Can Dogs Eat Blueberries? Health Benefits and What To Know
If you love munching on a handful of blueberries, you may be wondering if your dog can partake in this delicious superfood. The short answer is yes, dogs can eat blueberries, and they’re actually good for them. In this guide, we’ll cover what you need to know about feeding your dog blueberries, including health benefits, safety considerations, and ways to include them in your dog’s diet.
What Are the Health Benefits of Blueberries for Dogs?
For such a tiny fruit, blueberries pack a huge punch of fresh flavor and sweetness, but they aren’t just a tasty snack. Here are some of the unique benefits that blueberries can offer your pup.
Blueberries are one of the highest natural sources of antioxidants on the planet. Vitamins C and A, as well as phytochemicals, protect your dog’s cells against damage from disease, lower cholesterol, boost immune system health, and may even fight cancer.
Low in Calories
Low in calories, high in fiber, and full of key vitamins, blueberries are an ideal treat for dogs, especially those on a weight loss plan. In fact, some dog foods regularly use blueberries in their formulas as a nutrition-booster. The Honest Kitchen uses them in their Superfood Cod Crisps and Parmesan Pecks to keep your pup happy and healthy.
Improves Memory and Brain Function
Research shows that eating blueberries may reduce the effects of brain aging in dogs, such as memory loss or mental decline, and help maintain brain function. That makes blueberries a powerful addition for senior dogs.
Are Blueberries Always Safe for Dogs To Eat?
Blueberries aren’t bad for dogs, but every dog’s digestive system is different. If you’re planning on feeding your dog anything new, especially something that’s usually for human consumption, it’s best to consult your veterinarian. Here are a couple more things you should know before you start treating your pup to blueberries.
Get the Serving Size Right When Feeding Blueberries to Dogs
Although blueberries are low in calories, they still contain sugar, so they’re best served in moderation. Eating too much sugar leaves your dog vulnerable to tooth disease, weight gain, and other health issues. So, ask your veterinarian how much to feed your dog. If your dog requires a low-fiber diet or is prone to food allergies or sensitivities, this is especially important.
Blueberry-Flavored Doesn’t Always Mean “Real Blueberries”
As we’ve covered, blueberries are good for dogs, but that doesn’t mean that blueberry-flavored foods are safe. Things like candy and other human foods that are blueberry-flavored contain added sugar and other ingredients that could harm your dog. Stick to feeding your dog fresh or frozen blueberries that have been washed thoroughly.
How To Serve Blueberries to Dogs
Always be sure to wash blueberries well before giving them to your dog, as you want to rinse off all the pesticides or herbicides that may be on the skin. You can choose organic blueberries, but it’s still a good idea to give them a quick rinse.
For an extra boost of healthy nutrients and fiber, feed your pup a handful of fresh blueberries as a snack or mash and mix them into their food. In the summer, freeze blueberries for a cool and refreshing snack. We’ve also got plenty of blueberry recipes for dogs for you to get creative with. Here are some of our favorites:
- Blueberry and Blackberry Dog Treats
- Blueberry Dog Pupsicles
- Blueberry and Carrot Dog Treats
- Blueberry and Banana Dog Treats
Health Disclaimer: This post is educational in nature and doesn’t constitute health advice. Please consult your pet’s veterinarian or other healthcare professional for specific guidance on this topic.