Bok choy, a Chinese cabbage, is a green leafy vegetable that has a light, sweet taste and a crunchy texture that humans love.
It is incredibly nutritious too, says Alison O. Callaghan in “Can Dogs Eat Bok Choy?” in the Happy Puppy site.
But are vegetables good for dogs?
When it comes to carbohydrates, Callaghan said vegetables are the healthiest option.
But most scientists have said that carbohydrates are not necessary for a healthy canine diet, compared to protein and fat, Callaghan noted.
Thus, dogs do not need vegetables to survive, Callaghan said.
Vegetables, however, “provide essential nutrients and health benefits as a supplement to their regular diet,” she added.
Green leafy vegetables, such as bok choy, are the best to give to your dog, as they resemble the grass he would eat in the wild.
But some vegetables are toxic to dogs, so please always research before giving any to your pet.
Is bok choy safe for dogs?
Bok choy is safe for dogs if given in moderation and with precautions, Callaghan said.
1. When giving any new food to your dog, always give a small piece only to see if the dog has an allergic reaction to the food such as vomiting and diarrhea.
Do the same with bok choy. Start with a small piece only. Then observe your dog and watch out for any allergic reaction. If there is none, then you can give a little more next time.
2. Do not give bok choy with another fruit or vegetable when giving this for the first time so you will know to which food your dog had an allergic reaction to if ever he vomits or develops diarrhea.
3. Do not give a whole bok choy leaf as your dog might choke on it. Cut the large bok choy leaf into small pieces first. Better yet, put in a blender for easy digestion.
Preparing bok choy for your dog
1. Wash the leaves thoroughly. Most vegetables are exposed to dirt, chemicals, and harmful bacteria in the field.
It is best if you give your dog organic vegetables which are less likely to contain harmful chemicals, Callaghan said.
2. You do not need to give the white, crunchy part of the stem as this does not have as many nutrients as the green leaves.
3. Cut the bok choy leaves into small pieces.
“This will allow your dog to digest it properly, absorb all the nutrients and avoid a choking hazard,” Callaghan said.
4. Give only a tiny amount of cut pieces to puppies as “their bodies haven’t fully developed,” Callagajn said. “They will find it difficult to digest such a high fiber vegetable,” she added. It is best to put in the blender first before giving it to the pup.
5. Give only a small amount to dogs of all ages and ask your vet if this vegetable is okay for your dog if your dog has medical concerns.
What are the health benefits of bok choy for dogs?
Bok choy can possibly help a dog with constipation or digestive issues as it is high in fiber. This means however that a dog might develop diarrhea f given too much bok choy.
It also has Vitamin B6 and folate for a healthy heart, Callaghan said.
Bok choy also has the following:
1. Vitamin A which is good for puppies as their eyes is starting to develop. This will also help prevent eyesight deterioration in older dogs.
2. Vitamin K which helps absorb calcium.
3. Magnesium and phosphorous which are good for healthy bones and teeth.
4. Vitamin C boosts the immune system.
“However, be careful not to feed too much, as dogs do not need this vitamin,” Callaghan said.
5. A lot of water will keep the dog hydrated on a hot day.
“However, all of these nutrients should be found in your dog’s daily food and water intake,” Callaghan stressed.
She added, “Because bok choy has high fiber content, feeding too much can result in your dog having diarrhea. Also, as it is nutrient-rich, your dog could easily overdose on vitamins as well.”
There is such a thing as Vitamin A toxicity or taking in too much Vitamin A through food intake or vitamins. Symptoms include weight loss, lethargy, stiffness, and constipation.
Too much Vitamin B6 can make a dog light sensitive.
Too much Vitamin C will cause bloating or diarrhea.
Please consult your vet if your dog has any of these symptoms. DC
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