Every dog can be an well-mannered enjoyable member of the family and a pet the whole family can enjoy! DogSnog...because we love our dogs!
It's October. .
It's that time of year when PSK rules.
That would be Pumpkin. Spice. Latte. Of course!
Actually, anything pumpkin is at the top of the menu list, especially if it combines cream cheese and caramel, right?
But did you know pumpkin is good for your dog also? And most dogs naturally love the sweet taste of pumpkin! Canned natural pumpkin puree (no sugar or spices added), pumpkin seeds and cooked fresh pumpkin have many health benefits.
The pumpkin flesh itself is low fat, low in sodium and cholesterol, and rich in nutrients such as vitamin A, vitamin C, magnesium, beta-carotene (which gives pumpkin that lovely orange color), potassium, iron, and zinc. The pumpkin seeds are high in essential fatty acids and antioxidants that are good for your dog’s skin and coat, and may even reduce the risk of developing cancer.
I recommend pumpkin a lot for dog clients that have dogs with digestive problems or sensitive stomachs. The food I recommend with almost 100% positive feedback for people that say they are having trouble finding a food their dog will eat, stomach issues when changing foods or just common diarrhea is Nature’s Recipe Grain Free Easy to Digest Chicken, Sweet Potato and Pumpkin . This particular style is available at most pet specialty stores, affordable and rated 4 (out of a possible 5) stars from www.dogfoodadvisor.com .
Two of the most popular and common uses of pumpkin for your dog are for digestive health and weight loss.
1) Digestive Health. Pumpkin is a great natural remedy because of its high fiber content that helps keep dogs regular. Diarrhea is typically a symptom of something, usually with the digestive system, more than a disease. A lot of things can cause diarrhea in your dog but whatever the cause, in most cases, a simple and natural solution is canned pumpkin puree. The fiber in the pumpkin absorbs excess water in the stool and it usually firms up quite quickly. For diarrhea, the typical amount recommended is 2 tsp for small dogs and 2 tbsp for large breed dogs.- or 1 tsp per 10lbs of dog.
Surprisingly, if your dog is constipated, a little more of the pumpkin will also soften the stool and relieve the stomach problems associated with the constipation.
2) Weight Loss. Obesity in animals greatly reduces their life span and, like humans, leads to many other health issues. Pumpkin is a nutrient-packed, fiber rich, low fat food that's also low in sodium and cholesterol. If your dog needs to shed a few pounds, try replacing a portion of their food – 1/3 up to ½ the amount - with an equal amount of canned, natural pumpkin (no added spices or sugar). Ideally, your dog should be fed 2 times a day. Instead of cutting back on food and having a hungry dog, with 3 grams of fiber per cup, the pumpkin lets them feel full, satisfied and less like to get into things.
Pumpkin is 90% water and also helps with dehydration, improves digestion by increasing gastric juices essential to proper gastrointestinal and urinary health.
A few tips and reminders – with pumpkin a little is good, but more is NOT better.
Pumpkin is a good addition to your dogs regular meal when changing foods to help decrease the possibility of an upset stomach. And while the antioxidants and fatty acids in fresh pumpkin seeds help maintain healthy skin and shiny coats, go easy on the amount given to your dog. The seeds are also best when roasted and ground up. To roast the seeds, coat seeds with a little olive oil - NO salt- and roast 5-10 minutes @375 degrees. They can be stored in an airtight container or frozen.
A great website for pumpkin dog treats you can make your self is http://www.best-dog-treat-recipes.com/pumpkin-dog-treats.html .
Now, a little treat for yourself! Here is the recipe for one of my favorite pumpkin cookies- Soft Pumpkin Sugar Cookies with caramel cream cheese frosting. Oh YUM! http://www.chef-in-training.com/2015/10/soft-pumpkin-sugar-cookies-with-caramel-cream-cheese-frosting/ .
NOTE: I am NOT a Veterinarian so ALWAYS check with your dog’s veterinarian if your pet shows any signs of out of the ordinary behavior, starting a new diet or any issues that may require medical attention.
Dogs are a product of their environment. Provide a good environment for good choices. DogSNog...because we love our dogs!