Dogs may be our best friends but that doesn’t mean we can always share our lunch with them. There are plenty of foods that are safe for us but toxic for dogs—so many, in fact, they can be hard to remember.
Fortunately, there’s a new app called Om Nom?  to help us keep track of what foods—and, in some cases parts of foods—should be avoided. For instance, apples are a good source of Vitamin A for your dog, but the stems, leaves and seeds contain substances that can cause vomiting, diarrhea, decreased heart rate, and, if large amounts are ingested, respiratory failure.
The app also provides instruction on what to do if your dog accidentally eats something he wasn’t supposed to. While it’s not a substitute for a veterinarian, it is a guide that can be used preemptively to prevent feeding your dog something that could cause him harm. All of the information featured in the app comes from the developer’s own research based on published papers on toxicology and veterinary medicine from the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Chris Morrell, the brains behind the Om Nom? app, was inspired by his own cluelessness about his new friend, a now three-year-old Havanese named Scottie Pippen. “Once we actually adopted Pip, we quickly realized that neither of us knew the first thing about how to care for him,” Morrell says.
After his vet ran through the list of foods to avoid, Morrell became concerned about what else might be on the “do not eat“ list. Pip had a strong urge to snap up remnants left on the cutting board, which meant Morrell and his wife were constantly Googling ingredients.
“Each website had a slightly different list, so I figured I’d do everyone a favor and compile the most comprehensive resource available.” Morrell also had a researcher interview Pip’s vet about specific foods when he couldn’t find the information anywhere else.
Om Nom? also includes a Chocolate Toxicity calculator, which pops up when you hit the “chocolate” entry. “The type of chocolate and the weight of the dog are both important factors in how dangerous chocolate is, so I thought an interactive tool would be particularly useful for that entry,” Morrell says. In addition, users can submit requests for missing ingredients or foods to Morrell from the app itself.
And what about the peculiar name? Om Nom refers to the sound that people make when they’re eating something tasty. (Think: Cookie Monster on Sesame Street).
Om Nom? is a neat utility app for new and veteran dog owners alike, and at 99 cents it doesn’t cost much to ensure your dog is eating right. Currently, available for iPhone and iPad .