Although the vast majority of vegetables and fruit that we consume, can safely be fed to dogs there are some notable exceptions which can be toxic for dogs.
So, what are the best vegetables for dogs to eat? What vegetables are good for your dogs health and which vegetables are not safe for dogs and are those they shouldn’t eat?
Although not exhaustive the following list (in alphabetic order) outlines the most common, and popular human foods, that are safe (or unsafe) for dogs to eat, the nutrients they contain and the benefits for your dog’s health.
Bonza’s 100% plant-based (vegan) dog food contains a greater variety vegetables and fruit than any other food. Is this important? The reason we include such a variety is that every vegetable and fruit contain different nutrients and phytochemicals, each of which contributes something different to your dog’s health and wellbeing. Different anti-inflammatories and antioxidants which work synergistically to support your dog against digestive issues, improve their skin and coat (and reduce itching), support their eye and heart health and strengthen their bones, muscles and joints. The linked ingredients below are the vegetables we include in our premium food. We also include carefully selected fruit that are good for dogs.
Vegetables Dogs Can and Can’t Eat
As with all food it is important to feed any vegetables that are healthy, and safe, for your dog to eat in moderation and it is usually safer, and more nutritious, for your dog when gently cooked.
Yes, amaranth is safe for dogs. An ancient grain amaranth is a rich source of carotenoids, proteins, including the essential amino acids methionine and lysine, dietary fibre and minerals, such as magnesium, calcium, potassium, copper, phosphorus, zinc, iron, and manganese.
Yes, artichokes are safe for dogs. Artichokes are healthy for dogs and contain vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, niacin, and lots of antioxidants including carotenoids. These vitamins and minerals help prevent illness and support your dog’s immune system, muscles and metabolism.
Yes, asparagus is safe for dogs. A good source of fibres asparagus provides vitamins A, C, E, K, and B9, the minerals potassium, copper, calcium, iron, and phosphorus as well as antioxidants, polyphenols and flavonoids.
Yes, aubergine is safe for dogs. Although cooked aubergine is safe for dogs to eat, if your dog is prone to kidney issues, arthritis or allergies to nightshade vegetables it is best to avoid. Aubergine contain fibre, copper, manganese, B-6, and thiamine as well as the antioxidants anthocyanins, including nasunin, lutein, and zeaxanthin.
Beans (including Azuki, Borlotti, Butter, Fava/Broad, Haricot, Kidney, Lima, Mung, Runner and Soy)
Yes, beans are safe for dogs. Beans are an excellent, plant-based source of protein, fibre, iron, vitamins and antioxidants that offer many health benefits. Beans are rich in polyphenols, a type of antioxidant.
Yes, beetroot is safe for dogs. Beets include vitamin C (a natural antioxidant), folate (vitamin B9), iron (many senior dogs suffer from iron deficiency), potassium, magnesium, manganese, calcium, and dietary fibre. Beetroot is a unique source of phytonutrients called betalains. Betanin and vulgaxanthin have been shown to provide antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and detoxification support.
Bell Pepper/Capsicum/Sweet Pepper
Yes capsicum is safe for dogs. Peppers are rich in vitamins A, E, B6, and lutein and are great sources of vitamin C and beta-carotene, which are antioxidants important for a dog’s healthy immune system and important for skin, coat, and eye health.
Yes, broccoli is safe for dogs to eat in very small quantities and is best served as an occasional treat. It is high in fibre and vitamin C and low in fat. However, Broccoli florets contain isothiocyanates, which can cause mild-to-potentially-severe gastric irritation in some dogs
Yes, dogs can eat Brussels sprouts. Brussels sprouts are loaded with nutrients and antioxidants that are great for humans and dogs, alike. Brussels sprouts contain phytonutrients called organosulfur compounds, which have antioxidant properties. These beneficial compounds help protect your dog’s cells from oxidative stress. Overfeeding, however, can cause lots of gas.
Yes, dogs can eat cabbage. Cabbage is a great source of antioxidants and other beneficial plant compounds that help protect against cellular damage. Its antioxidants include vitamin C, carotenoids, and flavonoid antioxidants, such as anthocyanins and kaempferol. Like Brussel sprouts, and other members of the brassica family such as Kale, overfeeding comes with a gas warning.
Yes, dogs can eat carrots. Carrots are a particularly good source of beta carotene, fibre, vitamin K1, potassium, Vitamin C and antioxidant carotenoids including beta-carotene which is excellent for eye health. Raw carrot is great for your dog’s teeth.
Yes, cauliflower is safe for dogs. Another in the brassica family and a low-calorie, vitamin-packed vegetable, cauliflower is high in fibre, vitamin C, vitamin K, calcium, potassium and folate. Cauliflower contains several anti-cancer phytochemicals like sulforaphane and plant sterols such as indole-3-carbinol.
