Can dogs eat blueberries, and more importantly, should they? Yes, and yes!
Blueberries have been a favorite ingredient of Yitto Paws from the start! In fact, one of the original dog food recipes on our founder’s food blog was Katie’s Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats with Blueberries.
What makes blueberries so healthy for dogs? This guide will tell you all you need to know about the benefits of blueberries! Be sure to read to the end for a few simple recipes.
What are the benefits of feeding dogs blueberries?
Blueberries are a little fruit with a lot of impact! Blueberries are rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Plus, they are one of the best plant-based sources of antioxidants.
Blueberries get their deep purple color from anthocyanins, a type of flavonoid. Flavonoids are phytonutrients that help protect cells and fight off free radical damage.
In addition to the antioxidants, blueberries also have significant vitamin content, including vitamin K, vitamin C, and manganese.
Why are these vitamins important?
- Blueberries are a good natural source of vitamin K, a necessary player in the blog clotting process. Vitamin K helps with the synthesis of proteins used for blood coagulation, bone metabolism, and blood calcium regulation.
- Vitamin C is well known as an immune system booster! According to the NIH, vitamin C can help in the activation of B vitamins and folic acid, as well as reduce infections and allergic reactions. Dog owners should seek out vitamins that protect against free radical damage to support their dog’s cell and tissue growth and reduce oxidative stress.
- Manganese is a trace mineral that helps your dog’s body properly use, or metabolize, proteins and carbohydrates. This support of healthy metabolism leads to healthy growth and development and therefore strong bones! Additionally, manganese helps dogs’ bodies produce energy, make fatty acids, and utilize other vitamins.
In our post, What to Give a Dog For Upset Stomach Remedy: The Most Effective Ingredients Plus Top 5 Questions Answered, we pointed out that foods that are high in fiber help aid digestion.
Another one of our posts, helps answer the question “Can dogs eat blueberries for longevity?” In the post about the best dog food for senior dogs, blueberries are listed as one of top 3 ingredients due to their power to support brain health! A diet rich in antioxidants can significantly improve and maintain cognitive function, while reducing oxidative damage.
Can dogs eat blueberries of all kinds?
It is always important to buy organic, but especially when it comes to berries. Strawberries were #1 on this year’s Dirty Dozen list by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), which ranks foods based on which are contaminated with the most pesticides.
Although blueberries were not included on the 2021 list, Harvard University used similar methodology as EWG, and identified blueberries as having a high pesticide residue score.
Can dogs eat blueberries frozen? Yes! Because organic berries are often more expensive than conventionally grown berries, buying frozen organic blueberries is a healthy and cost-effective option!
How can dogs eat blueberries?
It is safe to feed dogs blueberries on their own! Blueberries are small and soft enough to be fed to dogs as a nutritious, low-calorie treat, but keep a close eye to ensure they are not a choking hazard.
Dogs can also eat homemade blueberry treats! Try these recipes: Blueberry Banana Frozen Dog Treats and Homemade Peanut Butter Dog Treats with Blueberries (aka PB&J Dog Treats)
Also, check back on our blog for a banana berry smoothie recipe!
Short on time to make your own but still want to treat your pet? Try Yitto Paws Granola Bites with Blueberries and Peanut Butter