Can Dogs Eat Squash?
Can dogs eat squash? Sometimes, we want to know which human foods we can safely give to our dogs. While they should have a balanced diet for their main meals, it’s nice to mix it up and give them a treat on occasion, but many human foods just aren’t healthy for dogs.
Many are even downright toxic.
So can dogs eat squash? Is this a safe food to give them?
Can Dogs Eat Squash?
The short answer is yes. Dogs can eat squash!
Is It Safe?
As long as it’s been cooked, squash is perfectly safe for dogs. While some fruits and vegetables pose some risks, squash isn’t one of them.
Is It Healthy?
There are many health benefits for dogs, and it can be included as part of a balanced diet for them.
The Many Benefits
Just as it for humans, squash is actually beneficial for dogs. It has:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin C
If you’re giving it as a treat, you should follow the 10% rule, but it can actually be included as part of a healthy diet along with their regular food, so it’s fine to go a little higher!
The various vitamins and minerals support many things in dogs, including coat and skin health, digestive health, muscles, vision, and hydration.
Much like pumpkin, it can also be used to settle the stomach if your dog is having loose stools.
It can also help to mix up their food. Some dogs are fussy eaters and need something mixed into their food to keep it exciting, and it’s understandable. Imagine if you had to eat the same food every day! Squash is a great option to mix in and make their food more enticing.
By giving your dog tastier options, you’ll strengthen the bond with them.
Are There Any Risks?
Just as it is for humans, raw squash can be hard for a dog to digest so you should make sure it’s cooked before giving it to them. If you give your dog raw squash, you could cause stomach problems (such as constipation) or you could even cause a blockage.
If you ever notice your dog can’t keep food or water down — especially after they ate something they shouldn’t have — it’s important to contact your veterinarian.
When giving any dog new food, you should start with a little and go from there. Dogs can have many sensitivities and allergies that you won’t find out about until they react to some things, so starting with a small piece is safest. Signs of allergies include:
- Irritated skin
- A rash
Small breeds and puppies under six months find new food particularly difficult to adjust to, so go slow.
How To Prepare It
You should cook squash through before giving it to your dog.
Make sure you don’t season it with anything. Salt and pepper can be very bad for dogs, especially in large amounts, and other spices and seasonings can be toxic. Many people don’t realize that things like onion and garlic powder are extremely bad for dogs, and could result in an emergency vet visit that you definitely don’t want to deal with.
You can give it to dogs on its own, or you can use it as a food topper or mix it into their kibble.
If you want it to last for a while, stuff cooked squash into a KONG and freeze it! Your dog will be entertained for a while trying to get the food out.
You can put it in there with their kibble or other dog-safe human food. Just don’t forget to account for the calories.
Other Safe Vegetables
If you want to include other safe vegetables in your dog’s diet along with squash, the following veggies are great for them:
Many fruits are also good to include in their diet or as a treat.
It is, however, important to know that not all fruits and vegetables are good for dogs. Don’t assume just because something is healthy for a human, your dog should be eating it. For example, grapes and cherries contain toxins that can be dangerous to a dog’s health.
Before feeding your dog something new, make sure you research the food in question. As long as you’ve done your due diligence, you’ll be fine.
So, can dogs eat squash? Yes! Not only can they eat it, they should — it provides a lot of great nutrients and can be a good part of a balanced diet. It’s important to make sure it’s cooked through, not use any seasonings, and start off slow just in case your dog has a sensitive stomach though. When they get the right amount, it can really help their digestive health if they’re introduced slowly.