Although the dog’s organism is more geared towards meat, they also like fruit and vegetables. But not every vegetarian side dish is healthy for our four-legged friends
More and more people are giving up meat-based foods or removing animal products from their diet altogether. For many, it is therefore only a logical step to also feed their four-legged friends vegetarian or vegan. Yes, the dog’s teeth and low pH value in the stomach correspond to those of carnivores. The gustatory system of our four-legged friends is also geared towards a meat-rich diet. When they eat, they first notice the meaty, savory umami taste, because the taste receptors that are sensitive to it are increasingly located in the front area of their tongue.
However, dogs also like vegetables. As a rule, the four-legged friends can eat all types of vegetables that are also on our menu. Dogs can enjoy green fodder raw or cooked, just as they like. To ensure that fat-soluble vitamins are better absorbed, a dash of oil should always be added to the cooked food. Raw food, on the other hand, can be used to clean teeth if it is administered in pieces. But if it is part of the menu, it should be grated better – this increases the digestibility for our rather lazy furry friends.
However, dogs should keep their mouths shut about some vegetables or follow the relevant rules. After all, how high the toxic dose ultimately depends not only on the particular vegetable but also on the constitution of the dog. Incidentally, the same rules usually also apply to the diet of the owner.
Healthy and digestible
Beetroot is at the top of the vegetable list for many dog owners. Rich in beta-carotene, carrots are a popular plant-based substitute for chewing bones. But not all dogs like hard vegetables. It is better to give it grated, boiled, or pureed.
Zucchini & Co
Many dogs love the pleasant taste of zucchini and other types of squash. They are also healthy. They can be eaten both cooked and raw.
Our four-legged friends rarely prefer the salad bed. If so, then it has to be something crunchy like chicory or lettuce. Leafy greens are not harmful at all.
Broccoli & Co
Like all cabbages, broccoli has a flatulent effect. Therefore, it is better to feed him boiled. In addition, raw-fed broccoli can cause a certain type of anemia. However, dogs should not go without the green: broccoli contains many healthy plant substances.
Dogs love fruit! In principle, all types of fruit are suitable as treats for in-between meals. Only raw elderberries are toxic to dogs. You should also be sparing with the seeds of stone and pome fruit, as these contain large amounts of a substance that can lead to severe neurological disorders if consumed regularly.
Enjoy with Caution
Caution is advised with grapes: It is still not known which ingredient in dogs can lead to increased calcium levels in the blood and consequently to acute kidney failure, and whether this substance is contained in all types of grapes. Again and again, there are dogs that stay alert despite a binge of grapes. It is therefore assumed that only some dogs cannot tolerate a certain ingredient. So be careful! The toxic dose of grapes can be as little as 10 to 30 grams per kilogram of body weight.
Tomato & Co.
Nightshade plants such as tomatoes, aubergines, and potatoes are actually not poisonous to dogs. Rather, the rule applies: To avoid the toxic alkaloids, they should never be eaten raw, only cooked, and tomatoes should never be eaten green. These substances are also contained in the cooking water. Consumption can lead to irritation of the mucous membranes, disorders of brain functions, and vomiting.
Dogs – like humans – are only allowed to eat beans when they are cooked. Even bean sprouts are taboo. The protein phasing contained in beans can stick together the red blood cells, leading to vomiting and diarrhea.
Wild garlic should only be added to the feed from time to time and in small amounts – of course, best cooked. Due to the allicin it contains, large amounts of raw wild garlic can lead to anemia.
Medicinal and aromatic herbs should always be enjoyed in moderation. While they enrich the food in small amounts, the pharmacologically active substances they contain can lead to symptoms of poisoning in larger amounts: sage and peppermint can cause tremors, parsley can cause a pregnant dog to give birth prematurely.
Dangerous to Poisonous
Particular caution is required with avocados: Even small amounts of the poison persin in them damage the heart muscle in dogs and can lead to death. The first signs are shortness of breath, coughing, and increased heart rate.
Onion and garlic
Onions and garlic contain a substance that can destroy red blood cells in dogs. Whether raw, boiled, fried, dried, or powdered – in contrast to the phasing in beans, this poison always retains its effect! A medium-sized, grilled onion, for example, would already reach the toxic level in many dogs. Typical symptoms of poisoning are loss of appetite, pale mucous membranes, diarrhea, and vomiting.
Leeks and chives
Leeks and chives are also definitely not part of the dog’s diet. All leeks are poisonous for our four-legged friends in any form and therefore taboo.