Fall is fast-approaching and with it comes all things pumpkin! But did you know that pumpkin is a superfood for dogs? Canned pumpkin is a convenient, tasty and nutritious addition to your dogs diet. Whether served frozen, baked, or straight from the can, the benefits from this veggie are outstanding. Your dog’s health and digestion can benefit significantly from the added nutrients and vitamins that canned pumpkin posses. It can aid to sooth digestion and constipation, hydrate your pup, as well as supply them with vitamins they may struggle to obtain. Additionally, unlike other digestive supplements, your dog may actually enjoy the taste of canned pumpkin and see it as a treat!
Top 5 Benefits of Canned Pumpkin for Dogs:
1. Supports Digestion
Loaded with fiber, pureed pumpkin can help solve several different digestive issues that may be plaguing your dog. Your dog may feel better if you give him a tablespoon of pumpkin if he has diarrhea or constipation. By absorbing water, the soluble fiber in pumpkin gives your dog's feces additional volume. On the other hand, using pumpkin may help dogs with constipation. Adding one to four tablespoons of pumpkin to the food of a dog who experiences mild constipation may be helpful.
2. Great for Hydration
Given that canned pumpkin is around 90% water, it is an excellent source of hydration for dogs. Including a small amount of pumpkin in their diet will help them stay hydrated overall.
3. Aids in Weight Loss
If your dog is a little bit too much on the heavier side, pumpkin can help them to lose a few pounds. With it's high water-content, pumpkin can help your dog feel fuller for longer so they don't miss those extra treats (as much!).
4. Promotes Healthy Skin and Coat
Pumpkin is an excellent choice for promoting better skin and fur. This works due to the canned pumpkins high water content; it increases your dog's water consumption while providing important nutrients like zinc, vitamin A, and high amounts of moisture. It can also aid in reducing hair shedding and skin flaking.
5. High in Essential Vitamins and Minerals
The nutritional facts for one cup of cooked pumpkin show that it has few calories but is high in various vital vitamins and minerals. Pumpkin has lots of potassium, supporting healthy neural function and metabolism. The substance that gives pumpkin its vibrant orange color, beta carotene, is an abundant source of vitamin A - a crucial vitamin that promotes healthy nerve and muscular function in dogs. It is also important for healthy eyes. Pumpkin is also rich in vitamins C and E. Vitamin C serves as an antioxidant, this will boost your dog’s immune system. Another antioxidant that is crucial for your dog's health is vitamin E. Your dog may experience eye, muscular, and reproductive issues if the amount of vitamin E in their food is too low. Adding a bit of pumpkin puree to your dogs meals will benefit their overall well-being.
How to Incorporate Pumpkin into Your Dog's Diet
Add it directly to their food
As a food topper or simply mixing it in, plain canned pumpkin can be added directly to your dog's daily meals.
Mix the canned pumpkin with plain yogurt (or water) in a 1 to 1 ratio and place in the freezer. After a few hours, remove from the freezer and serve to your dog.
Homemade Dog Biscuits
Mixed canned pumpkin with flour and xylitol-free peanut butter until a dough consistency is formed and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes.
It is important to note that canned pumpkin and pumpkin pie mix/filling are two completely different things and pumpkin pie mix SHOULD NOT be given to your dog. Avoid sweeteners, added preservatives, and lemon juice when making a tasty snacks for your furry friend.