The short answer: Yes, but only occasionally.
The long answer: Even though raisins and dates look similar, the effects they have on dogs are extremely varied. Raisins are dried grapes, so they are extremely toxic for dogs. On the other hand, dates are the fruits of date palm trees and they are safe for your dog to eat. Dates are high in fiber and amino acids, low in fat, and packed with vitamins A, B, and C.
How to feed dates to your dog: Limit the number of dates you feed to your dog. Though they are filled with vitamins and minerals, they also contain high amounts of sugar, which may cause stomach discomfort or diarrhea.
Before feeding fresh or dried dates to your dog, remember to wash the dates and remove the pits to prevent choking. If you plan to give him dried or packaged dates, make sure the ingredients used to flavour the dates do not contain salt, sugar, and other herbs and spices that might be harmful for him.
Here are three ideas for date treats your dog will love:
- Chop one or two dates into fine pieces then mix them with his regular food.
- Try gluten-free cookies for dogs! The dates make this recipe sweet and chewy.
- Serve it fresh, straight from your hand.
In summary: Because of its high fiber content, dates can help improve your dog’s digestion. The fruit is also known to provide quick bursts of energy, and improve eyesight and circulation. Give the fruit to your pooch sparingly to avoid the risk of digestive upset, diarrhea, and diabetes. Before letting your dog try dates, consult with your veterinarian if the fruit is something that will benefit him. Aside from dates, discover which fruits he can safely eat in our “can dogs eat” category.