Treats are the ultimate human equivalent snack in the dog world. Most dogs instantly perk up when they hear the word “treat”. They know they are about to get something that is delicious and fun that is something different from their every day kibble routine. But the question is, how do you choose the best treats for dogs? We’ve got some ideas below!
Reasons For Giving Treats
Treats make for a great training tool when teaching your dog various commands and behavior tasks. Whether you want your dog to sit, lay down, or wait, giving them a reward for their good work is a way to continue good behavior.
Another reason to give treats is simply out of love and affection for your pup. Taking the time to go out of your way to find a new treat your dog will love is exciting and can provide joy to both you and your dog. We love and appreciate our dogs so giving a treat is just that extra step to make them know they are loved.
While giving treats is a good gesture, it is best to note that too many treats can become a problem. Overfeeding treats, especially high calorie ones, can be dangerous for your dog’s health. Looking at the back of a treat bag can show you how many treats a day are good for your dog. For example, on the back of the Wholesomes Bruno’s Jerky Strips, it is suggested that 10-25 lb. small dogs can receive 1-2 treats per day while a 50-100 lb. dog can receive 1-4 treats per day. Another thing to look at is how many calories per treat there are. Bruno’s Jerky Strips contain 21 kcal/treat while the Wholesomes Rewards Cheezy Bites only contain 8 kcal/treat. Be sure to follow treat feeding guidelines closely. If your dog is showing signs of being overweight, save treats for special occasions only or find a low-calorie treat option.
Types of Treats
Whether they are dental chews or natural chews, these types of treats are great for dogs who need to be mentally stimulated for a good amount of time. Chewing is a natural thing for dogs as it helps with anxiety and controls their instinctual urges. Teething puppies especially prefer chewy treats.
Dental chews are great for cleaning a dog’s teeth and freshening breath due to their crunchy texture. Give these treats a try for that clean, fresh breath smell! If your dog needs extra attention to its teeth, look for the Veterinary Oral Health Council registered seal on products. According to the VOHC website, the VOHC authorizes that these products are intended to help retard plaque and tartar on the teeth of animals.
Soft treats are great for young puppies or smaller dogs. Hard chews can be tough on these types of dogs so choosing a bite-sized, soft treat can be the better option. Wholesomes jerky treats are grain-free, packed with farm-grown veggies, and have a tasty, wood-smoked flavor that will have your dog begging for more! These sticks or strips can be broken into smaller pieces for small pups or given whole to larger-sized dogs.
Functional soft treats are also another choice when finding the right treat for your dog. Treats containing fish proteins are great for skin and coat health because of the natural Omega fatty acids in fish. Hip and joint treats contain added glucosamine and chondroitin to aid in joint health.
Dog cookies or biscuits are considered the “original” type of treat for dogs. These crunchy dog treat recipes also tend to help clean plaque and tartar buildup on dog’s teeth. Wholesomes Rewards dog biscuit treats contain ancient grains like oatmeal for heart health, and superfoods like pumpkin and sweet potato to help support a fit lifestyle for your dog.
Peanut butter is also widely favored by dogs. Whether it be straight from the jar or infused in a treat, peanut butter is a delicious addition to your dog’s snack time. Our Wholesomes Gourmet Rewards Peanutty Bites capture that real roasted peanut flavor that your dog is sure to love.
If you do feed peanut butter straight from the jar make sure that the ingredients do not contain Xylitol as this is toxic to dogs.
As a dog owner, it can be overwhelming with the amount of dog treat varieties available. You know your pet best so make a decision based on what works well for them. Remember to check calorie content and refer to the feeding guidelines when feeding treats. On top of feeding dog food, adding treats into your dog’s diet will keep them happy and energized.