I’m all for superfoods—you know, healthy ingredients high in nutrients that give your immune system and well-being that extra oomph. Kale, broccoli, quinoa: bring it on! But did you know, there are also a bunch of superfoods you can safely feed to your dog or cat? Next time I’m snacking, I won’t feel so guilty sharing a bite or two with my dog Mystic. Here are a few animal-friendly superfoods I’ve come across in my research:
1. Organic coconut oil: A spoonful a day can help allergies, improve their coat, support bone health, minimize dreaded “doggy breath” and more. Plus, you can also use it topically to sooth cuts and inflamed skin. For safe feeding, the recommend amount is 1 teaspoon per 10 pounds body weight. (Too much can cause loose stools.)
2. Apples: An apple a day keeps the vet away? Fresh and wholesome, dogs just love these teeth-cleaning snacks. Just make sure to slice away the core and remove the seeds first. (Though apples are safe for cats to eat, most probably have no interest in eating them.)
3. Bananas: Though the smell of a potassium-rich banana may turn your dog off, if he shows interest, feel free to smash some up and mix it into his food for a low-calorie treat.
4. Boiled or baked sweet potatoes: High in antioxidants and simple to prepare, sweet potatoes make a healthy addition to any dog’s diet. But because they are high in carbs, sweet potatoes are best served in moderation as a special snack.
5. Organic kelp supplements: Rich in vitamin D, more and more animal lovers are turning to kelp to improve their dog’s health. Known for supporting the glandular system, kelp is also believed to benefit animals with dry skin and hypothyroidism. But because kelp is high in iodine, talk to your vet first before supplementation, especially with cats. I haven’t tried it myself, but this brand looks interesting—Norwegian kelp is considered one of the “best” due to the high-quality ocean environment.
6. Quinoa: The new “it” superfood packed with amino acids, quinoa is reportedly super easy for dogs and cats to digest and is especially good if they have an upset stomach. These quinoa cookies look fun to try!
What are your favorite superfoods to share with your animal? How has it improved their health?