Are cranberries safe for dogs to eat?
We all love cranberries, especially the sauce at Thanksgiving dinner, but can dogs eat cranberries? Spot & Tango says that yes, they can!
Cranberries are a human health snack that is rich in vitamins, fiber, and minerals. However, you should feed in moderation since too much good stuff isn’t good.
They are not just safe, but also will provide a powerful health boost due to the unique blend of nutrients that cranberries provide.
There is a big difference between food that is safe for dogs and one that is good for them. This is why you need to know the benefits of the nutrient blend of your food and snacks.
When it comes to cranberries, just like with humans, they are a superfood that has some essential vitamins that can boost their health.
For instance, cranberries contain:
- Vitamin E – Which is a powerful antioxidant that is crucial for the immune system
- Vitamin C – With humans, Vitamin C is in the top three vitamins that are essential for living a healthy life. The situation is the same for dogs as it supports your dog’s muscles and bones, immune system, and speed up wound healing.
- Manganese – Is great for growth, and for improving their metabolism.
- Vitamin K1 (phylloquinone) – Crucial component for blood clotting
Also, cranberries are high in:
- Anthocyanins – Antioxidant that supports brain health and the immune system
- Quercetin – Helps with allergies
- Fiber – For gut health and immune system
- Proanthocyanins – Which helps with urinary problems, gut health, heart disease, and even cancer
Now that we know that cranberries are safe and provide vital nutrition that dogs need, it is time to know more about how to give them to your dogs.
Are raw cranberries safe?
Raw cranberries are perfectly fine for your dog, but there is a catch. You should give your dog raw cranberries in moderation and only as an occasional snack, not including them in their everyday meal.
Even though raw cranberries are the safest way to give them to your dog, they may require a bit of supervision on your part. Since they are small, they could be a choking hazard, especially for smaller dogs, make sure you observe the process.
Are dried cranberries safe?
Dried cranberries are also safe, but they require a bit more attention. For example, most dried cranberries come mixed with dried raisins which are not preferred for doggos.
Some manufacturers also decide to add more sugar to dried cranberries to make them sweeter, which is also something to consider. Cranberries are great for dogs due to their low sugar quantities, so buying dried cranberries with added sugar doesn’t make sense.
Pay attention to the label and the ingredients used in the manufacturing process. Some dried fruits contain sugar that includes xylitol, which can be very toxic for dogs.
Are cooked cranberries safe?
If you have some leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving, it is safe for your dog, just make sure you control the quantities and that other ingredient are not used in the dish like added sugar, mixed with other raisins, or alcohol.
But if you are making a small dinner for yourself, there is nothing to prevent your dog from enjoying them.
In other words, cranberries are safe in every way possible. If you are buying cranberry products from your local store, make sure you check the products for other ingredients that might upset their stomach.
Health Benefits of Cranberries for Dogs
The unique blend of nutrients makes cranberries a super-food that can bring many benefits for dogs.
The most impressive thing is that cranberries also help increase apoptosis (cancer cell death) and some studies show that cranberries show great promise in fighting cancer in the early stages.
Research also shows that cranberries and their unique blend of nutrients make them great for preventing or slowing down tumor growth (in certain cancer) and scientists have successfully used cranberries to help manage cancer in rats.
Control urinary tract infections
One of the best-known medical uses for cranberries is for UTIs. Even though UTIs are most common in female dogs, male dogs can also get them.
The process is really uncomfortable and painful for the dogs and cranberries are great for preventing or managing UTIs. Since most UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, the antibacterial properties of cranberries make them perfect for preventing and managing this unwanted situation.
Manage gut and improve immune health
The best way to improve your dog’s digestive health is by maintaining a well-balanced gut microbiome. This is also very important for your dog’s immune system since 90% of it comes from the gut.
Cranberries are great for maintaining the perfect gut balance since they eliminate bad bacteria, even fungi, and viruses, without harming the good bacteria.
With that said, cranberries have many benefits for your dog, and they should be included as a snack in moderation. Just make sure you limit the number of cranberries they have since too much good isn’t good after all.