While you may be enjoying a fruit or vegetable snack, you may notice those two eyes from your dog staring at you. When your dog starts to beg for a treat from the table, there is a reaction of wanting to give your dog some but is it safe? Can dogs eat asparagus? Find out the answer to this question here!
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus?
The answer to this question is both yes and no. As you may already know, asparagus is very tough. As you cook it, the top half gets very tender. The bottom can get slightly softer but still very tough to chew on.
Dogs can enjoy the top half of the asparagus when it is cooked. Cut the woody stocks off the bottom of the asparagus first, and then you can cook it any way you want until it becomes soft. You can do this in an oven, steamer, or even instant pot.
Can Dogs Eat Raw Asparagus?
When the asparagus is raw, it contains all of the essential minerals and nutrients inside it. When you cook it, it does lose some of those nutrients inside it.
Raw asparagus is very tough even for humans to eat. If you want to give your dog raw asparagus, that is up to you, but it is strongly not recommended. Since the ends are so fibrous and tough, it can pose a threat as a choking hazard for your dog.
If you truly want to give your dog raw asparagus, cut it up in very small pieces; that way, your dog will not choke when eating it.
Can Dogs Eat Home Grown Asparagus?
Asparagus at the grocery store is actually slightly different from homegrown asparagus. Grocery store asparagus has been cut and delivered to the grocery store at the perfect time.
The groceries that are grown in your own backyard can be very tricky. Asparagus can be grown very quickly, and if it is not picked at the right time, it will start to flower and grow the small red berries it produces.
These little red berries are actually toxic to dogs and even humans. So once the asparagus has started to flower, it isn’t necessarily edible. I would avoid it if I were you. If you pick the asparagus while it is small, you shouldn’t have this issue.
Can Dogs Eat White Asparagus?
White asparagus is no different from the traditional green asparagus that we traditionally eat. The only difference is in how the asparagus was grown.
So, it is completely safe, just like the traditional green asparagus to eat. When it gets cooked, the color white will actually fade a lot.
How Healthy is Asparagus?
Dogs do not have to be left to eat just dog food; there are various foods out there that dogs can safely enjoy. Regular food can give your dog a lot of health benefits, and asparagus is one of those foods.
Asparagus has a lot of fiber inside of it. There are actually two types of fiber inside the asparagus, one being soluble and the other insoluble. The insoluble fiber helps to firm everything up and produce regular bowel movements. The soluble fiber is a good source of good bacteria that helps support the colon. This makes good probiotics inside your colon, which helps your entire body’s immune system. Not only does it help your body but also your dogs.
Asparagus contains a variety of vitamins such as vitamin A, C, E, K, and B9. These vitamins play an important role inside your dog’s body. The only vitamin that isn’t a big deal is vitamin C, as your dog produces this on its own without help.
- Vitamin A is important for your dog’s vision, reproduction, and overall immune health.
- Vitamin K is helpful for your dog’s bone metabolism. This will also help aid in blood clotting.
- Vitamin E helps free radicals, which is cancer-fighting as well as it will make your dog’s coat healthier.
- Vitamin B9 is essentially folate and folic acid. This helps to grow cells, DNA synthesis, and amino acids.
Minerals go hand in hand with vitamins to give your dog an excellent source of nutrition. Asparagus will give your dog potassium, calcium, iron, copper, and phosphorus.
- Potassium is most commonly found in bananas, but you can get it from asparagus too. This helps improve your dog’s brain and muscle function.
- Calcium is important to build strong bones as well; it helps aid in blood clotting.
- Iron helps the entire body by delivering oxygen all over the body and your dog’s body.
- Copper helps produce more red blood cells as well as it can help to produce and form collage and connective tissues.
- Phosphorus is much like calcium, that it helps aid in the bone development and teeth.
Lastly, your dog will get some antioxidants from eating asparagus. The two main antioxidants your dog will get as well as you are polyphenols and flavonoids.
- Polyphenols are a rich antioxidant that is found primarily in plants, and asparagus is a plant because it grows from the ground.
- Flavonoids are a type of polyphenols. This will help fight free radicals inside your dog’s body.
How Much Asparagus Can I Give my Dog?
Even though asparagus is safe to give your dog when cooked and the stems are cut off, you should still only give your dog small amounts. Most veterinarians say that leafy, green vegetables should only make up 10% of your dog’s daily food intake.
10% is not a lot when you think about it so let’s see just how much asparagus your dog can even enjoy. The answer will vary on just how big your dog is.
Small Dog Breeds – Only need 1-2 teaspoons a day of leafy vegetables
Medium Dog Breeds – Only need 3 teaspoons a day of leafy vegetables
Large Dog Breeds – Only need 1-2 tablespoons a day of leafy vegetables
So, as you can see, dogs do not need very much at all, so don’t go through the trouble of making an entire bunch of asparagus when your dog can only have a few pieces. Unless, of course, you plan on eating most of it.
How Should You Feed Your Dog Asparagus?
There are a few ways you can give your dog asparagus. The first way is just to give your dog a small cut-up piece to see what they think. Does your dog like it?
Another way you can introduce asparagus is to add a few small pieces on top of your dog’s food or meal. If you have a dehydrator, you can also make asparagus into homemade healthy dog treats.
You will find a way to introduce your dog to this delicious vegetable; if not, you can use some of the examples up above.
As you can see, asparagus is a very healthy vegetable that dogs can have in small amounts. Make sure you cook the asparagus thoroughly and cut off any rough ends. If you allow your dog to eat it raw, still cut off the hard ends and make sure you cut the asparagus even smaller, so your dog doesn’t choke.
Now you know if dogs can eat asparagus and all the health benefits your dog will gain just by eating a small amount. Next time you enjoy asparagus with your dinner, you can add some pieces to your dog’s food