Dog owners like to share every moment with their four-legged best friend, as dogs are integral parts of any dog lover’s life. These moments range from festivities to once-in-a-lifetime events to basic stuff like watching Friends on the TV. Dog lovers like to involve their pooches in all aspects of their daily activities, and these also include the meals that we enjoy.
Most owners often wonder whether sharing their food with their dogs is a good thing as most human foods are not safe for canines. This especially applies to tomatoes as this veggie is often present in our recipes, and therefore it’s essential to answer the burning question: Can dogs eat tomatoes or not?
To answer questions like these, we are presenting the following article to our valued readers as it’s full of all the information that you require to decide that dogs can have tomatoes or not?
Benefits of tomatoes for dogs
Tomatoes belong to the nightshade group of vegetables. Like the other members of this group, tomatoes come loaded with a wide range of valuable minerals such as potassium and Folate. In addition to being full of minerals. Tomatoes are also rich in Vitamins, especially when it comes to Vitamin C, which can be highly beneficial for our pooches. The list doesn’t end here as tomatoes are also full of Beta carotene and antioxidants like Lycopene. To skillfully answer the question “can dogs eat tomatoes?” we first need to inform you about the health benefits of tomatoes’ components mentioned earlier.
Beta Carotene is a protein present in vegetables like tomatoes. This protein gets converted into Vitamin A by metabolism and therefore serves to meet any Vitamin A deficiency in your pooch. Vitamin A is paramount in ensuring good eyesight, maintaining healthy skin, and protecting cognitive skills from any damage. Due to all the essential roles Vitamin A plays, it is suggested that owners keep an eye on their dog’s vitamin A and provide them with Beta Carotene is the best way to do it. Following is a brief description of all the vital roles played by Vitamin A
There are two types of cells found in the eyes, which are termed Cones and Rodes cells. These cells are collectively responsible for detecting all the colors around your dog and serve your dog at night by letting him see in the dark. Cones cells are characterized by detecting colors, while rode cells are put to the job of providing night vision to our canine best friends. Dogs cannot see in the dark without rode cells, which can be extremely dangerous for dogs as canines tend to be active at night. Rode cells are composed of a protein called Rhodopsin, and this protein is essential in the production of rode cells in the eye.
That’s why Owners must try their best to ensure optimal production of rode cells in their dogs. The most effective way to do that is to provide your pooch with an ample supply of Vitamin A, as this vitamin plays a vital role in producing Rhodopsin protein in dogs.
Improved Cognitive functions
Beta-Carotene is also an antioxidant, and therefore just like all other antioxidants, beta carotene is reported to have anti-aging qualities and boosts cognitive skills in dogs. Therefore, we recommend our valued readers supplement their dog’s diet with beta carotene supplements, and the best way to do it is to add tomatoes to your dog’s diet.
Dogs with smooth and lush coats are desired worldwide, and therefore owners are always searching for techniques to boost the quality of their dog’s coat. To improve the quality of your dog’s coat, all you need to do is provide your dog with good sources of Vitamin A. Vitamin A holds a central role in the production of Keratin protein which is further used in hair growth.
The leading reason for a poor-quality coat in dogs is the deficiency of Keratin protein, leading to inadequate maintenance of hair and skin cells. All this leads to the breakdown of your dog’s coat. To protect your dog from this fate, you must add tomatoes to his diet as tomatoes are loaded with Vitamin A. Vitamin A is an essential protein. Therefore, dogs can’t produce it on their own, and therefore, they rely on their meal to fill their vitamin A needs.
Lycopene is another beneficial substance present abundantly in tomatoes. Lycopene is famous for its anti-aging action due to its being an antioxidant. All antioxidants act against free radicals of oxygen that are sometimes produced as a by-product of metabolism and respiration. These free radicals are highly reactive and pose a significant threat to the well-being of internal organs in dogs. These free radicals can destroy cells that can accumulate with time and lead to the total collapse of a particular organ. This destruction of cells can also lead to aging, which is not good news for your pooch. That’s why owners must make sure that their dogs get enough supply of Lycopene and tomatoes are the best way to ensure that. Following are some other functions performed by Lycopene in dogs.
Lycopene reduces cancer risk.
Although scientific research is still going on in this field nevertheless, a unique link between reduced cancer risk and consumption of Lycopene has been established for a long time. It is quite a fact that Lycopene contributes heavily to reducing cancer risks in dogs. It is thought that the reason for this cancer-reducing effect of Lycopene is due to its unique composition, which prevents the growth of cancer cells in dogs and all other animals. Unlike other carotenoids, Lycopene is not converted into Vitamin A, which most likely boosts its antioxidant nature.
Better Heart Health
Adequate concentrations of Lycopene in the body can also drastically reduce the amounts of bad cholesterol. Bad cholesterol is exceptionally harmful to your dog’s heart as bad cholesterol tends to convert into fats and lipids, which end up blocking the blood vessels carrying blood to and from the heart. All this can result in serious heart problems, which even include heat attacks.
Therefore, dog owners should include tomatoes in their dog’s diet as tomatoes are the perfect sources of Lycopene.
