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Food & Diet

Can Dogs Eat Vegetables?

At A Glance

Most people consider pets to be a part of their family and a family that eats together, stays together.

Want your pet to eat the vegetables that you’re eating but not sure whether it’ll be good for them or not? We have the answers.

Unknown to many, dogs are omnivores by nature. They can consume both meat and plants as a part of their diet. In fact, they often do so in their natural, wild habitat. But what about pet dogs? Can dogs eat vegetables?

In most cases, yes they can. But the more pertinent question is, do you need to include vegetables in your dog’s daily diet?

Let’s find out.

chopped veggies

Should You Add Vegetables to Your Dog’s Food?

If you’re adding vegetables to your dog’s food to ensure that your dog gets a balanced diet, you need not stress.

As long as the food you get for your dog has been approved by the Association of American Feed Control Officials, it already contains all the nutrients that your dog’s body needs to function efficiently.

Many dog parents provide their pets with vegetables such as broccoli, green beans, carrots, etc. as occasional treats. You can do the same too.

Do not forget to consult your vet on how much vegetables you could add to your pet’s diet without upsetting their tummies.

 

What Are The Benefits of Adding Vegetables to Your Dog’s Diet?

In case you have a pet who is a little overweight, your vet would recommend you to feed your dog vegetables.

Certain vegetables are good for dogs as they contain lesser calories but make your pet feel full. 

However, make sure you do not make any sudden changes in your dog’s diet. It would take some time for your canine to get used to any new diet, including vegetables.

You can consider using softened raw vegetables to smoothen the transition.

dog licking

What Vegetables Are Safe for Dogs to Eat?

Here is a list of vegetables that have a healthy influence on your dog’s diet.

Beets

As long as you feed your dog beets in moderation, they are an excellent addition to your dog’s diet. Beets contain fiber, folate, manganese, potassium, and vitamin C.

These micronutrients play a huge role in strengthening your dog’s immune system and digestion. They also provide your dog with healthy skin and a luscious coat. 

If your pet is struggling with fur loss, stomach problems, or unhealthy skin, your vet might recommend beets to you.

broccoli

Broccoli

Broccoli is good for your dog’s health as long as it is given in moderation. Apart from being low in calories, it is high in fiber, Vitamin K, Vitamin C, minerals, and folic acid.

It helps your dog’s digestive system and improves bone density. As your dog ages, its bone density decreases. So broccoli is a treat for older dogs.

Known for its coagulating properties, broccoli boosts your dog’s immune system, provides anti-inflammatory advantages, and is water-soluble. It is an absolute treat for pregnant dogs as broccoli produces and maintains healthy cells.

Broccoli, despite its numerous health benefits, should only be given as part of the meal and not as a meal replacement.

Butternut Squash

Popular for its taste, butternut squash is an autumn vegetable. Apart from being sweet and nutty, it has a long shelf life and is quite versatile.

Can your dog enjoy butternut squash as much as you do? The answer is yes. Although it is best to keep the sugar, salt, and fats used in cooking butternut squash to a bare minimum.

Butternut squash contains minerals and vitamins such as A, C, B6. It helps your dog’s immune system develop, improves vision, and cardiovascular functions. 

Whether cooked as a topping, or as an ingredient in some other delicacy, butternut squash is fit for canine consumption.

Carrots for dogs

Carrots

Dogs can eat carrots. They contain essential nutrients and are rich sources of Vitamin A. Thin slices of organic carrots make for great treats for your pets. They improve dental health and are excellent sources of fiber and potassium for your dog.

Make sure you don’t boil the carrots as that can reduce their nutritional value.

Carrots should always be fed in moderation. Due to their high sugar content, they can make your do gain weight which might lead to obesity in the future.

Read the full article on Can dogs eat carrots.

Cucumber

Providing only eight calories per half cup of slices, this low-calorie vegetable is rich in phytonutrients and antioxidants.

Cucumber offers your dog anti-inflammatory benefits. Although it doesn’t pose any real threat to your dog, too much cucumber consumption might lead to gastrointestinal upset.

It is especially good for obese dogs who are trying to lose weight. Cucumbers also have high water content. This makes them not only a tasty treat but also a valuable one as they prevent your dog from getting dehydrated in the summer heat.

Celery for dogs

Celery

Apart from making your dog’s breath smell fresh, celery is an excellent source of fiber. It is low in fats and cholesterol. It also adds nutrients like Vitamins A, C, and K to your dog’s diet.

Unfortunately, celery comes with certain disadvantages as well. They are a serious choking hazard for puppies. But, this can easily be avoided by cutting celery into tiny pieces before feeding your pet.

