Can Dogs Have Blueberries

Picture of blueberries

Bursting with antioxidants, blueberries do a good job of strengthening the immune system. Can dogs have blueberries? Definitely yes! Many dogs love blueberries.

Learn more about the health benefits of blueberries for your dog and how you can share them below.

Blueberry nutrition

Blueberries are considered to be a nutritional powerhouse today. They are a terrific source of vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese, as well as dietary fiber. They’re also very low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium https://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/fruits-and-fruit-juices/1851/2. They are made up of 91 percent carbohydrates, 5 percent fats, and 4 percent protein. And they are low in calories. One cup of fresh blueberries only contains about 85 calories. But these nutritional figures only tell part of the story.

Blueberries are packed with antioxidants and phytoflavinoids so they are anti-inflammatory. They are also believed to help lower your risk of heart disease and some cancers.

Blueberries have one of the highest antioxidant values of any fruit. They contain anthocyanin, the powerful antioxidant that gives the berries their blue color. This antioxidant fights inflammation and protects cells.

The blue or purple berries (both are good for you) may reduce the risk of chronic disease. The antioxidants in blueberries limit inflammation and fight free radicals in the body. Free radicals damage your DNA and lead to aging and diseases such as cancer. The antioxidants in blueberries can neutralize some of this damage.

Blueberries also contain flavonoids that appear to reduce the risk of dementia and cognitive decline. They do this by improving circulation and protection the brain cells from damage.

As for the heart, some studies have connected the consumption of blueberries with lower blood pressure. Blueberries contain polypholic compounds that are beneficial for the blood vessels making them a cardioprotective food https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/diet-nutrition/a20916472/blueberries-nutrition/.

Blueberries can be a good food choice for anyone hoping to lose weight since they are low in calories and high in fiber that helps you feel full between meals. Blueberries contain both soluble and insoluble fiber which slows down the rate of digestion. This allows for a steady release of sugar in the bloodstream. It also gives you long-lasting energy instead of spikes. Blueberries are a good addition to the diet for diabetics and anyone concerned about their blood sugar level https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/10-proven-benefits-of-blueberries#TOC_TITLE_HDR_9. If you have a diabetic dog, blueberries could also be a good addition to his diet but please consult your veterinarian.

Blueberries are closely related to cranberries and have many of the same properties. Like cranberries, blueberries appear to be good at preventing urinary tract infections (UTIs).

Can dogs have blueberries?

Yes, dogs can eat blueberries. In fact, blueberries are a healthy treat for many dogs. They are low in calories and full of important nutrients. You can give them to your dog fresh, sprinkle a few over his meals, blend them in a smoothie, or add them to a homemade stew.

Many dog food companies add blueberries (and cranberries) to dog foods today, presumably for their antioxidant value or flavor.

How many blueberries can you give your dog?

Since blueberries are so low in calories it’s hard to estimate how many to give your dog based on calories. The usual rule-of-thumb for treats is to give your dog no more than 10 percent of his regular daily calories. If you have a 30-lb adult dog that needs about 900 calories per day in his meals, you could theoretically give him about 900 calories in blueberries or about one whole cup. Your dog might like that but that’s probably more blueberries than he really needs to eat in one day. Considering the amount of fiber in blueberries, you might have some tummy troubles and digestive upset after your dog eats that many.

We suggest that you start by giving your dog a small about of blueberries, especially if he’s not used to eating them. Even if he could eat more based on the calories, it’s best to err on the side of caution so your dog doesn’t have diarrhea or other digestive problems. Try giving your dog one-quarter cup instead of a cup.

If you happen to have any blueberry bushes in your yard and your dog helps himself to the berries, he should be all right. Birds usually get more berries than dogs, unless you have your bushes caged or netted off. Do be cautious about using any sprays or chemicals on berry bushes at home if your dog has access to them since they could be dangerous.

How often can you give your dog blueberries?

If you are giving your dog a few berries, you could give him several per day by adding them to his meal or feeding them from your hand. If you are giving your dog larger amounts, try to space them out through the week.

You can use blueberries when you make dog cookies, in homemade frozen pupsicles for dogs, and in smoothies.

Fresh blueberries are wonderful but you can also buy frozen blueberries. These berries are flash frozen at the height of ripeness. Flash freezing them means they keep the most nutrients possible. Dogs love frozen blueberries on a hot summer day.

Dogs and blueberries: conclusion

Blueberries are a wonderful, healthy treat for dogs. They are low in calories and jam-packed with antioxidants and other nutrients. Plus, they are sweet and tasty so most dogs love them. It’s fine to share them with your dog in moderation. If you have questions about giving them to your dog, talk to your veterinarian.

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Carlotta Cooper

Carlotta Cooper

Carlotta Cooper is a long-time contributing editor for the weekly dog show magazine DN Dog News. She's the author of The Dog Adoption Bible, a Dog Writers Association of America (DWAA) award winner. In addition, she is an American Kennel Club Gazette breed columnist and is the author of several books about dogs. She has been reviewing pet foods and writing about dog food for more than 10 years.

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