Yes, celery is safe for dogs to eat. In addition to vitamins A, B, and C, celery beta carotene, and flavonoids, and at least 12 additional kinds of antioxidant nutrients. It’s also a source of phytonutrients, which have been shown to reduce instances of inflammation in the digestive tract, cells, blood vessels, and organs. Raw celery is also known to freshen a dog’s breath.
Yes, chard is safe for dogs. Chard has high nutritional value and low caloric content, offering numerous nutritional benefits. Chards are an excellent source of soluble fibre which acts as a prebiotic. Rich source of vitamins especially vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B9 (folates) and vitamin B3 (niacin) and minerals particularly iodine, iron, and magnesium. Chards contain lutein, a carotene that is beneficial for maintaining visual acuity and prevents the development of cataracts.
Yes, chickpeas are safe for dogs to eat. They are incredibly health-protective. Consumption of chickpeas and other pulses lowers the risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and obesity and increases good gut bacteria to support digestive health and anti-inflammation. Excellent sources of dietary fibre, polyunsaturated fatty acids, vitamin A, vitamin E, vitamin C, folate, magnesium, potassium, and iron. The antioxidant compounds found in chickpeas include polyphenols, phytonutrients, beta-carotene.
Yes, corn is safe for dogs. However, together with wheat, rice and soy, they are the most likely plant-based ingredients dogs may be allergic too. All corn and maize types are sources of dietary fibre, vitamins (A, B, E, and K), minerals (magnesium, potassium and phosphorus), phenolic acids and flavonoids, plant sterols, and other phytochemicals (lignins and bound phytochemicals).
Yes, courgette is safe for your dog to eat. It is a good source of vitamin C, potassium, calcium, beta-carotene, and folate. These vitamins and minerals are important for your dog’s bones and the healthy functioning of your dog’s muscles, nerves, vision, and immune system.
Yes, fava beans are safe for dogs to eat. It is important to note that like many other foods including eggs, fish and potatoes eating raw fava beans can be toxic. They would also need to be consumed in unrealistically large quantities to have any toxic effect. Cooked fava beans are dense with nutrition. They contain no saturated fat or cholesterol and a high concentration of thiamin, vitamin K, vitamin B-6, potassium, copper, selenium, zinc and magnesium. Broad beans are also rich in phytonutrients such as isoflavone and plant sterols. They are researched for their effect on auto-immune disorders and cognitive disorders.
Yes, your dog can eat fennel. Fennel is very nutrient dense and contains many important nutrients including manganese, and other minerals vital to bone health, including potassium, magnesium, and calcium. Perhaps the most impressive benefits of fennel and fennel seeds come from the antioxidants and potent plant compounds they contain. The plant has been shown to contain more than 87 volatile compounds, including the polyphenol antioxidants rosmarinic acid, chlorogenic acid, quercetin, and apigenin. Studies suggest these antioxidants lower the risk of chronic conditions like heart disease, obesity, cancer, neurological diseases, and type 2 diabetes.
The answer is probably best not to. Although garlic toxicity for dogs is mired in confusion the fact is that garlic (and other members of the allium family, like leeks and onions, contain a compound thiosulfate. This compound is toxic for canines (but not for humans). When ingested in a large amount in canines, this thiosulfate causes oxidative damage in red blood cells, resulting in “Heinz Bodies” that the body rejects and expels from the bloodstream. Over time this can result in Haemolytic Anaemia and may even cause death. However, a small amount of garlic should do no harm to your dog and has been shown to provide many health benefits.
Yes, dogs can eat ginger. Ginger is among the healthiest spices on the planet. It has many phytonutrients, with gingerol the main bioactive compound. It’s responsible for much of ginger’s medicinal properties. Gingerol has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, according to research and may help reduce oxidative stress and, as a powerful anti-inflammatory, health conditions which stem from inflammation like osteoarthritis. A superfood worthy of the title.
Grains (Barley. Bulgur, Einkorn, Farro, Flaxseed, Freekeh, Khorasan, Millet, Rye, Spelt, Triticale, Wild Rice)
Yes, dogs can eat grains safely. While corn rice and and wheat are also grains, the ancient grains offer more nutrients than their mono-cropped cousins in general terms and whole grains far better nutrient profiles than their processed counterparts. Whole grain kernels are made up of three parts: the bran, germ, and endosperm. Each part contains its own unique, health-promoting nutrients. The bran, the fibre-rich outer layer supplies B vitamins, iron, copper, zinc, magnesium, antioxidants, and phytochemicals (the natural chemical compounds in plants so highly valued for their role in disease prevention. The germ, the core of the seed where growth occurs is rich in healthy fats, vitamin E, B vitamins, phytochemicals, and antioxidants. The endosperm is the interior layer that holds carbohydrates, protein, and small amounts of some B vitamins and minerals.
