Bananas are one of the healthiest foods out there for humans - they're packed with all manner of important nutrients to keep people healthy and full of energy. But how about dogs? Can (and should) our four-legged friends eat them?
CAN DOGS EAT BANANAS?
Dogs can absolutely eat bananas - in fact, they're often recommended by veterinarians and other professionals as an ideal snack for your pup. They're not all upside, though - one of the reasons they're so delicious is because they have relatively high sugar content, and that's not good for dogs.
ARE BANANAS GOOD FOR DOGS?
Bananas have lots of vitamins, particularly B6 and C, and they're also extremely high in potassium and magnesium. Potassium boosts muscle growth, increases metabolism and can even improve the cognitive function of your dog. It also promotes healthy bones and teeth (alongside calcium and phosphorous) and helps to keep organs like the kidneys, live and heart functioning well. Magnesium promotes healthy bone growth and also helps dogs absorb vitamins and produce protein.
The other big benefit to bananas for dogs is fiber - they have lots of it, and it's good for your dog's digestion.
POTENTIAL NEGATIVE EFFECTS OF GIVING BANANAS TO DOGS
The biggest potential issue with bananas is sugar - they have a substantial amount of it, and it's not great for dogs. That said, this shouldn't stop you from giving them to your pup; just make sure you do so in moderation. Too much sugar can lead to weight gain, and it's important to make sure your dog maintains a healthy weight.
CAN DOGS EAT BANANA PEELS?
While eating banana peels likely won't do any serious harm to your pup, it's still not a great idea to feed them to dogs. They're not toxic, but they contain a high amount of fiber that can make them tough to digest. If you've got a dog that tends to wolf down food, the peel can also get stuck in their throat, or if they're able to get it down whole, they may vomit it back out later. If your dog accidentally steals a peel, just make sure he doesn't choke on it.
WHAT'S THE BEST WAY TO FEED BANANAS TO DOGS?
As long as you don't overdo it, your dog can eat bananas in any form you like. A few pieces here and there as treats are great, especially if you smear a little peanut butter on there for some extra protein (and flavor). If you want to make that banana last a little longer, mash it up and shove it into a Kong or other stuffable toy and freeze it. If you want, you can even puree some banana and add it to your Pupsicle Mix. You can also freeze a banana whole and then cut it into nice crunch frozen banana ice cubes.
SO CAN DOGS EAT BANANAS?
They most certainly can. Just make sure your dogs eat bananas in moderation, so they don't have any negative effects from the relatively high sugar content.