diet & nutrition
Dogs can eat many if not most of the things humans can. In general, feeding the street dogs around you isn’t very hard at all.
However, the following must not be given under any circumstances – onions, garlic, chocolates/candy, grapes, raisins.
Also, PLEASE limit the amount of sugar/sweets. And it’s also a good idea to stay away from very salty and sour foods.
The following can be given –
Milk (diluted with water 1:1)
Yoghurt/Dahi/Chaach (no dilution necessary)
Paneer (up to 70-100g per dog per day is safe and healthy)
Eggs – must be fully cooked/boiled through – one egg per dog is a safe bet
Certain boiled veggies may also be given for overall health and nutrition, as per each individual dog’s taste – potato, pumpkin, green peas, beans, carrots, tomatoes (can be given raw). But it’s a good idea to limit the amount of vegetables – certain dogs are susceptible to runny stools if given too much.
Along with any and all of the above, any cereal may also be given – preferably rice, which is the safest, most nutritious (and often cheapest) option. Roti/bread can also be given. Even plain, unsweetened cornflakes can be given in addition to the milk.
Most of this can be found in our leftovers everyday, which many of us discard without a second thought.
Additionally, you may also buy the following options of dog food which are easy on the pocket, if you’d like to feed community dogs regularly (and in case leftovers from home are not enough). You may click on the links below:
Feeding a street dog has two very tangible benefits – 1. it is a good deed which leaves us feeling good and overall, makes us better human beings and 2. it actually helps REDUCE the overall number of cases and the severity of human-dog conflict.
However most people feel that the dogs on the streets are inherent monsters who are out on the prowl to kill children. Many are of the misconception that feeding dogs somehow “invites” more dogs to the area or discourages the existing dogs from moving away. People have also come up to me and complained that feeding them will add to the ever-increasing population of the dogs on the street.
Any dog behaviourist would concur with me when I say the first misconception is blatantly not true. Dogs are fiercely territorial and will remain so, whether or not food is provided by a human in the area. They will also drive out any new dog that may stray into “their area”.
The third misconception doesn’t HAVE to be true if your dogs are sent for safe sterilisations (once they are of age). This is actually one of the most responsible things you can do for your house pets as well as the animals on your street.
If you are ever confronted by someone attacking you, verbally or otherwise, please read this to learn the legal tools with which you can arm yourself.