All dog parents have this urge to spoil their dogs. Sometimes that shows itself with giving them human food. Although feeding your dog table scraps isn’t something that is recommended, there are certain things that you can feel good about giving to your dog without any issues. Vegetables is one of those things, but “What kind of vegetables are good for dogs”?
Before you jump up and start feeding your dog a plethora of human food, let’s look at what vegetables you can actually give to your dog as an add-on or as a substitue to their dog food. Remember vegetables are always a good idea, just as long as they are safe for dogs.
Dog friendly vegetables
When we talk about dog friendly vegetables, there is quite a list of vegetables that you can give to your dog that are good for them.
The beauty of giving your dog vegetables, is much like humans, vegetables are a good source of vitamins and minerals that provide excellent nutritional value. Keeping your dog healthy and maintaining a good weight is just as important as it is to us. I know that may sound strange to think about that, but a dog does have to watch what they eat, IT IS TRUE!
Making sure your dog maintains a healthy body weight and is eating good food, helps them live a longer life. Some dogs even become less interested in their own dog food as time goes on. By incorporating some vegetables with their food, you can keep them interested in eating regular meals.
Asparagus is full of amazing benefits like vitamin K, A, B6, fiber, potassium, folic acid, thiamine, and antioxidants.
Asparagus stalks can be tough and even a bit woody. For this reason, the best way to prepare them for your dog, is to only use the tips. Make sure to cut the tips in to small pieces and only use 1 – 2oz of steamed tips added on top of their regular meal. This is great add-on to entice your dog to eat their food.
Broccoli is full of a variety of vitamins. Things like vitamin C, K, and potassium, while providing support for bone density. It has a ton of benefits for helping with inflammation in your dog and helps boost their overall immune system. It is also wonderful for your dog’s teeth and helping keep them clean.
Giving your dog broccoli is a good thing, but because it can be gassy for your dog make sure to only give them no more than approximately 5% of their entire meal. This well ensure your dog doesn’t get bloated from too much. You can prepare the broccoli by boiling it in water and cutting it into small bite size pieces.
Carrots has always been the vegetable that have been known to help maintain healthy eyes. This is also true for dogs. Along with helping maintain your dog’s eyes, carrots also help boost their overall immune system. Raw carrots also provide an excellent way to keep your dogs teeth cleaned. The hard crunch of the carrots act as tooth-brush agitating the plaque away.
You can give your dog carrots either in its natural raw form, or by steaming them. Carrots should not be used as a meal substitute, as they are high in sugar. They are best used in moderation as a healthy snack, so use in moderation.
Cucumbers are filled with a ton of vitamin C, K, magnesium. They are a great for aiding in lowering your dogs blood pressure as they are low in carbs and fat. A cucumber is also a wonderful way to help freshen your dog’s breath. Because cucumbers are low in fat and carbs, they are helpful for overweight dogs. If you find your dog isn’t drinking enough water, cucumbers are also a good source of water and will help keep your dog hydrated.
Make sure to cut your cucumbers into small bite size bites for your dog. Giving your dog cucumbers once to twice a week is a nice healthy add-on or treat for your dog.
Green beans provide an excellent source of Omega 3s and are high in fiber. Full of vitamins C, K, and A, they are excellent for digestive and overall bowel health.
Make sure to wash all the greens beans properly and ensure that you cut off all the ends of each bean. The best way to serve green beans to your dog is to boil them for 10 minutes in water in a covered pot. Cool and then you can serve them to your dog. Also make sure to cut the beans in to small bite size pieces, just to avoid any choking hazard. You can replace approximately 5% of your dog’s food with green beans but no more.
Kale as we know is consider a superfood. Full of vitamin K, A, and iron. This helps provide good bone health. It is excellent for fighting heart disease and arthritis in your dog.
Kale can be very gassy if too much is eaten at one time. For this reason, make sure to only give your dog a small amount at one time. You can serve it to your dog cooked, chopped or dry. Make sure to cut into small pieces and a small amount is a great topper for your dog’s food.
Peas offer a great source of vitamin B, K, thiamin, and potassium. They can help boost your dog’s energy level and help improve their overall bone health.
You can give your dog peas either from frozen, thawed, steamed, or mashed. If you are giving your dog peas in shells, make sure to remove them from the shell before giving them to your dog. You don’t want your dog to choke on the shell. 1 -2 tablespoons of peas are the perfect amount to give to your dog. You can use it as an add-on or topper on top of your dog’s food, or give it as an extra treat for your dog in between meals.
Pumpkin is well-known for its ability to aid with constipation and diarrhea. It is full of fiber, vitamins and minerals that are great for your dog. The reason that pumpkin is such a popular choice to give to dogs, is that it aids in eliminating the growth of bad bacteria in your dog’s GI tract. Promoting a healthy gut.
One important thing to remember about giving your dog pumpkin, is to make sure that you never give your dog pumpkin pie filling. That is absolutely not good for your dog, unless it says that it is pure pumpkin. You can give your dog approximately 10% of their entire meal in pumpkin. As with many vegetables, too much pumpkin can have a negative effect on your dog’s digestive system. For this reason, ensure you don’t overdo it.
Sweet potatoes contain vitamin B6, C and manganese. They are high in fiber and the antioxidant beta carotene. One of the great things about sweet potatoes, is that they will easily fill your dog.
To prepare sweet potatoes for your dog, you can choose to dehydrate in strips if you choose. If you want to serve them mashed up, you can wash, peel, and cut them in quarters. Then you can boil them for 20 minutes in water until tender. The last way that you could give them to your dog is by baking them in the oven. Once you have chosen your method of cooking them you can easily mash them up and put them on your dog’s food. You can replace approximately a 1\4 of your dog’s dry dog food with sweet potatoes. This is excellent for keeping your dog interested and enjoying his meals.
Now I know that tomatoes are actually considered a fruit, but most often they are treated like a vegetable. So, for this reason, I wanted to include it on this list. Tomatoes are a great source of Vitamin C, K, Folate, Potassium and of course fiber. They are also a wonderful antioxidant for your dog’s overall health.
When giving tomatoes to your dog, make sure to take off any leaves or stems. You don’t want your dog eating that part of the tomato. Make sure that all the tomatoes are completely ripe before giving them to your dog. Just like every vegetable on this list make sure to cut it into small pieces whether you are giving them to your dog raw or cooked.
Zucchini offers high levels of vitamin B, C, and potassium. Because Zucchini is high in fiber it will also quickly fill your dog up. It is low fat and low in cholesterol, which makes it a vegetable that will help keep your dog looking lean.
You can give zucchini to your dog either raw, steamed, or cooked. For safety reasons make sure to cut it into small bite size pieces. You could also cut into big pieces and even shred the cooked zucchini if your want. Whatever way you choose to give your dog zucchini it is an excellent alternative to high calorie treats.
Bursting with veggies
When it comes to your dog and eating vegetables, there is an assortment of ones to choose from. I have always given my dogs some vegetables cooked and raw. My current dog Fergus is just slowly being introduced to them. So far, he is loving the cucumbers, tomatoes and peas. He also enjoys the crunchy carrots as a nice treat.
Boo who was one of my previous dogs, didn’t pass a veggie he didn’t like. He absolutely loved any vegetable you would give him. We could never find one that he was turned off by.
Like anything we give our dogs, it is important to start with a small amount and watched closely as they eat it. Too much of something all at once can overwhelm their system and completely ruin the entire reason you wanted to give it to them. Be smart.