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Can Dogs Eat Carrots? Vet-Approved Nutrition Facts & FAQ

Written by: Annaliese Morgan

Last Updated on May 6, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can dogs eat carrots?

Can Dogs Eat Carrots? Vet-Approved Nutrition Facts & FAQ


Dr. Amanda Charles Photo


Dr. Amanda Charles

BVSc MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

While we all love a tasty treat from time to time, we often find ourselves wondering if the foods we’re snacking on are safe to offer dogs, especially when they look at us with those pleading puppy-dog eyes. If you are a carrot fan or have heard the hype about the nutritional goodness carrots provide, you might want to offer some to your dog too. But can dogs eat carrots?

The answer is yes, dogs can eat carrots as a healthy snack, they are low in calories and contain beneficial nutrients. They are also a common ingredient in dog foods.

Please note, though, that not all human foods are canine-friendly, and even then, some dog-safe human foods may not be the best for your pet as an individual. It’s always best to check with your veterinarian before offering your pooch any new foods.

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Why Can Dogs Eat Carrots?

Carrots are a safe, non-toxic, and healthy vegetable for both humans and canines. If given in moderation, carrots can benefit your dog. Not only is it a tasty treat that dogs of all ages can enjoy, but the crunchy texture is perfect for teething pups to relieve some of their discomfort. They are also low in calories and fairly affordable, making them the perfect option for training sessions if your dog enjoys them. In addition, they are a source of potassium, fiber, and vitamin A, as well as other vitamins.

dog eating carrot outdoors
Image Credit: Mojpe, Pixabay

Benefits of Feeding Carrots to Dogs

While the carrot has several notable benefits for dogs, treats—yes, even the healthy ones—should make up no more than 10% of their total daily calorie intake to avoid nutritional imbalances, digestive issues, and weight gain.

However, they are overall nutritious treats, so let’s check out some of the benefits of carrots for our dogs:
  • Vitamins -The carrot’s main nutrient is beta-carotene which gives this root vegetable its orange color. Beta-carotene is a precursor to vitamin A which is important for vision. Vitamin A is also required for growth and a healthy immune system among other benefits. Carrots also contain vitamins K and B6.
  • Fiber-Carrots are high in fiber which can help promote a healthy digestive system.
  • Low calorie-Carrots do contain natural sugars but are overall low in calories and fat which can make them a good treat option, especially when compared with many commercial dog treats.

Are Carrots Ever Bad for Dogs?

Anything can be “bad” for dogs in excess. So, moderation is key. Most dogs can eat carrots as an occasional treat, but they also contain natural sugars, which could contribute to weight gain and other issues. To reiterate, only allow treats to make up 10% of your dog’s diet.

Carrots may not be a suitable snack for all dogs, especially those with sensitive tummies or dogs on a special diet, so it’s best to get your vet’s approval before adding them to your dog’s diet. If you haven’t given your dog carrots before, always start with small quantities and watch out for any signs of digestive upset in particular, such as vomiting or diarrhea.

Image Credit: Syauqy Ahmad, Unsplash

Are Raw Carrots OK for Dogs?

Yes! Serving carrots raw seems to be the favorite style amongst dogs and is also the easiest way for dog parents to offer them. As with any veggie, wash them thoroughly first to remove any soil, debris, or bugs. Although the green stems and leaves are not toxic, they are best removed as they taste quite bitter and can cause upset stomachs. It’s usually best to cut the carrot into bite-size pieces suitable for the size of your dog. Small pieces can lodge in a dog’s throat causing choking, so supervision while offering raw carrots is advised.

If your dog prefers something softer, you may also offer cooked carrots via being steamed, or microwaved. These are the best options to retain as many of the nutrients as possible. However, be sure not to include any extra spices or seasonings. Cooked, mashed or pureed carrots can be offered in Kongs.

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Feeding carrots to dogs as treats can provide them with a healthy alternative to high-calorie, processed dog treats. However, it’s essential to feed carrots to dogs in moderation and in appropriate-sized chunks to prevent choking hazards. Additionally, if introducing carrots to a dog’s diet for the first time, it’s advisable to get the go-ahead from your vet and monitor for any adverse effects such as digestive issues. Overall, carrots can be a nutritious addition to a dog’s meal when given as part of a balanced and complete diet.

See Also: Can Dogs Eat Parsley? Vet-Reviewed Facts & FAQ

Featured Image Credit: Syauqy Ahmad, Unsplash

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