Green Beans/French Beans/Runner Beans/Edamame Beans
Yes, dogs can eat green beans. All types of green beans are safe for dogs to eat. Green beans are a rich source of vitamins A, C, and K, and of folic acid and fibre. Green beans are a good source of minerals, especially manganese. This essential mineral supports the metabolism and has antioxidant abilities. It also supports bone health and promotes wound healing. Together with their chlorophyll content, green beans also provide a host of other phytonutrients like carotenoids, phenols, and flavonoids. All these phytonutrients function both as antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents in the body’s metabolism.
Yes, kale is safe for dogs. Kale is a nutrient superfood due to the amounts of vitamins A, K, B6 and C, calcium, potassium, copper and manganese it contains. The most important phytochemicals in spinach and kale are carotenoids: β-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. These antioxidant compounds are important in preventing chronic health diseases, such as cancer and heart disease and also support eye health.
No, dogs should avoid leeks. A member of the allium family, like garlic and onion, they contain a compound, thiosulfate. This compound is toxic for canines (but not for humans). When ingested in a large amount in canines, this thiosulfate causes oxidative damage in red blood cells.
Yes, lentils are safe for dogs to eat. Lentils are low in sodium and saturated fat, and high in potassium, fibre, folate, and plant chemicals called polyphenols that have antioxidant activity. These nutritional properties have led researchers to study their effects on chronic diseases. Lentils also contain slow-digesting resistant starch that delays the absorption of carbohydrates with blood sugar-lowering effects, as well as being a source of prebiotics that feeds gut flora to help prevent digestive diseases.
Yes, mushrooms are safe for dogs. Mushrooms are rich in the B vitamins: riboflavin, niacin, and pantothenic acid. The combination helps protect heart health. Riboflavin is good for red blood cells. Niacin is good for the digestive system and for maintaining healthy skin. Plant chemicals and components, including beta-D-glucans or fucogalactans and special organic compounds called hydrazines and hydrazides, in mushrooms may exert antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer effects.
Yes, oats are safe for dogs to eat. Oats offer high amounts of many vitamins and minerals, such as manganese, phosphorus, copper, B vitamins, iron, selenium, magnesium, and zinc. They are also an excellent source of protein. Whole oats are rich in antioxidants that provide various health benefits. They possess a wide spectrum of biologically active compounds including carotenoids, tocols (Vitamin E), flavonoids and avenanthramides – a class of polyphenols. These phytonutrients offer a wide range of specific potential health benefits, including cardio-protective, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activity, cancer-protective, protection from skin irritation, detoxification support, increase glutathione levels and enhance nitric oxide production, supporting normal blood pressure
No, dogs should never eat onions. Onions, leeks, and chives are part of a family of plants called Allium that is poisonous to most pets, especially cats. Eating onions can cause your dog’s red blood cells to rupture, and can also cause vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach pain, and nausea. Poisoning from onions is more serious in Japanese breeds of dogs like Akitas and Shiba Inus, but all dogs are very susceptible to it.
Yes, parsley is safe for dogs. Parsley is low in calories yet rich in important nutrients, such as vitamins A, K, and C which are beneficial for immunity and eye health, skin and bone and heart health. Phytonutrients parsley is rich in include carotenoids, volatile oils (myristicin, limonene, eugenol, and alpha-thujene), flavonoids (epigenin, crisoeril, and luteolin), and phenolic compounds (caffeic acid and chlorogenic acid). Carotenoids include beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. They support healthy eyes. Flavonoids and phenolic compounds are potent antioxidants with anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and immune-boosting properties. A super herb.
Peas/Green Peas/Sugar Snap/Garden or English Peas/Yellow Peas/Black Eyed Peas
Yes, dogs can eat peas. Green peas have an impressive nutrition profile. contain just about every vitamin and mineral your dog needs, in addition to a significant amount of healthy protein and fibre. Peas are rich in antioxidant nutrients like vitamin C, as well as phytonutrients including carotenoids and flavonols which are heart protective and support cardiovascular function.
Yes, potatoes are safe for dogs. Potatoes are well known to be good sources of potassium and vitamin C. They also contain an array of other bioactives, including high amounts of phenylpropanoids, compounds known to have diverse health-promoting roles. Phytonutrients in potatoes include carotenoids, flavonoids and caffeic acid. The vitamin C in potatoes acts as an antioxidant. These substances may prevent or delay some types of cell damage. They may also help with digestion, heart health, blood pressure and even cancer prevention.
