When it comes to making treat and foods for dogs, people are often looking for extra things that can serve as protein to add, keeping the cost of meat low. Beans are often a great source of protein while also adding fiber to the food. This makes chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, a great source of snacks, protein powder or whole bean addition to food for dogs.
When creating foods for dogs, many companies are now using chickpeas as a way to increase protein in the food, add fiber, and keep costs low. Chickpeas can be powdered and act as a filler in place of grains that some owners choose not to feed dogs for fear of wheat and grain allergies.
Chickpeas have become a very suitable source of food for dogs. You can make them into a paste that can be added on top of dry dog food too, if you wish. Other types of beans can also add some variety to the dog’s diet. Black beans are a rich source of protein, as well as lentils. When using dry beans, please make sure to soak the beans adequately and cook the adequately as well. Beans can be a source of gas if they are not cooked well.
Dogs do not require a lot of fiber in their diet, about 4 to 5% is fine, so don’t overdo beans as they are loaded with fiber. Too much fiber can lead to either diarrhea or constipation. Typically, too many beans cause loose stools and gas. When a dog has gas, flatulence is common and can be particularly noxious. Be wary of this when feeding chickpeas or any beans.
Green beans tend to be tolerated well by the dog’s digestive system and are a source of fiber and protein as well, though not nearly as much protein as lentils. Lentils are an easy bean to cook well as they are small. They absorb the flavors of the foods that they are cooked with and make an excellent easy addition to dog food recipes.
Experimenting with Foods
You can try offering your dog very tiny doses of various foods to see how he likes them and whether his body tolerates them well. Some dogs are not receptive to new foods while others will eat first and ask questions later.
If your dog is an ‘inhaler of food’ make sure to provide them an elevated bowl to reduce air intake and add food to a specially made bowl to help slow dogs down. When dogs eat too fast, they take too much air into their stomachs. Bending over too far can also increase this happening.
Many dogs enjoy all sorts of beans and they are all fine to feed. Lima beans, navy beans, lentils…you name it, they are all pretty good and full of goodness. Vegetables are a great addition to the beans.
Some carrots added to those chickpeas will give essential beta carotenes to your dog, which are good for the eyes. Dogs can also enjoy some cranberries added to their food sometimes. They help to increase kidney health by flushing the kidneys. This will reduce uti if your dog is prone to them.
Dogs enjoy a little rice added to their foods and this is fine. You’ll want to make sure that they are getting healthy omega oils. These healthy oils give a boost to the immune system and help to keep the skin and coat shiny and soft.
Dogs with a healthy immune system tend to live longer and have fewer health issues over their lifetime. Feeding a well-rounded diet of fruits, vegetables, lean meats and proteins, with just the right amount of fiber, topped with the omega oil they need will ensure that they are around with you for many years to come.
Make sure that any food you are feeding your dog are human grade, and safe for dogs. Don’t settle for second class foods. Don’t accidentally feed them something that is not good for them either. Make sure that you avoid the following foods, these is not a complete list but it’s a good start to make your considerations.
1) Macadamia nuts – these are highly toxic and no one knows exactly why but they can cause animals to lose control of legs and be rendered unable to walk. Convulsions can happen and even death in extreme cases.
2) Salt- This is for the same reasons that humans should watch salt consumption. Dogs are much smaller and it takes far less to cause toxicity in their body and they will become severely dehydrated, risking the kidneys and cardiovascular disease.
3) Sugar – Dogs are prone to developing type two diabetes from sugar. It is not a normal dietary food for them. Sugar will cause more harm, faster, to your dog than to you.
4) Dairy – Many dogs are lactose intolerant and have severe diarrhea from dairy products. If you give your dog dairy, use a small amount and please, pay attention to the potential reactions. Many owners who just let the dog out back are not paying attention to signs of diarrhea, which can make them very ill.
5) Chocolate – Dark chocolate is particularly dangerous, but it can all be lethal. Chocolate is a very bad thing and it is more lethal for small dogs as they can consume less before becoming violently ill, having seizures, and ultimately dying without medical intervention. It can still cause permanent damage to the kidneys.
6) High fat foods – Dogs will also suffer from high cholesterol and again, it takes less to harm them, in a shorter amount of time. Dogs already have a short life span. Feeding high fat foods will decrease their lifespan dramatically.
7) Grapes/raisins – These are highly toxic. One small handful of grapes over their lifetime can cause the kidneys to shut down. Six or seven grapes could kill a medium sized dog in a few hours. Do not allow dogs to have any product with grapes or raisins, such as cookies, oatmeal, raisin bread, etc.
8) Citrus – These can cause stomach upset that will lead to diarrhea and heartburn.
9) Raw meat – Risk of food poisoning is high from salmonella, e-coli, and other bacteria. Animals with a poor immune system can die.
10) Raw eggs – These are often tainted with salmonella which can cause horrible illness that can, in rare cases, lead to death.
11) Raw white potatoes – There is a chemical in them that is changed when cooked. When eaten raw, they can become violently ill.
12) Broccoli – Too much vitamin A for dogs to safely metabolise if they eat more than a couple of pieces. Be cautious with this one.
13) Apple seeds – The seeds contain cyanide and are toxic. This is poisonous and enough will kill dogs as well as many other animals.
14) Apricot/peach/plum pits – Remove the seeds or pits and then the fruit is safe. The pits are sometimes toxic and always a choking hazard.
15) Kiwi seeds – The seeds of this fruit are very toxic to dogs. The skins are also hard to swallow and should be removed. The fruit itself tends to cause acid indigestion to dogs.
Again, this is a partial list and meant to get your mind to realize that many things we eat and take for granted are not safe for dogs. Some of the above foods can kill your dog, cause kidney damage, brain damage, etc. Be very sure something is safe by looking it up before you feed it to them.
Dogs are trusting and if you put it in the bowl and it smells good, they will eat it. This is not always safe because we haven’t done our research. Take the time to explore foods that are safe and know which ones are not before you feed them to your dog. If you are unsure, skip it. Wait and find out first.
If you want to give your dog a little ice cream, try to choose one that is as low in sugar as possible but not artificially sweetened. Don’t give them too much. While no one eats 100% healthy all of the time, moderation is key. Dairy won’t kill your dog but it could make him uncomfortable. He’s trusting you to keep him healthy and safe. Let that be your guide when choosing his foods.
Food does not equal love. Food is nourishment. Food is energy. Don’t feel that you’re being awful to tell them “no” when they beg for something. If it isn’t good for them, give them something that is. They just want your love and attention.
Dawn Greer is a passionate blogger and animal rights activist. She is a pet lover, certified dog trainer, behavior consultant, pet nutritionist, and former veterinary technician. She continues her work while writing blogs for pet lovers around the globe.