You might want to give some treats to your dog in the form of fruits, such as banana. However, are bananas good for dogs? As responsible dog owners, you probably want to refrain from giving your dogs anything that is bad for them. In addition, you may prefer to give your dogs some treats which are beneficial for them. Let’s find out if bananas are good for dogs.
Why Do Some Dogs Like Bananas?
Dogs may prefer different types of food. However, some dogs like specific fruits or vegetables which have been introduced to their diets. People and dogs might find banana a very tasty snack. In addition, some dogs really have a sweet tooth. Ripe bananas can really be a sweet treat for your dogs. Moreover, banana cravings in dogs might be a result of their need in specific nutrients which are found in banana.
Not all dogs are able to receive essential nutrients from their staple dog food. That is why, banana may supplement for the lack of nutrients that some dog food brands might have missed in their formulation. Dogs might like bananas due to its taste or because of the craving for essential nutrients that bananas contain.
Nutrition Facts of Bananas
Banana may be added to your dog’s healthy diet as long as it is given in moderation. However, some dogs might like or dislike bananas more than others, so you might want to offer small quantities of banana to your dog upon introducing it to its diet. Bananas have several essential nutrients which can be beneficial for dogs. Banana is an ideal source of these nutrients:
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin C
Is It Safe for Dogs to Eat Banana Peel?
Dogs usually explore different things or food items with their mouths. Moreover, banana may not be spared from the innate curiosity of dogs. Whether dogs discover bananas by raiding your kitchen counter or they discover bananas upon your initial offering to them, dogs might not be able to differentiate banana peel from the rest of fruit. That is why your dog might be able to ingest banana peels by accident.
Banana peels do not contain any toxic compounds which my harm your dogs. However, banana peels are difficult to digest for dogs. Banana peels may interfere with your dog’s digestion or it may cause stomach upset. On the other hand, too much intake of banana may really upset the stomach of your dogs since bananas must only be given to dogs in moderation.
Therefore, banana flesh is safe for dogs, but banana peel is not safe for dogs. If you are planning to give banana to your dog, make sure that banana peel has been put away to avoid stomach upset or blockage in the digestive tract caused by banana peel. If you think that your dog is not feeling well due to banana peel ingestion, you may consult your veterinarian if the ingested banana peel did not safely pass through your dog’s digestive tract within 24 hours.
How to Prepare Banana Treats for Dogs
Bananas can be offered to dogs in different forms to create a nutritious treat. You may blend banana with cheese and/or peanut butter (without xylitol) to create a smoothie or paste that your dog may enjoy. In addition, you may also put the paste form in hollow toys which may challenge your dog’s skills on how to extract the treat from the hollow toy. This enrichment activity might entertain your dog for hours.
Dogs may enjoy ripe plain sliced banana on top of their regular diet. However, to add some variety to their banana, you may also offer them in frozen slices to make it a refreshing treat during hot days. This changes the texture of the banana which makes it more enticing to chew for some dogs. In addition, you may also include other frozen fruits for dogs in this preparation.
Recommended Portion Size of Bananas for Dogs
Bananas are not really essential to your dog’s diet. However, offering a variety of food to your dogs might help improve their long-term health due to the nutrients that other types of food may contain. Banana is rich in certain nutrients for your dogs. The recommended portion size of banana for dogs is just a few peeled slices. Banana slices that you can give your dog varies depending on your dog’s size and weight. As a general rule, 90% of your dog’s diet must be the composed of its staple food while the other 10% may be composed of different types of treats, including banana.
Potential Side Effects of Too Much Banana Intake for Dogs
Bananas are only safe for dogs if given in moderation. Moreover, too much banana intake might cause temporary, yet unwanted effects on your dogs. Diarrhea or constipation is the most common negative effect of banana on dogs. Not all dogs tolerate the nutrients in banana the same way. Some dogs might experience side effects of too much banana intake sooner than others. In addition, there are even breed-specific nutrients that your dog might need. Banana is high in natural carbohydrates which may either increase your dog’s energy or promote weight gain.
Potential side effects of too much banana intake are fairly reversible in early stages. However, long-term effects of too much banana intake may lead to a series of health problems such as weight gain, chronic digestion problems or organ failure. The only way to maintain the health of your dog is to provide proper nutrition and enough physical activity.
So, if someone asks you, “are bananas good for dogs?” You can definitely answer “Yes, because it contains several essential nutrients for dogs. But, treats must only be given in moderation.” There are numerous ways on how your dog can enjoy treats in the form of bananas while maintaining your dog’s health.