The Benefits of Sweet Potato for Dogs
What is a Sweet Potato?
Sweet potatoes are a complex carbohydrate and a natural energy source rich in vitamins and minerals.
Sweet potatoes, which originated in the Americas, are different from yams. In the U.S., however, the terms sweet potato and yam are often used interchangeably. Yams are typically only found in specialty markets, so what you’re likely to see at your regular grocery store is a sweet potato.
When Christopher Columbus arrived in the Americas in the 15th century, sweet potatoes were a staple crop. Columbus took some with him back to Spain and by the 16th century, gardens all over Europe were growing them.
While sweet potatoes have become very popular in recent years, you’re probably more accustomed to eating white potatoes. Sweet potatoes have more fiber and Vitamins C and A than white potato.
Can Dogs Eat Sweet Potatoes? The Benefits of Sweet Potato for Dogs
Sweet potato is safe for dogs, and can provide them a range of health benefits (and a sweet flavor they’ll love). Sweet potatoes are great for digestive health because they’re high in dietary fiber. They’re also low in fat and contain vitamin B6, vitamin C, and manganese.
Sweet potatoes are rich in the powerful antioxidant beta-carotene. Beta-carotene converts to Vitamin A in your dog’s body, which is essential for your dog’s vision, growth, and muscle strength. Symptoms of Vitamin A deficiency include night blindness and poor hair and skin quality.
How Do I Give My Dog Sweet Potato?
If you want to add sweet potatoes to your dog’s diet, trying steaming or boiling them. These methods help retain more nutritional value than roasting. Start by giving your dog a small amount. Depending on the size of your dog, start with between a teaspoon and a tablespoon. A sudden increase in fiber could create gastrointestinal issues, so start slow.
Another option is to slice and dehydrating sweet potatoes to create a chewy treat.