With so many dog rewards on the market, it’s no surprise that many dog owners are looking for snacks for their dogs that are healthy, nutritious, and, of course, cheap. Carrots are cheap and are a healthy snack for your dog.
That’s why most people opt for fruits and vegetables in their dog’s diet. Fortunately, the carrot, one of the cheapest, low-calorie vegetables is a safe snack, approved by your veterinarian.
A nutritious snack for both humans and dogs, carrots are an excellent reward for training and rewarding good behavior because they don’t have a higher number of calories than that found in many dog snacks sold.
Carrots contain no fat, which means they are a good choice for both adult and overweight dogs. However, they are quite rich in sugar, so you don’t have to make your dog a vegetarian.
Like any snack or food supplement, carrots should be given in moderation and with the approval of your veterinarian.
Because carrots are a good source of antioxidants like alpha-carotene and beta-carotene, which are converted into vitamin A, potassium, fiber, and other vitamins in the body, they provide important health benefits for the dog.
Carrots are rich in vitamin A, which helps in vision and overall eye health; in fact, without enough vitamin A, eye infections or even vision loss can occur. Vitamin A also helps the immune system of animals and keeps their skin healthy.
Carrots are rich in both vitamin K, essential for blood clotting, and vitamin B6, which helps convert carbohydrates, fats, and proteins into energy.
Finally, the high level of fiber in carrots helps to a healthy digestive tract and regular digestion of puppies, while the amount of carrots present in the food will not have the totality of the vitamins needed. They are a common addition in many dog food formulas, due to their range of nutritional benefits.
Even better, red carrots can also help improve your dog’s dental health. Raw carrots help maintain dental health due to chewing time when eating them. These vegetables can also be a “toothpaste” to keep your quadruped friend’s smile clean and healthy.
Whether raw or cooked, there are plenty of ways to prepare carrots, and more than likely, dogs will go crazy for the sweet taste of carrots regardless of how they are served.
Adding mashed carrot or carrot juice to your dog’s food and snacks will provide a bit of sweetness and a ton of nutritional value. You can even cook carrots at home, making them a great dog snack.
Raw or cooked, carrots are considered a safe option for dogs. It is good to cut the carrots, even the bars, into small pieces, or you can give them baby carrots, because bigger ones can be dangerous, especially for smaller dogs, if not cut properly.
However, an adult dog of medium to large size should be able to eat a full carrot of normal size. To be cautious, watch them every time they eat stronger vegetables, such as carrots.
Carrots can be offered as a snack or as a reward for training, as well as an occasional addition to your dog’s normal diet, by giving a more nutritional value to their dry food.
Be sure to wash and peel the carrots when preparing them for dogs to remove the soil and pesticides that could harm the animal.
Some veterinarians may recommend that carrots are kept in the refrigerator or freezer and offered to dogs as a way to help relieve toothaches and discomfort. For adult or older dogs, frozen carrots can be a very good edible chew toy.
As with the introduction of any “human” food into your pet’s diet, you just need to get in touch with your veterinarian regarding their carrot feeding, and always make sure they are provided in moderation.
Carrots contain cells surrounded by cellulose, which dogs cannot metabolize easily, so pet owners might want to consider putting carrots in a blender to maximize their nutritional benefits. This is a reason why cooked carrots are ideal for dogs. Cooked carrots allow their cell walls to be broken down, which allows for better absorption of vitamins and nutrients for the dog.
When cooking and offering carrots, be sure not to add butter, salt, or any other additives that may be harmful and unhealthy for your pet, because these types of ingredients can irritate their stomach.