The debate on the suitability of human foods for dogs is a conflicted one. The advocates argue that since our foods are safe for us, then why not for our dogs? The antagonists believe that not all human foods are safe for dogs.
Prunes are one such food that has elicited a heated debate. Since these fruits ease constipation in us humans, then can dogs eat prunes to give them relief too?
In this article, we are going to discuss this topic and come up with a way forward in regards to dogs and prunes.
Prunes and constipation: Myth or reality?
We humans occasionally turn to prunes for relief when our stomachs get backed up. This fruit helps in restoring regular bowel movements in us, so could it have the same effect in our dogs? After all, we are all mammals, right?
However much you may love your canine friend, not all remedies that work for you will be for your dog. Omnivores and carnivores require totally different nutritional needs. If you like fruits, your canine fiends do not necessarily have to like them as well.
Constipation is a common occurrence in dogs and can be caused by a number of reasons. It is characterized by infrequent defecation or straining during the process. The stool that passes is also harder or firmer than it would normally be.
When your dog is experiencing constipation, you are tempted to give her all sorts of concoctions to relieve her of the immense discomfort in the litter box. Prunes are at the top of this list. This is a one-off experience, so keep calm and never panic.
So, Can Dogs Eat Prunes?
As carnivores, dogs do not actually fancy eating fruits. Most dogs would just ignore them. Some dogs are curious and canny though and would take a crack at anything you throw their way. Prunes are not recommended for dogs as the benefits of this fruit to humans do not apply to dogs.
There are no nutritional benefits that your dog would derive from eating prunes either. Feeding prunes to your dog(s) are like taking her through a pointless and time-wasting exercise. However, there are no documented adverse effects that this fruit has to dogs though.
There are a few documented occasions where dogs have fed on their owners’ prunes without experiencing any side effects. Dogs have also survived since time immemorial without having to rely on prunes. Wild dogs do not consume these fruits no matter how appealing they would be.
Prunes whether dried or fresh contain too much fiber content. Fiber is essential to humans, but not quite to dogs. In fact, too much of it causes diarrhea in your canine friend as they find it hard to digest the fruit. So instead of doing good, it will be worsening the condition your dog is in.
The pits of the fruit also contain cyanide which will obviously poison your dog slowly. This would not be worth your efforts to control constipation. Even ASPCA stipulates that your dog should not be fed to any part of the plant, including the leaves and stems as they also contain cyanide.
What about Prune Juice?
Now that the “can dogs eat prunes” question has been answered, what about prune juice? Is it recommended? Just like the actual fruit, prune juice should never be given to your dog. The juice contains too much-concentrated sugars that are not healthy for dogs.
It could be the fruit juice, stewed prunes or pureed prunes. All have the same effect and should never be given to dogs. This is unless you want your dog to undergo various health complications in the future. No responsible dog owner in his right senses would want to see his dog suffer from any health-related complications.
What Is the Way Forward?
The reason why most dog owners would give their dogs prunes is to solve the constipation problem. However, with appropriate dog care initiative, it does not have to reach this point where feeding prunes to your dog is the only resort you have.
You have to keep watch on your dog at all times to avoid any complications. Any slight change in the dog’s behavior will be detected as soon as it occurs.
When you notice the symptoms of constipation such as difficulty in pooping, provide sufficient drinking water and canned food to restore the water levels in your dog during constipation and aid in bowel movements.
Make the Wise Decision for Your Dog
Generally, prunes are NOT RECOMMENDED for dogs. They add no value to a dog’s nutritional and dietary needs. However beneficial prunes may be to humans, the same does not apply to dogs. The key is to keep your dog hydrated. Ensure that her water dish is always full and give her wet food at all times.
Closely monitor your dog as you give her quality dog food and the “can dogs eat prunes” question will be the least of your worries.