With the dog days of summer in full swing, we’re spotlighting one of our favorite dog-friendly fruits: blueberries! They're delicious and rich in antioxidants.
Are blueberries good for dogs?
Yes! For many of the same reasons that they are great for people: they are rich in antioxidants, fiber, and work as a fantastic supplementary snack.
Blueberries are Rich in Antioxidants!
Sharing blueberries with your furbaby is a plus because of antioxidants. So, what is so special about antioxidants?
Antioxidants are substances that inhibit oxidation in your dog’s body.
Oxidation is a natural process that occurs in the body, but during this process cells can get damaged and then turn into free radicals. Excessive amounts of these free radicals can cause damage to the body. Antioxidants act to prevent this damage by attacking the destructive free radicals and safely disposing of them--protecting your dog! This removal is essential as the unchecked activity of free radicals has been linked to diseases like cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer's disease.
Antioxidants can help to provide immune system support by improving immune cell function and tend to have anti-inflammatory properties. For cell function, antioxidants delay the aging process of molecules in cells (a big win for young and more senior dogs alike!). For anti-inflammation, antioxidants tend to help reduce painful swelling. So consuming enough antioxidants from blueberries, for example, could help to relieve painful conditions like arthritis, and hip and joint pain.
There are antioxidants that are best suited for pups and others that work even better in the more senior dogs. For puppies, antioxidants like beta carotene, selenium, Vitamin C and Vitamin E are great because they help to support their growth and development as their bodies learn to fight germs and toxins. For more senior dogs, a supply of polyphenols can help to slow down or prevent the development of diseases like cancer and diabetes.
Other Benefits of blueberries for dogs
Great Low-Calorie Treat
If calories are consumed in excess, then your dog can develop health problems like diabetes or heart disease. Having low-calorie treats like blueberries is a healthy alternative that tastes delicious and keeps your dog in tip top shape.
Good Fiber Content
Fiber is an important nutrient that helps to maintain the flow of your dog's digestive tract. As such, it reduces symptoms of diarrhea and constipation, but it also reduces the risk of illnesses like colon cancer in dogs. It’s great to give your furry family members a diet that has a decent amount of fiber.When are Blueberries Not Good for Dogs?
If you are giving your dogs fresh blueberries, you should note that although healthy, they can cause choking in some dogs due to the small size of the fruit. There is also the danger of overeating the blueberries, and consuming too many calories or ending up with an upset stomach! Make sure to wash them first too. :)
How to Feed Blueberries
If you plan to feed your dog some fresh blueberries, it’s always great to start small or discuss with a veterinarian first. Veterinarians can help decide on an amount of berries that would be safe for your dog, taking factors like your dog’s size and age into consideration!
Aside from eating blueberries whole, you can also give your dog some healthy, sustainable treats like the Chippin Antioxidant Treats for dogs, which are made from blueberries and other anti-inflammatory ingredients like turmeric. This way, you get a nice balance of macronutrients (protein, fiber and fat) along with a kick of antioxidants.
Give Your Dog Some Natural Antioxidant Dog Treats!
Keep your dogs healthy and happy with a sufficient amount of antioxidants in their diet. Blueberries are a smart way to go about it, so think about seeing a vet about a good amount that you can feed your dog per day, or consider trying a blueberry-containing, antioxidant-rich treat today!