Can Dogs Eat Kale? Benefits & Risks For Your Dog

Can Dogs Eat Kale?

Well…it’s complicated

Kale is full of antioxidants that help to prevent oxidative stress that happens when there is an imbalance of antioxidants and free radicals in your dog’s body.

For all dog lovers who want to give kale to their furry friends but are worried about how to feed kale to dogs? Is Kale safe for dogs?

Don’t worry, we’re going to break down every step for you to understand more clearly.

Can Dogs Eat Kale? Is Kale Safe For Dogs?

Kale has various health benefits and is added to smoothies, salads, and healthy foods. But is kale safe for your dog also?

As I already said it’s complicated.

You can give kale to your dog in small amounts without too much risk of illness. It is not considered toxic as long as it is fed plain and in moderation. It is full of nutrients and has benefits for your pet.

But you have to follow a few rules before feeding kale to your dog which obviously means that you should know which type of kale your dog can eat and when.

Which Type of Kale Can I Feed My Dog?

1. Raw Kale

Dogs can eat raw kale but sometimes it can create digestion issues like some tummy trouble and gas.

Raw kale isn’t a good option for dogs with sensitive stomachs as they can experience difficulties while digesting it.

That’s why cooked kale is easier to digest and gentle for your pup’s tummy. Before feeding kale to your dog it is best to boil or bake it.

2. Curly Kale

Curly kale can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet but if it is little raw or steamed.

Raw kale is not a safe option for every dog and should always be fed in moderation.

3. Kale Stems

Kale stems are fibrous, tough, bitter, and have high oxalate content in them. Although kale stems are edible and you might have thought to give the stem to the dog thinking they will enjoy them as a crunchy snack.

Your pet might like it but due to the high oxalate content kale stems can cause some health risks for your dog as developing kidney stones.

If you want to feed your dog with kale stems, you can boil them but giving raw kale can be a choking hazard.

What If My Dog Eats Too Much Kale?

If your dog eats too much kale it will probably give your pup gas, diarrhea, and gut ache.

Dogs with sensitive stomachs can be unwell if they eat a little bit of kale.

If your doggo got to eat a lot of kale, then call your vet immediately.

Iodine

Iodine is required by dogs to stay healthy and prevent hypothyroidism. But too much iodine intake can also cause severe problems from stomach upset to cancer.

If your dog has any thyroid issues, then it’s better to avoid feeding them kale because of the high content of iodine in the leaves.

But if your dog is healthy then kale is safe and nutritious as long as they eat it a little every now and then.

Bladder Stones

Kale contains soluble oxalates that are needed but you need to limit it in your dog’s diet. Because soluble oxalates when bound with calcium can lead to kidney stones. It’s best to avoid oxalate-rich food if your pup has kidney or bladder problems.

Icky Isothiocyanates

Kale contains Icky Isothiocyanates which is a natural compound that can also be found in other veggies like broccoli. It’s totally okay to have it in small amounts but too much of it can cause irritation and can also become toxic for your dog’s health.

Nutritional Value of Kale

We stand by our original statement. Things are complicated. And while you should avoid feeding raw kale to your dog, steamed or little cooked is as safe as it gets.

Besides, if you’ve only just begun looking into the benefits of kale for dogs, why not look at its nutritional value?

Kale is packed with vitamin A, C, and K which helps in boosting your pup’s immune system, and healing ability, and maintain healthy eyes. The powerful antioxidants help to fight free radicals and stop oxidative damage to cells.

The anti-inflammatory effect helps to reduce the risk of cancer.

Manganese present in kale is also useful for producing energy as well as for creating enzymes. Calcium and potassium help with connective tissues and maintaining strong bones.

Benefits of Antioxidants In Kale

Kale is full of antioxidants that help to prevent oxidative stress that happens when there is an imbalance of antioxidants and free radicals in your dog’s body. Antioxidants help to stabilize free radicals and also stops them from reacting with your dog’s cell and DNA.

