Yes, dogs can eat asparagus. It is a safe vegetable that the ancient Greeks and Romans have loved. It is not only a food but it has also been used for many other purposes. It turns out to be great in maintaining oral health as it treats toothaches. It treats bee stings. It is also used to ease hangovers. The roots and the seeds of the asparagus plants are used as medicine. In fact, it is a very healthy vegetable. It is safe for human consumption as well as for the dog’s food.
Humans mostly eat soft stems and tips. Are dogs allowed to eat these parts too? Raw and cooked, which one is better? Let’s discuss this in detail.
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus Stalks?
Asparagus stalks are safe for dogs to eat because they do not contain any toxins that could harm their health. The only issue we discovered with these is that they are tough and so difficult to digest. A raw asparagus stalk is not safe for dogs because it poses a choking hazard.
If you really want to feed your dog asparagus stalks in raw form, consider cutting them into bite-sized pieces and then serve them in the dog’s bowl. In this way, your buddy will be able to eat them safely without any obstruction in his throat.
The other option is to serve them slightly cooked. All you have to do is wash the stalks and steam them for a few minutes in a covered cooking pot. You can also peel off the stems with a peeler so that these will be tender in no time. Your dog will eventually find them soft and easy to digest.
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus Tips?
Although the rough, woody, and hard ends of the asparagus stems are not suitable for consumption by your dog, the asparagus tips are completely safe and digestible. They are cooked and baked very easily; you can leave the tips intact while peeling the stems. Asparagus tips have a unique and strong taste, much like a mixed taste of broccoli and green beans.
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus Ferns?
Asparagus fern is not a true fern. The asparagus leaves are arranged in such a way to give the plant a fern-like look. These ferns are non-edible because of the presence of chemicals, saponins, in them. These chemicals are toxic for dogs. They are steroids in nature and cause gastrointestinal and dermal issues.
Feeding asparagus fern can result in asparagus poisoning in dogs. The symptoms of this poisoning are not severe in most cases, but the condition can be serious if the dog has eaten berries or other parts in large amounts. Some common signs include skin irritation, including redness and swelling, vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. In addition, many other vegetables, such as onions and garlic, have the same toxic compound and are prohibited in a dog’s diet.
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus Raw?
Technically speaking, raw asparagus is not toxic for dogs, so they can eat it. But, we advise you: don’t let your dog eat raw asparagus. It is tough and quite difficult to chew and digest for dogs. Your dog may even experience vomiting or diarrhea after eating it. Raw asparagus can also cause obstruction of the dog’s esophagus.
Moreover, raw asparagus is extremely rich in fibers; although they are necessary for normal digestion, their excessive amounts can upset the stomach.
All these reasons make it clear that eating raw asparagus has a higher risk of making your dog sick. If you want to feed him, try chopping it extremely finely or into some bite-sized pieces to make it easier to chew and digest for your dog. Even when chopped into small pieces, it should not be given in large quantities as it’s not an ideal dog food.
Can Dogs Eat Asparagus Cooked?
If you want to enjoy this asparagus season along with your furry friend, cooked asparagus can be a safe and healthy food for him. You can cook asparagus by adding all the dog-friendly ingredients, but the best option is to keep it as plain as possible. Seasonings like paprika, pepper, garlic, and onion powder should be avoided at all costs.
Adding butter or oil is not a good pick either. Before cooking, remove the rough and woody ends because the digestive system of a dog will not be able to digest these. If you want to retain its crunchy texture as it is, you can serve it after just blanching it in hot water.
How to Add Asparagus to Dog Food?
You can feed your dog cooked asparagus in a variety of ways, such as:
- Roast some sweet potatoes and asparagus together. As sweet potatoes are safe for dogs, feel free to give your dog these healthy snacks. These are both easy to make and delicious.
- Make broth for your pup and add asparagus along with other veggies. Serve it as asparagus soup.
