Brussels sprouts for breakfast? Why not? But honestly, there are two groups of people in the world – one who love to eat Brussels sprouts and another who hates them.
For those dog people who are part of the first group, feeding this vegetable to their pooch can just be part of an ordinary day. But, is that fine? Can dogs eat Brussel Sprouts?
Can Dogs Eat Brussel Sprouts?
Yes, they can. But, just like with other foods that humans normally enjoy, it’s best to offer your dog Brussel sprouts in moderation.
And no, you can’t feed him gourmet Brussels sprouts no matter how satisfying this meal can be for human consumption.
As dog owners, we already know what the term “gourmet” means more salt, pepper, onions, garlic, and many other ingredients that are toxic for your pup. If you want to add a bit of flavor, you can cook some sprouts using a few drops of olive oil.
What Are Brussels Sprouts?
These veggies may come out with a strong smell, but when prepared well, Brussel sprouts could make an outstanding dish. And of course, they are packed with essential vitamins, minerals, and dietary fiber that are beneficial for both humans and canines.
Brussels sprouts are part of the cruciferous vegetable family alongside broccoli, cauliflower, arugula, cabbage, kale, radishes, bok choy, collards, and watercress.
By their structure and color, these vegetables may not look the same, but they share a lot of nutritional benefits.
Health Benefits of Brussels Sprouts for Your Dogs
We’ve learned it since we’re a little kid – greens are loaded with nutrients that could aid our body to stay healthy and strong while facing everyday challenges. And Brussels sprout doesn’t disappoint in this category!
Just like its dark green sisters in the cruciferous vegetable family, it is rich in vitamins A, C, and phytonutrients or plant-based compounds that help decrease inflammation and lower the risk of getting cancer.
Moreover, vitamin A also promotes a dog’s vision, and it aids his organs to function well from his nervous system, his heart, lungs, and so on. The B vitamins also work together with the other nutrients in supporting blood health and your dog’s overall heart condition.
The vitamins C and K from Brussels sprout help in strengthening the body’s immune system and bone health. Hence, when your dog is munching on some bitter sprouts, he is also chowing on vitamins with every bite.
Furthermore, Brussel sprouts contain antioxidants that help fight against the damaging effects of free radicals on the healthy cells of the body. Antioxidants are also helpful in improving blood circulation and in reducing inflammation.
A serving of Brussels sprout contains manganese, potassium, and is packed with fiber. The manganese in your pup’s diet helps him to properly utilize the proteins, amino acids, and carbohydrates in his body, which helps in increasing his energy levels and in building healthy muscles.
Potassium, on the other hand, is important in ensuring the health of your dog’s muscles, nerves, and enzymes. This mineral also aids in maintaining proper fluid balance in his body that helps in promoting equilibrium or homeostasis.
The rich dietary fiber content of Brussels sprout helps promote bowel movements and supports colon health. And if your dog needs some treats that are low in calories, these veggies are a great option.
Finally, the high fiber and low-calorie content of this vegetable make it an effective part of your pup’s weight loss diet. As we know, high-fiber food is longer to digest, which makes your pup feel full longer on low calories.
Side Effects of Feeding Too Many Brussels Sprouts
If Brussels sprouts are just that good to your dog, then, why not feed him with these veggies every day? Well, it turns out that this green cruciferous vegetable also has its downsides that can be strengthened the more your dog eats it.
And as the song says, “too much of something is bad enough.” When your dog eats high amounts of Brussels sprouts, he will most likely suffer from gassiness, bloating, and diarrhea.
This is because sprouts contain a lot of isothiocyanates, a substance that improves intestinal motility that aids in pushing food and waste through the GI tract. As a result, the excess bacterium leaves the body as gas.
Nevertheless, when consumed in small amounts, these veggies are good for the digestive system. Their high fiber content helps in promoting regular and healthy bowel movements. Hence, if it’s really needed, just feed your dog sprouts in moderation or about one to three at a time depending on the size of your pooch.
Overall, Brussel sprouts are not that bad since they are not toxic to dogs. However, if your dog experiences stomach upset that causes diarrhea and vomiting for a few days, it’s best to consult your veterinarian.
We all know that these activities can lead to loss of fluids and electrolytes, which can be life-threatening or even lethal when not managed on time.
Serving Size of Brussels Sprouts for Dogs
Whether it’s your first or second time feeding Brussels sprouts to your dog, it’s a must that you know the right serving for his size. Feed your dog the recommended amount of Brussels sprouts to prevent unwanted side effects, particularly in his GI tract.
The size of your dog determines the amount of Brussels sprout that he may consume without causing discomfort, or at least reducing his chances of experiencing any of the mentioned downsides above. If you have a small pup, he should only eat ¼ to 1 sprout at a time.
Generally, Brussels sprouts should only be served in moderation from time to time. And to be on the safe side, the maximum prescribed serving should not exceed three sprouts at a time. If your dog is trying these veggies for the first time, just give him ¼ to ½ cooked sprouts at a time.
How to Safely Select and Prepare Brussel Sprouts
You are not on Iron Chef America or preparing dinner for Thanksgiving, so you can set aside your assortment of spices from Morocco and other salty condiments. Your dog doesn’t need a gourmet Brussels sprouts dish, so, just keep it simple to be safe.
When picking your sprouts at your local supermarket, choose the green and firm ones without wilted or brown leaves. Old Brussels sprouts will automatically give your pooch watery stools. And as you would with any vegetable, wash them first thoroughly in cold water before cooking.
