Did you know about the benefits of feeding this vegetable superfood to your dog?
There are very clear rules about what human foods a dog is allowed to eat or not. But one vegetable that is not just enjoyed by your dog but is actually recommended by veterinarians is the simple Pumpkin. You can add it to the main food or use it as a treat. Either way, the consensus is on saying yes to Pumpkin.
Here are the top reasons why you should include Pumpkin in your dog’s diet from today:
Pumpkin is nutrient-rich
is low in calories but contains lots of essential vitamins and minerals. When you feed your dog pumpkin, you are giving him an excellent natural source of vitamin A (beta-carotene). Besides that, pumpkin is a great way to get potassium, iron, vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorus, and folate, into your dog’s tummy.
Pumpkin is great for skin and coat
The nutrients that we spoke of in the earlier point will improve your dog’s skin and coat like nothing else will. The moisture-rich vegetable will make the coat lustrous. The water content also means your dog’s skin remains hydrated and keeps those pesky flakes off his skin. An added bonus is that your dog will shed less, which means less hair on your clothes, furniture, and carpet.
Pumpkin gives a boost to immunity
Vitamin C is an important ingredient to build and maintain good immunity. Add to that a dollop of vitamin A (beta-carotene), E and all the other antioxidants that are present in the pumpkin and you can help keep certain cancers away from your furry companion. Including fresh pumpkin in your dog’s diet can help fight back free radicals.
Pumpkin encourages good digestion
Pumpkin is good for dog poop. If your dog seems constipated, you can add a bit of fresh pumpkin to his food. It gives the stomach just the right amount of fiber to help your dog pass stool with ease. And then again, pumpkin is also good for controlling diarrhea. It is one of nature’s wonders that works in both conditions.
Pumpkin can help lose weight
Pumpkins are a great way to bulk up your dog’s food without cutting down on calories. The high water and fiber content can help your dog lose that extra weight. Replace a small part of your dog’s food with fresh pumpkin and watch the difference in a few weeks.
Dogs on an only-kibble diet are often thirsty and some even suffer from mild dehydration. This is because dry dog food contains very little moisture. If your dog is naturally not very fond of water, then he loses more moisture than he gets. Add pumpkin to the food to take care of this imbalance and hydrate your dog in a natural and easy way.
Pumpkin benefits eyes
We all know that vitamin A is good for our eyes. And the same holds true for our dogs too. The vitamin A present in pumpkin keeps your dog’s eyes health and slows down the development of night blindness and other eye degeneration. You can even mix a little pumpkin and flax oil to give an additional punch. You can give it in the food or make little treats with it.
Pumpkin seeds prevent urinary incontinence
Many seeds are a strict no-no for your dog. Not so with pumpkin seeds. The seeds also contain antioxidants and are a rich source of Omega 3
fatty acids. These fatty acids have been known to help control urinary incontinence, which is the dog’s natural ability to hold urine. In addition, pumpkin seeds can also break down and remove kidney stones.
Pumpkin controls parasites
However much you try, your pooch is going to get into the trash or some other unsavory places and pick up parasites. Some, like the tapeworms, are a health risk and can lead to weight loss, nutrient deficiency, dry skin, and even a shabby coat. Feeding pumpkin repels and controls parasites in your dog. It contains high amounts of cucurbitacin, an amino acid, which is toxic to many common dog parasites. You can feed your dog 1-2 teaspoons of ground pumpkin seeds to hasten the removal of these parasites. Just remember, this is not an alternative to the medical treatment but a supplement.
Pumpkin tastes great
And lastly, dogs love it. We all know the stress of trying to feed our dogs something that they don’t like. But no dog says no to the rich, creamy flavor of a pumpkin. You can even add a pinch of cinnamon or honey to make this treat even tastier.
How much pumpkin can a dog eat?
While your dog is unlikely to suffer any consequences of eating too much of a natural product, excessive pumpkin could mean that he is getting less of other nutrients.
The standard measure is to feed 1 teaspoon of mashed pumpkin for every 4kgs per day. Check with your vet if your dog suffers from any illness, like diabetes. Pumpkin feeds are fat-rich and should be much sparingly. 1 seed, ground-up, is a good standard for every 4kgs.
If using canned produce, make sure the pumpkin has no added sugars or spices, and is fresh. You can make treats at home too but always add dog-appropriate ingredients.
While on the subject of species-appropriate food, have you considered BARF?
Benefits of BARF – Basic Ancestral Raw Food
If you are already feeding your dog a raw diet, great! If not, read on to know how your furry friend can benefit from a species-appropriate raw diet.
The best way to help your dog’s over health and nutrition is to feed it a balanced, species-appropriate food. And the best option is raw. A part of the wolf family (yes, even your sweet Lab or lap-sized Apso), your dog needs and will thrive only on a raw diet.
Raw food is a natural food and it contains the exact mix of all the nutrients and goodness that a dog would get if it were a wild creature. More importantly, it doesn’t have any of low-quality protein that is not good for your dog.
You can make your own raw food in the right proportion, or you can buy commercially prepared raw food
for your diet. Whatever you do, eliminate or limit the number of grains and carbohydrates in your dog’s diet. And watch your furry companion thrive.