We hear you asking, “can dogs eat beets?” and are happy to tell you that- YES. Dogs can eat beets but in moderation.
When it comes to our dogs, it can be hard to make that line of “moderation.”
Unfortunately, beet also comes with risks to your dogs. So, to guide you, we have everything you need to know about feeding your dog beets.
Are Beets Good For Dogs?
Dogs can safely eat beets, and they also bring benefits to your pup. Not only do they maintain overall well-being, but they also are a perfect crunchy bite. Let’s look at how beets can benefit your dog if fed in moderation:
1. Balanced diet
Beets are excellent for a dog’s health. However, even though they are rich in many nutrients, they are insufficient. A growing dog has vast requirements that should be fulfilled. Beets can be a great addition to their already existing diet. You must feed your dog the regular primary meals but incorporate beets to make it a balanced diet.
2. Vitamin C
These juicy treats are rich in vitamin C. And hear us out! Vitamin C is famous for reducing inflammation and strengthening the immune system. Though beets do not have enough vitamin C to show results in 1 week, they can gradually. So you can incorporate beets as a treat to your dog’s diet.
Iron is a mineral known for its goodness and blissful properties. The iron that comes with beets helps to regulate the blood in a dog’s body. So when your dog’s heart pumps blood, iron helps make traveling oxygen easier. It is an essential mineral that helps properly function a dog’s body.
Another good thing about beets is that it is very fibrous. Beets are juicy yet have the fiber to provide your dog with a balanced diet. Fiber helps with digestion and can also relieve constipation. However, please ensure to keep the consumption minimal. Fiber helps to make metabolism stronger and make the digestion process smoother.
Are There Any Risks?
Not many risks are associated with feeding your dog beets unless you go gaga with them. Feeding too many beets can not only lead to choking hazards but other risks as well. Here are the two significant risks your dog can face if you overfeed them beets.
1. Sugar content
Does your dog have a sweet tooth, and you wonder, “Why the hell in the world will my dog go crazy over the beets?” Well, fun fact: Beets have natural sugar (article). It might be one of the reasons why your sweet tooth doggo is a fan of them.
Beetroot, one of the veggies with the most sugar, will not harm your dog in small quantities. However, if you feed your dog every day in big amounts, it can lead to severe problems. Especially if your dog is diabetic, please confirm with your veterinarian before feeding your dog sugary beets.
2. Kidney stones
Beets consist of oxalate, a compound that binds the minerals in the body. For dogs, high oxalate levels can lead to kidney stones (article). This can be a nightmare for your dog. They can experience awful abdominal pain and discomfort. Hence, please ensure to feed yummy beets in moderation only.
Cooked or Raw? Which One Is Safe?
Cooked beets are easy to chew for dogs. Especially if your dog does not have teeth, you can mash the steamed beets. This will ensure your dog gets enough fiber without losing its nutritional value. Also, this will make it easier for your dog to eat beets. You can incorporate cooked beets as a treat or a side salad.
Now, coming to the raw beets! Dogs can eat raw beets, too. However, it can be hard to gobble down the whole beet, so you should chop it for them. If your dog is an eager eater, chop the beet into smaller pieces. You should only feed them one or two bites at a time.
Eating too many raw beet bites can cause choking hazards or blockage in the intestines.
What About Canned Beets?
We do not recommend serving canned beets to dogs. They can be extremely harmful due to the ingredients used to preserve them. The most damaging thing is the sodium content. High sodium can lead to electrolyte imbalance and is a toxin for dogs. Beets already have natural salts, which is enough for dogs. But to add additional sodium concentration is unnecessary. Sodium is highly dangerous and can even be fatal if not attended.
Canned products especially add sodium and other ingredients like vinegar. These can lead to nightmares for you and your dog. Also, many dogs are allergic to vinegar, so you must ensure your dog is not allergic to it.
Whether a piece or two from canned beets will harm your dog depends on your dog’s diet. Every dog is different and may not react the same with canned beets. But taking a risk would be harmful and should be avoided.
Lastly, canned beets also need to be preserved! For that, the companies use harmful chemicals and preservatives. These can disrupt your dog’s digestive system and overall health. The added seasonings and flavors will only decrease the nutritional value of the beets. Hence, it would help if you only served organic and plain beets to your dog.
Safe and Fun Ways to Serve Your Dog Beets
1. Mash them
One of the safest ways to serve beets is to mash them. Giving your dog whole beets can cause choking hazards. So you can take a beet, peel the skin, boil it, and mash it properly. This will make a great juicy mixture that will be easier to chew.
Also, if your dog does not have teeth, mashed beets are a great way to include fiber in their diet.
2. Mix with kibbles
If your dog is tired of boring kibbles- you can add some spice to it (not literally, duh!). You can cut beets into bite-size pieces and serve them as sides. You can also add beets to their primary meals, like chicken, kibbles, fish, etc. Please do not substitute beet with any primary ingredients. Instead, add them for extra texture and taste. This will make a balanced diet for your furry friend.
3. A salad
Here is a healthy and fun recipe for beetroot salad:
Step 1: Prepare the beetroots by peeling, washing, and boiling them.
Step 2: Chop them into small pieces for easy consumption.
Step 3: Add more ingredients of your dog’s choice. It can be wet dog food, chopped carrots, blueberries, cashews, etc. We leave that to you and your doggo.
Step 4: Lastly, toss them together. And tada!
There you have it.
Note: Ensure NOT TO add any seasonings. It can be dangerous to a dog’s health.
While feeding your dog raw beets, you must be extra careful about the chewing part. Your dog must chew the raw beets before swallowing or gobbling them together. Rest beets are a great addition to your dog’s diet. They should not substitute for the primary meals but can bring the benefits if fed in moderation.
In case your dog’s allergic to beets or prefers other human foods, feel free to being open to exploring alternative treats!
Frequently Asked Questions
No, beets in vinegar are not OK for dogs. Usually, canned beets use vinegar to enhance the flavor for humans, but it is a red flag for dogs! Dogs should not eat processed food with chemicals and preservatives. Also, with vinegar, many companies add sodium, which is absolutely a NO for dogs. Hence, please avoid serving your dog beets soaked in vinegar or canned beets.
Beet powder is beneficial to dogs. You can feed that in moderation as a treat or along with their primary meals. It contains healthy minerals and nutrients for your dog’s well-being. However, as it is a powdered form, they will lose their fiber content. The good part is that you can mix the powder into their kibbles or meals to make a balanced diet.
Beets have nutritional benefits for the dog’s skin. It is a natural skin care food that helps protect your dog’s coat. It also ensures that skin allergies and infections are kept away from your pup. Although, there is no absolute evidence that proves this. But as beets help to keep skin healthy, they may or may not help your dog with skin allergies.
No, canned vegetables will most likely contain harmful preservatives and unnecessary minerals. They also have high sodium, which can lead to electrolyte imbalance and even be fatal to dogs. These ingredients can irritate your dog’s stomach. Please avoid giving your dog canned beets. Instead, serve them unseasoned and organic beets for the best benefits.
No, beet stems are not toxic for dogs. But you should ensure to cook them and feed them in moderation. However, if your dog is allergic to beets (which is rare but possible), you should not feed them beet stems. Also, you can confirm with your veterinarian before feeding them the beet stems/beet greens.