Can Dogs Eat Cranberries

Can Dogs Eat Cranberries

Author WDF Staff


If you are a dog owner, you probably noticed your dog circling you when you eat. They know what’s happening, and they would love to get a piece of your food. Dogs don’t care if you are eating a steak or eating cranberries; they just want some.

Many dog owners wondered, “Can dogs eat cranberries?” especially around Thanksgiving when cranberry sauce becomes an essential part of the dinner. We are always tempted to share some things we eat with our dogs, but we need to answer the first question: Is it safe?

Luckily, cranberries are safe for dogs. If fed in appropriate amounts, dogs can enjoy cranberries and even reap some health benefits cranberries can offer them. However, like with everything else you would want to include in your dog’s diet, there are things to keep in mind. If you think about giving your dog cranberries, you should be cautious. Here is what you need to know about giving cranberries to dogs.

Are cranberries safe for dogs to eat?

The shortest possible answer would be - yes. You can share some cranberries with your dog. The key to safely giving them to your dog is moderation. Overfeeding your dog with this delicious little fruit can lead to gastrointestinal upset. Your dog might vomit or get diarrhea. Also, smaller dogs should eat them slowly because cranberries pose a choking hazard.

cranberries closeup

Dried cranberries are also safe for dogs to eat. However, not all dogs love them. Keep in mind to give them only a few, and not overdo it. If you are getting them store-bought dried cranberries, make sure they are not mixed with other fruits. Different packages contain all sorts of dried fruits, and among them, there can be raisins. Raisins are toxic to dogs and can lead to kidney failure. Even just a few raisins can cause severe health problems for small dogs.

Are they healthy?

Fruits, in general, are packed with healthy nutrients that offer many health benefits to humans and dogs. They often contain vital vitamins, sugars, minerals, and some make great antioxidants. Cranberries are no exception, and humans can reap different health benefits from eating this delicious small fruit. Some of the best nutrients in cranberries are;

  • Antioxidants - Cranberries are fantastic antioxidants. Alternative medicine uses them for battling severe diseases like cancer. Antioxidants keep our cells safe from free radicals.
  • Vitamin C - Vitamin C is an essential vitamin the body uses in many functions. This vitamin is necessary for the growth, development, and repair of all body tissue. It also boosts the immune system, helps wounds to heal, and maintains bones and cartilages.
  • Fiber - Dietary fiber is essential for proper digestion. It adds bulk to the dog’s stool, and it is perfect for dogs suffering from diarrhea. One of the most popular and useful supplements packed with fiber is pumpkin. Check out this article for more info - Pumpkin for dogs.
  • Potassium - Potassium is an essential mineral in the body. It plays a role in different body functions. It helps control fluid balance, nerve signals, and muscle contractions. 

cranberries on spoon

Is cranberry sauce safe for dogs?

Cranberry sauce is an essential part of every Thanksgiving dinner. It is delicious, and it makes a great addition to the traditional Thanksgiving dinner. Whether or not cranberry sauce is safe for dogs will depend on the recipe.

There are several ways to make cranberry sauce, and some recipes include alcohol. Things like brandy are added to it, but those types of sauce are not safe for dogs to eat. Alcohol is toxic to them, and even the smallest amount can cause severe problems. The safest option is plain cranberry sauce. Another problem is that traditional sauce is packed with sugar. Make sure you don’t feed your dog too much sauce and keep an eye on them after eating it.

Cranberries and UTI

The real power of cranberries is their effect on urinary tract infections in humans. If you ever had the bitter pleasure of suffering from a UTI, you probably heard that cranberry tea or freshly squeezed juice is the answer. The significant effect of this fruit on UTI cannot be denied, but what about dogs? Does it have the same impact on them?

wild cranberries

Unfortunately, the effect is not the same. For dogs to feel the health benefits humans can get from cranberries, they would have to eat a lot more than what is considered safe for them. The amount needed would cause them a stomach upset, and in the long term, overfeeding your dog on cranberries can lead to the formation of calcium oxalate bladder stones.

If you want to know more about UTI in dogs, check out this article - UTI in dogs.

How to safely give your dog cranberries?

The key thing to remember is - moderation. Treat cranberries as you would treat dog treats, and then cut that amount in half. Dogs can have cranberries, but giving them too much will cause more problems than they solve.

Before you decide to implement anything new to your dog’s diet, you should ask your vet for advice. Make sure your dog doesn’t have any bladder, liver, or kidney problems, and cranberries will be a viable option. However, it is best to check with your vet first.

If you want to know more about which fruits are safe for dogs to eat, check out this article - Fruits that are safe for dogs.

World Dog Finder team

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