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Can Dogs Eat Cranberries?

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Cranberries are bright red berries known for being packed with antioxidants. On top of their myriad health benefits, cranberries also have a delightful flavor that is perfectly balanced between tart and sweet. You probably enjoy them in your Thanksgiving cranberry jelly or as a garnish in seasonal holiday drinks. But are cranberries safe for your dog to enjoy as well?

Many fruits are safe for dogs to eat, but it is still a good idea to do your research to know for sure whether something you’re about to feed your dog is safe. Keep reading to learn whether dogs can eat cranberries and, if so, how best to offer them.

Related: Can Dogs Eat Bread?

Cranberries, both dried and fresh, are a popular snack for humans because they are loaded with healthy nutrients. Before you offer them to your dog, however, it’s a good idea to determine whether they are safe. The short answer is yes, but also no.

Generally speaking, cranberries are not toxic for dogs and they are generally safe when fed in small amounts. As is true for many human foods, however, they should only be fed in moderation. Cranberries do contain sugar and the high fiber content could upset your dog’s stomach if he eats too many at once. You should be particularly mindful of dried cranberries. Dried cranberries are often sweetened and too much sugar is not good for your dog. Plus, they are sometimes sold in dried fruit mixes which often contain raisins, a food that IS toxic for dogs.

Related: Benefits of Bone Broth for Dogs

Cranberries are safe for your dog to enjoy in small amounts, but you should be careful about offering them. Make sure any fresh fruits or vegetables you offer your dog are properly cleaned to remove any traces of pesticide – you may even want to buy organic to be extra safe.

Here are some tips for feeding your dog cranberries:

  • Freeze a couple of cranberries to offer your dog as a refreshing summer treat.
  • Feed your dog a few fresh cranberries as small training treats.
  • Boost your dog’s fiber intake with a few fresh or dried cranberries mixed into his food.

Though cranberries are generally safe for dogs, they are not necessarily the best option when it comes to fresh fruit. Apples, for example, are a rich source of vitamins A and C as well as fiber. If you want to feed your dog berries, blueberries are a great choice because they are packed with antioxidants – strawberries are another option. For a sweet summer treat, try freezing slices of mango or peaches.

You are your dog’s caregiver, so it is your job to provide for his needs. On top of giving your dog all the love in the world, you also need to keep him safe and that means knowing what foods are and are not safe for dogs. Now you know that cranberries are safe in small amounts!


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