Can Dogs Eat Carrots?
Carrots are a versatile vegetable. They can stand alone as a snack, pair with a roast and potatoes or add flavor to stock or soup.
The vitamins and minerals this vegetable contains make them great for humans, but can dogs eat carrots? Purina experts say yes, dogs can eat carrots. Not only can they eat them, but most dogs also enjoy them. Below our experts explain why carrots are good for dogs, how to serve them and more.
Can Dogs Have Carrots?
Like many other fruits and vegetables, dogs can have carrots. In fact, every part of this vegetable, from the carrot itself to the leafy green tops are safe for dogs to eat. They’re a good, natural treat, and most dogs like the flavor, too.
Are Carrots Good for Dogs?
Carrots contain essential vitamins and minerals like beta carotene (which the body converts to vitamin A), vitamin K, potassium and more. Although these nutrients are good for humans, can dogs reap the same benefits?
Because you aren’t relying on carrots alone to give your dog the nutrients he needs, he’s unlikely to see major benefits from small amounts of this vegetable. That said, it’s still a healthy and tasty treat for your pooch.
When Are Carrots Bad for Dogs?
In moderation, carrots are a healthy, low-calorie treat. Like other fruits and vegetables, though, they’re high in natural sugar. This is why dogs (and humans) find them so tasty. Too much sugar, even the natural kind, can cause weight gain, which can lead to other health problems.
“The same rules apply to serving carrots as they do with any other treat,” says Purina Senior Nutritionist Jan Dempsey. Meaning carrots should make up no more than 10% of your dog’s daily calories.
Although dogs aren’t usually at risk for cavities, too many high-sugar treats could lead to dental decay. Unlike more abrasive dog food and treats, which clean the teeth, carrots won’t clean your dog’s teeth as he eats.
How to Serve Carrots for Dogs
Before giving your dog a new food, check with your veterinarian to get the ideal serving size. You can slice them into rounds or cut them into sticks or smaller or larger pieces, depending on your dog’s size.
Your dog may enjoy the crunch and flavor of raw carrots, but if he doesn’t like them raw, try giving him cooked carrots. If you’re worried about altering the carrots’ nutritional value by cooking them, don’t.
“Steaming or cooking minimally in the microwave shouldn’t cause a major change in vitamins and minerals in carrots,” says Dempsey. “But don’t boil the vegetable, since boiling tends to leach out nutrients. Just know however you fix them, carrots are not bad for dogs.”
Always follow your veterinarian’s advice, even with people foods safe for dogs. Doing so helps to protect your pup from digestive upset, weight gain and other health problems. If your dog loves carrots, consider giving him Beyond Grain Free Chicken, Carrot & Pea Wet Dog Food or treating him to Beneful Break-N-Bites Dog Treats with Real Chicken, Carrots & Sweet Potatoes. Explore similar questions to “Can dogs eat carrots?” to find other people foods your dog can (and can’t) eat.