For a high-fibre, fat-free, and low-sodium diet, butternut squash is one of our top choices on the menu. Thanks to its vitamins and minerals that keep us healthy and active. We dog owners may think of including this fruit in their diet. But can dogs have butternut squash?
Dogs can eat butternut squash, as it has no toxic elements but high amounts of nutrients. It means your dog can get many health benefits from this fruit. Also, it is important to keep the amount in mind, as too much butternut can worsen a dog’s health.
This article will provide you with some benefits and drawbacks of this fruit, along with the right way to prepare it.
Can Dogs Have Butternut Squash?
Fortunately, butternut squash falls into the category of safe foods for dogs. Besides, it offers some health benefits with its loaded nutrients. It means this fruit is good for our paw friends.
Well, you must consider some safety concerns before letting your dog eat squash. For example, dogs should have fruits like butternut squash in moderate quantities. You may feed this fruit to them raw or by baking, boiling, or steaming its pieces. It can be harmful to dogs if not taken in the right quantity. Also, adding other ingredients to a butternut can worsen their condition.
Other safety concerns include avoiding the seeds and skin of butternut squash. The seeds are not toxic but can cause intestinal blockage. If you want to serve the goodness of these seeds to your dog, make sure the fruit is in pure form. These seeds can also enhance the thickness of the butternut squash juice.
Do not consider offering the butternut squash skin to dogs. It is not digestible at all and causes further health problems to them.
Benefits Of Having Butternut Squash For Dogs
Butternut squash can contribute a lot to your dog’s health if he eats it in the right quantity. For instance, it has high amounts of vitamin A, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. Vitamin A can help with your dog’s skin, hair, and muscles. Besides, it will promote healthy vision and body growth. Vitamin B6 will support his brain function and body function.
On the other hand, vitamin C will boost your dog’s immune system and help with absorbing nutrients.
Again, the antioxidant properties in butternut squash can protect your dog from free radicals and reduce inflammation. These can also protect him from oxidative stress and cancer.
Butternut squash also contains several minerals. Such as calcium, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and so on. We know calcium is a boon for bone health, and phosphorus is great for cell growth. Besides, magnesium allows for the absorption of other vitamins and minerals in the body, and manganese absorbs carbohydrates and protein.
The high fibre content of this squash can be a great addition for dogs dealing with constipation. Also, it has a high water content that keeps our canine friends hydrated.
Risks Of Having Butternut Squash For Dogs
Along with some health benefits, butternut squash can pose health risks to dogs. This mainly occurs when they eat it in high quantities or not in the right way.
As said earlier, this fruit is high in fibre. Eating it too much can soften the stool more than necessary, which can lead to diarrhoea. It also has high amounts of carbohydrates, and dogs don’t need many carbs. The more squash they eat, the more carbs they will consume. This can turn into fat if stored in the body. Meanwhile, dogs have to deal with the pancreas, as too many fats inflame their pancreas.
Sometimes, we prefer adding seasonings to fruits, like butternut squash. I know you care about your dog’s taste buds, but adding seasoning to his fruits and veggies is a bad idea. This can trigger his GI tract, as dogs can’t digest such ingredients.
Another problem associated with butternut squash is the choking hazard. This can happen when you offer this fruit to your dog along with seeds. However, the seeds of cooked or pureed butternut squash won’t harm your dog; they are only harmful in raw form.
How To Feed Butternut Squash To Dogs?
You may offer butternut squash to your dog in several ways. It can be raw, boiled, roasted, steamed, or baked. It doesn’t matter in which way you want to feed; make sure the fruit is fresh and ripe. Also, wash it properly before preparing a treat from it.
If you are offering raw butternut squash, peel its skin first. Then remove all the seeds and cut the flesh into tiny pieces. This can help to avoid choking hazards in dogs.
If you want to bake or steam the squash, follow the same steps as mentioned. The additional step will be boiling, steaming, baking, or whichever way you prefer.
Some dogs may struggle with intestinal blockage with tiny pieces too. In that case, you must make the butternut squash in puree form, or just make juice from it.
How Much Butternut Squash Can Dogs Have?
Although butternut squash is low in calories, you can’t offer it to your dog in large quantities. Always keep the treat within 10% of your dog’s calorie intake.
Anyway, if your dog is a small breed, make sure he doesn’t eat more than one teaspoon. Medium dogs can have two teaspoons or probe tablespoons of squash. Lastly, large breeds can have around two tablespoons.
When Can Dogs Have Butternut Squash?
Butternut squash is good for dogs, but that doesn’t mean it can be safe for all dogs. If your dog’s diet already includes enough carbs, he should avoid this fruit. Also, dogs can produce vitamin C naturally, so they need fewer amounts of vitamin C in their diet. If your dog ingests enough vitamin C, butternut squash will be unnecessary for him.
Dogs with pancreatitis should also avoid this squash. Its carbohydrates can turn into fat if stored, which can worsen a dog’s condition, which is pancreatitis.
Some dogs are even allergic to fruits and vegetables. If your dog falls into the same group, it is better not to offer him the butternut squash.
Let’s say your dog is not allergic and is healthy enough to consume butternut. But that also requires approval from the vet. So before introducing any food to your dog, make your vet certain about it.
Frequently Asked Questions: Can Dogs Have Butternut Squash?
Can dogs eat butternut squash every day?
As per vets, non-allergic dogs should have small amounts of fruits and vegetables every day. Hopefully, you will offer a variety of fruits to your dog. In that case, you may consider adding butternut squash to his diet occasionally.
What is good for dogs, pumpkin or butternut?
Both pumpkin and butternut squash are safe for dogs in moderate quantities. All types of squash, like pumpkin, butternut, zucchini, etc., contain almost the same level of nutrients.
What happens if a dog eats too much butternut?
Eating too much butternut can make a dog vomit and have watery diarrhoea. If he is already dealing with other health issues, he may develop pancreatitis, lethargy, or weakness.
How do I prepare butternut squash for dogs?
In order to cook butternut squash for dogs, you can steam it or boil it. We usually offer boiled and steamed veggies to our dogs. You may add the pieces of butternut squash to those pieces to boil or steam them.
As butternut squash poses some health risks, we may still think, Can dogs have butternut squash? Well, the answer is yes, if they don’t have any allergies to plant-based foods and if their vet allows it.
Don’t panic if your dog eats this squash more than necessary. Watch his symptoms first and tell your vet about them. Meanwhile, let your dog throw up everything to relax for a while. If he has other health issues, don’t delay and offer him treatment immediately.