6 Health Benefits of Pumpkin for Dogs
Not only do we love decorating pumpkins for Halloween, this brilliant superfood is useful all year round. Pumpkins are highly nutritious and packed with essential minerals, which is why all our dog food recipes contain this super ingredient (we're slightly obsessed). There are various ways pumpkins can benefit dogs and that’s why it's a great choice for their bums, tums and overall well-being. We’ve rounded up 6 top benefits of why pumpkins are an amazing superfood.
1. High in fibre, easy digestion
Since pumpkin is so packed with nutrients, it is renowned for its digestive benefits. The high fibre content in pumpkin can help regulate your dog's digestive system, alleviating issues like constipation, diarrhoea and bum ‘scooting’. Pumpkin contains prebiotics, which are great for your dog’s gut. Pumpkin is also beneficial for your dog to ingest if they are feeling unwell since it is easy on their stomach. If your dog has anal gland issues, eating pumpkin will help express them naturally.
2. Good for weight management
As many as 1 in 14 dogs suffer from obesity. Pumpkins can help dogs maintain a healthy weight, as it promotes a feeling of fullness without adding many additional calories. If your dog is struggling with weight issues, pumpkin can be especially helpful if you're looking to assist your dog in maintaining or losing weight.
3. Helps maintain healthy skin and coat
The vitamins and antioxidants found in pumpkin can contribute to a shinier coat and healthier skin for your dog. Regular consumption of pumpkin can help alleviate dry, itchy skin and reduce shedding. Specifically, Vitamin A plays a vital role in maintaining healthy skin and mucous membranes, which serve as the first line of defence against bacteria.
4. Assists immune function
Vitamins A, C & E present in the superfood pumpkin are vital for dogs to maintain a strong immune system. These vitamins help your dog's body fend off infections and illnesses. Vitamin A is necessary for the proper functioning of a dog's immune system as it helps maintain the integrity of mucous membranes in the respiratory, digestive, and urinary tracts, meaning less inflammation. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps neutralise free radicals and reduces oxidative stress, promoting a healthier immune response. Vitamin E can help further support the immune system by protecting cell membranes from damage caused by free radicals and assists the function of white blood cells.
5. Hydration and Electrolyte Balance
Since pumpkins are 94% water, they are good for rehydration when your dog is having intestinal issues. Pumpkins are also particularly useful during hot weather, if you have an active dog or if your dog is prone to urinary tract infections due to their natural high water content. Additionally, pumpkins contain essential electrolytes like potassium, which can help maintain proper muscle and nerve function. Pumpkins are also packed with essential nutrients such as folate, which helps ensure proper function of cells.
6. Supports and protects vision
Pumpkins are packed with beta-carotene, which dogs then convert into vitamin A, an essential nutrient for maintaining good vision (useful so they can spot squirrels from a mile away!). Pumpkin also has two important compounds called lutein and zeaxanthin, which studies have shown can lower the prevalence of cataracts and even slow down the aging process. Vitamin A is a key component of the retinol molecule, which is involved in the formation of the light-sensitive cells in the eyes (photoreceptors) and also helps dogs see in low light conditions.
In summary, you can go ahead and let your furry best friend enjoy this tail-wagging, vet approved superfood that is low in calories and high in fibre, with no qualms. Pumpkin can support a dog's immune system by providing essential antioxidants and nutrients and is a healthy and delicious superfood for your dog. Many dogs enjoy the taste of pumpkin, making it an excellent option for rewarding good behaviour or simply adding variety to their diet. As well as containing fibre, nutrient-rich pumpkins contribute to a healthy canine diet and support various aspects of your dog's health, from their immune system to their digestive tract. So make sure your dog gets plenty of immunity boosting pumpkin this season. Shop HOWND Superfood today and get 20% off your subscription for life. HOWND Wet Superfood flavours contain fresh pumpkin as a main ingredient.