Bananas and dogs? Really? If you think this is odd, try offering a piece of banana to your dog and see how he reacts. Dogs have a real sweet tooth and many dogs really like bananas. But, are they good for dogs? Are they safe? Keep reading and we’ll tell you what you need to know about bananas and dogs.
Are Bananas Good for Dogs?
Surprisingly, yes, bananas are good for dogs, in moderation. Bananas are a good source of potassium, manganese, magnesium, Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, biotin, copper, and fiber. They are also low in sodium. And they’re a great source of fiber. Plus, they are a wonderful prebiotic.
Some veterinarians will recommend giving a dog a little banana if he’s having gastrointestinal problems. They can also be a good alternative to fatty or salty treats.
Bananas as Prebiotics?
Your dog’s gastrointestinal system has an abundance of microorganisms that help him digest his food. Most of these organisms – called flora – are beneficial, but some can be harmful. When your dog is healthy, he usually has a balance of about 80 percent helpful bacteria and 20 percent harmful bacteria in his gut. Prebiotics are nutrients that help the flora grow, especially when combined with probiotics – friendly bacteria that is often added to dog foods today. Many dog foods also add prebiotics such as chicory and inulin. However, bananas and some other foods are known for being good prebiotics, too. Giving your dog some banana a couple of times per week is a good way to encourage the growth of this friendly bacteria in your dog’s system.
The Downside to Bananas?
Bananas do contain sugar so you shouldn’t give them to your dog in large amounts. If you give your dog too many bananas he can get a stomach upset.
You should also be careful about giving your dog banana peels. They aren’t toxic but they are harder to digest. They can even cause a blockage in your dog’s gastrointestinal system.
How Do You Give Your Dog Bananas?
There are lots of ways to give your dog bananas.
- Cut up a banana into small pieces and let your dog eat them, one at a time.
- Mash up a banana and include it with your dog’s meal.
- Stuff a banana into a Kong and freeze it.
- Freeze a whole banana, peel it, and slice it for your dog.
You can also find cookie recipes online that use bananas. We like this great frozen yogurt recipe for dogs that uses bananas.
- Put a banana in a blender or food processor
- Add 32 ounces of plain yogurt
- Add 2 tsp of peanut butter (no xylitol!)
- Add 2 tsp of honey
- Fill a muffin tin or ice cube trays with the mixture. Freeze.
Dogs love these treats. You can give your dog a frozen treat on a hot day or whenever he’s been extra great. Basically, you can use bananas with any kind of recipe that calls for peanut butter. Bananas and peanut butter go great together.
Most dogs love bananas and they are good for dogs – in moderation. Watch out for the peels and don’t let your dog have too many bananas at one time. It’s easy to give your dog bananas lots of different ways.