Best Treats For Puppies: What to Look For, What to Avoid

best treats for puppies

Choosing the best treat for puppies is as important as selecting puppy food. However, these treats, if not chosen carefully, may lead to health issues such as obesity.

In other words, you don’t want to feed your puppy with fatty treats full of empty calories. It should contain healthy ingredients that will prepare your pup for a happy and healthy life ahead.

Five Highly Recommended Treats for Puppies

Things to Look for and Avoid in Choosing Puppy Treats

The attentive anticipation that you see in your dog’s face once they see a treat is coming is one of the best things about being a dog owner. 

As much as possible, you want to keep them happy and healthy. Thus, you make sure you are feeding them with the best treats you can find in the market.

If you are on the hunt for a healthy and well balanced puppy treat, here are things you should look for, as well as things you should avoid.

1. Ingredients

You can check the ingredients on the label based on weight. Keep in mind that the first ingredients on the list are more significant in the content. These ingredients comprise most of the content. This is why it should be high quality.

How can you tell if the ingredients are high quality or not? One way to know is to investigate its attributes.

Fundamentally, the idea behind pet food nutrition is the same as human nutrition. Meaning, top quality ingredients are the same as what we would consider for our own food.

These ingredients should be fresh and pure. As much as possible, they should be minimally processed as well. Opt for whole food ingredients since they are far better in terms of nutrients compared to food fractions or by-products.

What this means is you should aim to have wheat in the ingredients instead of wheat flour, which is a by-product of wheat. Wheat germ and wheat bran are food fractions of wheat flour, so you are better off with the latter than the former.

The idea here is that the more refined the ingredients are, the higher the loss in its nutritional content. Reconstituted and processed ingredients have higher chances of getting contaminated and adulterated in the process. Thus, your puppy gets nothing out of it but empty calories.

2. Locally Sourced Ingredients

It is worth to consider puppy treats and dog foods that are sourced locally. Other countries are less likely to invest high quality puppy treats and dog foods in general.

At the same time, it is logical that the ingredients are fresher for products that are sourced domestically. The ingredients do not have to be preserved so badly so that it can be shipped from one country to another.

Of course, there are exceptions to the rule. Not all ingredients can be obtained locally. If there are imported components, check the label where the goods were taken from, and do additional research about it.

Although, this does not mean it is a deal breaker if it is made somewhere else. It is, however, advisable for you to find out more about the ingredients before purchasing products that are not domestically sourced.

Local ingredients are not only fresh. They are also good for the environment.

3. Ingredients are Familiar

Have you ever read through the ingredients and wondered what it is? Chances are, you don’t want that for your puppy. The ingredients on the label should be easy to recognize. At the same time, you should not have to wonder what the source is or where it is from.

For example, the label ‘animal fat’ is a sweeping term that could mean anything. It is better to opt for labels that state ‘chicken fat’ so that you know it is from chicken specifically.

If you do not know the animal species the fact came from, you should not feed it to your puppy or your dog in general.

4. Organic Ingredients

These ingredients are good sources of nutrients since they are less likely to be contaminated. Inspectors also tend to expect organic ingredients more than their adulterated or processed counterparts. The more organic ingredients there are the better.

The same goes for sweeteners. They should be natural and food-based. For example, molasses, honey, and applesauce are the best types of sweeteners. Although sweeteners should not be present in dog foods, having it in treats are okay since they are not given regularly.

Preserved treats should also contain natural preservatives. For example, Vitamins C and E are both natural preservatives that are more desirable and advantageous than artificial preservatives.

There are treats that do not have preservatives at all. They, however, need better storage and should be used as soon as possible.

Finally, there are some ingredients that you should avoid. While examining the list, make sure it doesn’t contain bits like artificial preservatives, artificial colors, and chemical humectants like propylene glycol.

These ingredients keep treats looking moist and chewy. They also stop discoloration especially in preserved meats. While they preserve the physical look of the meats, however, they are unnecessary ingredients that do not have health benefits at all. Thus, they should be avoided.

Pet Botanics Training Rewards is especially made as a treat to help in your puppy or dog’s training process.

It is meaty, small, soft, and moist composed of only about 1 ½ calories each.

This makes it ideal for training since you are repeatedly giving the treat each time your puppy gets it right.

Since it tastes good, these treats motivate your puppy to focus and eventually encourage them to perform better and speed up the learning process.

Pet Botanics brand also has good reputation with their products out in the market.

They are all made in the USA, which makes it healthier both to your pets and to the environment.


Pros

  • Cost effective
  • Container has re-closable zipper for freshness
  • Perfect size and calorie content for repetitive treats
  • Packaging made easy to carry around
  • First ingredient is real pork liverMade in the USA
  • Small and soft for puppy’s teeth

Cons

  • Does not fit all dogs and puppy taste
  • Not advisable for picky eaters
  • May cause adverse reaction to some puppies and dogs

This treat combines the crunchy biscuit texture and the delicious taste and texture of real bone marrow.

This treat is produced in Milk Bone’s facilities in the USA. These wholesome treats are guilt-free and delicious.

It is rich in calcium to help in the development and maintenance of healthy bones and teeth.

Milk Bone products are made in Buffalo, New York.

The company has been providing healthy dog and puppy foods since 1908 and is known as the very first biscuit treat for dogs in the United States.

