dogs however, salmon is one of the better choices.


High in antioxidants, vitamin B-12 and phosphorus, shrimp is a good dog treat served in moderation. It’s also low in fat, carbs and calories. When you feed your dog shrimp, it needs to be fully cooked and the shell, tail, legs and head have to be removed.

sweet potatoSweet Potato

Just like pumpkin, sweet potatoes are excellent for keeping your dog’s stomach and digestive tract operating well. The active ingredients are beta carotene and vitamin A. The best way to serve sweet potato is fully cooked and without any kind of seasoning, butters or oils present.


As all fish contain omega-3 fatty acids that are good for health, tuna is no exception. The nutrients in tuna promote vision and heart health. The tuna you serve must be fresh and cooked. Canned tuna and the tuna juice is a nice treat once in awhile but only if the tuna is packed in


Your dog will recognize this tasty treat because turkey is often one of the main ingredients in dry dog food. It is great for Rover simply because it contains the fats and proteins needed in order to maintain a healthy weight. It also fuels the energy reserves of your dog.


Wheat and grains are very good for your dog. They are actually a high fiber dog food. In addition to fiber, wheat and grains contain high concentrations of proteins and essential fatty acids. If your pet happens to have certain allergies you will want to avoid wheat and grains as they can trigger some allergic reactions.


Yogurt, and Greek yogurt in particular, is a great source of protein for your dog. Just be sure to read the labels. Those varieties that are high in sugar and preservatives should not be fed to your pet. Yogurt also contains active bacteria and probiotics that promote healthy digestion.



Feeding your dog alcohol for any reason is just plain dumb. A drop of it can result in vomiting and diarrhea. Other symptoms that can develop include central nervous system depression, breathing problems as well as death. Smaller breeds suffer even more problems.


Almonds and other nuts including walnuts and pecans are toxic to dogs. Plus, if almonds are not chewed thoroughly they can cause irritation to the esophagus and windpipe. Salted almonds are even more dangerous as they can lead to dehydration in your dog.


Avocadoes contain persin. Persin is known to cause dogs to vomit or develop diarrhea when it is ingested. This puts avocadoes on the “do not feed to your dog” list as both of these conditions can be harmful to your pet leading to dehydration and further complications.


Chocolate (and cocoa) contain theobromine, which is a toxic agent. The extreme toxicity of chocolate can cause a dog to vomit or suffer from diarrhea from just a small bite. Other conditions that may occur include tremors, seizures, abnormal heartbeat and death.


The oils contained in cinnamon can cause several kinds of irritations in a dog. They range from mouth sores which will make them feel uncomfortable and blood sugar levels may drop. Too much cinnamon can lead to vomiting, diarrhea, heart rate problems and liver disease. One more thing to watch out with cinnamon and your dog is the powder dust. If your dog sniffs the fine powder it can result in sneezing, eye irritations and even throat conditions.


While coffee can give humans a jolt or kick start, it is extremely harmful to dogs. The caffeine contained in coffee is the main culprit and just a sip of a cup can give your pet heart palpitations, bleeding and restlessness. A larger amount of coffee can lead to death.


This powerful herb that contains several healing and flavoring properties is not good for your dog in any form. Garlic can cause damage to both your pet’s gastrointestinal tract and red blood cells. This can result in the development of a condition called anemia.


Grapes look harmless enough but they are not. There is some compound contained in this fruit that is dangerous to most breeds. It is also not good if your dog is older or is sick. The main condition grapes can cause is kidney disease and that can happen to most breeds.


The sweetener in gum, Xylitol, is the main concern for dogs. It also appears in many kinds of candy, so read the labels. Liver failure and hypoglycemia are possible as a result. Plus, since a dog’s digestive system can’t breakdown gum, it could lead to a blockage and complications.

ice creamIce Cream

As a dairy product, ice cream is not good for your dog. That’s because they have difficulty in digesting it. Their bodies can’t breakdown lactose like a human body can which could result in an intestinal blockage of some kind. So, don’t treat your dog to any kind of ice cream.


Macadamia nuts are like poison to a dog. They will cause vomiting (which can lead to dehydration), body temperature fluctuations, lethargy and walking difficulties. These nuts can also impact your dog’s nervous system which could lead to even more serious complications.


As yummy as onions are as flavor enhancers for humans, they are big trouble for dogs. Onions consumed in large quantities can irritate the gastrointestinal tract and damage red blood cells. This can lead to your dog developing anemia.


Should You Feed Your Dog Human Food?

Human food is meant for humans. Dog food is meant for dogs. However, there are some foods we eat that are also good for our four-legged friends. As to whether or not you should share them with your pet is entirely up to you. Keep in mind that most good quality wet dog food or natural dog food varieties are specially formulated to provide Rover will all the good things he needs to stay healthy.

There are also varieties of diabetic dog food and senior dog food to address the changing needs of your pet regardless of health condition or age. Should you have to resort to feeding human food to your pet, at least now you have a better idea of what is safe and what is not.

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