Can Dogs Eat Blueberries?

Yes, it is safe for your dog to eat blueberries!

This very berry fruit poses no toxicity risk to your pup. [1]

They’re a safe and healthy snack option and are an ideal source of vitamin C and fiber. They’re also low in sugar which makes it an excellent treat for diabetic dogs.

A bit about about blueberries

Blueberries are full of nutrients and vitamins which give dogs a big health boost. They are also soft and small, which means that they do not represent a choking hazard for your dog.

In actual sense, many commercial dog foods typically contain blueberries in their ingredients list.

It is, however, important to note that too much of anything can become hazardous, so, feed your dog blueberries in moderation. Try a little at first, and check to see if he/she has an adverse reaction to them. If they do not, then proceed to include them in their everyday meals.

How to feed blueberries to your dog

You can feed your dog both frozen and fresh blueberries. The blueberries are small in size, which means that you do not need to cut them up into small pieces. You can, however, try the following recipe for a tasty treat.

Why do dogs need antioxidants?

blueberry on the muzzle of a dog

Antioxidants help in preventing oxidation which is a normal chemical process that occurs mostly when food is breaking down. It doesn’t necessarily require oxygen as the name may imply, but it happens in every living being, including humans. [6]

When your dog breathes or exercises, food breaks down in his stomach and oxidation takes place. This breaking down process usually produces molecules which are uncharged, and they are known as free radicals.

These free radicals can overreact and injure other molecules within your body, but this is usually on a small scale. Accumulation of these molecules over time is associated with aging and leads to diseases such as:

  • memory loss
  • arthritis, and
  • heart disease.

So, simply put, yes, dogs need antioxidants. They are essential in controlling the damage that may have been done by the free radicals [7] in your dog’s body, and most dog foods contains these antioxidants.

Supplements are not always enough, and therefore, dogs need fresh fruits and veggies on a regular basis as these are the primary source of antioxidants. These antioxidants also help to attach bacteria and viruses in your dog.

Canine health benefits of blueberries

canine health benefits of blueberries

Like most fresh fruits, blueberries are brimming with nutrients, [2] all super beneficial to humans and dogs alike.

Fiber boost

Blueberries are high in fiber which is essential in a dog’s diet. [3] Although often overlooked, without fiber, your dog can develop a host of digestive problems.

Just like in humans, fiber helps in digestion, and therefore it is fantastic for a dog’s digestive system. It also prevents the harmful bacteria from forming in the dog’s gut, helps the colon in recovering from an injury, and also reduces constipation and diarrhea.

Fiber also helps in maintaining a dog’s healthy weight and prevents them from becoming overweight and obese. It keeps their blood sugars from going up, and can actually do wonders for a dog who is following a diabetic diet.

You should, however, still be careful with the fiber content, because as with everything, too much can be dangerous, and too much fiber can lead to diarrhea and gastrointestinal upsets in your dog. Always consult your vet on the quantity you should feed the dog.

Low calorie treat

Blueberries are 91% carbs, 4% protein, and 5% fats. This means they are very low in calories and makes them a great snack or reward treat when training your dog. They will not cause your dog to gain weight or become obese. [4]

Other essential nutrients found in blueberries are:

  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin B6, and
  • Vitamin K – blueberries are one of the best-known sources of Vitamin K. [5]

All of these nutrients help to boost your dog’s immunity and aid in fighting the aging process in the dog’s brain. They also work in warding off cardiovascular diseases and other symptoms such as:

  • the common cold
  • arthritis pain, and
  • cancer.

They do, however, have a sugary nature and may not be too good if fed in large quantities as with most other fruits.

RECIPE: Blueberry and Banana Dog Treats

blueberry dog treat

Ingredients

  • A half cup of blueberries – fresh or frozen
  • 1 large banana
  • A half cup of unsweetened applesauce
  • A quarter cup of ground flaxseed
  • 2 and a half cups of buckwheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons of pro bloom – the honest kitchen
  • Water as needed

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and use parchment paper to line your cookie sheets.
  2. Puree together the banana, blueberries, and applesauce in a blender.
  3. Pour the mixture in a large bowl.
  4. Add in the buckwheat flour, pro bloom, and ground flaxseeds and knead them into a stiff dough. Add water if needed.
  5. Roll out the dough on a floured surface to a quarter inch thickness and cut with the cookie cutter to the shapes you want.
  6. Place them on the parchment paper that has been lined with cookie sheets.
  7. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes.
  8. When ready, allow to cool and offer them to your precious puppy in moderation.

Final thoughts on feeding dogs blueberries

bowl with blueberries

It is always good to be safe rather sorry. Ask your veterinarian for advice before feeding your dog any human food. They will instruct you well on the proper and ideal serving size, which ensures that your dog’s health is not adversely affected.

Please note that not every fruit is suitable for your dog. Grapes, for example, may appear similar to blueberries but they are quite dangerous to a dog and may lead to kidney failure.

Whichever fruit your feed your dog, as we said earlier, moderation is key. Do it little by little till your dog is used to it, and also, ensure that he is not allergic to it in any way.

Other frequently asked questions:

dognutrition.com-websites-medical-disclaimer

Another great read: Weight Gain & Weight Loss Dog Food Diets

Resources

  1. Can Dogs Eat Blueberrries – DogTime
  2. Everything you need to know about blueberries – Medical News Today
  3. The Benefits of Dog Food Fiber – DogFoodAdvisor
  4. Can Dogs Eat Blueberries? – Purina
  5. Vitamin K – National Institute of Health
  6. Olas, Beata. “Berry Phenolic Antioxidants – Implications for Human Health?” Frontiers in pharmacology vol. 9 78. 26 Mar. 2018, doi:10.3389/fphar.2018.00078
  7. Lobo, V et al. “Free radicals, antioxidants andfunctional foods: Impact on human health” Pharmacognosy reviews vol. 4,8 (2010): 118-26.

About the Author

Dog Nutrition

Dog Nutrition

The Dog Nutrition team is here to help you navigate the stormy ocean waters that are the dog products industry. With over 10+ years experience in dealing with dog products and caring dog owners, we look beneath the surface to uncover hidden features, deals, and some of the most popular, best selling and highest reviewed dog products you can purchase.

Read More Posts By: Dog Nutrition

Leave a Comment





This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.