Our pup Ace loves to eat. I mean LOVES it. He's a black Lab, so he's very motivated by food. Luckily, there are all kinds of human foods that are perfectly safe for dogs. Here's a list of popular people foods dogs can eat, as well as ones that aren't safe for them.
Most dogs love a treat now and then. Or in the case of our dog Ace, all the time! We have a lot of homemade dog treat recipes on the blog that Ace has tested and approved.
He really likes these Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Dog Treats and these Watermelon Blueberry Yogurt Dog Treats. In fact, peanut butter, bananas, and watermelon are great people foods that are safe to give your pooch.
But because humans and dogs digest and break down foods differently, there are some foods that could make your lovable, furry friends sick.
Here's a list of common dog-safe foods, along with some that are not.
- 🐶 Dog-safe foods
- 🍎 Apples
- 🍌 Bananas - safe
- 🥩 Beef - safe
- 🫐 Blueberries - safe
- 🍞 Bread - safe
- 🥦 Broccoli - safe
- 🥕 Carrots - safe
- 🥬 Celery - safe
- 🧀 Cheese - safe
- 🐓 Chicken - safe
- 🥥 Coconut and coconut oil - safe
- 🌽 Corn - safe
- 🥚 Eggs - safe
- 🐠 Fish - safe
- 🍟 French fries - safe
- 🍯 Honey - safe
- 🍄 Mushrooms - safe
- 🥜 Peanut butter - safe
- 🥜 Peanuts - safe
- 🤎 Oats - safe
- 🌱 Peas - safe
- 🍍 Pineapple - safe
- 🍿 Popcorn - safe
- 🎃 Pumpkin - safe
- 🍚 Rice - safe
- 🍤 Shrimp - safe
- 🍓 Strawberries - safe
- 🍠 Sweet potato - safe
- 🦃 Turkey - safe
- 🍉 Watermelon - safe
- 🥛 Yogurt - safe
- 🚫 Foods that are not dog safe
- Almonds - not safe
- 🥑 Avocado - not safe
- 🦴 Bones (pork, poultry, steak) - not safe
- 🍫 Chocolate - not safe
- 🟠 Cinnamon - not safe
- 🧄🧅 Garlic or onions - not safe
- 🍦 Ice cream - not safe
- 🌰 Macadamia nuts - not safe
- 🍇 Raisins and grapes - not safe
- ☠️ Xylitol - not safe
- Tips and FAQs for homemade dog treats
- Homemade dog treat recipes
🐶 Dog-safe foods
Apples have a lot going for them: lots of vitamins; plenty of minerals; a load of antioxidants; and a bunch of fiber. These are all great for your pup. And they're dog safe too.
Just remember to slice up the apples into small portions before serving them to your dog. And never give them apples with seeds. The seeds contain cyanide which can be toxic in large quantities.
🍌 Bananas - safe
Bananas are a great human food to give to your pet! Their soft texture makes them easy to eat on their own. And they can easily be added as an ingredient for other treats. Plus they're packed with vitamins and minerals.
Try this Reader Fave Recipe for Frozen Peanut Butter Banana Treats!
🥩 Beef - safe
Quality beef is loaded with protein and vitamins which make it a good option for your dog. If you decide to give it to your pup, opt for lean, cooked beef free from excess fat.
And avoid beef that has been seasoned or smothered in a sauce, as some of the ingredients could make your dog sick.
🫐 Blueberries - safe
Blueberries — both fresh and frozen — make wonderful treats for your dog. They contain vitamin C which promotes nutritional health, as well as fiber and antioxidants which help keep cells healthy.
They also don't have a lot of calories. But don't let your dog splurge on them. Just a few blueberries can make the perfect, healthy canine snack.
Try this recipe for Frozen Watermelon Blueberry Yogurt Bites.
🍞 Bread - safe
While bread has little nutritional value for your dog, it's not harmful either, in moderation. To be as safe as possible, it's best to give your dog home-baked break rather than store-bought to reduce any unwanted preservatives making their way into your dog's digestive system.
And since bread is carb and calorie-heavy, only feed it to your dog in small portions.
