Can Dogs Eat Sweet Potato?
It’s no secret that dogs have voracious appetites and, quite frankly, low standards when it comes to food. Our four-legged companions wouldn’t have a problem eating a few months old Dorito they found under the couch cushion or nibbling on an old sock, so it’s no wonder that they’re always up for sharing whatever is on their human’s plate. And, since canines are omnivores, quite often, they get to mooch off their owners for a bite or two of their food that they can safely eat.
But, just because some human foods are OK for dogs to eat, that doesn’t mean that they can eat whatever and whenever they please (no matter how much they’d want to). A lot of our food, including the healthy stuff like veggies and fruit, can be harmful to dogs, with side effects ranging from gastrointestinal discomfort to death in the more extreme cases. Provided that you choose the right ones, though, fruits and veggies can be an excellent addition to your dog’s usual diet. Regardless of whether you’re doing a raw diet, home-cooked meals or rely on commercial pet food to satisfy your pooch’s needs, giving out occasional treats in form of plant-based human foods is a great idea.
Fruits and vegetables are rich in dietary fiber and micronutrients that can support your pet’s immune system and promote good health, and they’re a great alternative for chubby pooches- they have a very low energy value and taste scrumptious, so you get to reward your doggo and cut down on calories, too.
So. which veggies should you choose? Can dogs eat sweet potato, for instance, and live to wag the tail? Thankfully, dogs can eat these yummy spuds without having any side effects, and they’re one of the rare holiday foods that our furry companions can munch on- as long as they’re prepared correctly.
To find out more about the benefits of sweet potato for dogs, find out in which cases this starchy veggie is dangerous for canines, and get some ideas on how to prepare it best, read on.
Can Dogs Eat Sweet Potato? Are There Any Benefits?
If you need a short and simple answer to the question can dogs eat sweet potatoes, the answer is yes. The starchy spud is not only perfectly safe for canines to consume, but this holiday favorite actually offers a myriad of benefits that will have you preparing it for your pooch all year long- and not just for special occasions. Of course, not unlike all foods you might want to introduce to your pet’s meal plan, you should give your pooch a moderate amount, especially at first, to make sure that the fibrous veggie doesn’t cause any GI incidents, such as diarrhea or vomiting.
While there’s no doubt about can dogs eat sweet potato safely, it should go without saying that the starchy spud should first be cooked. Dogs shouldn’t be given raw sweet potatoes, as it can upset their stomach and cause unwanted reactions. When boiled, steamed, dried, or baked, though, sweet potatoes become a great snack for hungry doggos. The veggie should be prepared plain, though, without seasoning you’d use if you were preparing it for your two-legged family members.
As for the benefits of the sweet potato in canine diet, it’s enough to notice that a lot of commercial pet food manufacturers are turning to the sweet potato as the source of carbs in their dry food formulas. There are no substantial studies done about the potential positive effect of the spud on the health of canines, but vets and animal nutritionists claim that feeding sweet potato to dogs can have its merits.
First of all, sweet potatoes are rich in dietary fiber, which makes them excellent for the digestive health of your pet. Second, these sweet and starchy veggies are a bountiful source of essential vitamins and minerals your dog needs to have optimal health. These include vitamin B6, vitamin C, manganese, as well as the powerful antioxidant beta-carotene. All of the micronutrients sweet potatoes contain will boost your pooch’s immune system, so it shouldn’t be any dilemma when it comes to can dogs eat sweet potato- rather, you should ask yourself how best to serve it to your four-legged friend!
How to Give Sweet Potatoes to Your Dog
Although we’ve already determined that sweet potatoes could be an excellent healthy snack for your furry baby, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t pay attention to the method of preparation. For instance, while sweet potato skins are not toxic to our canine companions, feeding them raw spuds could cause diarrhea, vomiting, and other digestive tract issues. The best way to give your dog some starchy spuds as a yummy treat is to boil or steam them, as this is the way they’ll retain most of their nutrients, and the plain cooking method is suitable for your pupper’s palate. You might find this bland- this means it’s just as it’s supposed to be if you want to feed it to your pooch!
However, sweet potato nom-noms don’t have to be boring to be healthy. If you’re looking to make some spectacular dog treats that use sweet potato as one of the main ingredients, check out some of our tried-and-true recipes!
Dehydrated Sweet Potato Dog Treat Recipe
To start it off, a recipe that yields delicious snacks yet it’s simple as they get! Of course, to make these dried sweet potato chips for your pooch, you’ll need a dehydrator, but not only that these gadgets are affordable, they’ll definitely worth it- for the plethora of dog treats alone! For chewy treats, dehydrate sweet potatoes for 6 to 8 hours, and for a treat with a crunch to it, let the spuds dry for 10 to 12 hours. Pro tip: if you want to ensure your pooch thinks these are paw-licking pawesome, sprinkle dog-safe meat-flavored seasoning before putting them in the dehydrator.
Sweet Potato Dog Biscuit Recipe
Who could say no to a biscuit? Certainly not your greedy little furball! Instead of opting for store-bought treats that are often laden with preservatives and artificial ingredients, or not that budget-friendly, make our own dog treats for the fraction of the cost- plus, the ingredients are definitely healthier! To whip up a batch of these bad boys for your good boy, you’ll need a medium-sized sweet potato, whole wheat flour, unsweetened applesauce, eggs, and a shredded carrot.
No gluten? No problem! If you have a four-legged companion that has a sensitive digestive tract and doesn’t do well with grains, you’ll love these delectable and healthy treats. Not only that there’s no pesky gluten to wreak havoc on your pupper’s gastrointestinal tract, these cookies have a reinforcement in the form of sweet potatoes that are known to improve digestion. And as if that wasn’t enough, you won’t have to go through the hassle of cooking sweet potatoes for this recipe- it calls for sweet potato baby food instead! In addition to the starchy spud, to make these, you’ll need rice flour, quinoa flour, peas, dried parsley, and broth.
Crispy Chicken Dog Treat Recipe
Admit it: hearing the words crispy and chicken has your stomach growling, let alone your gluttonous pet’s. These delicious nom-noms are not just super tasty to canines, they contain healthy ingredients that will complement a well-balanced diet perfectly. To make these, you’ll use ground chicken, cooked and mashed sweet potato, egg, garlic clove or powder (optional), rolled oats, and olive oil. Your pooch will get excited at the first sniff- not to mention that first bite.
Homemade Beef Liver Dog Stew Recipe
If you are cooking meals for your dog, or simply like to switch it up once in a while with a bowl of homecooked food instead of kibble, you know how hard it is to find good dog food recipes. This canine-friendly stew will become an instant classic in your kitchen, and a quick favorite for your furry bestie. The ingredients include beef liver, olive oil, sweet potato, carrot, and mashed chickpeas. Bon pawpetite!
A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.
More by Angela Vuckovic