Pumpkin/Butternut Squash/Buttercup Squash
Yes, pumpkin is safe for dogs. It offers a long list of nutrients that protect and support the heart, such as vitamins A, B1, B6, and C, copper, fibre, folate, and manganese. Pumpkin provides calcium, potassium, and magnesium which are good for bones, skin, teeth and heart. Benefits of pumpkin, such as improving spermatogenesis, wound healing, antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, anti-ulcerative properties, and treatment of benign prostatic hyperplasia have also been confirmed by researchers.
Yes, quinoa is safe for dog to eat. The proteins in quinoa offer a wide range of amino acids. Amino acids are vital for supporting muscle development and immune activity, among other essential functions. Quinoa, unlike many other grains, is also an excellent source of lysine. Lysine is vital for the synthesis of proteins. Quinoa also provides healthy source of fibre as well as vitamins and minerals including manganese, phosphorus, copper, folate, iron, magnesium, and zinc as well as vitamins B, C and E. The phytochemical composition of quinoa include antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities of hydrophilic (e.g. phenolics, betacyanins) and lipophilic (e.g. fatty acids, tocopherols, and carotenoids) nutrients, and these contribute to the potential health benefits, especially in lowering the risk of the oxidative stress related diseases e.g. cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity.
Yes, rice is safe for dogs to eat. While rice is completely safe for your dog to eat, there are better grains for them both from carbohydrate and nutrient perspectives. If you are inclined to feed your dog rice as part of their diet, brown rice has less carbohydrates and a greater level of nutrients than white. Brown rice is the entire whole rice grain. It contains the fibre-rich bran, the nutrient-packed germ and the carbohydrate-rich endosperm. On the other hand, white rice is stripped of its bran and germ, leaving just the endosperm, the starchy part of rice. In general terms brown rice has more amino acids, antioxidants and vitamin and mineral levels than white. Additionally in human studies white rice has been shown to increase the risk of type 2 Diabetes significantly.
Yes, soybeans are safe for dogs. It is important to note that soybeans are allergenic for some dogs alongside corn, and wheat. That said they are an excellent source of protein and dietary fibre. The insoluble fibres are mainly alpha-galactosides, which may exacerbate irritable bowl syndrome. Soy contain a wealth of phytonutrients including soy isoflavones, namely, genistein, daidzein, and glycitein, and a novel group of soy phytoalexins, glyceollins, have also shown promising biological activities, such as insulinotropic, antiestrogenic, antiproliferative, antioxidation, anti-inflammation, and cholesterol-lowering effects.
Yes, dogs can eat spinach. Spinach, like kale, is an extremely nutrient-rich vegetable. It packs high amounts of carotenoids, vitamin C, vitamin K, folic acid, iron, and calcium. The possible health benefits of consuming spinach include improving blood glucose control for those suffering with diabetes, lowering the risk of cancer, and improving bone health. Spinach contains many important plant compounds, including lutein, kaempferol, nitrates, quercetin, zeaxanthin. These can play important roles in the body, from maintaining eye health to reducing inflammation.
Yes, swedes are safe for dogs. This healthy vegetable is particularly high in vitamins C, E, K and B6, as well as being a good source of manganese, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, carotene and fibre. A member of the cruciferous veg family, swede is rich in glucosinolates, a class of powerfully health-promoting phytonutrients that protect against cancer, heart disease and cognitive decline; improve insulin sensitivity, immune function, mood, anxiety and depression and balance hormones.
Yes, sweet potato is safe for dogs to eat. Sweet potatoes are nutritional powerhouses – a great source of fibre, vitamins, and minerals such as vitamins A and C, manganese, potassium, and beta-carotene. They also contain healthy minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, and copper. The phytochemical profile of sweet potatoes includes phenolic acids, carotenoids and anthocyanins. Research shows these phytonutrients help protect the body from free radical damage and chronic disease, are beneficial for gut health, may help protect against certain cancers, support healthy vision, enhance brain function and support the immune system.
Yes, tomatoes are safe for dogs to eat. Tomatoes are a good source of several vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin C, potassium, vitamin K, and folate. The main plant compounds in tomatoes are lycopene, beta carotene, naringenin, and chlorogenic acid. These phytochemicals have been shown to protect heart health, brain health and combat metabolic syndrome, aid the immune system and reduce cancer risk.
Yes, turnips are safe for dogs. This vegetable, from the same family as swedes, is particularly high in vitamins C, E, K and B6, as well as being a good source of manganese, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, carotene and fibre. A member of the cruciferous veg family, swede is rich in glucosinolates, a class of powerfully health-promoting phytonutrients that protect against cancer, heart disease and cognitive decline; improve insulin sensitivity, immune function, mood, anxiety and depression and balance hormones.
The vegetables shown as safe to eat can be fed to your dog everyday. Adding a variety of vegetables to their daily diet is highly recommended for the health giving benefits they offer your dog through their life.
Best, and safest, fruits for dogs – find out what the healthiest fruit for your dog is.