🥦 Broccoli - safe
Low in calories and high in nutrients, broccoli makes for a safe and healthy dog treat. And they can eat it either raw or cooked.
However, too much can be an issue. A compound in broccoli can cause digestive issues, so it may be best to avoid making broccoli an overly-common snack for your pooch.
🥕 Carrots - safe
Carrots are also vitamin-rich and safe to feed your dog. But you want to be sure to cut them into small pieces to prevent your pup from choking.
You can serve them raw or cooked. Or even add them to baked items like dog-safe cupcakes.
🥬 Celery - safe
Some dogs may find the fibrous texture of celery unpleasant or difficult to eat, but it is safe in moderation. As with most vegetables, it's full of vitamins and minerals and low in calories.
To help with digestion, cut up celery into small pieces.
🧀 Cheese - safe
Like for most people, cheese is fine for your dog, in moderation. Since it's high in calories, you should limit your dog's intake. And the lactose may be a problem for some dogs who have trouble digesting dairy.
Cheese is safe for most dogs to eat in small quantities. A good low-fat cheese option: Mozzarella.
🐓 Chicken - safe
There's a reason chicken is one of the most common dog food ingredients. It's great for dogs and they love it!
Cooked chicken is a healthy way to provide much-needed protein for your dog. Just be sure to remove the bones before feeding. And don't serve your pup raw chicken, as it could lead to Salmonella infections.
🥥 Coconut and coconut oil - safe
Coconut is not only safe for your dog, it contains all sorts of helpful benefits. Lauric acid found in coconuts can help fight bacteria and viruses and even help with bad breath and skin ailments.
Coconut oil is also dog-safe, and it's a great ingredient for baked dog treats, like these Dog Donuts.
🌽 Corn - safe
Corn is dog safe and is a common ingredient in many dog foods, as it's rich in vitamins and minerals. While you can feed your pooch corn, never feed it on the cob, as that can be a choking hazard or lead to digestive problems if swallowed.
🥚 Eggs - safe
Fully cooked eggs are safe for dogs to eat and are a great source of protein. But don't overdo it. Too many eggs can lead your dog to gain an unhealthy amount of weight. A
nd avoid feeding your dog raw eggs, as they can contain salmonella and other harmful bacteria.
🐠 Fish - safe
Cooked fish can be a great, healthy meal for your dog as it contains beneficial fats and amino acids. One of the best options is the vitamin-and protein-rich salmon.
Just be careful to pick out any bones to prevent your dog from choking. And don't feed your dog uncooked fish, as it can contain Salmonella or parasites.
🍟 French fries - safe
While fries are safe for your dog to eat, that doesn't necessarily mean you should feed them to your pooch.
Fries are often loaded with salt and fat, which can cause weight gain. They also don't contain much nutritional value, so they're essentially empty calories for your dog.
Bottom line: while a few fries now and again probably won't hurt, they shouldn't be a regular part of your dog's treat regimen.
🍯 Honey - safe
Because of the high sugar content, we're often asked: Is honey bad for dogs? And while it is in high in sugar and calories, honey is safe for dogs.
And it's full of other healthy vitamins and antioxidants. It's just best to keep the honey intake small or give your dog treats that include honey only once in a while.
🍄 Mushrooms - safe
As long as you stick to common varieties you can find at the grocery store, mushrooms are dog-safe foods.
Good options include cremini, porcini, and portobello.
It's best to serve them plain so they don't ingest other potentially harmful ingredients like certain aromatics. And just like with humans, don't let your dog eat wild mushrooms, since many can be toxic.
🥜 Peanut butter - safe
Here's another question we get a lot: Is peanut butter safe for dogs? The answer is a big yes! Most dogs love peanut butter and it's a great source of protein.
And it's versatile, so you can add it as an ingredient in all sorts of homemade peanut butter dog treat recipes, like these Peanut Butter Pumpkin Grain-Free Dog Treats.
That said, you should only give your dog unsalted peanut butter. And since it is pretty high in calories, try not to over-indulge your dog's peanut butter cravings.
