Treats – How many is too many?September 1, 2016
It’s nice to treat your pet. Especially if you’re training them to do something, pet treats can easily become a routine part of daily life. While pet treats are okay to give to your pet, too many treats can be harmful to their health. The same way you try to balance out a yummy treat for dessert with a salad for dinner, it’s important to keep this same balance in mind with your pet.
How many treats are too many exactly? Well, it depends on the type of treat you feed your pet, and the size of your dog or cat. Healthy treats are free of corn, wheat, soy, by-products and anything artificial. Start by reading the labels of the treats you buy and keep an eye out for these items. If you see these things listed in the ingredients, consider switching the treat brand you purchase to something healthier – like Zoë’s 100% natural, Canadian made treats!
A good guideline to follow is ensuring that you don’t feed more than 10% of your pet’s total diet in treats. You should also keep in mind that, when you’ve fed your pet a treat, their next meal should be reduced accordingly to keep them at a healthy weight. The larger the treat, the more reduced your pet’s next meal should be.
Like humans, pets also have a recommended calorie intake per day. This is another great way to track your pet’s diet and balance out their treat intake. For dogs, the recommended calorie intake is 30 calories for every 1 pound of body weight. So a 10-pound dog needs only 300 calories per day, while a 100-pound dog needs 3,000 calories per day. For cats, the recommended calorie intake per day for an indoor cat is 20 calories per 1 pound of body weight, and for outdoor cats the calorie intake jumps to 35 calories per 1 pound of body weight.
Overall, the best way to ensure that you’re not feeding your pet too many treats is to be aware of how many treats you’re giving them and how often. You wouldn’t eat three cupcakes every day for the next week, right? The same goes for your pet! Most treat bags have a feeding guide, usually 1 or 2 per day depending on your pet’s size. Be sure as well that the treats you choose to buy are the healthier option on the shelf. By following the steps above and keeping this information in mind, you can ensure that your pet stays healthy while also receiving the occasional treat for being such a good little guy.
Have you tried Zoë’s treats yet? Did your pet love them? Tell us about it in the comments section below!