If you have recently adopted healthier eating habits, you may have roped in your entire household (including your dog) for this endeavor. Otherwise, it will be torturous to watch your family snack on goodies while you make do with vegetable puree (aka baby food) and vegetable juice!
When selecting veggies to include in your household’s new diet, vegetables such as pumpkins and carrots may come to mind. You may wonder, “Can dogs can eat carrots? Can carrots give dogs diarrhea? How many carrots can I give my dog?”
This article discusses how carrots can be served to dogs, when carrots can be good or bad for dogs, and how to decide the number of carrots to give your dog.
Can dogs eat carrots?
Most dogs can eat carrots! Every part of a carrot – including the carrot top – is safe.
Carrots are rich in antioxidants. They are high in fiber, which is essential for good gut health. Carrots are also rich in beta-carotene, which dogs can convert to Vitamin A. Vitamin A supports important functions such as strong immunity, good vision, and healthy skin.
Furthermore, small quantities of carrots are low in fat and calories. If your vet has placed your dog on a weight-loss diet, do consult them about using carrots as treats!
Can all dogs eat carrots?
Sadly, no as the occasional dog can be allergic to carrots. Symptoms include itchy skin and diarrhea. If you think your dog may have a medical condition that may make carrots unsafe to eat, or if you wish to introduce carrots but don’t how to start, seek veterinary advice!
If your vet allows your dog to eat carrots, you may wonder how you can serve them to dogs. Read on…
Can dogs eat carrot peels?
Yes, carrot peels are safe for dogs! Researchers have found that it does not matter if you skin the carrots beforehand, as carrot peels only contain a small proportion of nutrients. Most of a carrot’s nutritional value will remain even after you skin it and discard the peels!
Can dogs eat raw carrots?
Yes – dogs can eat raw and cooked carrots! Raw carrots can help with your dog’s dental health as they have a mildly abrasive surface. This can help to scrape plaque from your dog’s teeth.
However, cooked carrots are easier to digest. Studies show that beta-carotene in cooked carrots and carrot puree is absorbed more easily in the body.
At this stage, you may be excited and you may want to start your dog on carrots straightaway. However, before you rush to the supermarket and buy all of their carrots, please note that carrots are bad for dogs under certain circumstances.
When are carrots are bad for dogs?
The Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) states that unwashed vegetables are dangerous as they can contain leftover pesticides and harmful bacteria that cause food poisoning. It is important to wash the carrots even if you plan to skin them and discard the peels.
You may decide to try various carrot-based recipes (e.g. carrot cake) for your dog. However, please avoid preparing carrots with cream, seasonings, or spices, as many of these ingredients are toxic to dogs.
If you still wish to try carrot-based recipes for your dog, speak to your vet! They can refer you to a board-certified pet nutritionist who can formulate yummy recipes (e.g. dog-friendly carrot puree, maybe mixed with flaxseed oil and seasoned with kelp)
As juicing a carrot greatly reduces its fiber content, there is little point in giving carrot juice to your dog. Bite-sized carrot pieces are more nutritious. Also, store-bought carrot juice is a huge no-no as it may contain additives that harm dogs!
How many carrots can I give my dog?
You may wonder, ”How many carrots can I give my dog? Is it ok to give my dog carrots every day?” Feeding carrots in moderation is key as feeding too much of anything can lead to weight gain in your dog, which can cause several health issues (e.g. arthritis, heart disease) and reduce your dog’s lifespan!
The optimal serving size depends on many factors, including your dog’s size and current diet. If you wish to determine the optimal serving size for your dog, consult your vet for personalized advice!
Is it OK to give your dog carrots every day?
Your pet nutritionist can formulate a plan that enables you to feed carrots daily or you can feed dog food that’s recipes include carrots and are formulated to meet AAFCO’s standards for a complete & balanced diet.
To conclude – carrots are not just used in baby food as most dogs (except those with certain medical conditions) can eat carrots!