Kale

Containing Vitamin K and A, and iron, kale provides your dog with good bone health, enhanced vision and immune function, better development, and a strong metabolism. You can feed your dog kale as a treat or as a meal supplement.

Giving kale as a treat instead of high-calorie biscuits can help your dog lose a few pounds. However, this needs to be paired with heavy exercise and moderating its diet.

With the potential to fight cancer and inflammatory diseases, kale also improves blood and muscle health. It also aids in liver detoxification. Your dog will be more likely to fight off infections if it enjoys a diet rich in kale.

Spinach for dogs

Spinach

Rich in nutrients like iron, magnesium, and Vitamins A, C, and E, spinach is a lovely treat for your dog.

Spinach can help in protecting your dog against cancer, inflammatory, and other cardiovascular problems. It also raises your dog’s energy and immunity levels.

You can prepare spinach for your dog by blanching, steaming, or pureeing. This makes it easier for your pet to eat and digest it. It’s better to serve your dog organic spinach. In case that’s not available, make sure you wash it properly.

Green Beans

Green beans can be fed chopped, steamed, raw, or canned.

Full of iron and Vitamins B6, A, C, and K, green beans are also high in fiber content. This makes them a good dietary supplement for constipated dogs. 

Despite their benefits, avoid serving green beans with added salt, or cooked with oils, spices, garlic, and onions. Do not serve it in large chunks either.

dog sitting with his food bowl

What Vegetables Can Dogs Not Eat?

You’ll be surprised to know that the same fruits and vegetables which are good for humans are sometimes toxic for dogs.

Below is a list of vegetables you should keep away from your dog.

an image of avocadoes on a chopping board

Avocados

Avocado toast might be extremely popular, but avocados are a big no-no for canines. Do not let your dog lick an avocado from your breakfast plate, let alone as a part of its diet.

It can cause breathing trouble and diarrhea in dogs.

onions

Onions, Garlic, and Chives

These much-loved ingredients are terrible for your dog’s blood.

All three can make your dog’s iron levels drop, thus harming the kidneys. 

Unripe Tomatoes

Being rich in tomatin, unripe tomatoes can damage your dog’s digestive tract, kidneys, and even prove to be fatal to the nervous system.

Keep them away from your dog at all costs.

Dog Looking at Mushrooms

Mushrooms

While you can still feed your dog the mushrooms you’ve bought from the market, avoid giving it wild mushrooms as they might be toxic.

Your dog might experience symptoms such as wheezing, vomiting, diarrhea, and a change in heart rate upon eating mushrooms.

Unfortunately, eating wild mushrooms might be extremely lethal as well because they sometimes cause organ failures, seizures, and even coma.

Read the full article on Can dogs eat mushrooms?

Beagle eating

How to Prepare Vegetables for Dogs?

You’ll be surprised to know that preparing a vegetable is as important as feeding your dog the right one.

You must keep in mind that the vegetables need to be thoroughly chopped into tiny pieces so that your pooch won’t choke on them.

Next, avoid boiling your vegetables as it makes them lose their nutrients.

Below are a few simple methods you can use to prepare the vegetable for your dog.

Blanching

If you feel the need to boil your vegetables, put them in boiling water first and then immediately in cold water.

This allows the vegetables to get clean while retaining their nutrients and taste. It is even considered a healthier alternative due to the lack of cooking oil.

Dogs with obesity can benefit from blanched vegetables in their diet.

Pureeing

If you want your dog to enjoy the maximum benefits of the vegetable while also ensuring it is completely digestible, blend the veggies into a raw puree.

Pureeing a vegetable shatters the cell walls of the plant material, making it easier for your dog to digest. 

Steaming

Considering that putting your vegetables in boiling water makes them lose their nutrients, streaming them is a wonderful alternative.

It cooks the vegetables well enough while managing to save the color, flavor, and nutritional value. 

An image of veggies

Can dogs eat vegetables? Yes.

Talk to your vet before adding vegetables to your dog’s diet. They can prepare a proper diet chart which, when followed, will ensure that your pet gets the nutrition it requires. Serve vegetables as a part of your dog’s diet. Create a food chart if need be.

What’s good for you will not be the best for your dog. Dig deep, get recommendations, and then get going on dietary changes.

After all, a healthy dog is a happy dog.

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Paul Andrews
https://www.linkedin.com/in/paul-andrews-172490189/

A digital marketing expert by profession, Andrews is a gifted writer and animal lover at heart. A self-confessed "pawrent", Andrews is well-versed in all things dogs. He uses his years of experience of raising puppies into show-quality dogs to help guide first-time pet parents. He believes in spreading the joy that comes with being a dog dad and advocates more families to adopt pets.