Some dogs do not adhere to the 24 hour clock we humans base our days on, but rather an internal clock with a milk-bone or juicy kibble bits representing each pivotal hour of the day. Like clockwork, you may notice your significant fuzzy-buddy sidling up to the treat stash or you may watch your dog morph from a slumbering angel to a slobbering and very vocal canine in a matter of minutes when that special time rolls around. Treats, whether you use bones, biscuits, or chicken strips, have become an intrinsic addition to the canine diet. Unfortunately, treats have also become the leading cause of canine obesity, transforming slender dogs into generously proportioned chubsters. To help keep your adorable pet as healthy and fit as possible, we’ve outlined some tips to help you tackle the tricky treat quandary.

Moderation

All dogs should enjoy an indulgence from time to time. That said it should be done so in moderation. It is often a good idea to break the treat into small pieces. Your dog will still savor each of those small bits and you can save money on treats by using less!

Count Calories
It is a good idea to check the packaging on your dog’s treats to find the calorie content in each treat. You might be surprised by what you find. The Woof Report suggests that treats should only take up 10% of your dog’s daily calorie count.

Healthy Alternatives
We often think our dog will only be attracted to juicy hunks of meat, but many dogs salivate over carrots, little slices of apple, and green beans. However, remember to steer clear of grapes or raisins, which can be poisonous to dogs. Try substituting these healthy, low-fat alternatives into your dog’s diet. Now that it’s summer, try a small seedless slice of watermelon or even some crunchy ice cubes that will cool your dog off and keep him or her happily occupied.

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There is no doubt that treats make our dogs happy, so there is no need to deny your precious pooch tasty treats. Just remember that in order to keep your dog healthy and happy, opt for low calorie, low fat options, and use your treats sparingly. Most importantly, get the whole family on board. It won’t work if Grandma is sneaking extra bacon under the table! It takes all hands on deck to provide the best quality of life for our special four-legged friends.