Bananas can be a healthy snack for humans, but what about for our canine companions too? Dogs love sharing your food with you, and if your dog shows curiosity when you are eating a banana, you may have wondered if it’s a safe snack for your four-legged friend. Nothing helps build the bond between you and your dog like offering them a little nibble of whatever you may be eating.
Or, maybe you had a banana on the counter and your dog decided to grab it and make a meal out of it, skin and all? It’s not uncommon for a dog to sneak their own little snacks from the kitchen when you aren’t looking, but you may be worried whether or not this snack is safe or if it could potentially make your dog sick.
Bananas are a common and easily recognized food item around the world. Their bright yellow colour and unique shape make them very unmistakable. Not to mention, they are extremely healthy food items for humans to consume. With their high fibre content and low amount of calories, they can be a great food item to snack on when you’re short on time and can’t have a proper meal.
Can Dogs Eat Bananas?
Adult dogs can safely eat bananas – peel and all. This fruit is not only a healthy snack for you, but it can be a healthy snack for your dog as well. As with all things, however, it’s best to offer them as a treat only and in moderation. Puppies should only be offered small bits of banana as a rare treat.
Bananas are nutritious and contain fibre, vitamins, potassium and other micronutrients that can help both human and canine bodies grow and develop. But, bananas are also high in sugar which can lead to stomach upset or diarrhoea if fed in high amounts.
How Should You Prepare Bananas For Dogs?
If you want to share a banana with your dog, remove the peel. While the peel is not dangerous to feed your dog, it is hard for them to digest and can lead to stomach upset. Additionally, if your dog eats a large amount of peel, it can lead to intestinal blockages and vomiting.
Once the peel is removed, cut the banana into small pieces and offer it fresh as a treat. It’s a great snack for use when training your dogs as well, especially if they are very food motivated.
If your dog isn’t in love with eating fresh bananas on their own, you can add a little peanut butter to the mix. Some dogs will go wild for little bite-sized pieces of banana with peanut butter smeared on top.
You can also try mashing the banana in with your dog’s food. If your dog isn’t entirely in love with the banana itself, but you still want your dog to enjoy the nutrition bananas can offer, mixing it in with dry kibble or wet food can be a sneaky way to get a healthy snack into your dog.
On hot summer days, your dog might love a cold treat. Add bits of bananas and other food items into a Kong toy and freeze it. Your dog might love chewing on the cold toy while also getting little tidbits of tasty snacks as well!
Is Banana Good For Dogs?
When asked, some veterinarians would recommend bananas as an occasional treat or snack over other food items which may be high in salt, fat or other unnecessary ingredients. Bananas are an excellent source of fibre and potassium. They also contain vitamin C, vitamin B6, and magnesium.
For dogs that are suffering from an upset stomach, offering them a few tidbits of banana can help settle their stomach. The added boost of fibre can help with diarrhoea or constipation, and magnesium is great for promoting healthy bone growth.
Bananas are high in sugar, which is why feeding them in moderation is the best choice. Too much sugar in your dog’s diet can lead to obesity as well as other health problems. Many veterinarians and canine nutrition experts recommend using the “90/10 Rule.”
The 90/10 rule states that 90% of the daily amount of calories your dog consumes in one day should come from properly formulated, dog-specific kibble or wet food. The other 10% of those daily calories can come from treats; such as bananas, peanut butter, and peas.
As with any food item that is not specifically formulated for dogs, always feed in moderation. Bananas should never make up the bulk of what your dog eats in a day, and should not be offered as a treat every day. Once or twice a week for an adult dog is suitable, or mix it up with other dog-safe fruits, vegetables and meats for training sessions and praise.
The Bottom Line
Bananas make a healthy snack that is perfectly safe for your adult dog to eat. Puppies can enjoy bananas as well, but since their nutritional needs are different as their bodies are growing, it’s best to stick to proper puppy foods and not too many snacks or treats.
Banana peels are not toxic to dogs but are extremely hard to digest. If your dog grabbed a banana from the kitchen and ate it, peel and all, keep an eye on him or her and monitor their behaviour. If you’re concerned, don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian for advice.
This delicious yellow fruit is high in fibre and potassium and contains ample amounts of vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, and more. Some veterinarians will recommend feeding bananas as a healthy alternative to other less healthy snacks such as salty meats.
Always remember to offer bananas as an occasional treat and not the bulk of your dog’s diet. While bananas are a healthy snack, too much of a good thing can lead to stomach upset and other health issues.