Question: Can dogs eat blueberries? Or are blueberries bad for dogs?
Blueberries are awesome fruits for us humans to eat, often highly recommended by fitness experts worldwide for anyone who would like to improve their overall diet.
But, and since we know for a fact that not all food that’s great for humans is the same for dogs, you (and because you care enough to look it up) are asking yourself “can dogs eat blueberries? Or are blueberries bad for dogs?”.
Can Dogs Have Blueberries? The Short Answer
The short answer to this question is, YES, dogs can eat blueberries!
Blueberries are an awesome choice of fruit for your dog, and experts in the field all agree that this fruit is perfectly fine for your dog to eat, as long as you follow a certain set of rules we’ll be talking about in this article.
The exact same health benefits you receive from eating blueberries (and trust me, there’s a TON of them, we’ll be covering them in this article) your dog will receive as well from eating this heavenly fruit.
However, and just like we talked about in the beginning of this section, there is a certain set of rules you have to follow when you want to feed your dog blueberries.
Follow this set of rules and stay on the safe side, and you won’t have anything to worry about. But, if you step out of this “safe zone” and don’t do things the proper way they should be done, that’s when problems can happen.
How Much Blueberries Should Dogs Eat?
Blueberries are one of those foods you want to give your dog only on occasion and in moderation (such as a special treat like cashews you only feed your dog from time to time) and not as part of their overall diet.
If you ask your veterinarian this question, chances are they will tell you that you’re best off giving your dog blueberries in moderation. And, just like you would expect, they’re right about that.
Feeding your dog too many blueberries all at once will result in digestive problems, stomach upset and diarrhea.
If you haven’t given your dog blueberries before, try to give them 1-2 small blueberries at first and monitor how they react to eating them. It’s vitally important you do this.
If they don’t exhibit any weird behavioral problems after eating 1-2 small blueberries, then you could feel free to utilize blueberries as part of your dog treats arsenal.
However, if you notice any new behavioral issues or digestive problems after your dog eats 2-3 small blueberries, you’re better off keeping them away from blueberries.
A good treat every now and then you could give your dog when you want to let them know that they’ve been good could be a bowl of 7-8 blueberries. More than that, and that’s when stomach problems can start to kick in.
How Should Dogs Eat Blueberries?
The best blueberries you can give to your dog are fresh raw blueberries that you wash very well.
Why fresh, raw blueberries? Because that’s when they’re most nutrient, minerals and antioxidant rich. Old blueberries might make your furry friend’s stomach upset.
One thing a lot of dog owners do (which they really shouldn’t) is give their dogs blueberries in pancakes, muffins, pies, etc …
Just the other day I saw a dog treat recipe that consisted of blueberries and marshmallows, which if you don’t already know is a problem waiting to happen because marshmallows are bad for dogs.
This is a big NO-NO because blueberries have enough sugar content in them, and when you give your dogs blueberries inside these foods, you’ll be giving them way more sugar than their bodies could possibly handle.
It should also be said that you won’t have to feed your dog blueberries by yourself all the time – chances are if you were to check the ingredients list of a few dog food brands or dog treats you have at home right now, you’re going to find that blueberries are on that list.
Many manufacturers of dog food and dog treats like to include a healthy mix of fruits and vegetables as part of the ingredients list, and one favorite choice among many happens to be blueberries.
Last but not least, a word of caution must be issued – a very bad practice we oftentimes see many dog owners do with their dogs is feeding them frozen blueberries.
We can’t begin to stress enough how bad of a practice this is, so if you’re guilty as charged, please immediately give this habit up.
Not only is it very bad for your dog’s teeth to eat frozen blueberries that are very hard to crunch on, but there’s a big risk that your dog will have one of these blueberries get stuck in their throat when they’re trying to swallow – and that’s where you could have a disaster on your hands.
Why Should Dogs Eat Blueberries?
So, you need someone to convince you about why you should be feeding your dog blueberries? Well, here you go!
Here’s some of the most impressive benefits of blueberries:
- Low in fat
- High in vitamin C
- High in fiber
- Increase antioxidants levels in the body
- Fight cancer, most importantly of which are colon cancer cells
- Prevent heart disease
- Rich in polyphenols.
- Rich in vitamin K
- Prevent memory loss
- Prevent aging
- Prevent hypertension
- Prevent obesity
- Prevent dyslipidemia
- Prevent insulin resistance
- Prevent glucose intolerance
- Fight inflammation
- Low in sugar content
- Help in regulating blood sugar levels
- Prevent urinary tract infections
- Lower cholesterol levels
Was that enough to convince you to get up and eat some blueberries for yourself and give your dog some as a treat every now and then, or what? 🙂
When Should Dogs Not Eat Blueberries
If your dog suffers from any digestive issues that you already know about, it’s best you contact your veterinarian before feeding them blueberries. Your veterinarian would be the best person that could help you out in that case.