Can My Puppy Eat A Banana?

One of the most frequent sorts of questions I hear about puppies is what they can eat. They’re important questions, no doubt, because, like a human baby, a puppy needs the proper nutrition to become a healthy, happy adult dog.

Most of the time, the questions center on what type of puppy chow is best or, as I talked about in another recent blog**, if puppies can eat adult dog food. (They shouldn’t.) That got me thinking about one question I hear about puppies and food most of all, namely, can my puppy eat a banana?

The answer is that, yes, your puppy can definitely eat a banana, but as with many foods not explicitly made for puppies, it’s best if they eat them in moderation. Bananas actually make a delicious treat for your pup. They’re high in several essential nutrients, including biotin, fiber, potassium, and copper. 

Bananas have very little salt and cholesterol also, but they are high in fructose or fruit sugar. That’s why they’re better as an occasional treat rather than a prominent part of your pup’s diet.

Now that you know you can give your puppy the occasional banana as a treat, you may have more questions about bananas, like what their benefits are and whether your pup can eat banana chips. If so, read on. I’ve got the answer to those questions, and several more, below!

What are the Benefits of Bananas for Puppies?

As I mentioned earlier, bananas have several benefits for puppies. First of all, most puppies seem to absolutely love bananas, likely because they’re a bit sweet and have an interesting texture.

Besides being a snack they like, however, bananas are loaded with several different nutrients that are excellent for your puppy’s health. Those nutrients include:

  • Potassium
  • Vitamin C
  • Vitamin B6
  • Biotin
  • Copper
  • Manganese
  • Magnesium

The magnesium in bananas is very helpful when it comes to your puppy absorbing the other vitamins on the list. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), it’s excellent for bone growth. Even more, the magnesium in bananas can help your puppy’s body produce the protein it needs to grow and mature.

For dogs who suffer from gastrointestinal problems, bananas are loaded with fiber which, as many humans know, is a great way to help them poop. In short, bananas are packed with benefits for your puppy.

Can my Puppy Eat Banana Peels? 

If you’ve read some of my previous blogs, you know that certain foods like cherries and grapes are not suitable for puppies. The main reason is that those fruits, while they may have some safe parts, have others that are toxic for your pup. 

We now know that bananas are, in moderation, a good snack for puppies and contain several excellent nutrients that can help them grow and mature. But what about banana peels?

The fact is, banana peels aren’t toxic to dogs but, if they eat one, they may throw up or have diarrhea. Why? Because their digestive system isn’t used to the high amount of fiber a banana peel contains. 

Even though they aren’t toxic, however, veterinarians and the AKC recommend peeling bananas before feeding them to your puppies. Frankly, if you ever ate a banana peel, you know why; they taste pretty nasty.  They’re also rather tough and chewy, and most puppies will spit them out anyway.

Can Bananas Be Unhealthy for Puppies?

Yes, like any type of food, if you give your puppy too many bananas, it can be problematic. As I mentioned earlier, the main culprit is the natural sugar that bananas contain. Even though it’s natural, any type of sugar can cause your puppy to gain unnecessary weight, which, in time, can cause other health problems.

One of the best rules that I’ve seen when it comes to puppies and their food is the 90/10 rule. Basically, it means that 90% of the calories your puppy gets every day should come from their kibble and the other 10% from treats. 

Are Bananas a Good Cure for Your Puppy’s Digestive Problems?

I mentioned earlier that bananas could be beneficial for gastrointestinal and digestive problems with your pup. However, experts recommend not giving your dogs bananas as a cure for diarrhea or constipation. Again, the reason is the high sugar content.

Instead, they recommend reducing their food intake, seeing what foods they can tolerate, and, if their symptoms don’t resolve within 1 or 2 days, calling your veterinarian for help and advice.

Can my Puppy Eat Banana Chips? 

Yes, like regular bananas, you can give banana chips to your puppy in moderation. Like raw bananas, banana chips have a lot of fiber which can help settle their stomach. They can also provide an energy boost, and they’re loaded with potassium as well as vitamins B6 and C. Again, however, it’s best to follow the 90/10 rule and only give them a few banana chips a day.

Can my Puppy Eat Banana Bread?

Another banana-filled food, banana bread, can safely be fed to your pup but in even more moderation than raw bananas and banana chips. The reason why is that most banana bread has even higher amounts of sugar than raw bananas, which is problematic for their health.

Also, although rare, some people make banana bread with raisins (for some ungodly reason)  which are fatal for puppies. If your puppy has allergies to grains, banana bread can also be problematic. (You might not know they have allergies until after they’ve eaten banana bread and vomited all over the place, however.)

How much Banana can Puppies Eat?

We’ve talked about the 90/10 rule of moderation when it comes to feeding your pup treats. Another rule of thumb that many experts recommend is giving large dogs one-half of a banana per day. Smaller dogs should only be given two to three-inch-long pieces of banana per day, maximum.

How To Feed Bananas to your Puppy

The easiest way to feed your puppy bananas is to simply cut them into slices small enough to fit in their mouth easily. You can also fill a dog toy with mashed banana and put it in the freezer. That way, they can spend some time digging and licking it out while it’s thawing.

Another way to feed your puppy bananas is to freeze tiny pieces and give the frozen pieces to them. The smaller the dog, the smaller the pieces should be to not hurt their jaw when chewing on them.

Final Thoughts

If you’re asking yourself, “can my puppy eat a banana?” the answer is yes, they certainly can. Bananas make a healthy and delicious snack for puppies and are filled with several nutrients that can help them grow and mature into healthy adult dogs. However, following the 90/10 rule of thumb is vital so that they don’t consume too much sugar.

If you have more questions about what your puppy can eat and what snacks you can give them, please read some of my other blogs on the subject. They’re packed with real-world information and advice that can help your pup grow into a healthy, happy, well-balanced adult dog.