The yummy and delicious strawberries are the favorite seasonal fruit of many people. If you’re into sharing you might wonder if your pooch can indulge in strawberries too.
So, can dogs eat strawberries? Yes, dogs can eat strawberries in moderation. Strawberries have high water and fiber count, and they contain essential vitamins and minerals. Feeding strawberries to your dog can improve his immune system and digestive health. But, don’t overdo it, too many strawberries can cause tummy upset.
Strawberries have many health benefits for dogs when fed as treats! Continue reading to find out the advantages and risks of feeding strawberries to dogs.
Are Strawberries Good for Dogs?
Strawberries are full of essential vitamins and minerals that are good for dogs and their overall health. Low in calories and high in fiber strawberries are an excellent alternative for fatty dog treats and can be fed as a healthy snack.
High in fiber and vitamin C, strawberries can boost your dog’s immune system and make him more resilient to diseases. These berries are also a good source of vitamins B6, B9, K, and E as well as manganese, magnesium, potassium, iron, and calcium.
Including strawberries to your dog’s diet can have major health benefits such as a stronger immune system and better digestion.
Benefits of Strawberries for Dogs
Feeding strawberries to your dog can be a great way to spice up his regular diet and include all essential vitamins and minerals. To take the full advantage of everything strawberries have to offer, feed them moderately to your dog.
Check out the major benefits of strawberries for dogs:
1. Strawberries Support Healthy Digestion
Strawberries have high fiber and water content, which supports good digestion and better nutrient absorption. Fiber-rich foods will make your dog feel full for longer and prevent hunger pangs which can be a great thing if your pooch is on a diet and needs to shed a few pounds (source).
2. Strawberries for A Strong Immune System
Strawberries contain a high amount of vitamin C, an antioxidant that supports a strong immune system and skin health. Vitamin C has many health benefits and when consumed regularly can minimize the occurrence of chronic conditions and cancer.
3. Strawberries for Clean Teeth
You might not know, but strawberries can improve your dog’s dental health and keep his teeth pearly white. These berries contain a tooth-whitening enzyme of malic acid which makes them a great alternative for dental dog treats.
4. Strawberries Improve Bone Health
Strawberries are a natural source of manganese which is essential for bone health and can reduce joint inflammation when combined with glucosamine. Furthermore, this mineral also has strong antioxidant properties and can reduce chronic diseases.
5. Strawberries Build Strong Muscles
Strawberries also contain magnesium which controls many functions in your dog’s body. Most importantly, magnesium helps the body to absorb proteins thus ensuring that your dog’s muscles stay lean and strong.
Side Effect of Strawberries for Dogs
Although strawberries can do wonders for your dog’s overall health, eating too many can do more harm than good. Strawberries are safe for your dog only as treats, otherwise your pooch might exhibit certain side effects.
Downsides of feeding strawberries to dogs include:
1. Allergic Reaction
As with all other foods, there is a small chance that your dog will develop an allergic reaction to strawberries. If your dog hasn’t eaten strawberries before, give him just one piece, to begin with, and observe his reaction.
If you notice signs of an allergic reaction in your dogs, such as coughing, sneezing, hives, or swelling stop giving him strawberries and call your vet right away (source). In some cases, a dog can go into an anaphylactic shock which is a life-threatening condition that requires emergency veterinary care.
2. Strawberries Contain Sugar
Like all other fruit, strawberries contain sugar, which is harmful to dogs when consumed in large amounts. Too much sugar can lead to obesity, diabetes, and digestive problems, but also exacerbate many other chronic health problems.
The excess sugar will be an issue only if your dog eats too many strawberries every single day. You won’t have to worry about extra sugar if you feed your dog strawberries once in a while as healthy treats.
3. Strawberries Can Cause an Upset Stomach
A dog that eats too many strawberries in one sitting can get an upset stomach. If this is the case, your pooch might suffer from diarrhea or constipation which shouldn’t last more than a day.
How Much Strawberries Can a Dog Eat?
Always consult your vet before you start feeding new fruits and vegetables to your dog. Since every dog is an individual, your vet will know how many strawberries your dog should eat based on his nutritional needs.
Here are the general feeding guidelines:
- Small breeds should eat one medium-sized strawberry per day
- Medium-sized breeds can eat two to three strawberries per day
- Large breeds should eat four medium-sized strawberries per day
Note, your dog should eat strawberries as treats and they should make up to 10% of his daily calorie intake.
Can Dogs Eat Canned Strawberries?
Don’t feed canned or processed strawberries to your dog since they contain artificial strawberry flavors that aren’t good for dogs. Furthermore, these products usually contain excess sugar, preservatives, and sweeteners such as xylitol which are toxic to dogs (source).
How to Feed Strawberries to Your Dog?
There are many ways you can serve strawberries to your dog. But first, you’ll have to wash them thoroughly and remove the stems since they can pose a choking hazard, especially for small dogs.
Popular ways to feed strawberries to dogs are:
- Cut strawberries in small pieces and feed them fresh
- Mash them into a soft pulp and mix with your dog’s food
- Offer frozen strawberries as a refreshing summer treat
- Make a homemade treat using strawberries and peanut butter
- Make frozen strawberry treats using bananas and Greek yogurt
Strawberries have many health benefits for dogs and are great healthy snacks for hot summer days. Full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber, strawberries will boost your dog’s immune system and improve his digestion.
To take the full advantage of everything strawberries can offer to your dog, feed them in moderation as treats.