Reading about the health benefits of Folate in dogs can help our readers answer the question that can dogs eat tomatoes or not as tomatoes are full of Folate. Folate is a version of Vitamin B soluble in water and is also referred to as Vitamin B9. This vitamin is essential in forming red and white blood cells, without which your dog’s body can’t even begin to function. Folate also plays a crucial role in converting carbohydrates into energy and is also essential for producing nucleic acids like DNA and RNA.
Dogs need to have adequate amounts of Folate as Vitamin B9 is especially required in developmental periods such as infancy and pregnancy.
Some more detailed health benefits of Folate are as follows.
Reduced chances of Depression
Most owners are not aware of this basic fact, but dogs can also fall victim to Depression due to several reasons. Therefore, it’s the responsibility of dog owners to educate themselves about this topic and do everything in their power to keep their canine friends as far away from Depression as possible. Having adequate amounts of Folate in the bloodstream is exceptionally beneficial in preventing Depression when it comes to dogs. Therefore, we recommend our readers to provide their pooches with adequate amounts of Folate through their diet.
Folate is also essential for anti-depressants for their mode of action. Without Folate present in the body, anti-depressants fail to do their job, resulting in a significant increase in Depression-related cases.
Healthy Cardiovascular system
The cardiovascular system is the organ system of the body that is responsible for pumping blood throughout the body. The heart is at the core of this system, and therefore canine lovers need to take exceptional care of their dog’s heart. There are many excellent ways to achieve good heart conditions, and one of them is to supply your pooch with a good amount of folic acid.
Folic acid or Folate helps boost the health of your dog’s heart by reducing the amounts of homocysteine in the body. Homocysteine is an organic compound that is extremely dangerous for the heart and can cause several heart-related diseases, including heart attacks.
It must be clear from the above statements that it’s safe for dogs to eat tomatoes, which answers, “can dogs have tomatoes?”. Tomatoes are full of compounds and minerals that are highly beneficial for dogs, and therefore dog owners shouldn’t shy away from feeding tomatoes to their furry friends.
Cons of feeding Tomatoes to dogs
We have told you about all the benefits of tomatoes for dogs, but it doesn’t mean that dogs and tomatoes go hand in hand all the time. That’s certainly not the case as there are lots of potential dangers of feeding tomatoes to dogs. This stands especially true when green parts of tomatoes and unripe tomatoes are brought to the question. Following are all the disadvantages of giving tomatoes to dogs, and these can also help in understanding that the answer to the question “can dog have tomatoes?” is not always a yes.
Tomatoes are full of minerals like potassium, Folate, and Oxalates. All of them are healthy for dogs if taken in small quantities, but they can also cause several diseases if taken in large concentrations. These minerals can affect the entire body in adverse manners. Still, the organ system that is affected the most by the abundance of these minerals is the body’s excretory system. The excretory system is composed of organs that work collectively to excrete all the waste material from the body.
These minerals can quickly form clusters known as stones and block all the pathways used by the excretory system to do their job. These stones can occur inside the kidneys, and there they can cause a lot of chaos by affecting the well-being of kidneys. If left untreated for long, these kidney stones can also cause Kidney Failure. Other than kidneys, these pesky stones can also be formed in urinary vessels, urinary bladder, and urethra. All this can be highly painful and dangerous for your canine best friend.
Toxicity caused by Tomatoes
Tomatoes belong to the nightshade group of vegetables, and therefore it is full of a compound called Solanine. Solanine is exceptionally harmful to dogs in high concentrations and can cause several medical conditions in dogs. These conditions include Gastrointestinal infections, cardiac problems, complete loss of coordination, muscle weakness, tremors, and seizures. Therefore, owners must avoid green parts of tomatoes and green tomatoes as Solanine is most present in them.
Therefore, although it is established that dogs can eat tomatoes, it still doesn’t mean that dogs and tomatoes are meant for each other, and owners should keep an eye on the amounts of tomatoes their four-legged friends are consuming.
Can dogs eat Cherry Tomatoes?
Dog owners often wonder, “Can dogs have cherry tomatoes?” and we are here to solve this query of theirs.
What dog owners must know is that the size of the tomatoes doesn’t really matter, so they shouldn’t worry about it unnecessarily. The color of the tomatoes matters as green tomatoes are loaded with Solanine, which can cause toxicity in dogs, and that’s why it is always recommended to keep your pooch away from green tomatoes and green parts of tomatoes such as stem and leaves.
One area where the size of the tomatoes can be a factor is the issue that dogs can swallow cherry tomatoes, which can result in them choking. That’s why it’s better to keep cherry tomatoes away from your pooch as long as you have the option of feeding regular tomatoes to your canine fellow.
Can dogs have Tomato Sauce?
Another question that keeps dog owners busy is, “Can dogs have tomato sauce?” Fortunately, we are here to solve this query. It is generally safe for dogs to consume Tomato sauce as long as it is made from red, ripe tomatoes as green tomatoes are full of toxic alkaloids like tomatine and Solanine. It is also recommended to keep your dog away from pizza sauce as it has ginger and garlic in it, which are highly toxic for canines.