Oh My Gourd! Why Pumpkin Packs A Healthy Punch For Pups

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Autumn is upon us, and with it comes football, falling leaves and of course – pumpkin everything. As we sip away at our pumpkin lattes, indulge in pumpkin beer and light pumpkin scented candles, we can also consider the benefits pumpkin has for dogs. Pumpkin is a tasty treat that has many health benefits – specifically, pureed pumpkin from a can or directly from the pumpkin itself. (Pumpkin pie filling is not good for dogs because it contains sugar and additives.) Here are the reasons why pumpkin is perfect for your pooch.

Health Benefits

Pumpkin has many uses for dogs, the main one being to aid in digestion. If a dog’s stool just isn’t right, a bit of pumpkin will help. Whether your dog (or cat) is constipated, or has diarrhea, the fiber in the pumpkin will fix the issue. It also helps settle their stomach if it’s upset, and can help prevent them from having stinky toots. Of course, if your dog isn’t feeling well you need to contact your veterinarian, but pumpkin is here to help. The dosage appropriate depends on the size of the dog. For the tiny dogs, use a teaspoon. For the larger ones, a couple of tablespoons will do the trick.

Related: Halloween Pumpkin Oatmeal Spice Dog Treat Recipe

Canned pumpkin can also help fix urinary problems and promote weight loss. The oils in the pumpkin will help straighten out urinary incontinence and keep your dog regular. If you’re trying to get your dog to lose a little weight, you can cut back on kibble and add pumpkin to keep their appetite satiated.

Store-Bought Pumpkin Treats

Pumpkin treats can be found at just about any pet store. Treats won’t have the same potency as feeding it directly from the can, but they still taste delicious. Fruitables, Cloud Star and Wellness food brands all make pumpkin treats that are healthy. Fruitables even has cans of pumpkin you can purchase at the pet store if you can’t make it to the grocery store.

Related: Grain-Free Pumpkin Dog Treats

DIY Pumpkin Treats

Bake up a batch of dog treats using pumpkin as the main ingredient. It’s an easy ingredient to substitute into an existing recipe or whip into a new creation you think will go over well with your pooch. Head over to our Recipe section to find easy to make pumpkin treats your dog will love!

Pumpkins and Cranberries

Cranberries are another fall favorite, and they are also beneficial for dogs. Cranberries are loaded with vitamins A, B and C, minerals and healthy antioxidants. Along with pumpkin, cranberries can aid in urinary health for your dog.

I love sharing the change in seasons with my dog. When it’s summer, we go swimming together. In the winter we wear matching jackets. While I gorge myself on everything pumpkin – I will do the same with my dog. I will be sharing canned pumpkin with her, and even the stuff left over from my pumpkins (after it’s pureed and refrigerated). In fact, I will probably even carve her face into a pumpkin for Halloween!

Rachel LeavyRachel Leavy lives in Rochester, New York with her dog, Maria, and her gecko, Nigel. She has loved animals all her life, and has owned her own dog training and walking company for five years. When she’s not playing with puppies, she can usually be found writing short stories, riding horses or out at a play.