Carotenoids

Carotenoids are a rich source of antioxidants that helps your dog from free radicals. They are also responsible for different colors in plants, fungi, bacteria, and algae. Kale has three major carotenoids:

  1. Zeaxanthin
  2. Lutein
  3. Beta-carotene

These carotenoids help to restore the immune system, prevent cancer, improve cognitive function, improve vision, and protect skin from sun damage.

They also help to protect against retinal detachments, cataracts, age-related macular degeneration, and blue light damage.

Flavonoids

Kale has two most common flavonoids that are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.

  1. Kaempferol
  2. Quercetin

Both of these antioxidants help to reduce inflammation, fight allergies, protect the brain, control diabetes, and manage liver and metabolic diseases. They also help to protect against cancer.

Vitamin C

Although dogs produce their own vitamin C, sometimes your dog needs an extra boost of it. If your dog has allergies and needs an immune system boost then it may be a good idea to add vitamin C to your dog’s dish. It is also used to produce anti-stress hormones.

One cup of kale has more vitamin C than spinach or a whole orange.

How To Feed Kale To Dogs?

You can follow these steps before feeding kale to your dog.

  • Try to buy organic kale when you can.
  • Before feeding kale to your pup, make sure to wash it thoroughly in order to remove pesticides from it.
  • You can chop or make purree of the leaves which will help your dog’s digestion.
  • Try to steam or cook kale whichever way your dug prefers eating it.
  • You can serve kale with some source of protein like beef or chicken.
  • Make sure to serve plain and avoid adding any spices, herbs, or oil that can be toxic to your dog.
  • Always serve moderately.

Kale Recipes For Dogs

Let’s have a look at some kale recipes for dogs.

Crunchy Kale Chips For Dogs

Ingredients:

  • 1 bunch of kale;
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil.

Procedure:

  1. Wash and dry the kale properly. Now remove the stems and tear the leaves in the form of chips.
  2. Now, massage the kale chips with olive oil in a bowl.
  3. Line the baking sheet with parchment paper and gently lay the chips on the tray.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes until they become crispy.
  5. Cool the chips for a few minutes and serve.

Kale & Oats Dog Treat

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups chopped kale;
  • 3 cups oats;
  • 2 apples;
  • 2 tbsp honey.

Procedure:

  1. In a food processor, grind the flour until it has flour-like consistency.
  2. Remove the core and seeds from the apple and chop them. Grind it until it resembles apple sauce.
  3. In a mixing bowl, add oats, apple mixture, kale, and honey. You can add oats or kale if the mixture is runny and if it is dry you can add water or honey.
  4. Using a cookie cutter, cut the shapes from the dough and place them on the baking tray.
  5. Bake the cookies for 15 minutes at 350F and serve.

Fun Facts About Kale

Alright, so that was all about whether your dog can or cannot eat kale.

Well, we also have some fun facts about kale that we thought to share with you today!

  1. The word kale came from the Scottish name for the plant Kail.
  2. Kale helps to lower the risk of certain cancers and is packed with antioxidants and other nutrients.
  3. Kale belongs to the same family as cabbage, sprouts, and collards.
  4. Kale doesn’t cause hypothyroidism if you take it in small amounts.
  5. One cup of kale has more vitamin C than spinach or a whole orange.

Wrapping Up!

You can give kale to your dog in small amounts without any risk of illness. It is not considered toxic as long as it is fed plain and in moderation.

It is full of nutrients and has benefits for your pet. Try to steam or cook kale whichever way your dug prefers eating it. Don’t give too much kale as it will upset the stomach of your dog.

Let us know in the comments if you or your dog like to eat kale. How do you serve it to your dog?

FAQs

Can Dogs Eat Kale?

Yes, dogs can eat kale if fed in moderation.

Does kale cause gas in dogs?

If you feed too much kale to your dog then it can cause gas in dogs.

Is kale good for a dog’s eyes?

Kale supports vision and colon health in your dog.

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