🥜 Peanuts - safe
Peanuts are chock full of beneficial fats and proteins and are safe for dogs to eat. Plain, unsalted, shelled peanuts are the best option and small quantities are advisable, as those fats can still add up and put added weight on your pooch.
🤎 Oats - safe
Yes, oats are safe for dogs and are a good source of vitamins and minerals, as well as soluble fiber which can help with digestion.
The best types to feed your dog are rolled oats or steel-cut ones, as they go through less processing than instant oats.
Also avoid pre-mixed oats that can contain foods and substances that are harmful to dogs like raisins and xylitol, an artificial sweetener.
Try this recipe for Homemade Dog Treats with Rolled Oats.
🌱 Peas - safe
Green peas are safe for dogs to eat and their small size can make them a great, healthy treat option.
They're high in nutrients and low in calories so your pup can enjoy these on their own or as part of their daily meals. Your dog will also love frozen peas, which can provide a satisfying textural crunch.
🍍 Pineapple - safe
Packed with vitamins and fiber, fresh pineapple is both dog-safe and healthy. When cut into small pieces, it can be a great snack for your pup.
Just be sure to cut off all of the rind and scratchy bits. Excessive amounts of pineapple can lead to digestive problems for dogs, so as with most of these foods, moderation is best.
🍿 Popcorn - safe
Popcorn is safe to give your dog. It contains both protein and iron and can help with digestion.
Opt for unbuttered and unsalted options. And do not feed your dog raw, unpopped kernels, as they can present choking hazards for your pup.
🎃 Pumpkin - safe
Yes, pumpkin is dog-safe in moderation. Plain canned pumpkin is the best option as it contains high levels of fiber and nutrients.
In fact, pumpkins promote both digestive and eye health. Even pumpkin seeds can make a healthy treat for your pup.
Just be sure the shells are removed to help prevent choking hazards and that you give them to your dog in small amounts.
Try this Peanut Butter Pumpkin Dog Treats recipe.
🍚 Rice - safe
Rice is a common commercial dog food ingredient as it's easily digestible and can help if a dog has an upset stomach.
The best types are cooked white and brown rice. But rice is also high in carbs, so while it's ok to add some cooked rice to your dog's bowl at meal time every now and again, be careful of overdoing it.
🍤 Shrimp - safe
As with fish, cooked shrimp is dog-safe. They're low in calories and fat and contain high levels of B-12 and antioxidants, which can help promote a healthy nervous system.
If you do feed your dog shrimp, just make sure you remove the shell along with the head, tail, and legs.
🍓 Strawberries - safe
As far as healthy dog treats go, strawberries are right up there. They're packed with nutrients and antioxidants and are low in calories.
As with most other foods, just be sure to cut them into small pieces so your pup doesn't choke on them.
🍠 Sweet potato - safe
Sweet potatoes can make for a tasty healthy treat for dogs. They're low in calories and contain beta-carotene, which helps promote good vision. They're also heart-healthy and can boost your dog's immune system.
If you do decide to serve your dog sweet potatoes, avoid cooking them with extra sweeteners like syrup or brown sugar, which contain unnecessary calories.
🦃 Turkey - safe
Like chicken, cooked turkey is also safe for dogs, as long as you remove the bones beforehand.
One note of caution: it can be tempting to feed your pooch turkey scraps around Thanksgiving, but avoid doing so, especially if it was cooked with garlic or onions, as they are highly toxic to dogs.
🍉 Watermelon - safe
Watermelon is not only safe for dogs, but they tend to love eating it, especially in the hot summer months.
The cool, refreshing vitamin-packed fruit can make for a great treat on its own or as part of another recipe, like these Watermelon Blueberry Yogurt Bites.
However, be careful to remove the seeds and rind before giving watermelon to your pooch, as they can be choking hazards.
🥛 Yogurt - safe
Yogurt is ok to feed your dog, and the active bacteria in it can even help with digestion. But be aware, some dogs may have a problem with dairy products as a whole.
It's best to give your dog plain yogurt with no added sugar or artificial sweeteners. Homemade dog treats with yogurt like these Frozen Watermelon Blueberry Yogurt Bites are a good idea because they are smaller treats that include only a small amount of yogurt in each bite.
