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4 min read

Can Dogs Eat Carrots?


By Leslie Ingraham

Published: 01/04/2023, edited: 01/10/2023

Reviewed by a licensed veterinary professional: Dr. Linda Simon, MVB MRCVS

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Many dogs enjoy chomping on veggies, but smart doggy parents know that not all vegetables are good for them. Carrots have a natural sweetness that fur babies love, along with a crunchiness that makes the orange veggie fun to eat. But are carrots safe for dogs? The answer is Yes! Not only are they safe and enjoyable, but they also deliver good nutrition for pups! 

Carrots are included as an ingredient in many commercial dog foods because they add pup-approved flavor along with vital nutrients. Let's take a look at why carrots are pawsome for dogs, and how to give them this crunchy treat!

Do dogs like carrots?

In general, dogs love carrots, especially if they're offered from puppyhood. Carrot treats are pawfect for puppers who may enjoy a change from grainy treats and rawhide. Slightly sweet and chewy, a raw or cooked carrot hits the spot as a food topper, snack or meal addition. While Fido may want to get their mouth around a carrot prepared with honey, butter, or onions, it's best to feed them plain to avoid upset tummies or other problems.

Raw carrots of different colors

Health benefits of carrots for dogs

Carrots contain nutrients that can contribute to a pooch's health and happiness. Here are some of carrot's furbulous health benefits.

Soothe pain from teething

Puppies who are teething may experience pain as their chompers emerge. It's helpful for them to have something chilled or frozen to alleviate the soreness, and carrots are ideal for the job. They provide soothing, numbing coolness on the gums and give the pup a distracting activity at the same time. Broken up into small chunks to prevent choking, a frozen carrot can provide relief several times a day.

Assist in digestive and cardiac health

Carrots contain a rich supply of both soluble and insoluble fiber, each of which has actions that affect a doggo's health. Insoluble fiber helps regulate elimination by removing toxins from the intestinal tract, as well as stimulating intestinal movement to help the pup stay regular.

The soluble fiber in carrots absorbs water from the colon and adds it to the stool to make passage more comfortable by bulking and softening the solid waste. A carrot-munching fur baby may also experience better cardiac health as the insoluble fiber reduces cholesterol in the bloodstream.

Improves dental health

The texture of raw carrots helps to scrub food particles and tartar from dogs' teeth and stimulates gum tissue to keep it well-nourished and healthy. Feeding your dog carrots doesn't replace regular brushing, but they are effective in scouring the mouth, removing bacteria, and promoting blood flow. 

Contributes to skin and coat health

The antioxidants in carrots, such as vitamin A and vitamin C are powerful protectors of a doggo's skin and fur health. By fighting against free radicals that can damage cells and promoting the production of collagen, these nutrients promote healthy coats and skin. In addition, Vitamin A can improve vision, fetal development, immunity, and cell functioning.

How much carrot can I give my dog?

The amount of carrot that's safe to feed your dog will depend largely on their size. Moderation is key because giving them too much can cause problems like obesity or GI upset. Dogs with diabetes may need to consume less as carrots do contain a fair amount of sugar. It's always a good idea to consult with your veterinarian about feeding your dog new foods. 

Generally, a medium or large adult dog can safely eat a whole carrot or three baby carrots a day, two to three times a week. Each serving should be approximately a half-cup. Small breeds like Terriers and other small or miniature dogs can be given a few slices of baby carrot a day, a few times a week. This measures to about one-quarter cup or less.

Raw, steamed, microwaved, roasted, grated, and cubed carrots are all great ways to prepare carrots for your dog. Your fur baby may show a preference for one or more preparations. If preparing cooked carrot, steaming, roasting, or microwaving is preferable because boiling will leech out some of the nutrients. Cooked, mashed carrots may be preferable for older dogs or those with mouth problems. 

As with most human food, it's important to offer carrots washed and peeled. But carrots for dogs should always be unseasoned, with no butter, oil, saltonionsgarlic, or sweeteners.

Raw carrots lying next to glasses of carrot juice - Can dogs eat carrots

Can dogs drink carrot juice?

Carrot juice can be a great compliment to regular meals and treats that'll give your pup a nutrient boost, especially for older dogs or those with dental issues. However, once carrots are juiced, they do lose their fiber component. If your dog likes carrot juice, you can give it to them in small amounts once in a while. 

Can dogs choke on carrots?

Large canines like German Shepherds can handle a whole carrot at once, holding it between their paws and chewing off small pieces. Small and medium dogs may not have the biting power to do this, so to prevent choking, they should be given shredded, cubed, or soft-cooked carrots.

How would I know if my dog has a sensitivity or is allergic to carrots?

While dogs rarely develop an allergy to carrots, some may be sensitive, especially if they've eaten large amounts. Sometimes carrots will cause inflamed, itchy skin. Much less often, a dog will exhibit chronic gastrointestinal issues, ear infections, or wheezing.  If you suspect your dog may be allergic to carrots, stop feeding them and visit your veterinarian.

If a dog gets far too much beta-carotene, a nutrient in carrots, their skin can develop an abnormal yellow or orange coloring.

Carrots, like many fruits and vegetables, can provide a delicious health boost for your fur baby while filling them with low-calorie, low-fat nutrients. As with any new food, check in with your vet to be sure carrots are safe for your special doggo. 

A high-quality diet is essential for keeping your dog healthy, along with regular vet visits. Compare pet health insurance plans to save more than $270 a year on vet care.

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