Can dogs eat strawberries? Sure they can. Should they eat strawberries? It’s likely not harmful for them to do so unless they eat too many of them. It’s not so much a matter of strawberries being in any way harmful to dogs, it’s more a matter of them eating too much of something that’s not a normal part of their diet. Dogs are for the most part meat eaters, but they will eat vegetation as well, and grains and flour often make up a significant portion of some dog foods.
Strawberries, Yes – Grapes, No – Let’s look at the question again from a slightly different approach. Say you give your dog a couple of strawberries and it likes them. It may even sit up and beg for more, which is cute. Since strawberries haven’t hurt the dog any, you might consider trying raspberries, or huckleberries, next. Once a dog has been acquainted with the taste of a huckleberry it will probably pick its own if you take it along on a huckleberry picking expedition. No harm done there. Your dog likes berries, and berries generally aren’t harmful.
Things could come to a bad, and perhaps tragic ending though, if you decide to try feeding your dog some grapes. Most dogs will eat grapes as readily as they will eat strawberries. Some dogs will suffer no ill effects from eating grapes. Others can become very sick from just eating a few, and suffer acute kidney failure. Raisins have the same effect. Don’t experiment with grapes to see which category your pet fits in. The message? Can dogs eat strawberries? Yes. If you want to give your dog an occasional bit of fruit for a treat though, stay far away from grapes. Grapes are bad.
All Dogs Are Not Created Equal
There isn’t always any way to tell what might hurt a dog to eat and what might not. The situation isn’t necessarily breed specific, except smaller dogs in general are more susceptible to suffering ill effects from eating the wrong things that are larger breeds. In addition, dogs can have vastly different eating habits. One dog can be the ultimate scavenger hound, eating anything and everything in its path. The next dog may be super choosy, with its preferences for food often extending to which brand of dog food it will accept. The message there is, if your neighbor gives his dog a few grapes every now and then, and the dog is as frisky or obnoxious as ever, that doesn’t mean giving your pet a few grapes would be OK. If you are a gambling person, the chances are better than 50-50 you’ll wish you hadn’t.
Just what is there about grapes that’s bad for dogs that isn’t found in strawberries? The answer is, no one knows for certain. There are theories, but no one has yet been able to prove exactly what there is in grapes and raisins that is harmful to canines. All that is known is it only takes about an ounce of grapes per two pounds of dog to cause a problem. From that, it can become obvious that a hungry toy poodle could get into trouble very quickly if it happens upon a bowl of grapes. Also, try to keep your dogs away from nuts, well can dogs eat almonds? Yes, technically they aren’t toxic but hard to digest.
Other Harmful Food Items
While we don’t know just what it is in grapes that can cause a dog serious problems, we do know what’s in another food that we enjoy that should always be off-limits to dogs. That food is chocolate. Chocolate contains a substance called theobromine, which is toxic to dogs, but fortunately, or unfortunately, is not toxic to us. Dark chocolate is the worst, as it contains the highest concentration of theobromine. The green skin or green shoots of the potato can be toxic to dogs, and to humans as well. That’s one reason we usually discard potatoes that are on the surface of the ground and have been turned green by the sun. The potato itself is fine. A little serving of mashed potatoes is actually beneficial to dogs, not to mention tasty when a little gravy is included.
Speaking of gravy, sometimes gravy can contain bits of onion. Onions are another food that can be toxic to dogs. The toxicity in this case tends to be cumulative over time, and a couple of spoons of gravy over some mashed potatoes isn’t going to cause Fido any harm. Don’t give Fido onion slices or fried onions though.
Fruits and nuts have something in common here. Most kinds of either are OK for dogs to eat. One kind of fruit that is not OK, as we have discussed here, is the grape. One kind of nut that is not OK is the Macadamia nut. Most other kinds of nuts are all right, although many veterinarians are opposed to the idea of feeding dogs nuts of any kind.
Strawberries? OK – We seem to be straying farther and farther away from the original questions – can dogs eat strawberries? The purpose for doing so was first, to make note of a few things you should not feed your dog. Second and just as important is this. If a food type, such as fruit, is all right for your dog to eat, it doesn’t mean every food item in that group is going to be fine. But, if you avoid feeding your dog, grapes, raisins, onions, dark chocolate, and green potatoes or potato sprouts, it will probably live a long and healthy life.