Soft dog treats are easier for some dogs to manage and others simply find them the tastier option. Or maybe you just have a picky pup.
Soft treats are often more flavorful and appealing than other treats, but with that also comes more opportunity for calories and filler ingredients.
Here are five things to consider when choosing a soft treat for your dog.
It’s easy to determine if a soft dog treat variety is a healthy snack or doggy junk food.
Although there’s nothing wrong with including healthy whole grains such as brown rice or whole wheat flour, treats with large quantities of white flour or other refined grains aren’t ideal.
Treats that contain sugar should be used occasionally.
Quality treats should also contain quality protein, whether that’s from meat or legumes, including peanut butter.
Avoid treats with unspecified animal fats or meats (for example, “animal fat” rather than “chicken fat”), excessive filler ingredients or artificial colors, flavors and preservatives.
For dogs that need them, soft treats are available in grain-free options, but a grain-free diet is not necessarily healthier for all dogs.
Consider the calorie content of treats for your dog.
The smallest soft treats contain just 1-2 calories apiece, while large soft treats can contain more than 30 calories.
It’s important to stay in control of your dogs’ calorie intake so they don’t gain weight.
Treats should make up no more than 10% of your dog’s diet. A quick internet search can tell how many calories your dog needs per day.
You can find soft treats in many sizes, from petite 3-ounce bags to giant 2-pound tubs.
You’ll often get the most cost-effective option, at price per ounce, by buying in bulk, but your dog may not get through all of the treats before they go bad.
You can find soft treats ranging from teeny training morsels to large biscuits.
Use your discretion when choosing treats. Small treats are best for training your dog, to be able to give them multiple rewards in a session. If you buy treats that are too large, their softness makes them easier to break into pieces.
3 soft dog treats to try
Cloud Star Dynamo Dog Skin & Coat Functional Soft Chews
Salmon, a skin and coat health booster, is the first ingredient in these treats, which are packed with healthy fruits and veggies. They’re highly palatable to most dogs, but on the costlier end of the price spectrum.
Hill’s Peanut Butter and Banana Soft Savories
These affordable soft treats are a great option for pet parents on a budget. Peanut butter is the No. 1 ingredient, but the cane molasses sweetener and added sugars aren’t great for teeth. It’s made with no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives.
Old Mother Hubbard Soft & Tasty Peanut Butter & Bacon Biscuits
These mini soft treats are great for small dogs, or a larger dog’s training treat. They contain healthy whole grains and no artificial colors or preservatives. But the peanut butter flavor could be more prominent.