can dogs eat blueberries
can dogs eat blueberries

Dog owners commonly ponder about the toxicity of foods. There was an increase in questions about the safety of different foods after learning that certain ones were toxic which led to a lot of press coverage. The most important toxic foods to know are Grapes and Raisins, Peanut Butter, and Chocolate. Exposure to the dangers of these foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about the effects other human foods have on dogs, such as blueberries. Learn more about what dogs can and can’t eat in the article: The Ultimate Guide to What Dogs Can’t Eat.

Can Dogs Eat Blueberries?   

A blueberry is a round shaped sweet soft blue to purple fruit native to North America. Blueberries are grown from a blueberry bush or shrub. The blueberry bush is a low bush in the wild that gets taller when cultivated. They are classified within the genus Vaccinium which also includes cranberries and huckleberries. The berry is generated from a bell-shaped pale flower and when the fruit grows in, it starts as green and then changes color to a dark blue-purple color when ripe. Blueberries are most commonly in season between May and August.

Blueberries are commonly eaten by themselves or prepared in foods such as pies, ice cream, milkshakes, preserves, candy, wine, or enjoyed covered in chocolate. The flavors and aromas are common in candy, perfume, cosmetics, and many more products.

The answer to the question, “Can dogs eat blueberries?” is, “Yes.”

Dogs can eat blueberries but in moderation. Dogs often love the soft moist texture and many enjoy this as a healthy snack. Blueberries are a good source of antioxidants, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese. They are approximately 84% water, 14% carbohydrate with minuscule amounts of protein and fat.

The Dangers of Blueberries to Dogs 

Ingestion of large amounts of blueberries can cause gastrointestinal upset or diarrhea. Ingestion of blueberry stems and plants can cause gastrointestinal obstruction. The leaves and plants, while not toxic, are very difficult to digest. Signs of problems include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, abdominal pain, straining to defecate, and/or a decreased appetite.

Please be careful if your dog eats anything blueberry flavored that contains the sweetener xylitol. This can be an ingredient in diet or low-calorie pastries, especially those created for people with diabetes.  Learn more about Xylitol Toxicity in Dogs.

Do Dogs Need Blueberries?

There is nothing in blueberries that dogs require on a regular basis. What dogs do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved dog food. Learn more about Nutrition in Dogs.

The Safest Way to Give Blueberries to Dogs

The safest way to give blueberries to your dog is to give a few clean fresh blueberries. Dogs should never be fed the blueberry stem or leaves.

How Many Blueberries Can You Give a Dog?

One or two medium-sized blueberries is plenty for a small dog, three to four for a medium-sized dog, and five to six blueberries for a large dog.

Can Dogs Be Allergic to Blueberries?

While it is possible for a dog to be allergic to anything, dog allergies to blueberries are rare.

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