Recommended Fruits and Vegetables for Dogs
See files for Dogs
The domestic dog that we know and love today belongs to the order Carnivora, biologically they are omnivorous. In fact, it is believed dogs were domesticated from wolves more than 30,000 years ago. Their ancestors depended on human food leftovers, trash, etc., so they had to adapt their behavior. As a result, they changed physiologically, to be able to eat a more varied diet.
Dogs, compared to the carnivorous wolf, are superiorly evolved and able to metabolize carbohydrates. Although they still need a substantial amount of protein, they are able to survive with a diet lower in protein, than that of a wolf.
Thus, there are plenty of recommended fruits and vegetables for dogs that AnimalWised encourage you to feed your pet! Let's get onto the list.
Benefits of fruits and vegetables for dogs
In general, quality dog food has the proteins, vitamins, minerals, fats and oils that our dog needs in a balanced way. However, it is worth providing your dog with some antioxidants and fiber that fruit and vegetables have in abundance.
You probably have heard how important it is for us to ingest foods rich in antioxidants to eliminate free radicals and thus prevent premature aging. But, did you know that for animals they are also very beneficial? A lack of antioxidants will not give your dog wrinkles, but cellular oxidation will manifest through cellular lesions that weaken their immune system and favor the onset of degenerative diseases of old age, cardiovascular disease or cancer.
For its part, fiber helps prevent constipation in our dog and favors the digestive system provided it is adequately provided. We must keep in mind that the percentage that our body needs fiber is not the same as a dog. Veterinarians recommend that a dog's fiber intake does not exceed 3.5% of the diet, as an excess could result in an obstruction of the digestive tract, among other problems. However, consumed properly it can be very beneficial to our dog.
If the feed that we provide to our dog does not present antioxidants or fiber, the best way to provide it is through raw fruits and vegetables. In addition to compensating what the feed may lack, we will break the dietary routine of our pet. Offering a varied diet that won't let them get tired of food will prevent them avoiding food altogether.
What fruit can i give my dog?
Although many fruits are recommended for dogs, you should keep in mind that not all are suitable. Actually, many others are highly toxic to them. Check out our article on forbidden fruits and vegetables for dogs and prevent your dog from consuming them at all costs. The best fruits for dogs are the following:
- Blueberries. One of the most outstanding properties of blueberries is their high antioxidant content, being one of the best fruits to prevent the appearance of diseases related to the heart in our dog. They are also rich in vitamin C and fiber. Of course, do not forget to remove the seeds that are inside before providing this food to your dog, as this can cause serious damage.
- Apple. Both for its digestive and astringent properties, treating diarrhea in dogs and other stomach problems, its high vitamin C content, calcium and anti-inflammatory properties, make apple a great fruit for dogs. Before giving it, remember to wash it well and remove the core and seeds. If you want to give your dog an apple to treat diarrhea, it is best to remove the skin, but if you want to combat constipation, give your dog pieces of apple skin.
- Pear. 80% of its composition is water, so its caloric intake is very low. It is a perfect source of fiber and potassium, so in addition to promoting intestinal transit, it will help prevent cardiovascular diseases and are suitable for dogs with diabetes.
- Banana. This fruit contains a high amount of insoluble fiber, so an excess of it can cause serious consequences to our dog. In very small amounts, it can be beneficial to them and help them defecate if you notice that they have constipation. If your dog is in perfect condition and you see that after providing a bite of banana they have diarrhea, remove this fruit from their diet.
- Apricot and peach. Both fruits are rich in soluble fiber and, therefore, favor the regulation of the intestinal transit in dogs. In addition, their high iron content helps them prevent the onset of anemia, they are a potent natural source of antioxidants and are mainly composed of water - so they do not promote obesity in our dog. Remember to remove bone and skin before giving this fruit to your pet.
- Strawberry. Like blueberries, strawberries represent one of the best antioxidants, so they are ideal for maintaining the health of our dog's skin and preventing cellular oxidation. On the other hand, they are highly beneficial for their bones and have diuretic and digestive properties that improve their intestinal transit.
- Watermelon. They are also composed mainly of water, so giving our dog small portions without seeds can help combat overheating and hydrate them well. Of course, we must give watermelon in moderation because of its high fructose content.
