Bananas are beneficial fruits that are not hard on our stomachs. They are energy packs prepared by Nature that you can take anywhere with you. They are the second healthiest fruit for mind and body health. Two bananas a day can help maintain your digestive health, and, in consequence, help in normal regulation of bodily functions.
Here, we are talking about our Fidos, man’s best friend. Can we share bananas with our best friends? Are they equally healthy for our pooches when they are young or old, healthy or sick? The article will answer all your queries related to ‘bananas as dog food’.
Bananas are Herbs!
Reflecting upon the history of bananas that dates back to approximately 500 BC, they are considered as herbs not fruits. Banana trees are known as ‘high herbs’ not trees. Furthermore, the varieties of bananas that are grown globally in over 150 countries are over 1000.
Can We Share Bananas with Our Pooches? Are They SAFE for Dogs?
Yes, we can share bananas with our dogs or pups. Loeser Joyce DVM, a senior veterinary at the American Animal Hospital Association, says that bananas are healthy snacks for dogs if they are already having a commercially prepared balanced and complete diet.
Banana peels should be strictly kept away from the reach of dogs. They are not entirely toxic for their health, but can be difficult to digest. However, you can use banana peels to soothe the itch caused by bug bites in dogs. As the peel acts a home remedy for cleaning of our teeth, the banana skin relieves the itchy and inflamed skin of dogs.
How Much Banana Can You Give to Your Dog?
Portion size does not depend on the size or age of the dog. Moreover, It is not recommended to give a whole banana to the dog. Slice up the banana and give them in chunks to the dog throughout the week. You can add a vet-recommended amount into banana treats.
Bananas act as energy packs for dogs too, but they should not form a large portion of their daily diet. Sick dogs can be served healthier foods such as bone broth and rice, etc instead of bananas.
Bananas are not easy on a dog’s stomach and might cause gastric problems. You can begin by feeding only one to two slices of banana to the pooch to observe its effect on the dog’s tummy.
Bananas are a good source of fibers, potassium, vitamin C and B6—which are heart-healthy components. Bananas have low sodium content. The fat and cholesterol are in minimum quantity. In spite of various health benefits of bananas, the high sugar content makes it important for us to give them in small slices to our pooches.
Are Bananas Healthy for Pups?
The nutritional requirement of puppies is different and they need a specially formulated diet that’s necessary for bone and muscle development. Puppies can have bananas in the form of treats in small quantities, but the intake of treats should be strictly limited.
Ways to Feed Bananas to Your Fido:
Some commercially prepared banana treats and puppy cakes are good to feed your dogs as the banana dose is kept appropriate. Other banana foods that your pooch would love to have are banana chips, mashed bananas (added to treats or dog food), and frozen slices.
Symptoms of Over-Dose of Bananas:
If your Fido is a food thief, he may steal some bananas from the kitchen counter and have plenty of them. But, he cannot hide it for long as the symptoms of over-dose will become apparent soon. The pooch will experience pain and discomfort in the stomach, strained bowel movement, diarrhea, and maybe vomiting.
If your dog forgot that he is not a monkey who can eat a bunch of bananas, he will suffer from hyperkalemia, that is, high potassium concentration in blood. The symptoms include disorientation, weakness, and collapse. In this case, you should consult the veterinary at the earliest possible time to save him.
Other symptoms of over-eating bananas include restlessness, dilation of pupils, panting or whining of the dog.
Health Issues Related to Over-Dosage of Bananas:
Dogs are usually attracted by the banana scent and flavor. They are stuffed with all three types of naturally occurring sugars, that is, glucose, sucrose, and fructose. However, try to avoid an overdose of banana in dog food, which can cause stomach disorders.
Keep bananas out of the reach of your pooch. It is better not to place them on the dining table to be easily accessible to dogs.
What are the side-effects?
Over-dose of banana can lead to:
- Hyperkalemia: High potassium level in blood can cause cardiac issues and, in severe cases, cardiac arrest. So, bananas in high doses can become poison for the pooch.
- Obesity: High sugar content can lead to weight gain and obesity.
- Blood Sugar: Irregularities in blood sugar levels are observed due to an excessive banana intake.
Bananas should be an occasional treat. You can use banana snacks for treat training, but moderation is the key. Daily banana treats can lead to any of the side-effects mentioned above.
So, if your new family member is not yet attracted by the treats and toys you offer, banana treats may work for you and turn out to be one of the favorite treats of your Fido.
Accidental Intake of Banana Peel:
Banana skin is high in fiber content so it becomes difficult for your pooch to digest it. It will induce vomiting and cause constipation in dogs. In extreme case, it will cause intestinal blockage. Observe the pooch whether he is defecating normally or is finding it difficult to excrete, it’s a positive sign if the system does not seem blocked.
When you consider the list of toxic foods for Fido, banana is not one of them. However, an overdose of this herb-fruit can cause trouble for the pooch, so beware of placing bananas on the table. Even if the banana treat is Fido’s most favorite treat, keep in mind to use it occasionally. Moreover, this favorite treat can change your positive reinforcement training into a bribe if it is used in excess. After all, no one would like to reject the “sugar-filled energy pack”.