🚫 Foods that are not dog safe
Almonds - not safe
Almonds don't contain any toxins harmful to dogs, but they can still create problems for your pooch.
Their rough texture can scratch or damage the windpipe if they're swallowed too fast. Plus, they're high in fat and calories.
And many store-bought almonds come heavily salted. Excessive salt intake can lead to heart disease in dogs, which in some cases can be fatal.
🥑 Avocado - not safe
You may enjoy some creamy avocado on toast or in guacamole, but you should never feed it to your dog. The reason is a substance it contains called Persin.
This toxin be extremely poisonous to dogs, leading to vomiting and diarrhea. It can also cause potentially fatal breathing problems.
All parts of the avocado contain persin, so keep your dogs away when preparing avocados for your own consumption.
🦴 Bones (pork, poultry, steak) - not safe
The biggest reason not to give your dog leftover bones from pork, poultry, or steak is that they can be choking hazards.
Some can break apart while chewing. Others can become lodged in the dog's digestive system, which can lead to constipation or damage to internal organs.
Bones also contain fatty tissue which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and dehydration in dogs.
🍫 Chocolate - not safe
While a tasty treat to a lot of people, chocolate is not safe for dogs. It contains toxic substances that can dogs can't effectively metabolize.
Even a little bit can cause diarrhea, vomiting, and dehydration. Large quantities can even lead to death.
This is especially good to be aware of around Halloween and the holidays, when chocolate goodies may be more plentiful around the house.
If your dog does eat chocolate, contact your veterinarian as soon as you can.
🟠 Cinnamon - not safe
Cinnamon isn't toxic to dogs on its own, but it does contain substances that can cause irritation and digestive problems.
Eating cinnamon can lead a dog to develop diarrhea, vomiting, and potentially liver ailments. So if you're making baked dog treats, avoid adding any cinnamon.
🧄🧅 Garlic or onions - not safe
Garlic and onions (as well as leeks and chives) are highly toxic to dogs. Eating them can lead to rapid heart rate, weakness, anemia, vomiting, and diarrhea, even in small amounts.
If your dog accidentally eats some, be sure to monitor your pup for signs of these symptoms.
🍦 Ice cream - not safe
Ice cream often ranks as the top dessert treat among people, but when it comes to dogs, you should steer clear.
Your dog may react poorly to the dairy in ice cream, and the high amounts of sugar can be unhealthy.
🌰 Macadamia nuts - not safe
Whereas peanuts are safe for dogs, macadamia nuts are not. They contain a toxin that can be harmful to dogs, even in small amounts.
Side effects include tremors, vomiting, and muscle weakness. Apart from that, macadamia nuts are not healthy from a nutritional standpoint, as they have high fat levels.
🍇 Raisins and grapes - not safe
While you might think grapes and raisins would be healthy fruit options for dogs, they contain compounds that are toxic to dogs, which can lead to kidney failure and maybe even death.
The best option is to avoid giving these foods to your dog altogether.
☠️ Xylitol - not safe
This sugar substitute is not safe for dogs, as it's very toxic for them and can lead to liver problems and death, even in small amounts.
Unfortunately, it's found in some food items that can make their way into your dog's body, such as certain kinds of peanut butter and yogurts.
Be sure to check the labels of people foods to see if they contain xylitol before using them to make treats for your pooch.
Tips and FAQs for homemade dog treats
According to the American Kennel Club, "Treats should not make up more than 10 percent of your dog’s diet." You can learn more about how much you should feed your dog on the AKC website.
Our dog Ace loves peanut butter, carrots, blueberries, watermelon, and pumpkin. He also enjoys the very occasional French fry!
Homemade dog treat recipes
We have a lot of homemade dog treat recipes on Urban Bliss Life! These have been tried, tested, and approved by our own dogs.
Remember that your dog is unique and special. Every dog will tolerate different foods in different ways, depending on a number of factors - including size, breed, allergies, and overall health.
If you have questions, or are unsure about about these or other foods to feed your dog, be sure to check with your veterinarian.
Sources: American Kennel Club