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Is your dog in need of some vegetable supplements to its regular food? If so, then you’re probably wondering what veggies they can and can’t eat. For example, can dogs eat asparagus?
The answer is YES, they can.
But let’s take a look at what to avoid and how to properly feed asparagus to your dog.
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Benefits of Veggies for Dogs
We obviously eat our vegetables to keep us healthy. But do dogs need them too? The answer is no, not necessarily. They’re perfectly fine with a high-quality dog food diet, but it’s nice to mix it up with some added fresh veggies from time to time.
Just make sure the brand of food you buy has a stamp or indicator from AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials) that it offers a balanced diet with each serving. This means that their food already contains everything your dog needs to be healthy.
If you don’t have access to quality dog food then adding fresh produce to their meals can help give them the nutrients they need like carbs, vitamins, and antioxidants. Adding cooked potatoes can give them the extra carbs they need for energy. Any leafy greens or bright green veggies such as asparagus provides them with all the vitamins A, E, C, and K they require each day as well as all those helpful antioxidants.
For overweight dogs, it’s actually a really good idea to start cutting their meals into half dog food and half fresh veggies to lower their fat intakes and increase energy.
Which One Should They Avoid?
But don’t run out and grab extra veggies for your best buddy yet. You should first learn their limits. Regardless of the breed, these few fruits and veggies are bad, sometimes fatal, to them.
So, take note:
- Raisins and grapes can cause serious kidney damage and sometimes failure.
- Garlic and onions can cause respiratory problems which are more of a concern in breeds that already face this issue like bulldogs and pugs.
- Mushrooms: some are good, but there are a few that are fatal and can seizures and heart failure. So, it’s best to avoid all types of them.
- And lastly, raw potatoes. While cooked spuds are perfectly fine and are even found in some brands of dog food, uncooked and green potatoes are harmful to dogs. They cause nausea, vomiting, and even seizures.
So, Can Dogs Eat Asparagus?
There’re tons of veggies that dogs can have and yes, asparagus is one of them. In regards to other types, a good rule of thumb is to keep the veggies green and/or sweet.
Dogs just love zucchini, green peas, peas, celery, beet tops, sweet potatoes (cooked), and, you guessed it, asparagus! It is packed full of fiber, essential vitamins, folate. These things are vital to any dog’s health and can help supplement their diet if they need to lose weight or recover from an illness.
If you want to try it out, cook the asparagus until it’s fairly soft and then chop into bite-sized pieces. You can feed it to them straight, but if they’ve never eaten it before they may reject it. In that case, mix it into their regular dog food to ensure they get the benefits from the veggie.
Extra Tips When Giving Your Dog Asparagus
- Parboil it (or any other veggies you give them). This softens the food and makes it easy to chew as well as digest;
- Chop veggies up for them in bite-sized pieces. Most dogs, regardless of their size, tend to wolf down food in large gulps and choking can be a major issue, especially with long string-like ones like asparagus. Pre-cutting their veggies (or any human food) ensures it goes down nice and easy;
- Use 10/90 rule. If you are supplementing their dog food with fresh food, then a good ratio to remember is 10% veggies, 90% dog food for already healthy pets. If your dog needs to lose weight or requires extra nutrients then you can balance that ratio a little more. But they should always have at least 50% dog food;
- Start with small portions. Dogs can have a reaction to new things just like humans do. It’s best to test them out first. Give them a small bite of a new veggie, even asparagus, first and let it sit with them for at least three hours.
If you notice them going outside to eat grass then that’s a clear indication that the new food is upsetting their stomach. The grass is a natural vomit inducing substance, and most animals know to eat it when they need to make themselves vomit. Another indication is diarrhea.
And that’s about it! And whether dogs can have asparagus or not is pretty clear, they can. If you’re looking to add some extra vitamins to your dog’s diet, then this is a great place to start. Just make sure to chop it up into small, bite-sized pieces.
And don’t forget:
- Green and sweet
- No raw spuds
- Bite-sized pieces
Did you try and feed your dog some asparagus? What was your experience? Did she enjoy it? Share with us in the comments how you served it to them and if you had success getting them to eat other veggies!