The banana is one of the most common fruits in any kitchen. Not only is it delicious, economical, and versatile, but it is also considered a satiating and nutritious source of energy. On top of that, it has its own wrapper, making it an ideal snack to take with you wherever you go. But are bananas as good for dogs as they are for their owners? | Can dogs eat bananas?
Read on below to learn the pros and cons of feeding bananas to your dog, the best ways to consume them, the recommended amount of bananas, warnings and easy recipes to make at home.
Is it safe for my dog to eat bananas?
Simply put, yes. Dogs can safely eat bananas, plantains, bananas, or cambur. Being a natural food rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, its consumption is not only considered safe, but beneficial. However, bananas are a fruit rich in sugar, so they should always be eaten in moderation.
It is important to administer it as an occasional treat, not as part of the regular diet. Remember that fruits and vegetables suitable for dogs should only be a supplement to reinforce nutrition and reward the pet.
Specifically, bananas are very sweet, tasty and rich in essential nutrients such as potassium, magnesium, several vitamins and a type of fiber called pectin.
6 Benefits of bananas for dogs
Let’s take a closer look at some of the main benefits and healthy properties that bananas offer in a canine diet…
Supports numerous processes in the body (potassium)
Thanks to their high potassium content, bananas support healthy kidney and heart function, promote better bone density and regulate fluid levels in the body, among other vital processes.
Supports the function of the gastrointestinal tract (fiber)
Bananas contain pectin, a type of dietary fiber that supports digestion and promotes regular bowel movements.
Contributes to better bone health (magnesium)
Another of the abundant nutrients in bananas is magnesium, an essential mineral for promoting and maintaining normal bone density, as well as for better use of vitamins and other minerals in the body.
Supports various brain and body functions (vitamin B6)
Vitamin B6 is a key nutrient that helps regulate fluid balance, generate proteins and regulate hormones.
It helps strengthen immunity (vitamin C).
Like many other fruits, bananas contain vitamin C, one of the most important antioxidants for strengthening your dog’s immune system.
Improves coat and skin health (biotin)
As if this were not enough, bananas provide biotin, a vitamin of the B group that promotes good skin health and the growth and beauty of the coat.
It should be noted that, despite these benefits, bananas are a source of carbohydrates. Its excessive or too frequent consumption in dogs is usually contraindicated.
How to give a banana to a dog?
Dogs can eat ripe bananas in several ways, either natural or frozen. In general, they are usually given small portions of the freshly chopped fruit, but some owners may notice that their pet prefers the previously frozen banana.
In the animal’s eyes, the change in texture and temperature make it a different treat.
Whatever the form of consumption, there are two key steps to consider:
- Control portion size. As a general rule, small portions are recommended as an occasional snack. The recommended amount varies according to the size of the particular dog.
- Remove the shell. Be sure to remove the banana peel before your dog eats it. Also, consider that to him, the peels smell just as appetizing as the fruit, so he may be tempted to eat them if you leave them in plain sight.
Note: Consult your veterinarian before introducing bananas into a dog’s regular diet. He or she can give you precise indications as to the amount and frequency of consumption according to size, weight, and specific dietary needs.
Fun ideas for your dog to eat bananas
- Fresh ripe banana slices. This is the quickest and easiest way to peel a banana. Simply peel the banana, cut several slices not too thin, and give them to him as a treat.
- Frozen bananas Cut a ripe banana into bite-sized pieces, put them in the freezer, and offer several to your dog once they are hard.
- Ripe bananas with other ingredients. Use the banana as a complement to serve more appetizing meals and treats. For example, banana slices spread with peanut butter, frozen banana pieces wrapped in plain yogurt, banana chips mixed with regular food, etc.
- Banana stuffed toy. This fruit can be a good stuffing if you have stuffable dog toys, such as the popular Kong. You can do it with bananas alone or mixed with other ingredients. A good recommendation is to fill the toy with mashed bananas and freeze it slightly to make it even more stimulating.
What is the most appropriate portion of a banana?
Since it is a fruit high in sugar, dogs should eat bananas in moderation. Generally speaking, it is said that a small breed dog should not eat more than 2 or 3 banana slices at a time, while medium and large dogs should not exceed 12 banana serving (normal size) in a day.
It should always be provided as a reward or treat, never as a meal replacement.
Remember? Puppies have specific diets that support their growth and development. Consult your veterinarian about the use of bananas as a treat and the most appropriate form of consumption.
How often should they eat it?
According to experts, a balanced canine diet should be governed by the 90/10 rule, i.e., 90% of calories should come from regular dog food and only 10% should come from treats.
This means that a dog should eat small portions of bananas occasionally, never regularly… let alone daily. Minimize consumption to just once a week.