With these numbers of years in the business, you can expect they have developed their products in the best way possible.


Pros

  • Can be used as treat or part of healthy diet
  • Wholesome and deliciousHigh in calcium
  • Each treat contains 5 calories
  • Small size
  • Fortified with 12 vitamins and minerals
  • Unique texture – crunchy on the outside and soft in the inside
  • Easy to carry in your pocket

Cons

  • Some dogs may have adverse reaction
  • May cause diarrhea for some dogs
  • Does not suit all puppies and dogs
  • A bit dry
  • Scent may not be too attractive to some dogs

This product from Zuke’s is made of chicken as its number 1 ingredient.

They are small in sized but packed with savoury rosemary and turmeric to help keep the treat healthy.

It also contains wholefood cherries that add unique flavours and scents that make it highly attractive to dogs and puppies alike.

Each treat contains 3 ½ calories, so it’s great for repetitive training.

For dogs allergic to soy, corn, and wheat, this product is free from those ingredients. It is also made in the USA.

Thus, you can expect the products to be fresh and of high quality.


Pros

  • Main ingredient is real chicken
  • Contains only 3.5 calories each treat
  • Delicious for training dogs and puppies
  • Made of wholefood ingredients
  • Does not contain corn, soy, or wheat
  • Healthy miniature treats full of vitamins and minerals
  • Made from high quality ingredients
  • Can be given as a healthy appetizer
  • Great for training
  • Soft treats for developing puppy teeth

Cons

  • Some dogs may not like this treat
  • May cause stomach issues to some dogs and puppies
  • Treat turns hard when bag is left open
  • Some ingredients may cause allergic reaction to some dogs

This treat is made especially for puppies. Soft and chewy for their growing teeth, Wellness Puppy Bites are made with premium salmon and lamb.

It is can be used for both rewarding and training purposes. The ingredients are all natural and they are sourced in the US.

It is especially made for puppies so they have the right size for the purpose.

At the same time, it contains natural source of DHA to help with healthy brain development.

You want treats for puppies that are not just delicious.

You want it to be good for their development at this stage in their life as well.


Pros

  • Specifically made for puppies
  • Contains all natural and premium-class ingredients
  • Does not contain artificial colors and flavours, meat by-products, dairy, corn, and wheat
  • Natural grain
  • Natural source of DHA
  • Contains antioxidants
  • Contains Superfoods like omega-rich flaxseed, blueberries, and delicious veggies
  • Nutritious treats designed for the development of puppies
  • Reasonably priced
  • Soft treats made for developing teeth
  • Has perforated lines for breaking into tinier pieces when necessary

Cons

  • Some puppies may have adverse reactions
  • Not the best fit for all puppies
  • May cause diarrhea to some puppies
  • Some digestive issues may arise
  • Smelly due to the salmon
  • May not appeal to older dogs

Made with natural wholesome ingredients, these puppy treats were slowly baked in the oven to preserve its natural flavours.

They are all natural ingredients, flavours, and crunch as it is made in a true classic cupboard classic from North America.

Old Mother Hubbard Crunchy Classic, with its 90 years of experience in this industry, is also made of high proteins, veggies, and fruits.

It has the health benefits and nutritious taste of carrots, apples, and chicken.

Plus, it’s shaped like a dog bone with a delicious crunchy taste your cute furry friend will enjoy.


Pros

  • Delicious puppy treat with chicken flavour
  • Added with essential vitamins and minerals for growing puppies
  • Fun bone-shaped dog biscuits
  • Great for training
  • Contains premium natural ingredients
  • No artificial preservatives added
  • Made with high quality veggies, proteins, and fruits
  • Comes in 3 sizes (mini, small, large) for all dog sizes

Cons

  • Some puppies may manifest adverse reaction
  • May cause diarrhea to some puppies
  • May come off as tough for some puppies
  • Not the best fit for all puppies

Conclusion

All of these products are considered to be the best treats for puppies in the market today. However, not all puppies will like them.

At the end of the day, each puppy has his or her own preference. At the same time, some puppies may also have adverse reaction to any of these products. It is important to observe how they react to the product.

With that said, we can compare and determine the winner based on the factors mentioned above. Out of the five, Wellness Puppy Bites Natural Grain Free Puppy Training Treats win the contest. It is composed of all natural ingredients with antioxidants and Superfoods.

More importantly, they are perfectly sized for puppies as they are especially made for your cute mates.

Finally, Wellness Puppy Bites does not contain corn, grain, soy, wheat-gluten, meat by-products, and artificial flavours and colors. All these ingredients are fillers and they add empty calories to the treat.

Remember that choosing treats should not be taken lightly as you will repeatedly give them to your puppies. Choose those that have natural ingredients and health benefits. Stay away from high calorie treats. And also, you should give your puppy a schedule on how often to feed him.

I hope this article helps you choose and decide which will be the best dog food for your beagle. For suggestions, comments, and questions, just leave a message in the comment box and if you like the article, don't forget to hit the share button.

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Anna Stewart

Hello!! I'm Anna. I have many hobbies about pets and animal, especially about dogs. In this blog I will share those necessary things you need to know about your dogs like behaviors, training, favorites, health care ... and more. Visit my blog regularly and share the fun with your dogs.

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