PFMA advice is that any treats given should ideally be specially formulated pet treats rather than human food tit bits. Treating should also be carefully monitored to prevent weight gain.
It’s understandable for pet owners to want to treat their pets over the festive period and this includes human food treats. Treats can be an important part of the owner-pet interaction.
The advice from the Pet Food Manufacturers' Association (PFMA) is that any treats given should ideally be specially formulated pet treats rather than human food tit bits.
All treats should be fed in moderation to prevent excess calories and weight gain. Any treats given also need to be taken in to consideration at mealtimes. As a guide, no more than 10% of a pet's calorie intake should come from treats.
PFMA encourages owners to follow the feeding instructions provided on the pet food packet to help control calorie intake. PFMA has also developed a series of weight management resources to help owners with this. These are available at: https://www.pfma.org.uk/weight-management-tools
In addition to the information provided on the pet food packet, many manufacturers provide customer care lines for any questions on ingredients and feeding queries.
If treating with human foods this Christmas, keep in mind that these can be highly calorific for pets and some popular festive foods can be toxic, for instance chocolate, grapes, raisins and nuts. A full list is available from the British Veterinary Association (BVA).
Useful weight management resources from the PFMA include: