The answer to that important question is YES, and there are several reasons why tomatoes are okay for dogs. About the tomato itself, did you know that it is a fruit, not a vegetable? We, use fruits mostly as a side meal or dessert, but in the tomato’s case, we eat it as a main meal or part of it. As to whether a canine can eat tomatoes like the way humans do, The information is further down below.
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There is no question that tomatoes are good for dogs and there are reasons why these fruits good for them. Here is a list of useful health benefits that your pet can get from tomatoes.
- Bolsters a dog’s bone tissue – Tomatoes have plenty of Calcium and Vitamin K that can enhance bone tissues in canine making them stronger. Both Calcium and Vitamin K are helpful for dogs that are getting old. Problems like arthritis affect older canines and nutrients in tomatoes can help ease those problems.
- Good eye visions for your pet – Good eyesight is necessary for a healthy dog especially if your pet is very active during walks, playtime or just running around. Vitamin A and beta-carotene are some nutrients responsible for improving and maintaining the sharpness of a canine’s vision. Additionally, Vitamin A fights night blindness condition that tends to affect outdoor dogs.
- Maintains the proper health of a canine’s heart – Nutrients like B Vitamins and Potassium prevent strokes, heart attack and other heart-related illnesses from affecting your dog. These nutrients are present in tomatoes so adding some of the fruit to your pet’s diet is a smart move. Some canine breeds tend to suffer more from heart diseases and tomatoes can help fight those diseases.
- Reduces the dog’s cholesterol levels – Vomiting, abdominal pain, diarrhea, seizures, itching and loss of hair are some symptoms of high cholesterol level. What your pet eats if often the cause of high cholesterol level. Add in some tomatoes in your dog’s food will help lower its cholesterol level.
- Fights cancer and degenerative diseases – Most dog breeds have a tendency to suffer some forms of cancer and degenerative illness. Medicines and curative treatment can help a canine, but adding tomatoes to your pet’s diet is preferable. Tomatoes have Lycopene that fights these diseases.
- Improves a canine’s colon health – A tomato’s dietary fiber can do wonders for your dog’s colon by fighting constipation, diarrhea and diabetes mellitus. Note that dietary fiber is not an essential nutrient and gives no energy to your pet. However the fact that it helps in making a dog’s potty easier
- Prevents hypoglycemia – Glucose or blood sugar is the primary source of energy canines need for their daily activities as long as their blood sugar levels are at normal (not high or low) level. When the sugar level drops then hypoglycemia rears its ugly head. Low energy levels in dogs will cause them to weaken, and it can reach to the point that they lose consciousness. Hypoglycemia can become a dangerous health condition that threatens your pet’s life. Since tomatoes have sugar content, it will be enough to fight off hypoglycemia.
Are Tomatoes Good For Dogs?
If you read the list of health benefits a tomato can give to your pet, then you know already that the only answer is YES. Tomatoes are good for dogs, but like any other food that your pet eats, it can be harmful or even toxic. If you want to know why and exactly how tomatoes can be dangerous for your dog, then read the next topic below.
Are Tomatoes Bad For Dogs?
Tomatoes are not detrimental to your pet’s health, but in certain situations, they can be bad for a canine’s health.
Too much of anything like food, for example, is harmful to your pet. Hence it stands to reason that an excess of tomatoes for dogs is unhealthy. The tomato fruits themselves are safe, but the tomato plants are the only part that is harmful. The leaves and stem along with green or unripe tomatoes are dangerous to your pet. Why are parts of the tomato plants and green ones dangerous? It is because raw tomato and the plant itself contain Solanine and Alpha-tomatine (or just Tomatine) which can be harmful to your dog’s body.
Tomato plants are members of the nightshade family and plants in this grouping usually have toxic substances. However these plants including the tomato are not harmful to humans (at least in small quantities), but it tends to affect dogs more strongly.
The good news is that ingesting Solanine and Tomatine won’t harm your pet immediately. However, if you overfeed your dog with tomatoes, then the two substances will have affected the canine’s body in a negative way. Hence there must be some moderation when it comes to serving your dog tomatoes. Unripe and green tomatoes also contain Solanine and Tomatine albeit in large quantities. Still, if you are careful, you need not worry about serving up a member of the nightshade family plants.
However, despite your precautions, your pet may have accidentally ingested some of those substances, or you managed to do it accidentally. When that situation happens, your dog will feel the effects of the Solanine and Tomatine toxicity. Thankfully there visible symptoms and here is a list of them clinical signs of poisoning to give you the heads up:
- Stomach pains
- Dysphagia or difficulty in swallowing
- Gastrointestinal upset or GI
- Loss of coordination
- Cardiac effects (may vary, but the dog’s heart is always affected)
- Weakness of the muscles
- Body tremors
- Dry mouth
- Dilated pupils
- Difficulty in breathing
If your pet shows these signs, you need to stop giving it tomatoes for a while and see if things will improve eventually. But my best advice would be to go to a veterinarian for consultation and treatment. Better to be safe than sorry when it comes to Tomatine and Solanine poisoning.
How Many Tomatoes Can Dogs Have Daily?
Unfortunately, the answer to this particular question is a big NO. To reiterate a canine can eat tomatoes, but overfeeding your pet by serving it tomato every day is a bad idea. From the previous topic above you can clearly read the effects of tomatoes in excessive amounts.
The best thing to do is to serve tomatoes on every other day or an irregular basis. You can serve other healthy foods in between these periods. Alternatively, you can serve the fruits as treats or in little bits with your pet’s main meals. Just bear in mind that moderation is must when it comes to serving tomatoes to your dog.
Can Puppies Eat Tomatoes Safely?
Adult dogs eat tomatoes, so that means that puppies can also eat them without any problems. Since the various health benefits affect adult dogs, then the same thing can be said for puppies. First, make sure that the puppy’s weaning period is finished and that it is now able to eat solid foods. Then feed your puppy little bits of tomatoes mixed with the regular meal. A puppy at first will not like tomatoes, but feeding it slowly with the fruit will make the pup like the taste of tomato. In fact, this is the best time to make your pup get used to not tomatoes, but other healthy foods as well.
Just to remember to apply the same principle when feeding that pup. Overfeeding or constant serving of tomatoes will do the same adverse effects to the pup. In fact, these effects may even be worse since the puppy’s body is vulnerable to them. You may also need to measure your pup’s food intake since puppies have small stomachs. Indigestion is a significant possibility if you stuff your pup with too much that its stomach can’t handle much less digest.
However, if you manage to moderate the feeding of your pet, then the tomatoes will apply the same positive benefits to it.
Can Dogs Eat Tomato Peel?
Yes, dogs can eat the tomato peel or skin since it contains many nutrients that are beneficial. The tomato peel is the fruit’s skin or outer layer. We humans sometimes remove the skin for various reasons, but throwing it away is wasteful. Instead, we should give it to our pets.
Tomato peels contain a significant amount of Lycopene which important factor in combating cancer cells. Some dog owners tend to think that skin is the same as the tomato’s stem, vines, and leaves. The latter parts of the tomato are dangerous due to their Tomatine and Solanine content. The skin of the tomato, however, has no such harmful substance.
What are Grape tomatoes? Can Dogs Eat That?
There are many varieties of tomato that we humans cultivate for our use, and the Grape tomato is one of these varieties. Other kinds of tomato plants include plum tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, Campari tomatoes and beefsteak tomatoes.
As for the question of whether a dog can eat a grape tomato, the answer would be yes, however, there are some things you need to know about the fruit. The fruit is sweet to the taste due to its high sugar content, and it can be bad for a canine. High blood sugar levels usually result in diabetes, and it affects humans along with dogs. A moderate or small serving of grape tomato is not harmful, but too much of it and it’s no longer healthy.
If you intend to give your pet grape tomatoes, do not forget to serve them in reasonable amounts and give them occasionally instead of daily.
The grape tomato is believed to be originating in Southeast Asia. This fruit looks similar to the plum tomato, but its sweet taste and small size are akin to cherry tomatoes. Ever since the 1900s, you can find the fruit in the worldwide market, and it is a very popular commodity. There are at least two varieties of the grape tomato: the Santa F1 which is supposed to breed right up to six generations or more and the Rosalita which is widely available for planting in home gardens.
So can dogs eat tomatoes? Yes, that is true, and it should be obvious that tomatoes have their upsides and downsides. On the one hand, the tomato in moderate amounts can be a healthy food that maintains the well-being of the dog and prevents most illness from affecting it. On the other hand irresponsible feeding a canine too many tomatoes give it unnecessary sicknesses. Overall the tomato is the excellent choice of healthy foods for your dog. You love your pet, and it deserves the best.