Pumpkin is a commonly recommended supplement for dogs and cats for everything from loose stool to constipation to an occasional bowl topper or a regular supplement. But what is it about pumpkin that makes it so great for your pet? Let’s find out what makes this sweet treat a favorite among vets and nutritionists!
Reasons You Should Consider Adding Pumpkin to Your Dog’s Diet
#1 RICH IN FIBER
Pumpkin is rich in dietary fiber – both soluble and insoluble.
- Soluble fiber helps with weight management, lowering fat absorption, stabilizing glucose levels, reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease, and feeding healthy gut bacteria.
- Insoluble fiber assists in preventing constipation and lowers the risk of diverticular disease.
Because pumpkin contains both soluble and insoluble fiber, it can essentially help to normalize your pet’s stool, whether it’s too loose or too firm. It’s a win-win situation!
As a preventative, pumpkin is an excellent source of prebiotics that feed the good gut bacteria- probiotics. This is a wonderful addition for any pet with a sensitive stomach as it can aid in the digestive process. Also, since roughly 80% of your pet’s immune system resides in their gut, a happy belly can mean a healthier pet!
#2 ESSENTIAL VITAMINS
Pets need food that allows them to consume all their vitamins and minerals. Pumpkin is packed with essential vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin A and Zinc help strengthen your pet’s immune health, promote clearer skin and a healthier coat, and improve overall eye health.
- Vitamin D helps to grow and maintain strong bones by regulating and balancing the retention of calcium and phosphorus. It also works to reduce inflammation.
- Potassium is vital to pet health! It assists in the functioning of the heart, nerves, and muscles by aiding in transferring energy from the nutrients.
Not only is pumpkin a great source of vitamins and minerals your pet needs, but it also assists with the absorption of these nutrients to improve many functions of their body.
#3 ADDED MOISTURE
Kibble-fed pets often live in a mild state of dehydration, as the body pulls moisture from itself to digest the dry food. Therefore, adding moisture to your pet’s kibble is essential. Adding moisture-rich pumpkin can help to keep your pet well hydrated. Added moisture is crucial for not only the digestive process but also…
- Weight control – Pumpkin is high in moisture and fiber, which helps your pet feel full. As a result, your pet is less likely to overeat and will be satisfied longer!
- Hairballs– Lack of moisture can lead to more frequent hairballs. An addition of pumpkin to your pet’s kibble will keep them well-hydrated, which means fewer hairballs for them and less clean-up for you.
- Low in glycemic index– Glycemic index is a measurement of the blood glucose response to carbohydrates. Low GI foods (such as pumpkin) contain carbs that are digested slowly, so energy is sustained for an extended period of time.
Pumpkin is super versatile for your furry friends. You can include it as a treat, bowl topper, or toy filler. Pumpkin is worth the hype! With the holidays right around the corner, include your pet in the holiday festivities and try incorporating more pumpkin into your pet’s diet!
*This article is for informational purposes only. It is not meant to provide medical advice or replace the advice of a qualified veterinarian.