Yams are a natural source of dietary fiber which assist human bodies in food digestion. The vegetable also contains plenty of nutrients essential for efficient metabolic functions of body organs. You might ask yourself if all the nutritional benefits you get from yams can be shared with your dog.
Can Dogs Eat Yams?
Yams are not toxic to dogs, as they provide many benefits to your furry friend if fed occasionally. According to most vets, yams contain vitamins and nutrients that are considered safe for canines. You can offer yams as a meal or treat to your dog; you can further add small portions to their regular meals to provide them with essential nutrients.
Benefits Of Yams To Dogs
Yams are natural vegetable tubers with a range of health benefits to dogs. These include:
Your dog’s regular diet needs to contain a generous amount of fiber to assist with bowel movements. Yams can alleviate your dog’s constipation or diarrhea, making them a natural remedy for the ailments.
Fiber works to stop stomach issues by adding mass to your dog’s stool. It also assists them in feeling full after eating hence aiding in losing weight for dogs suffering from obesity. Some fibers are known to displace calories making a dog’s meal healthier.
It is an antioxidant that is highly present in yams. It helps repel certain types of canine cancers while simultaneously offering protection from heart diseases. Beta-carotene works by conversion of vitamin A in a dog’s body which is critical in various functions such as:
- Bone growth
There are various symptoms of Beta-carotene deficiency that you can notice in a dog. Take your furry friend to the veterinarian for a diagnosis if you see the following signs:
- Poor skin
- Abnormal teeth or bone development
- Night blindness
- Abnormal reproductive development
While various vegetable tubers are cheaper, they are not healthier compared to yams. Potatoes that are dog friendly contain too many carbs and can potentially raise your dog’s blood sugar levels, putting them at a severe health risk. Your dog should eat yams as their carbs don’t go overboard.
How Do I Prepare Yams For My Dog?
Your canine should always eat cooked yams; they can either be baked or boiled as they will be easier to digest. To boil the yams, cut them into small pieces, place the chunks in a pot of water on medium heat, and let them cook for about 20 minutes or until soft.
To bake the yams, preheat your oven to 350F, cover your baking pan with aluminum foil and place sliced yam on it. Bake the tubers for about half an hour or until they become tender. While preparing the yams, avoid adding spices, as some, such as garlic and onion powder, are known to be toxic to dogs.
Can Dogs Eat Raw Yams?
When feeding yams to your dog, ensure that they are always cooked. Raw yams contain tannin, a toxic substance for dogs in large quantities. Your dog can experience various health problems after consumption of the harmful compound. However, the compound in yams is neutralized when cooked.
Though raw yams contain tannin, it is relatively low and might not affect your dog if only a small amount was accidentally eaten. The compound may not affect large breed dogs but can cause harm to puppies or smaller dog breeds as they have a lower tolerance. It is, therefore, important to keep raw yams far from your dog’s reach, even if there is a low chance of tannin poisoning.
Moreover, raw yams can be a choking hazard to your canine. They are not soft compared to cooked yams; hence they can choke your dog if not properly chewed. In rare cases, raw yams can cause blockage in a dog’s digestive tract, causing abdominal pain.
Can Dogs Eat Canned Yams?
Plain canned yams are safe for dogs to consume. However, the majority of canned yams available in the market are not plain as they contain preservatives and additional ingredients that may not be dog friendly. Ensure the yams are plain if you want to share a canned variety with your pooch.
Yams are safe for dogs to consume and offer many nutritional benefits. When preparing yams for your dog, it will be best if they are plain boiled. Feed your dog the tuber in moderation, served only as an accompaniment to their regular protein-based meals.