Dog Care 101: Tip #174 – Fruits You Can Share With Your Dog
Best Bully Sticks knows it’s easy to forget that our dogs were once wild animals. They didn’t sleep half the day, they didn’t chase after plastic bouncy balls, and they didn’t wear clothes, go to the groomer or get their toenails painted. Your sweet pooch is a descendant of wild dogs and before that, wolves! You have to remember that trapped somewhere inside that cute, cuddly exterior is a wild animal! You live with a wild animal! Isn’t that more than a little strange to think about?
That being said, your dog’s descendants definitely didn’t eat that dry brown food that comes out of a bag. Not that bagged dog food isn’t good. A good food provides all the necessary vitamins, minerals and proteins your dog needs. However, owners forget that dogs are natural hunters and scavengers and ate as much vegetation and roughage as they did meat. Dog owners sometimes have a stigma of offering their dogs human food, thinking that it isn’t good for them. The fact is, there are some very nutritional and wholesome foods that are great for your dog and you shouldn’t be afraid to share. Over the next three weeks Best Bully Sticks will take you through some natural, “human” foods that will feed your dog and his wild side. Today we’re talking about fruit!
Most families have bananas on hand in their house for a healthy and quick snack. Your dog can benefit from the same high potassium levels, fiber, magnesium B6 and C vitamins as well as all the good antioxidants in bananas that you will when eating this berry. In a pinch, bananas can help remedy a troubled doggy stomach and you can easily mix banana in with your dog’s dry food to make it more appealing. However, some dogs don’t like bananas because of the compounds that make this berry smell, well, like a banana.
This great summer melon is cool and refreshing, so give your pup the benefits of vitamin C, potassium, antioxidants and fiber that cantaloupe offers. Make sure you remove all seeds when serving to your dog. You can serve fresh or even mix it with other fruit, freeze and serve as a doggy popsicle. You might even join in on that!
This fruit may not be a staple in your house, but if you love fresh apricots, your dog may like the taste, too! Apricots provide beta-carotene, vitamin C and E, calcium, potassium, iron and fiber to your pooch. As we said, fresh apricots are great for your dog, but have the potential to be sour. You can try a dried apricot for a sweeter taste, however pre-packaged dried fruits can be deceptively high in calories and fiber because dehydrating creates a more concentrated food. Try home drying your own apricots or check packaged dried apricots for added sugars or sulphurs.
Dogs LOVE blueberries. And, dogs are pretty funny to watch while eating these tiny round berries. Besides the laugh factor, blueberries offer loads of antioxidants. In fact, the deep blue color of this berry comes from the fruit’s high levels of antioxidants called anthocyanidins. Blueberries are also jam packed with vitamin C and E, manganese and fiber. Make sure you don’t go overboard with the blueberries. Make sure you build up your dog’s intake slowly or you’ll be dealing with the “blueberry trots.” And nobody wants to deal with that. To serve, rinse well and serve whole or slightly mashed.
A good way to add crunch to your dog’s diet, apples are full of vitamin A and C and fiber. Apple’s skin contains plant chemicals called phytonutrients, which are thought to guard against cancer in humans. Apple skin is also great for your dog’s skin. You can even try out low sugar applesauce on your dog. If he likes it, put some on his food! However never give your dog the core of an apple. The seeds contain amygdlin, which is a form of cyanide, and of course, is toxic to your dog. A few seeds aren’t potent enough to affect your dog, but the toxin can accumulate. If your dog does somehow swallow a seed whole, the seed will pass through your dog intact.
This is probably the least beneficial of the fruits, but it does contain calcium and potassium. Pineapple can be a sweet and refreshing treat for your dog on hot summer days. You can even try freezing it and watch Fido enjoy a treat while cooling down.
Fruits and berries like watermelon, honeydew, strawberries and peaches are other good foods for your dog. Right now, during the summer months, finding fresh fruits and berries isn’t hard. Check out your local farmer’s market! If you’re a more adventurous fruit and berry lover, find an orchard to pick all your favorite summer produce!
All fruit is loaded with natural sugar and is good for you, but you can have too much of a good thing. Make sure you’re moderating the amount of fruits and berries your dog is eating.
If you’re looking for a wholesome, all-natural food that has the added benefits of fruit, try Acana. Pears in the Acana Duck and Bartlett Pear Dry Dog Food and apples in Acana Lamb and Okanagan Apple Dry Dog Food will give your dog’s daily diet a boost with sun-ripened fruit in each morsel!