Dog parents are often surprised that the best healthy snacks for dog weight loss are the same healthy snacks for people. I know I was.
Before you spend money on expensive “low-calorie” dog treats, turn the fruits and vegetables you have on hand into your dog’s new favorite treat.
Here are the 12 best healthy snacks for dog weight loss.
- Carrot sticks
- Apple slices
Foods high in phytochemicals, like broccoli, berries, carrots, cantaloupe, and apples, may decrease the risk of developing certain cancers, heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes.
This article details which fruits and vegetables are the healthiest for dogs, including how many calories in each serving. By the end, you’ll learn what fruits and vegetables are best for your dog’s weight loss journey and which ones are dangerous.
The healthiest fruits for dogs.
Just like people, dogs love sweet fruits. My 7-year-old PBGV mix, Shelby, loves watermelon and cantaloupe as a refreshing Summer treat. Her most frequent fruit snack is blueberries, with only one calorie per berry.
There are many healthy fruit options for dogs, but some can be high in calories or bad for their digestive system, like citrus fruits.
What are the healthiest fruits for dogs?
- Watermelon: This juicy fruit is 90% water and is low in calories, making it a great summer snack for dogs. Be careful to remove the seeds before feeding watermelon to your dog — 30 calories per 100 grams.
- Strawberries: These low-calorie sweet berries are 91% water and a good source of fiber and protein. Strawberries are also high in magnesium — 32 calories per 100 grams.
- Cantaloupe: This sweet melon is also high in water content and low in calories — 34 calories per 100 grams.
- Cranberries: Fresh cranberries are 87% water. These tart berries are a good source of fiber and are low in calories. If your dog has hypothyroidism, cranberries are a great source of iodine which produces the T4 hormone — 46 calories per 100 grams.
- Apple: Apples are a healthy snack for dogs and contain vitamins A and C — 52 calories per 100 grams.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are healthy, low-calorie fruit packed with antioxidants for dogs. They’re also a good source of fiber and vitamins A, C, and K — 57 calories per 100 grams.
The healthiest vegetables for dogs.
A healthy, complete diet is essential for your dog’s well-being. Adding vitamin-packed vegetables can help to prevent future health problems.
What are the healthiest vegetables for dogs?
- Cucumber: Cucumbers are 96% water and low in calories, making them a refreshing and healthy snack for dogs — 16 calories per 100 grams.
- Zucchini: Zucchini is a healthy vegetable for dogs and is low in calories. It’s also a good source of vitamins A, B, and C — 17 calories per 100 grams.
- Pumpkin: A healthy, low-calorie vegetable for dogs, Pumpkin is rich in fiber and vitamins A, C, and E. Pumpkin puree can also be helpful for digestion and upset stomachs — 26 calories per 100 grams.
- Broccoli: Broccoli is a vitamin-rich vegetable for dogs. It’s high in fiber, potassium, and vitamins C and K — 34 calories per 100 grams.
- Carrots: Carrots are an excellent source of vitamins, minerals, and fiber for dogs. They’re low in calories and a perfect way to keep your dog’s teeth clean — 41 calories per 100 grams.
These fruits and vegetables are all low in calories and high in the nutrients that are good for your dog’s health. Feed them to your dog as a healthy snack, or add them to their regular food to help them lose weight.
Not all healthy snacks need to be fruits and vegetables. One or two pieces of your dog’s kibble can also make a perfect little treat.
What fruits and vegetables are dangerous for dogs?
Some fruits and vegetables are hazardous for dogs to eat. Please visit the complete list of foods to avoid by the ASPCA for additional information.
The most dangerous fruits for dogs are:
- Grapes: Grapes are very dangerous for dogs because they contain tartaric acid, a toxin that can cause kidney failure. Even just a few grapes can be deadly for a small dog.
- Raisins: Raisins are also very dangerous for dogs because they contain the same toxin as grapes. Even just a few raisins can be deadly for a small dog.
- Citrus: Citrus fruits like oranges, lemons, and limes can cause an upset stomach and vomiting. The stems, leaves, peels, and seeds are more dangerous due to the high portions of citric acid and essential oils.
The most dangerous vegetables for dogs are:
- Onions: Onions are very dangerous for dogs because they contain a toxin that can cause anemia. Even a tiny amount of onion can be deadly for a small dog.
- Garlic: Garlic is also very dangerous for dogs because it contains the same toxin as onions. Garlic, chives, and onions can cause gastrointestinal irritation, damage to red blood cells, and anemia.
- Avocado: Avocado is very dangerous for dogs. The avocado contains a toxin that can damage a dog’s heart, lungs, and stomach.
What are the best healthy snacks for dog weight loss? (per 100 grams)
- Cucumber: 17 calories
- Zucchini: 17 calories
- Pumpkin: 26 calories
- Watermelon: 30 calories
- Strawberries: 34 calories
- Cantaloupe: 34 calories
Dogs love crunchy carrots, the sweetness of apples, a snap of green beans, cooling cucumber slices, or the creaminess of mashed sweet potatoes.
These fruits and vegetables are all low in calories and high in nutrients good for your dog’s health. Replace your dog treats with these healthy snacks to help them reach or maintain their ideal weight.
Remember, always consult with your vet before transitioning your dog’s diet.
It’s snack time. Go enjoy a healthy snack with your best friend.
What’s your dog’s favorite natural snack? Share this article and tell us what healthy snack your dog loves most.