Can Dogs Eat Lentils? In Moderation, Yes

Can Dogs Eat Lentils

Dogs eating legumes seems to be a slightly foreign concept to most dog owners. However, lentils have a lot of advantages for your dog. You should always consult your veterinarian if you have any questions about how good lentils may be for your dog.

In this post, we discuss what lentils can do for your dog and how to deal with the disadvantages they may hold.

Can dogs eat lentils?

Dogs can eat lentils. This should be in moderation, though. If you work on the proportion of 10% lentils to 90% dog food in your dog’s diet, this will be sufficient. In addition, you should not feed your dog lentils more than three times a week. The lentils must always be cooked, as this breaks down the harmful lectins in lentils. Lectins bond with carbohydrates, which results in the positive effects of the nutrients and proteins in lentils being reduced.

Raw lentils for dogs

The advantages of lentils

Lentils are one of the legume family. They are related to beans, chickpeas and peas. All legumes are known to be rich in elements that are good for the body. Lentils, particularly, are very nutritional food.

The nutritional advantages of lentils are quite numerous. They are rich in micronutrients, fiber and protein. The micronutrients help to boost the immune system. Naturally, this has benefits for the way a person can fight diseases and other invasive bacteria.

The role of proteins in the body is to help cells grow and repair themselves. This means that consuming lentils can help your body grow and develop. If you have an injury of any kind, it is the amino acids in the proteins that help you to recover. The proteins in lentils contain these amino acids, which makes them good for consumption.

Because of the amount of fiber in lentils, the carbohydrates that are present in lentils burn quite slowly. This gives the body more energy for longer, providing an ongoing supply of what the body needs to function.

Happy running beagle with stick

Storing and using lentils

Not only do lentils contain many useful elements, they also have a long shelf-life and can be used in a variety of ways. This makes them an attractive feature in any kitchen. It also makes them an option to include in your dog’s food.

Is feeding your dog lentils a good option, though?

Can you feed your dog lentils?

The short answer to this question is yes, you can feed your dog lentils. There are certain things to consider, though.

Advantages of lentils for your dog

Because of the micronutrients, proteins and vitamins lentils contain, they can be good for your dog. They are a rich source of nutrients and are a source of slow-burning energy. In the long run, this means that your dog will have more energy without over-eating. This helps to control your dog’s weight.  

Just as with humans, the proteins in lentils will work on building and repairing the cells in your dog’s body.

The amount of fiber is also good for a dog. It has a low glycemic index, which means the carbohydrates in the fiber are used up more slowly by the body. This will give your dog more energy, which will discourage them from eating during the day.

Disadvantages of lentils for your dog

The largest disadvantage of feeding your dog lentils is that they contain lectins, which can be harmful. Lectin is present in raw lentils. The problem is that it can bond with carbohydrates and break them down. This means your dog will lose any benefits lentils may offer.

The lectin in raw lentils can result in your dog developing leaky gut syndrome.

Dogs with energy

What, exactly, are lectins?

If the major disadvantage of feeding lentils to your dog is that lentils contain lectins, it’s important to understand what lectin is.

Lectins are described as being an ‘anti-nutrient’. They don’t necessarily act against the nutrients, but their action prevents the ‘good things’ from being absorbed by the body.

When the lentils are raw, the lectins bind to the carbohydrates. This means the body wont’ get the energy it needs. It can also affect the way a body’s stomach and bowel function. This can lead to stomach problems for both humans and dogs. It also

What do you do about lectins in lentils?

Lentils can be broken down during cooking. If you are going to feed lentils to your dog, they must be cooked. Never feed your dog raw lentils.

The best option is to soak the lentils until they are relatively soft. Then boil them. Make sure you don’t add anything. Although you will have removed the threat from the lectins by cooking them, adding any spices or salt may adversely affect your dog.

So can dogs have lentils?

The answer is, yes, your dog can eat lentils. This is as long as they are not raw, because this releases lectins into your dog’s body, which will be harmful. Lentils should be soaked, then cooked, to prevent the lectins from working on the carbohydrates in the lentils. However, lentils do contain a number of good nutrients for your dog. They also give the dog more energy. This means that they are good for your dog. Always feed them in moderation, though.

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