Can Dogs Eat Spinach
We have heard a lot about dogs and vegetables in our previous articles. You may be wondering can a dog eat spinach. Yes, he can but it may not be the top vegetable on your list.
We can give carrots, broccoli, melon, and strawberries, etc. as natural treats. As a dog owner one may have a second thought on giving spinach as it contains oxalic acid. Not only, will the acid limit the absorption of calcium but also may lead to kidney damage when spinach is given in large quantities.
Dogs are known to be carnivorous especially in the wild but this doesn’t mean they do not eat vegetables. Although, we need to be cautious not to give them human foods that can be harmful, for example, onions, garlic, chocolate among other foods.
Importantly, before introducing any new food into their diet consult your vet, and once given a green light do it gradually. The introduction of a new diet can lead to allergies or stomach upset for your dog.
Some dogs may be picky eaters and reject spinach hence give alongside a yummy meat diet. In case your dog suffers stomach upset after feeding consult the vet immediately. Pet insurance can facilitate emergency treatment if a dog consumes something poisonous.
Importance of Spinach to Dog
Supplement Main meal
Obviously, vegetables can be used to supplement the dogs’ if meat is scarce or as a topping. Spinach and other vegetable are good as they contain useful nutrients which the dog may need. Besides this, it can also act as a low-calorie snack, good for obese dogs.
Spinach is loaded with numerous nutrients from iron, potassium, fiber, magnesium, vitamin A, B, C, K, calcium that assists in dogs’ growth and repair needs.
Improve Energy levels, Immunity, Health
Moreover, it boosts the dog’s immunity, energy levels, and vitality. Furthermore, it improves the heart’s wellbeing and reduces the chance of the dog getting cancer, as well as improves digestive tract health.
Spinach is rich in folate which helps in creating red and white blood cells and improves the cell capacity to repair the dogs’ DNA when injured or sick.
Spinach is a good source of minerals and vitamins and your dog will benefit if prepared and given in the right quantity.
Which Nutrients are Contained in Spinach?
As much as spinach has useful nutrients it can also be harmful to your dog if given in large quantities. Undoubtedly, spinach has vitamin A, B, C, and K which is important for your dog’s growth and repair issues in case of injury. The right amount of vitamins will benefit your dog in its development.
2. Iron, Roughage, Antioxidant
Alongside this, spinach contains iron, roughage, antioxidants, and beta-carotene which play a very important role in the digestive tract health.
Dogs can sometimes suffer from constipation and foods that have roughage properties and fibers assist a lot in digestion and spinach is rich in this.
3. Oxalic Acid
Regardless of this, we have to keep in mind that feeding the dog a healthy and balanced diet for proper growth is essential. A lot of spinach may have a negative impact on the dogs’ health. Spinach contains oxalic acid, which limits the absorption of calcium into the dog’s body and can lead to kidney damage.
Without a doubt, the presence of oxalates may raise concerns while feeding spinach to your dog for many dog owners. Even so, it requires large quantities of spinach to negatively affect your dog. When feeding limits the Quantities to a small percentage.
We all want our dogs to live to their full lifespan hence a little spinach is recommended, not too much.
Subsequently, large consumption of spinach can eventually lead to kidney problems, muscle weakness, respiratory challenges, and abnormal heart rhythms.
How to Prepare your Dogs’ Spinach
Wash thoroughly and chop into small pieces
Any food be it spinach or broccoli or fruits given to your pets should be well prepared, washed thoroughly with clean running water, and chopped into small pieces. It is much safer if you buy organic spinach for your dog due to the lack of pesticides.
To start with, you want your dog to get all the nutrients available in the spinach hence steaming will be better than boiling.
Also, for ease of digestion, steam the spinach instead of giving it raw. The dog may have difficulty chewing and also digesting it when raw.
Give Right Portions
Unquestionably, if you decide to feed your dog spinach consult your vet for advice and to get the right portions recommended. Give small portions to your dog as recommended to avoid an accumulation of oxalic acid and kidney damage later.
Consider Food Texture
Remember different dog sizes may need different ways of preparation. For instance, you can make spinach puree for a puppy while for an adult dog, you steam the spinach.
Spinach may not have a pleasant taste when cooking but do not add salt, seasoning, or spices as it may be toxic to the dog. Following this, you can serve the spinach with your dogs’ yummy meat diet for him to enjoy.
If you decide to do homemade meals for your dog or vegan diet create a balanced diet specifically for him. A meal plan can be discussed with your vet so as to suit his dietary needs. Ensure to include carbohydrates and vegetables which should take the least percentage and meat can take 85% of the diet.
Spinach is good for you hence they are also good for your dog. Moreover, spinach is a healthy addition to your dog’s diet as it is loaded with useful nutrients.
It can be used as a snack or topping to the main dog diet. Furthermore, feeding your dog small quantities of spinach can help chances of getting cancer, cardiovascular issues, and inflammation problems as it contains antioxidants too.
Feeding spinach to puppies may not be a good idea as their kidneys are still developing. In addition, give lots of water to flush out the oxalic acid in the spinach they feed on.
Lastly, consider dogs are carnivorous and 85% of their diet should be meat-based hence spinach and other vegetables should take the least percentage to avoid nutrient deficiency diseases.