Contraindications and side effects of bananas on dogs
As we have mentioned throughout the article, bananas are a fruit rich in carbohydrates and sugars (fructose, glucose, and sucrose), whose excessive consumption in dogs can lead to dietary imbalance, weight gain, and thus result in obesity. However, there are other contraindications and negative effects associated with inadequate banana intake.
Why would too much bananas be bad for my dog? Here are the main warnings to take into consideration…
Firstly, it should be noted that some dogs are not able to digest bananas very well, hence they may experience stomach upset and diarrhea. Also, the high dietary fiber content can cause constipation when the amount ingested is not limited.
Overweight, obesity and diabetes
The high sugar content of ripe bananas can be problematic for dogs that eat too much fruit. The amount of carbohydrates in the canine diet should be limited, so too much can end up causing considerable weight gain.
This is especially true if the dog does not get enough physical exercise to expend all that energy, or if the excessive banana consumption is sustained over time.
If the problem is not corrected, the pet could face an increased risk of developing obesity and diabetes.
As with any other food, it may be the case that your dog is allergic to bananas. As a result, the pet could experience swelling, hives, difficulty breathing, sneezing, coughing or other allergic symptoms.
If this is the first time you are going to give a banana to a dog, be sure to start with a very small portion and watch him closely to see how he reacts.
Quick answers to Frequently Asked Questions
Do all dogs like bananas?
No. Like humans, dogs can also have food preferences, so it is possible that a dog may not like to eat bananas. As a recommendation, it is worth introducing them to small pieces of ripe banana, alternating between fresh and frozen fruit to see which option they like best.
Can dogs eat green bananas?
Although green bananas are not considered toxic to dogs, and in fact, some recommend them as a home remedy for persistent diarrhea, be warned that they are not the best alternative. Green bananas are rich in resistant starches that are very difficult to digest and their ingestion can cause serious digestive problems in animals.
In the case of giving bananas to your dog, always opt for a fully ripe fruit.
Can dogs eat banana peels?
No. Dogs should not eat the banana peel, not because it is poisonous to the pet, but because its high fiber content is almost impossible to digest. Accidental ingestion of the peel can cause vomiting, constipation, and, in more severe cases, intestinal blockage.
In addition, pieces of banana peel represent a potential choking hazard.
As an owner, it is important that you always peel the banana before giving it to your dog. In addition, avoid leaving the peels in a place where the pet can easily access them.
Can dogs eat plantains?
Yes, plantains are safe for dogs, as long as they are given cooked and in small amounts. Like bananas, plantains are rich in vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber, so eating them can provide health benefits.
Can dogs eat fried bananas?
Although they may find it a very appetizing snack, it is not recommended that dogs eat fried bananas. This type of fatty food is not considered a healthy choice. Avoid giving fried bananas (green or ripe) to your pet, especially if he suffers from a liver condition.
Can dogs eat boiled/cooked bananas?
Yes, most dogs can eat a small portion of boiled or steamed banana without any problems. In fact, some people find that mashed cooked bananas promote recovery in dogs with an upset stomach. Always be sure not to add salt, seasoning or sugar.
Can my dog eat bananas and oatmeal?
Yes. Serving a small portion of cooked oatmeal with several pieces of ripe bananas can be a quick and nutritious snack for your dog. Add 12 teaspoon of peanut butter to make it even more balanced and appetizing.
Are banana chips safe for dogs?
In this case, the answer depends on the type of chip in question. Natural dehydrated bananas or plantain chips are considered a safe, tasty and nutritious snack for dogs. They are a quick alternative to rewarding them and giving them an energy boost.
Now, commercial banana chips are not the most suitable alternative, as they are usually high in fat and contain salt, preservatives, added sugar, etc. This makes them an unhealthy type of snack and they are much higher in calories.
Can puppies also eat bananas?
Many owners wonder if their puppy can eat bananas. Although it is not considered a strictly forbidden food for puppies, it is best to have veterinary approval first. Consider that very specific nutritional needs must be met at this stage.
As a fruit rich in carbohydrates/sugars, there is a risk that the puppy will fill up on bananas and miss out on the foods he needs most.
Can my dog eat bananas every day?
Dogs can eat bananas or plantains occasionally, but never daily. The high sugar content in this fruit can cause digestive upset, overweight and other health problems if given every day. Offer several slices of ripe banana to your pet only as a sporadic treat or snack.
Can my dog eat bananas? Yes, bananas are a great snack for dogs. Not only are they tasty, but they also provide tons of vitamins and nutrients essential for canine health. However, given their high natural sugar content, they are not considered a type of treat suitable for regular consumption.