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Raspberries are delicious and a lot of us love them and they make a perfect treat for humans but are they a good treat for your dogs? As much as you love them you should be sure that they’re safe for your dogs before sharing them and now we’ll answer that question for you.
Can dogs have Raspberry?
Can dogs have Raspberry? Yes, like most fruits, raspberries are safe for your dogs to eat, dogs are omnivores and although their digestive system is different from ours, they can still digest and benefit from a lot of the foods we eat. They have to be given these foods in moderation though and raspberries have several health benefits that will be good for your dogs.
Heath Benefits of Raspberry
Raspberries are packed with nutrients. They are a good source of dietary fiber and these help with digestion and overcome gastrointestinal issues because they help to keep the food moving during digestion. They also help to prevent obesity by making your dog feel full without eating too much. Raspberries also help to keep your dog’s blood sugar under control and they help to lower cholesterol.
They help improve their skin and coat health because they contain vitamin C which prevents tissue and collagen degeneration and collagen is a protein that makes up a large percentage of the skin. Vitamin C also protects their cells from getting destroyed or altered by oxidation, it helps prevent sun damage and it works with other vitamins and minerals that protect the body.
They also contain other antioxidants like Vitamin E, beta carotene, lycopene, selenium and zeaxanthin, and flavonoids which are not as powerful but still act as antioxidants and they all help to eliminate free radicals which can be toxic, improve your dog’s immune system and help to prevent cancer.
Antioxidants also help to improve the health of the brain and neurological system and they help in lowering blood pressure, preventing the buildup of platelets, and suppression of inflammation which all help to prevent cardiovascular disease.
Vitamin E also helps in preventing eye and muscle degradation, regulates the functions of the digestive system, and prevents reproductive problems. It also reduces the loss of elasticity in the skin and muscles, helps prevent skin conditions like rashes, dandruff, dermatitis, and other skin infections, and supports respiratory functions.
They contain potassium which aids the proper functioning of the kidney and heart and helps in muscle development and to regulate fluid levels.
They contain some of the B Vitamins which have a host of benefits from enabling high-energy organs like the brain to function properly to playing roles in the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Vitamin B6, in particular, helps in amino acid metabolism, it regulates hormones, improves bladder health, helps to support neurotransmitters, and supports brain and body functions.
They are rich in manganese which is used for metabolizing protein and carbohydrates, producing energy, and making fatty acids. It also contains omega-3 fatty acids which help in the proper brain and eye development in puppies and improve cognitive function for older dogs. They also contain sulforaphane which can slow down the progression of arthritis by blocking enzymes that cause joint destruction.
If raspberries do all these then why not just feed only raspberries to your dogs? They’re tasty and have so many health benefits, right? Here’s why you shouldn’t do that.
Can Raspberries be Bad for Dogs?
Unlike a lot of other fruits, you don’t have to worry about your dog suffering from an intestinal blockage or choking on raspberries, but they have their own downsides.
They have a lot of natural sugar. The digestive system our dogs have is different from ours and their process is mainly protein and fat and because of this too much sugar can lead to problems. The sugar contained in raspberries is fructose which is slightly different from sucrose which is the sugar we buy and use regularly but that doesn’t make it any healthier to feed to your dog.
However, raspberries contain a lot of water and even though they are very sweet the amount of sugar per raspberry is really low so unless your dog is suffering from diabetes or any other preexisting conditions that make monitoring sugar necessary you don’t have to worry. However, if that’s the case then you should contact your veterinarian to know if your dogs can have raspberries at all and in what amounts.
Dogs should not eat too many raspberries because they are one of the major sources of naturally occurring xylitol and xylitol can be very toxic to dogs. Xylitol, however, is only toxic in high amounts, especially in foods that use it as a substitute for sugar like human candies.
Some dog toothpaste even contains small amounts of xylitol but not enough to cause any harm. You’ll be happy to know that raspberries have little amounts and your dog will have to eat a whole lot of raspberries before they can be considered toxic but be careful because high amounts of it can lead to xylitol poisoning.
Symptoms of xylitol poisoning are weakness, a lack of coordination, sluggishness, vomiting, tremors, and in very severe cases it can lead to seizures and liver failure and your dog might go into a coma.
If your dog suffers liver failure from xylitol poisoning you might not notice any signs of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), which is caused by liver disease, but you should still watch out for signs of it which include an extreme lack of energy, weakness, dilated pupils, muscle twitching, discoloration of the gums and skin and all the symptoms listed above. Most dogs will find it hard to eat or drink when they have low blood sugar levels.
They can also cause gastrointestinal issues like constipation if they eat too much because they contain high amounts of fiber.
However, your dog might just be having an initial reaction if it’s their first time having raspberries so if none of the major symptoms are there, just monitor them over a 24 hour period to see what happens. If any more serious symptoms show up be sure to contact your veterinarian for help. If this is their first time having raspberries make sure to give it to them in very small portions and monitor them carefully.
You should also keep your dogs away from your trash can so they won’t come across raspberries you threw away. This is also a very good rule to follow so they don’t end up eating any other spoilt food or harmful objects that could choke them or lead to other bad situations.
Can Dogs Have Raspberry Products
Canned raspberries or raspberry products like raspberry jam are entirely different things. They usually have a lot of added sugar and may contain additives or preservatives that could be very harmful to your dogs. It’s best to avoid these completely because even small amounts of some of these substances can be life-threatening.
How to Feed Your Dog Raspberries
There isn’t much preparation required. All you have to do is wash them and you can give them to them fresh or frozen.
You can also mix it in with their food or mix them with other healthy fruits into a fruit salad but make sure everything you put together will be safe for your dogs and you shouldn’t feed them raspberries with protein-rich foods because protein usually digests much slower than fruits. You can also use them as rewards during training sessions.
If you happen to have a raspberry patch make sure you keep them away from it so you can decide and control how much they eat.
How Many Raspberries Can Your Dog Eat?
It’s best to stick to the 90/10 rule which is that only 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake should come from treats and the rest should be from food made for them. It’s best to stick mostly to dog food though because they are specifically created with the physiology and dietary needs of your dog in mind.
They serve as a well-balanced snack that allows your dogs to stay healthy and get sufficient nutrients and minerals. Any other treats should be supplementary food options.
Limited portions of raspberries can be beneficial but if your dog has had too many it’s best to call your veterinarian to seek advice on what to do next.
Your dog’s long term health is very important and raspberries can be extremely beneficial to your dog’s health but they also have their downsides, some of which can be deadly so they should be given to your dogs in small amounts and as treats and not the main part of their diet.
Your veterinarian will be the best person to tell you if your dogs can have raspberries and how much and how frequently and this applies to all dogs and not just dogs with preexisting conditions because all dogs are individual and may react differently. if you ever notice any strange behavior do not hesitate to contact them for help.