- Melon. It is an excellent source of vitamin A and E, in addition to having potent diuretic and antioxidant properties, very important to maintain the health of our dog. As in other fruits, we must remove the seeds and chop the fruit before giving it to our faithful companion.
What vegetables can i feed my dog?
In general, the best vegetables for dogs are the leafy green kind, for the great variety of vitamins they contain, antioxidant properties, fiber and endless benefits. However, they are not the only ones, because many vegetables are rich in highly recommended beta-carotenes.
- Spinach. This vegetable helps our dog to regulate their bowel movements thanks to its fiber content. In addition, it is rich in vitamins A, C, E, B and F. We must provide this vegetable to our dog raw, well-washed and chopped. Otherwise it could get stuck in their throat and cause significant damage.
- Lettuce and cabbage. Both vegetables are rich in iron, antioxidants and have analgesic and depurative properties. Before giving the dog these products, we must also wash and chop them to avoid possible suffocation.
- Celery. Just as for us humans, celery is highly beneficial for our dog as well. Yes, in moderate amounts, washed and well chopped. It is also a potent natural antioxidant, so important to maintain our dog's health in perfect condition. It is diuretic, digestive, anti-inflammatory and strengthens the immune system. It is ideal for dogs with arthritis, as it helps reduce their pain. You can provide this vegetable in its natural version, or prepare a juice and give it to your dog once a month, in the morning and on an empty stomach.
- Green beans and peas. Rich in vitamins A and C and with antioxidant, digestive and, above all, energetic properties, these vegetables are highly beneficial to our dog in moderate amounts. If your dog is a dog that does not chew food, do not give them peas, they could choke.
- Carrot. We can say that they are one of the best vegetables for dogs not only for its antioxidant properties, purifying and digestive, but also for its ability to strengthen their teeth. We will provide a good piece of peeled carrot to chew and help remove bacterial plaque.
- Pumpkin. It is recommended, above all, for dogs suffering from constipation. It is rich in fiber, antioxidant and diuretic, so we can provide it moderately, always peeled, chopped and seeded.
How to give fruits and vegetables to my dog
As we said at the beginning, dogs are omnivorous animals, so fruits and vegetables should be a complement to their diet. Some experts and veterinarians recommend that 15% or 20% of our dog's diet be composed of fruits and vegetables. This number is not set in stone though.
Pet nutritionist Dr Billinghurst recommends feeding vegetables to your puppy from about six weeks old . For therapeutic reasons in treating illness, he also may prescribe vegetable content in the diet that can be as high as 50%.
We must keep in mind that the dog's organism is not the same as ours, so they do not require the same amount of food as we do. The high sugar content of fruits, for example, is not as digestible for dogs as it is for us, and can be toxic to them in large quantities.
Remember you must provide your dog with all fruits peeled and chopped, without seeds or bones. Vegetables, on the other hand, will have to be washed and chopped too, remember that if not, our dog could choke.
If you have any queries at all, don't hesitate to leave us a comment below.
If you want to read similar articles to Recommended Fruits and Vegetables for Dogs, we recommend you visit our Homemade diets category.
- Axelsson, E., Ratnakumar, A., Arendt, M., Maqbool, K., Webster, M., Perloski, M., Liberg, O., Arnemo, J., Hedhammar, Å. and Lindblad-Toh, K. (2013). The genomic signature of dog domestication reveals adaptation to a starch-rich diet. Nature, 495(7441), pp.360-364.
- Ovodov, N., Crockford, S., Kuzmin, Y., Higham, T., Hodgins, G. and van der Plicht, J. (2011). A 33,000-Year-Old Incipient Dog from the Altai Mountains of Siberia: Evidence of the Earliest Domestication Disrupted by the Last Glacial Maximum. PLoS ONE, 6(7), p.e22821.
- Dogs Naturally Magazine. (2017). 10 Reasons To Feed Your Dog Vegetables And Fruit - Dogs Naturally Magazine. [online] Available at: http://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/10-reasons-to-feed-vegetables-for-dogs/ [Accessed 28 Sep. 2017].