- Cook plain white rice with asparagus. Add this healthy treat to the dog’s diet; he will like it.
Health benefits of Asparagus
Asparagus is a nutritious vegetable. It provides the following health benefits:
Just like green beans, asparagus is rich in vitamins. Vitamin C is an immune booster and an important antioxidant for dogs and humans equally. It is also known to reduce inflammation and aging. Vitamin B6 found in asparagus improves the function of the nervous system and immune system. This vitamin is also necessary for hormone regulation, red blood cells production, and gene activation. Finally, vitamin K is necessary for the gut-associated bacteria so that they will be able to do their work properly.
When the dog digests his food, many free radicals are produced in the body as by-products of metabolism. These radicals can cause cardiovascular diseases. As a result, the body becomes prone to inflammatory diseases and cancers. Antioxidants are required to neutralize their effect and protect the body against these diseases.
They boost the immune function, empowering the white blood cells to fight off the diseases. In addition, their anti-inflammatory properties reduce pain in the eyes. They are also known to slow down the aging process.
Asparagus has many polyphenols, flavonoids, Vitamin E, C, and glutathione as antioxidants. They perform all the functions described above and guard the body against these diseases.
Two types of dietary fiber are present in asparagus, insoluble and soluble fiber. Insoluble fiber is not dissolved. Instead, it eases bowel movements. Such types of diets are therefore very helpful in relieving constipation in some constipated dogs. On the other hand, the soluble fiber present in asparagus dissolves in water, making a gel-like substance that feeds the good bacteria in the dog’s gut. It can thus work as a prebiotic.
Asparagus is a rich source of potassium and folic acid. Potassium is extremely necessary to keep your dog’s blood pressure in check and is thus helpful in reducing the risk of cardiac diseases. Potassium is also necessary for various body functions like conduction of nerve impulses, contraction of muscles, osmoregulation inside the cell, and much more. Therefore, it is an important mineral which is found in fair amounts in asparagus.
Low Calorie Content
Asparagus is for you if you are concerned about the dog’s daily caloric intake because he is becoming obese. Feed it to your dog without any concerns. It offers only 20 calories per 100-gram serving. Low calorie and high nutrient content make asparagus good for your dog. It acts as a natural weight gain remedy.
How Much Asparagus Can Dogs Eat?
Too much of anything is bad. The same goes for the food. For example, eating asparagus in moderate amounts won’t hurt your dog, whereas large quantities can make your dog sick. In addition, it can cause digestive upset. While an adult dog’s body can digest it easily when fed after a few days, treat it as an occasional treat for small dogs.
Moreover, before adding new food to the dog’s daily diet, dog parents are advised to check for allergies. It’s best to start with small quantities. If the food turns out to be safe, one can increase the quantity later on.
Possible Downsides of Asparagus
If not fed in the right way, asparagus can put the dog’s health at risk. It can cause the following issues:
Many dogs eat whatever is in front of them without giving it any thought. Dogs don’t know what’s good and what’s bad for them. You are the one responsible for making asparagus consumption safe for them. Don’t let your dog eat asparagus stalk without cutting it into bite-size pieces. The stalk is quite long and can cause a choking hazard.
Healthy foods become the reason for ill health when not eaten the right way. For example, feeding your pup raw asparagus plant or too much asparagus can deteriorate the dog’s digestive system. Symptoms of an upset stomach include vomiting and diarrhea. He might be licking his lips or gulping again and again to resist nausea. He becomes too sluggish and loses his appetite.
Asparagus fall on the list of the vegetables that are safe for dog consumption. Cooking asparagus for you dog is a great idea as raw one is not safe for him. It can eat both the stalk and the tips. Asparagus fern is harmful for dogs because of the presence of a toxic chemical. Common asparagus provides enormous health benefits, such as promoting digestive health and immunity.
It can be added to the dog food in a variety of ways. But make sure to feed in moderate amounts as large amounts can become the cause of health issues.