Sweet potatoes are pretty amazing. They're delicious, nutritious, and versatile. But did you know they're also great for dogs?
That's right! Sweet potatoes are a superfood for dogs. They provide many health benefits, including improved digestion, stronger bones and teeth, and better overall health. Not just for tasty pies or the family dinner table—sweet potatoes can be as simple as a dried dog treat, canned puree, in a dog biscuit, or even freeze-dried. It’s such a versatile ingredient that no matter how picky your dog, there’s bound to be a way to make sure they can get the health benefits that come with adding sweet potato to their diet.
Ready to learn more about this unique vegetable? Let’s dig in.
Why is sweet potato good for dogs?
There are many reasons why sweet potatoes are good for dogs. they're packed with essential vitamins and minerals. They're also a great source of fiber, which is important for healthy digestion. Sweet potatoes are also low in calories and fat, making them a great treat for dogs who are watching their weight. And last but not least, sweet potatoes are loaded with antioxidants, which have numerous health benefits.
Let's break that down a little.
Sweet potatoes are packed with much needed vitamins, minerals, and nutrients
These include vitamins A, C, and B12, as well as potassium and manganese. Vitamin A is important for eye health, while vitamin C boosts the immune system. B12 is essential for red blood cell production, and potassium helps maintain healthy blood pressure levels. Manganese is a mineral that helps with energy production and metabolism. Sweet potatoes are also a good source of complex carbs, which provide your dog with sustained energy throughout the day without immediately flooding their system with harmful sugars.
Sweet potatoes are a great source of fiber
Fiber is essential for keeping your dog's digestive system healthy and regular. As a dietary supplement, the levels of fiber in sweet potatoes can also help overweight dogs lose weight by making them feel fuller for longer. This means that whether a dog is having digestive issues (think anything from constipation to diarrhea) or needs to regulate their diet to lead a healthy life, the fiber in sweet potatoes can help.
But how does it work? The secret is that sweet potatoes are an excellent source of both soluble and insoluble fiber.
Soluble fiber dissolves in water and forms a gel-like substance, which helps slow down the digestion process. This is important because it allows your dog's body to properly absorb all of the nutrients from their food. Insoluble fiber doesn't dissolve in water and helps add bulk to your dog's stool, which can also help with regularity. The fiber content of sweet potatoes absorbs any excess moisture in the digestive system and regulates the movement of waste.
Sweet potatoes are low in calories and fat
In addition to the nutrient-dense nature of sweet potatoes, because they are low calorie and low fat, they can be guiltlessly given to nearly all dogs, regardless of their current health status. This makes them a great treat for dogs who are watching their weight or have diabetes.
Sweet potatoes are loaded with antioxidants
These include beta-carotene, quercetin, and anthocyanins. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant that helps protect cells from damage. Quercetin is an anti-inflammatory agent, which can help reduce swelling and pain associated with arthritis or other inflammatory conditions. Anthocyanins are a type of flavonoid that give sweet potatoes their characteristic orange color. These antioxidants have been shown to improve heart health, cognitive function, and cancer prevention.
What type of sweet potato is best for dogs?
There are two primary types of sweet potatoes—white and orange. Both types are good for dogs, but the orange variety is higher in antioxidants.
Can I give my dog sweet potato every day?
Yes! Sweet potatoes can be given to your dog daily as a supplement or treat. If you're feeding your dog sweet potato as a treat, we recommend sticking to around one ounce per 20 pounds of body weight. If you're feeding your dog sweet potatoes as a supplement, we recommend giving them around one-half cup per 20 pounds of body weight.
How do I get my dog to eat sweet potatoes?
Every dog likes different treats. Some like to chew, others like to savor, and others will only eat meat. So not every dog will be open to eating a simple sweet potato treat. In this case, you may need to get a little sneaky in order to make sure your dog gets the benefit of this superfood.
Try giving sweet potato as a treat
We have some pretty awesome sweet potato dog treats. They are soft, chewy, and addicting for pups who LOVE to chew. You could break them up into small pieces and give them as a bite-sized treat, or offer your dog whole slices to chew on for a while.
If your dog refuses sweet potato as a treat, it's time to supplement.
Mix it into their food
Pure, simple, single-ingredient, canned sweet potato puree is about to become your dog’s new best friend. You can mix sweet potato puree into your dog's food to add some extra flavor, nutrition, and moisture. This is a great way to get picky eaters to enjoy sweet potatoes.
Add it to their kibble with a little canned dog food and mix in some hot water. The sweet potato puree will bind everything together and create a delicious, moist, nutrient-rich meal for your pup.
More importantly, you'll be able to get this extremely healthy superfood into them because it's incorporated into a nearly impossible-to-resist meal!
Sweet potatoes are a great addition to your dog's diet for a variety of reasons. They're high in fiber, which helps with regularity and digestion. They're low-calorie and low fat, making them a guilt-free treat option. And most importantly, they're loaded with nutrients that improve heart health, cognitive function, and overall wellness. You can feed your dog sweet potatoes every day, either as a treat or a supplement. If you're having trouble getting them to eat it, try sneaking it into their food. With all of the benefits that sweet potatoes offer, there's no reason not to add them to your dog's diet!