More and more, natural food is being adapted to the canine diet. In fact, research proves that a natural diet prolongs the lives of our furry friends. For example, broccoli is a well-known vegetable that contains many nutrients that are good for human health, but what about your dog’s health? Is broccoli a recommended vegetable? Can dogs eat broccoli?
Next, we will answer that and talk about the nutrients and minerals found in broccoli. And in case it is safe for them, how to serve it properly.
Can dogs eat broccoli?
Many people adhere to a healthier diet for their dogs, leaving the industrialized foods a little aside. Still, you must have a conversation with the vet before changing your dog’s diet.
Others are just opting for healthier snacks, and broccoli could be one of these snacks because, yes, dogs can eat broccoli.
Of course, like most foods, it must be adapted little by little and in small amounts in your dog’s diet; if given in excess, it can cause problems.
But in general, yes, dogs can eat broccoli and still enjoy most of the benefits that this vegetable will bring to their health, in its cooked or pre-cooked form; the dog will surely love it.
We can highlight in broccoli that its florets contain isothiocyanates. It has been discovered that this substance can cause gastric irritation that can be mild to potentially severe, depending on the dog.
Now that we know that dogs can eat broccoli let’s talk a little about the benefits of broccoli to your dog’s health.
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Discover the benefits of broccoli for dogs
For Dr. Ana Paula, the main advantage of using fruits and vegetables as a snack is that they are natural foods. So, in general, they are low in calories. In addition, broccoli is rich in essential nutrients for your dog’s body. Know that, while consuming broccoli, your furry friend gets:
- Vitamin A contributes to good vision and regulates skin functions and hormone synthesis.;
- Vitamin E has a strong antioxidant function, fighting free radicals and delaying the premature aging of cells.;
- Vitamin K participates in blood clotting and protein metabolism;
- Potassium is vital for the conduction of nerve impulses, as well as for several enzymatic reactions that occur in the body;
- Calcium participates in essential functions, such as maintenance of bones structure, blood clotting, nerve impulse conduction, and muscle contraction;
- Magnesium is involved in more than 300 metabolic processes in the dog’s body, including those related to protein synthesis, heart function, and lymphocyte proliferation.
As well as the lack of nutrients, their excess can be harmful in some cases, depending on each animal’s health status and sensitivity. Therefore, before any changes in your four-legged friend’s diet, consult a veterinarian.
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Method of preparation of broccoli for your dog
In addition to the amount of broccoli, the way we prepare it for dogs is also important to reduce the risks related to its consumption. In general, foods that must be cooked before being eaten by humans must also be cooked before serving them to dogs.
Therefore, dogs can eat cooked broccoli without problems. However, in the specific case of this vegetable, the furry ones can also consume it raw. Here are some tips on how to prepare food for your fur baby:
- Always wash all fruits and vegetables very well;
- To cook broccoli, use only water or steam;
- Avoid overcooking it. In addition to wasting vitamins, overcooking makes the texture of broccoli less appealing to dogs;
- A drizzle of olive oil can be used to enhance the flavor of broccoli. It should only be added at the end of the preparation;
- Discard leftover food to avoid contamination.
When can broccoli be bad for your dog?
Let’s be very clear: vegetables do not replace a complete diet, and they only serve as a complement between one meal and another, always in moderation.
As mentioned above, in broccoli florets, we find a substance called isothiocyanates that can be very harmful, causing gastric irritation in some dogs.
This irritation can be potentially severe for some dogs and need to be checked by the vet, but it can be mild in other dogs and may not even occur.
In addition to this gastric irritation, excess broccoli can cause gas and swelling in your dog, causing discomfort, so be aware of the recommended daily amounts.
It is recommended to be careful with the amount of broccoli ingested daily by dogs, preferably not exceeding 10% of their daily diet.
Read also: Can dogs eat carrots?
When broccoli is ingested in large quantities or more significant than this average of 10% a day, the dog will probably experience irritation; pay attention to any symptoms, and visit your veterinarian if that happens.
In general, broccoli in small amounts is not an issue. On the contrary, if consumed in moderation, it will benefit your dog’s health.
Whenever you suspect something different, look for your veterinarian as soon as possible so that they can evaluate the condition and help you take the necessary precautions.