I have often read that when teaching your dog a new trick it is helpful to use a high value treat to reward your pooch with. Let me tell you, there is nothing that Maya values more highly than the food i am eating – and that is often fruit. Fruit is nutritious and delicious and lots of varieties are safe for dogs to eat in moderation. (I normally only give small pieces of fruit in a training session) Giving our pooches fruit as a treat also encourages us humans to have an apple or banana for a snack too – so it’s win, win!!
Raspberries and blueberries are favourites of Maya’s and strawberries are popular too. I normally give her around 4/6 rasps or blueberries or 1 biggish strawberry in a session. Berries are such a great source of vitamins and minerals too. If you feed your dog a balanced commercial dog food of course you don’t need to think too hard about the nutritional content in terms of balancing his/her diet, but if like me you feed a raw diet mostly prepared from scratch it’s something to take into account.
As you can see below the raspberries are particularly irresistible!!
The list of fruit that Maya enjoys is huge, Water Melon, apples, pears, bananas, oranges, mangoes, strawberries and blueberries are all highly coveted. Sometimes I use the fruit as props in training too. for example waiting for permission to enjoy a raspberry balanced on the nose or paw or giving a banana a “High Five”
Maya loves eating raw vegetables as well, including carrots, broccoli and green beans, she also loves celery which is great because it is known to be a natural mouth freshener for canines. No doggy breath here!! Using fruit and veg for treats is also useful in terms of keeping your dog a healthy weight as commonly they contain less calories than regular treats. Cucumber is a really great reward to offer if your pooch is watching his/her waistline, as anyone who has ever dieted will know it contains just 16 calories per 100g – pawsome!!!
Of course not all fruits and vegetables are safe for dogs to eat, grapes and raisins are extremely toxic and can in some cases be fatal. These must never be fed and you should seek veterinary advice if you suspect your dog has eaten one. Mushrooms, onions and garlic are also very toxic. Raw potato and green tomatoes are also unsafe.
Happily though there is a huge variety of fruits and vegetables that are safe to feed to our dogs and I hope reading this has inspired you to share a little bit of your apple or banana with your best friend. Have fun everyone and please leave a little comment as I really love feedback.
Sal & Maya xxx