Your dog knows that human food is oh-so-tasty and probably thinks he should eat table scraps as his primary meals. The problem is, some of that lip-smacking food you consume can be dangerous for your pup. It's not only the cause of upset stomachs, it can even cause your dog to develop diseases, and some types of food lead to fatal symptoms.
The occasional pizza crust probably won't cause your pup to empty the contents of his stomach all over your floor, but filling his bowl with leftover mashed potatoes and gravy isn't going to sit too well with him. Dogs have a tendency to scarf down human food very fast, because it's so tasty. The faster your pup eats, the more likely he is to have stomach problems and vomit up all the food he took in. That's one of the least dangerous causes of vomiting. Others include greasy foods, such as hamburger that wasn't drained or rinsed; foods your pup's allergic to, which often stem from a protein source; or foods that are poisonous to dogs, such as chocolate and macadamia nuts.
Diarrhea and Gas
Unlike vomiting, one sliver of something your pup's not used to -- like that pizza crust -- can send him running for the grass or sending stink bombs into the air. Lots of things cause diarrhea and flatulence, including a change in your pup's menu or the introduction of something to his diet he can't digest properly. A food allergy can also cause the smelly symptoms. Any type of food or drink you consume can cause the problems, especially dairy products.
As long as your pup didn't eat something poisonous, vomiting, diarrhea and gas are the most common symptoms you'll come across. But if your little guy swallows something dangerous to canines, like grapes, macadamia nuts, chocolate and peach pits, a whole slew of other symptoms can appear. These include trembling, excessive panting, lethargy, loss of coordination, seizures, acute paralysis, coma and even death. Diseases like anemia and pancreatitis can even occur with certain foods, such as meat trimmings and onions.
Obesity and Lack of Nutrition
On the back of your pup's food bag or can, you'll see specific guidelines on how much food to feed him each day. If he's regularly eating his food plus table scraps, he's probably going to gain an unhealthy amount of weight. Overweight dogs can suffer from lots of problems, such as diabetes, joint pain and heart disorders. If he's eating mostly table scraps, he's not getting the nutrition he needs to be a healthy canine. Your little guy needs certain amounts of things like protein, fat, carbohydrates, fatty acids and fiber or he'll start having problems that include excessive shedding, skin and muscle problems and behavioral changes.
Located in Pittsburgh, Chris Miksen has been writing instructional articles on a wide range of topics for online publications since 2007. He currently owns and operates a vending business. Miksen has written a variety of technical and business articles throughout his writing career. He studied journalism at the Community College of Allegheny County.