As is the case with most pet parents, we would like to share some of the delicious vegetables we enjoy with our dogs. Vegetables are a great source of vitamins and minerals for humans and animals. The question here is; can dogs eat eggplant? For most dogs, yes, you can feed them eggplant. This is because eggplant is not poisonous to dogs and is quite nutritious. Except for the vine and leaves, the rest of the eggplant is safe and edible for dogs.
Nutritional Benefits of Eggplant for Dogs
Raw eggplant is completely safe to eat for dogs. However, you may want to grill or bake the eggplant for taste reasons before serving it to your dog. In terms of nutrition, can dogs eat eggplant? Absolutely. It would help if you did not add any seasonings because most spices are harmful to dogs. Some of the nutritional benefits eggplant has for your dog include;
The main phytonutrient here is nasunin, an antioxidant that improves brain function by protecting the brain cells from free radicals. The antioxidant properties of eggplants boost phenols that protect your dog from heart diseases and certain types of cancers. Eggplant also contains chlorogenic acid that helps your dog fight off harmful bacteria and infections. The anthocyanins are great for lowering blood pressure, especially in senior dogs.
Low in Calories
Eggplants are an excellent snack for your dog because they are low in calories. This means that no matter how much your beloved canine eats, they are not at risk of being overweight.
Vitamins such as B6 and BK are abundant in eggplant. These vitamins make them a good addition to your dog’s food for that extra boost of minerals and nutrients.
High in Fiber
When you are looking for better sources of fibre, grab an eggplant. Fiber is good for your dog’s digestive tract and will help in cases of both indigestion and diarrhoea.
There are many reasons you should add eggplants to your dogs’ meals. However, there are a few circumstances where caution needs to be exercised. It would be best if you were on the lookout for it.
Downsides of giving your Dog Eggplant
If your dog is allergic to plants from the nightshade family, like eggplants and tomatoes, then you should not add eggplants to their diet. Vegetables from the nightshade species are known to cause allergic reactions in dogs. After you feed some eggplants to your dog, look out for the following reactions;
- Abdominal upset
- Swelling, especially on the face
If your dog presents any of these symptoms, alert your veterinarian immediately. Dogs with autoimmune illnesses should also be kept away from eggplant.
The leaves of the eggplant are loaded with solanine and hence not suitable to feed to your dog. Solanine is an alkaloid that can cause inflammation and worsen symptoms for dogs with arthritis.
The oxalates found in eggplants can block the absorption of calcium which causes crystals to be formed in the kidney. This puts your dog at risk of kidney failure and bladder stones.
Are Eggplants Safe for Dogs?
So in these circumstances named above, can a dog eat eggplant? It’s probably okay, but it’s not the best food to give a dog.
When appropriately prepared, eggplant is an excellent source of vitamins and nutrients for your dog. However, moderation is key because too much of this vegetable can irritate the dog’s stomach. Before serving, cut the eggplant into bite-sized pieces to avoid choking. A healthy dog without any underlying health conditions should be able to enjoy an eggplant dish and reap its many benefits.