Carrots can be a healthy treat for your dog, no matter their age, size or breed. In fact, they have such a range of nutritional goodness, they are considered to be a superfood for dogs!
We will go through some of the things to consider when giving your dog carrots.
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Are carrots safe for my dog?
It is safe for dogs to eat both cooked and raw carrots.
However to get any real nutritional value from the carrot they should be slightly cooked to allow the body to break down the cellulose found in the carrot, otherwise, you’ll be finding carrot in much the same state when it comes back out in their poop! But this isn’t to say you can’t give raw carrots.
Something crunchy to chew on can be just as enjoyable for your dog and can be a good enrichment treat to give them.
If you give raw carrots the best thing is to wash the carrot first and then give your dog the whole carrot. This way they are more likely to chew it properly and put in the work too.
If you have a large breed of dog, then choose bigger carrots, small breeds choose smaller carrots.
Avoid giving small carrots to big dog breeds as there’s a higher risk of choking. This is a reason to always monitor your pooch with any treat like a carrot or toys.
Suggested reading: How many treats can my dog have a day?
How to cook carrots for dogs?
To cook carrots, you can do this in much the same way as we do for ourselves.
Chop them into big chunks if they are for treats or dice them up if you plan to mix them with your dog’s regular food.
Alternatively, you can cook them whole and then boil or steam them. Just make sure to properly cool them before serving, we don’t want any burnt tongues!
How many carrots should I give my dog?
Carrots can be a healthy treat, or a healthy option to mix into their already balanced diet if you feel like you want to give them “a little something extra”.
However, carrots do have their downfall, they are high in natural sugars so it is important not to feed too many or too much as you may find your pooch getting fat!
If you are only giving small amounts then you can give your pooch carrots daily.
A good rule of thumb is to make sure all treats and added extras do not take up more than 10% of your dog’s daily allowance of calories.
My dog has health issues – are carrots still safe?
Depending on your dog’s health status, It may or may not be suitable to give your dog carrots.
For example, due to the naturally high sugars occurring in carrots, it is not advisable to feed carrots to a diabetic dog unless you check with your vet first.
Likewise for dogs that are already overweight – if feeding carrots instead of commercial dog treats as a healthy treat, just remember this still has to be taken into account for your dog’s daily calorie intake and their main meals will need to be adjusted to compensate for this.
Tip: If you want to give carrots and your dog has a health issue (including weight issues) and requires a special diet, please speak to your veterinarian or your veterinary nurse for dietary advice. If you are on a diet plan, your veterinary nurse can help you calculate a diet plan to incorporate carrot treats.
Carrots for bored dogs
Carrots are a versatile food that is great for enrichment, You can cook and mash them up and push into a Kong or onto a licki mat
Tip: to make them last longer, you can also freeze your kong & licki mat.
Can my puppy have carrots?
Puppies can have carrots much the same as adult dogs. When you have a young puppy, teething time can be mayhem, with your pup chewing on anything or everything they shouldn’t!
Carrots can be a healthy option as a chewable treat to keep those mouths busy and help with teething and one of the most beneficial ways is to freeze your carrots!
Frozen carrots for dogs
Freezing carrots can be great for your dogs, ideal for hot weather as a cool-down treat, just as a treat that will last longer, or for your teething puppy.
How to freeze carrots for dogs?
It is easy to freeze your carrots for your dog. First, wash your carrots and then cook them as mentioned above. Once they have been cooked, allow them to cool.
Once cooled, leave to drain for a short while to ensure not too much water is taken with them. Place them in a container big enough for the carrots to fit and freezer safe. Then seal it and place it in the freezer.
Top tip: You can also use freezer-safe zip bags.
Allow to freeze for several hours, overnight would be best to make sure the carrots are properly frozen throughout.
Can my dog have frozen carrots every day?
Like normal carrots, raw or cooked you can give frozen carrots to dogs every day but just remember in small quantities.
Frozen carrots for teething puppies
Frozen carrots can be great for your teething puppy.
When your puppy starts to teeth their mouth is sore and almost itchy which is why they start to chew to help bring their teeth through quicker and relieve their discomfort. So follow the guidelines above to freeze your carrots and give them one, ideally when nothing else will pacify their chewing.
If your puppy doesn’t know what to do, make it into a game to begin with to encourage them. Throw the carrot and see if your puppy will chase it or try and play with it like a game of tug of war then let them win, this will usually get them interested in the carrot and encourage them to chew it.
So to answer your question, yes dogs can have carrots, cooked, both raw and frozen. They can have lots of benefits, especially for your teething puppy or to keep your dog from getting bored.
Just remember to give in small quantities and always watch your dog whilst they have them.