Once you are done washing, cut the stem or the hard knobby part at the bottom, but don’t cut it all so there is still a remaining base that will hold the rest of the leaves together. You may also cut the sprouts in half to make it easier for your dogs to eat.
Tips on How to Properly Cook Brussels Sprouts
Once you are done washing and cutting your sprouts, it’s time to cook them for your dog. Don’t serve raw Brussels sprouts because they can be difficult for them to digest.
The best ways to prepare these veggies are by steaming, boiling, or by cooking them with the use of a microwave. When steaming, add the sprouts and water inside a 3 to 4-quart pot and then cover. Cook them in high heat for five minutes, or until they are tender.
If you prefer to cook them in your microwave, add the sprouts and water to a ½-1 quart microwave-safe dish. Cook it for six to eight minutes, and stir it every two minutes. Don’t forget to check if the sprouts are tender enough.
Boiling the Brussels sprouts take much longer, and this way of cooking doesn’t preserve most of their nutrients. You can boil the sprouts for 10-15 minutes, or until they are tender enough for your liking.
Finally, don’t overcook your sprouts to preserve their nutritional value.
Feeding Brussels Sprouts to Your Dog
When feeding your dog with cooked Brussels sprouts, you can try to serve them alone, or you can chop and add them as toppings on your pup’s favorite dog food.
This can be a helpful way to sneak in some healthy treats into your dog’s meals, especially if he is not really fond of vegetables.
No matter how much you want to incorporate these healthy cruciferous vegetables into your dog’s diet, if his body doesn’t tolerate them, then, you can’t force it to happen (and you should not). This is especially true if your dog is sensitive to certain foods that he ends up showing signs of allergic reaction even after just a small bite.
As always, when introducing a new food into your dog’s diet, start by giving him a small portion and observe for his reactions. If he doesn’t show untoward side effects from Brussels sprouts, then, you can proceed in feeding him one to three sprouts at a time.
And while you are serving him these healthy veggies, you can also prepare some for yourself and show your dog that you are also enjoying them. Doing so can encourage your dogs to try out the sprouts, especially if it’s their first time.
Below are hearty recipes that your pupper might enjoy.
Brussels Sprouts Skillet
- 1 tbsp Oil
- 1/4 cup Sun-dried tomatoes chopped
- 1 pack (16oz) Pack organic grass-fed beef hotdogs cut into 1/2 inch pieces
- 5 cups Brussels sprouts cut into halves
- 1 medium Sweet potato cubed
- 1/4 cup Water
- Juice and zest of 1 lemon
- Dash of black pepper
- In a cast iron pan over medium-high heat, add oil nd sun-dried tomatoes and saute. Add the hotdogs and cook until a little browned. Remove from pan and set aside.
- Add brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes into the pan. Add water, cover and simmer until the sprouts turn bright green and sweet potatoes are cooked.
- Add the hotdog mixture back to the pan, and season with lemon & black pepper.
- Mix everything together and cook for a few more minutes until all the flavors are incorporated.
- Remove from heat and serve once cool.
Brussels and Bacon with Honey
- 1.5 lb Brussels sprouts cut in half
- 8 slices Low sodium bacon
- Salt & Pepper
- Cut brussels sprouts in half, discarding any brown spots that you may find.
- Cut bacon into 1” sections and cook in large sauté pan over medium to high heat until pieces are crispy.
- Remove with a slotted spoon and set the pieces aside on a plate. Drain all but 3 tsp bacon fat.
- Carefully arrange the brussels sprouts flat side down in the pan. Cook just until tender, approximately 8-10 minutes.
- Add the bacon pieces back in the pan and mix to evenly distribute. Season with a bit of salt and pepper.
- To finish the brussels sprouts, lightly drizzle honey over the entire dish.
Brussels Sprouts with Bacon
- 5 pcs Bacon thick-cut
- 24 oz Brussels sprouts cut in half or quarters, depending on size of individual Brussels sprout
- 1 tsp Organic salted butter
- 1 cup Chicken broth organic
- Dash of Salt & Pepper
- Cook bacon in large skillet until completely cooked; remove and place on paper towel to cool.
- In the same pan with the bacon grease, carefully add 1 tablespoon of butter add cut Brussels sprouts and cook for 3 minutes.
- Add chicken stock and spices and cook for 10 minutes. There will still be chicken broth left in the pan, which is delicious, so don't think that this all needs to be absorbed.
- Remove from heat and serve once cool.
Can dogs eat cooked Brussels sprouts?
Yes. Brussel sprouts are rich in fiber and antioxidants, which help reduce inflammation in the body and improve overall blood circulation. They're also loaded with vitamins, including vitamins K and C, which are good for a dog's immune system and bone health.
Do brussel sprouts kill dogs?
Bear in mind that even the smallest amount of brussels sprouts can upset your dog's stomach. All in, this vegetable is not dangerous to your dog, because of zero poisons or toxins. If your dog experience heavy diarrhea, consult your veterinarian.
Do brussel sprouts make dogs fart?
The same properties that make dogs fart after eating Brussel Sprouts, will actually cause harm if too much of the little green vegetable is consumed in any one sitting. Sprouts contain a high level of isothiniocyanate which directly impacts the gastrointestinal function of dogs.
Will brussel sprouts hurt dogs?
Brussels sprouts are good for dogs in moderation as they contain antioxidants, are fiber rich, and packed full of essential vitamins. Whilst Brussel sprouts are safe for dogs, too many can cause an increase in flatulence or gastrointestinal issues.