As a dog owner, it will not be new to you, to stand in the kitchen, or even in your vegetable patch, and wonder, can my dog eat this? For example, can dogs eat parsnips? With dogs being dogs, most of them will eat anything that they can get their paws on, but is it really healthy, or even safe for them?
In many cases, that answer will be no, especially when it comes to the classics, such as onions and chocolate, but what about parsnips?
Can Dogs Eat Parsnips?
You might be happy to hear, that yes, feeding parsnips to your dog is perfectly safe. There are even some health benefits to feeding things like parsnips, not only to ourselves but our canine friends as well.
- Parsnips are rich in Vitamin C, which will not only help your dog stay sharp, but will also help their immune system. Another Vitamin, that is abundant in parsnips, is Vitamin B6, which is vital in a dog’s immune system and can even help regulate glucose levels. These two vitamins combined are also the reason why some experts believe parsnips can help dogs with kidney disease.
- Parsnips are also a good source of fiber for your dog, but be careful not to feed too much, as the excess fiber can lead to indigestion problems.
- Folic acid is another benefit of parsnips and can help keep your dog’s immune system healthy. Folic acid deficiency has been shown to cause many problems in dogs, including weight loss and a low number of antibodies.
- Last but not least, there are numerous amounts of minerals and antioxidants present in parsnips, that keep your dog healthy and happy.
Check out the below table showing what you can find in parsnips. The below data is from the USDA FoodData Central Database.
Whole Parsnips - 100g
|Total lipid (fat)||0g|
|Carbohydrate, by difference||18g|
|Fiber, total dietary||5g|
|Sugars, total including NLEA||40mg|
|Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid||16.8mg|
How Can I Give Parsnips to My Dog?
It is always good to remember, that most of the vitamins and minerals in vegetables are found just beneath the skin. Therefore, it is always best not to peel them before eating – and not just for your dog! Make sure the parsnip is completely clean, however, especially if you did not grow it yourself and are therefore not sure if pesticides were used when growing it.
You can feed parsnips to your dog either raw or cooked, that is left up to you. Do remember that some vitamins will not survive cooking, however!
If you opt to feed them raw, you can either chop them finely and add them to their regular meal or give larger chunks, which they must chew, as these can help clean their teeth as well. There are benefits to both methods, as chopping them finely or even blending, can help with digestion, as dogs do not digest vegetables as well as humans do.
Don’t feed too much, however, as that can cause indigestion in your dog, and remember to introduce new foods slowly.
Can Dogs Eat Parsnip Skin?
Yes, they can. You do not need to peel the skin of the parsnip for your dog. Although you do need to make sure you clean the parsnip thoroughly. This is done to get rid of any dirt or any bacteria that might be residing on the turnip.
You might be shocked to learn that a lot of the nutrients can be found on the skin, along with the flavor. So peeling it, is not always the best option.
Eating raw parsnip can cause trouble for some dog’s digestive system. If they are known to have an upset digestive system, you are best cooking the parsnip. Please note though, if your dog does have a digestive problem, you should consult your veterinarian before introducing anything new into their diet.
Can Dogs Eat Parsnips and Turnips?
Yes, they are both safe to feed your dog. Regarding turnips, you should follow the same guidelines as above. Please let us state you should only be feeding them turnips in small portions as well, on a treat basis.
Turnips can be as beneficial to dogs as parsnips are. Please remember though that all human food is a treat and it should only be 10% of their diet.
The type of nutrients that can be found in turnips are below:
- They have a high content of water.
- Rich in various antioxidants (Always a good thing)
- Vitamins B6 and C
- High in Fiber
- High in Folic Acid
- Source Of magnesium
Turnips just like parsnips have been known to help dogs that suffer from kidney diseases. If you suspect your dog has a kidney problem or if they do have one. You should speak to your dog’s veterinarian first before introducing anything new into their diet though.
Dogs that have a thyroid problem should not be eating turnip. Turnips can suppress the thyroid, which in turn will not help it to function correctly.
Can Dogs Eat Parsnip and Swede?
Yes, dogs can eat parsnip and swede. A lot of people mix swede and turnip up, but they are actually two different vegetables. Swede or also known as rutabaga are low in calories, so they can be a great treat for a dog.
Swede does have a few different nutrients in it. Check the list out below:
- High in antioxidants
- Low in calories
- Excellent source of Vitamin C
- vitamin E
- Excellent source of fiber
AS you can see swede has a lot to offer. But that does not mean you can feed it to them on a regular basis. Swede and any other type of human food should only be given as a treat.
You can feed swede raw or cooked to your dog. Just make that is chopped up and is not a choking hazard. If you want to feed your dog raw swede, make sure to clean the swede thoroughly of any dirt and bad bacteria.
What Other Fruits and Vegs Can I Feed my Dog?
You might be wondering about what else you could give to your dog besides parsnips. There are different fruit and vegetables you can give your dog as a treat. We have an article explaining what human food dogs can eat, it is worth a read. Along with that though we have created an article for what dogs can not eat as well.
We advise you read both article, so you know what they can and can not eat. If you would like to watch the below video, they show 15 fruits and vegetables that your dog is allowed.
We hope this article has answered your question on can dogs can eat parsnips and have also shown some light on other healthy fruit and vegetables that you may want to feed your dog with.
The good news is that your dog can eat parsnips, turnips, and swede. Parsnips are rich in vitamin C and B6. Along with multiple minerals and antioxidants which are always good for your dog. Also not forgetting that parsnips are a good source of fiber. You just need to be careful not to feed your dog too much fiber, as it can cause them indigestion problems.
Parsnips can be eaten raw or cooked. Please note that if you feed them raw parsnips, they should be chopped into small portions. This stops them from being a choking hazard and helps with the digestive system. You should always wash the parsnips thoroughly. This applies to raw and cooked parsnips.
Since we mentioned parsnip and turnips above, we want to remind you that you should not give your dog turnips if they have a thyroid condition. Turnips can cause problems with a dog’s thyroid; they suppress the thyroid and will not function properly.
Please just remember that when giving your dog any human food, that it should be done in a small portion and not on a regular basis. It does not matter if human food is healthy for them, dogs are not designed to eat human food.
They receive all the correct nutrition and protein in their daily dog food. If they are not, then you need to change your dog food or speak to your dog’s veterinarian.