Can Dogs Eat Dates?
There is a lot of confusion around whether or not dogs can eat dates and what other people food is safe for dogs. This stems from their similar physical appearance to raisins, which can cause kidney failure in dogs. However, dates and raisins are not related at all. Raisins are made from grapes, which are toxic to dogs, while dates are made from the fruit of date palm trees.
In short, yes, your dog can eat dates. However, they should be given sparingly. Too many dates can cause an upset tummy, leading to stomach pain and diarrhea. Even if your dog does not experience tummy issues from eating too many dates, their high sugar content calls for moderation. Just like with humans, too much sugar can lead to obesity, diabetes, and/or dental problems. For pets who are obese or have diabetes, it is best to avoid dates altogether. While allergies to dates are rare, make sure to monitor your pet after feeding them the first few times just to make sure there are no issues. You should also never give your dog dates with pits in them. This is a choking hazard, as well as a potential intestinal blockage.
With all that said, dates are packed with lots of nutrients, and thus provide several health benefits when given as a treat. They contain lots of fiber, vitamins A, B, and C, potassium, and calcium. The most reported benefit is improved digestion, particularly in dogs suffering from constipation, due to their high fiber content. They’re also great at providing a quick energy boost and are even though to improve heart and eye health, as well as arthritis. While you may want to run out and buy a whole bunch of dates and start adding them to your pup’s diet, remember that they need to be given sparingly.
Remember to always check with your vet before adding anything new to your dog’s diet!
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