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Can Dogs Eat Green Beans? Vet-Approved Feeding Facts

Written by: Misty Layne

Last Updated on March 26, 2024 by Dogster Team

close up of green beans

Can Dogs Eat Green Beans? Vet-Approved Feeding Facts


Dr. Alice Athow-Frost Photo


Dr. Alice Athow-Frost

BVM BVS MRCVS (Veterinarian)

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

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Our canine companions are excellent at sneaking food off our plates or out of our hands, but that food isn’t always the best for them. Sometimes, people food has more fat and sodium than our dogs need, while other times, it contains ingredients that are toxic to them. But vegetables should be fairly safe for dogs to eat, right? In some cases, yes. But what about green beans?

Can dogs eat green beans? The answer is yes! In fact, green beans have been deemed not only safe but healthy for pups. So, if you’ve been hunting for a healthier treat for your favorite dog, green beans could be just the thing! However, there are a few things to know before feeding green beans to your pet.

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Why Can Dogs Eat Green Beans?

Why is it safe for dogs to eat green beans? For starters, there is nothing toxic about green beans, so you don’t need to worry about them harming your pet. For another, they’re low-calorie, making them a fantastic treat (in moderation, of course). And finally, green beans are an excellent source of many essential nutrients (as you’ll see below), making them a healthy snack for your dog. Plus, many dogs actually enjoy green beans!

Green beans
Image Credit: MikeGoad, Pixabay

Benefits of Feeding Green Beans to Dogs

Green beans contain a wealth of essential minerals and vitamins your dog requires.  If your dog is being fed a good-quality, balanced kibble, these minerals and vitamins should already be taken care of.  However, there’s no problem in offering some healthy variety alongside your dog’s regular food. Just a few vitamins and minerals found in green beans are:

  • Iron
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamins B3 (Niacin) and B9 (Folate)
  • Vitamin K
  • Calcium
  • Potassium
  • Magnesium

Plus, green beans are heavy on fiber, which is great for helping dogs feel full for longer and for keeping their bowel movements regular. Add in the fact that green beans are low-calorie, and you can see how they can be a healthy snack for your dog! However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t still exercise caution when feeding this veggie to your pup.

Dogs can have sensitive stomachs, and an overabundance of green beans could cause stomach upset because of all the fiber they contain. And, as mentioned above, while all of the above minerals and vitamins are essential, if your pup is eating a balanced diet already (as they should be!), they don’t necessarily need the extra nutrients found in green beans.

So, green beans are safe and healthy; just remember to give them to your pet in moderation!

golden retriever dog eating food from feeding bowl
Image Credit: AYO Production, Shutterstock

How Should Green Beans Be Fed to My Dog?

The most important thing to remember about green beans is that they should be plain if you give them to your pet. Green beans are often made with other ingredients, and these other ingredients can be unhealthy or even dangerous to your dog. For example, canned green beans are high in salt. In half a cup of tinned green beans (120g), there is 290 mg mg of sodium.  For a medium sized dog, more than half a teaspoon of salt can lead to salt toxicosis, so staying away from highly salted foods is a good idea.

You also want to avoid any green beans that have been cooked with any member of the Allium genus, such as onions or garlic, as those foods are toxic to canines. If this veggie has been cooked with spices or oils, it should also be avoided, as those can upset a sensitive dog’s stomach.  You should always be careful of the size of the green bean you’re giving to your pup—if the green bean is large and your dog is small, it could pose a choking hazard (although this isn’t likely).

So, as long as green beans are plain, they’re fine. You can serve them to your pup however you want, whether raw, steamed, chopped, or some other way.

Green beans
Image Credit: Free-Photos, Pixabay

Canines & The Green Bean Diet

If your dog is carrying extra weight and you’ve spent time online searching for ways to help them lose that weight, you might’ve encountered the “green bean diet”. What is the green bean diet? It’s a diet plan that slowly incorporates green beans into your dog’s diet by replacing a percentage of their normal food with this veggie. Since green beans are safe and healthy for canines, it sounds like a pretty good weight-loss plan, right?


While this diet sounds good in theory, in reality, it has serious downsides, as described below:

  • Your dog missing out on important nutrients they would be getting from their normal food (as green beans don’t contain every vitamin and mineral they need) could lead to malnutrition.
  • There isn’t enough protein in green beans to meet what a dog needs each day, which could lead to muscle mass loss.
  • Because a dog is missing out on vital nutrients while on the green bean diet, any weight they might lose could be regained the moment they switch back to dog food because of changes to their metabolism.

Overall, this diet isn’t safe (and you should speak to your vet before attempting any diet with your dog; your pet may have an underlying health condition causing them to gain weight). So, avoid using the green bean diet if your pup is carrying a few extra pounds.

What you can do is replace some of their dog treats with green beans, as part of a vet-approved weight loss plan.  Doing this will reduce your dog’s overall calorie intake but the green beans are not replacing balanced nutrition, they are replacing highly calorific treats.

a sick vizsla dog lying on a dog bed at home
Image Credit: Edgar Feliz, Shutterstock

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Green beans are a delicious and healthy treat for the majority of canines! Just keep in mind that you should only give plain green beans to your pet, and this veggie should be offered in moderation. Green beans contain many healthy minerals and nutrients that are wonderful for your dog, but they also lack in other areas, so they aren’t a replacement for a balanced diet, even in overweight dogs.

You should also avoid the green bean diet that replaces a portion of your pup’s food with green beans as a way to lose weight, as this could be dangerous for your canine pal and lead to malnutrition.

Featured Image Credit: flockine, Pixabay

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