Is It Healthy to Have Dogs Lick a Plate?

by Bridget Johnson
    Keep dogs out of human-food plates to keep their tummies healthier.

    Keep dogs out of human-food plates to keep their tummies healthier.

    Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    When you sit down for dinner, chances are your pup thinks it's his chow time as well. It's tempting to give in to Rover's begging by at least setting your post-feast plate down to let your dog lick up leftover tidbits or flavorful sauces. But you could be exposing your pooch to unhealthy ingredients by letting him partake in people food.

    Licking Up Trouble

    Vets caution against table scraps for pets because at the least these calorie-laden treats can lead to excessive weight gain. But think about what else might be on that plate. You may have marinated meat in a sauce containing onion or garlic, which can cause gastrointestinal upset and even red blood cell damage. A few chives from your baked potato may be on the plate, which have the same potentially toxic effect. The guacamole with your burrito is made with avocado, another toxic food. And dessert plates carry the danger of chocolate ingestion, along with the standard tummy-ache risk from any people food. Try offering your dog a healthy freeze-dried meat treat during mealtime to make him think that he's getting a taste of your dinner.

    Photo Credits

    • Chris Amaral/Digital Vision/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Bridget Johnson is a veteran print journalist who covers Washington, DC. For more than 15 years, she has been a reporter, editor and award-winning columnist in small and major metropolitan markets across the United States. Johnson has also served as a commentator on numerous radio and TV shows, including NPR's "Tell Me More."

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