Can Your Dog Have Raspberries?
Berry season is one of the tastiest fruit seasons around. Sweet strawberries, tart blackberries, and succulent blueberries taste exactly like summertime. While you’re tossing berries into your morning oatmeal or whipping them into a frothy smoothie, your body appreciates the fiber and vitamin C they provide. Before you start sharing your berry bounty with your canine family member, keep a few of these things in mind!
Are Raspberries Good for Your Dog?
Biologists have seen wolves in the wild foraging for various kinds of berries while seeming to enjoy them quite a bit. The exact reason why they eat berries isn’t quite known (it could be for nutrition, or it could simply be because they taste good) but domesticated dogs also enjoy different kinds of berries. Most berries are safe for your dog to eat in moderation, including raspberries.
Raspberries are some of the sweetest berries out there. They’re a wonderful source of valuable nutrients that aren’t limited to vitamin C. The vitamin C is excellent for the immune system and helping the body absorb iron. They’re also bursting with antioxidants, which research has linked to reducing the risks of cancer, arthritis, heart disease, and diabetes. The manganese found in berries helps synthesize protein and carbohydrates to create energy in the body. Raspberries are also rich with B vitamins, copper, folic acid, and magnesium.
The fiber found in raspberries is great for overweight dogs because it helps them feel full on smaller amounts of food and less calories. If your dog is on a diet, the first few weeks can be rough because they’re feeling hungry quite frequently. Help mitigate the hunger pains by giving them low-calorie foods with plenty of fiber, like raspberries. They’ll appreciate the sweet snack while feeling less hungry as their body adjusts.
Dogs don’t thrive on excess, especially excessive food. Whether you’re giving them too much of their regular dog food or too many berries, their stomach and intestines are going to revolt. Too many berries will definitely give your dog loose stool or even diarrhea.
When you’re giving your pup raspberries, be cautious in how much you’re giving them. The proper amount depends on your dog’s size. Larger dogs, like labs or retrievers, will do fine with six to ten berries. Smaller and medium sized dogs shouldn’t have any more than three to six berries per day. As long as you don’t make berries a main part of their meal, your dog will be fine. Think of berries as a light snack or as an occasional treat when your dog is nosing around the dinner table.
A Caution About Berries with Pits
There are some berries out there with pits that can be slightly dangerous to dogs. Cherries are the main culprit, and while the cherry itself is safe, the pit isn’t. If your dog has developed an enthusiastic taste for berries, they might develop a habit of stealing them off of the counter or from the trash. The pits can be passed through the intestines, but they can be a choking hazard if they’re swallowed too quickly. If you keep cherries around the house, be cautious where you store and dispose of them.
Raspberries are a much better summer treat than something like ice cream or a sugary popsicle. Remember that dogs don’t need additional fruit to be healthy because they get all of the nutrition they need from their quality dog food. It’s only normal to give your dog the things that you love, but try to keep yourself from giving your dog too much love.