Blueberries are great for dogs and humans alike. With its recognized antioxidant properties, this low-calorie and low-sugar fruit is an excellent treat to give your dog, not only to please him, but also for its health benefits on your four-legged friend.
In this article, we take a look at blueberries in your dog’s diet.
Can you give blueberries to your dog?
Yes, you most certainly can give blueberries to your dog. Indeed, with no toxic effects, they are even recommended for their antioxidant virtues. However, wild blueberries can be contaminated by animal droppings, so it is advisable to clean them well and even cook them before eating.
Commercial blueberries are definitively safer.
What are the benefits of blueberries for dogs?
Blueberries are an excellent source of flavonoids and anthocyanins, compounds known for their antioxidant effects in addition to fibre and vitamin C.
Indeed, many studies have shown that the antioxidant properties of flavonoids are involved in the stimulation of the immune defences and in inhibition of the growth of the cancerous cells, in particular in the case of benign vascular cancers (hemangiomas).
Anthocyanins are used for their blood vessel protection properties, their anti-edematous properties and in the inhibition of platelet aggregation.
In addition, blueberry extracts are used in the supplementary treatment of night vision disorders. Moreover, blueberries are also used in the prevention of digestive disorders thanks to the tannins that compose them.
Because of their low sugar content, blueberries can be an excellent way to prevent obesity in your dog by reducing fat storage.
Blueberries for my dog: in what form?
Wild blueberries may be contaminated by the droppings of animals such as foxes, which can harbour parasites that can be transmitted to dogs but also to humans such as Echinococcus multilocularis. It is therefore advisable to cook the blueberries before you give them to your dog to avoid any risk of contamination. Ideally, you should give your dog commercial blueberries.
They can be offered raw, and don’t need to be cut. However, it is advisable to crush them before offering them to puppies to avoid the risk of choking.
Finally, if this is your dog’s first time eating blueberries, it’s best to introduce them gradually to see how he reacts.
How much blueberries can you give your dog?
Blueberries are a very popular fruit for dogs and have many health benefits. However, too much of them can cause certain digestive problems such as diarrhea. As such, it is necessary to consider this food as a treat to give as a reward.
In active dogs, the amount of blueberries to be offered should not exceed 10 g per kg of body weight/day, or 10% of the daily energy requirement.
In summary, blueberries are a very beneficial fruit that can be given to your dog without any problem, but without exceeding the recommended amounts. They should not be your dog’s main source of energy and should be given as a treat.
Finally, prefer commercial blueberries to wild ones because the latter can be contaminated by the worm Echinococcus multilocularis, present in fox droppings.