Can Dogs Eat Lentils? (Pros and Cons)


can dogs eat lentils

If you are familiar with the legumes family (beans), you probably have heard of lentils before, and if not, don’t worry since we will start off with a quick intro before diving into the main topic.

Lentils are oval-shaped beans that are a great source of protein and fiber, which can be helpful for your dog. In this article, we will go over whether or not dogs can eat lentils.


Benefits of Lentil for Dogs

To follow our tradition, we will start by taking a quick glimpse at the nutritional values of lentil. This will help you to see if your dogs can eat lentils. Also in the list down below, you will the percentages of each nutrient and the amount for 100 grams of cooked lentils.

  • 70% Carbohydrates (20.13 Grams)
  • 30% Protein (9.02 Grams)
  • Little Bit of Fats / Minerals / Vitamins

Please remember that these nutritional values are not for raw lentils but for cooked lentils. You will see the reasons why you need to feed dogs cooked in the drawback section, so without further ado, let’s jump straight in!


1. High Amounts of Protein

By looking at the nutritional values, you would have probably found out that lentils contain a high amount of protein, which is great news for your dog. The majority of your dog’s diet should be protein and fats, so adding lentil as a protein supplement would be a great idea.

  • Lentils Provide Great Amounts of Plant-Based Protein

Don’t look down on plant-based protein because they are just as good if not better than animal-based protein. However, animal meat such as chicken, beef, and pork should be your dog’s go-to for every meal since meat contains protein and fats while lentils contain protein and just a little bit of fat.


2. Good Source of Fiber

As a member of the legume family, lentils also contain a high amount of fiber, which aids your dog’s digestion and helps with an upset stomach. However, if consumed in large amounts, it can cause vomiting since huge amounts of fiber is never good for any dog.

  • Also a Good Source of Minerals (Iron) and Vitamins

Fiber’s main role is to slow down digestion, and giving your dog too much means that your dog’s digestion will slow by a lot, which is not good. As with any food, feed in moderation and always observe your dog for any positive or negative effects.


3. Easy to Prepare

Instead of having a set list of instructions, lentils can be easily prepared by pouring some raw lentils into a pot, and either boil or steam them to prepare the supplement. It doesn’t take that much time nor effort since you just need to add water to prepare the lentils.


Drawbacks of Feeding Your Dog Lentils

Since it was mentioned in the previous section, I will not include this in the heading, but be sure to introduce lentils slowly into your diet in small amounts. Introducing any food suddenly might have a negative impact since your dog might not be used to that food, so take care when adding a new ingredient to your dog’s diet.


1. Don’t Use Commercially Bought Lentils

These drawbacks are not really drawbacks since they are just stuff that you need to keep in mind when using lentils. The first and foremost is to never use commercially bought lentils since they contain additives and a high amount of sodium, which can be fatal for your dog in large amounts.

  • Just Buy Raw Lentils and Prepare Them Yourself

I know it is easy to just buy a refrigerated package of lentils instead of buying a raw package, but taking that extra step ensures your dog’s health in the long run. Prolonged sodium intake can lead to cardiovascular diseases while artificial additives can lead to a coma and even death in worst scenarios.


2. Never Feed Lentils Raw

Some might think that cooking the lentils would strip away all the good nutrients, and that is not so! If you look at the nutritional values, you will see that all the nutrients are from cooked lentils, so preparing them with hot water does not decrease the nutritional value.

  • Lentils Contain Huge Amounts of Glycoproteins Called Lecithin

If a dog consumes raw lentils, he will consume large amounts of lecithin, which can be toxic for your dog. If you cook the lentils, that large amount of toxic substances will be removed due to the high heat and intense pressure, so it is highly recommended that you cook the lentils before giving it to your dog.


Can You Give Lentils to Your Dog?

The answer is a resounding yes since lentils contain high amounts of protein and fiber, which are both great for your dog. However, as mentioned in previous sections, you need to start small and increase it gradually since even good stuff can be bad in large amounts.

Dogs can definitely eat lentils, and it is even good for them. But like stated earlier, start slowly.


Are Lentils Bad For My Dog?

Even though lentil contains great nutrients inside, it can be bad for your dog if fed in large amounts. Also, you should always prepare the lentils by cooking them since raw lentils contain a harmful toxin which can be only removed by using hot boiling water.


How Should I Prepare the Lentils For My Dog?

The best way to prepare lentils for your dog is to either steam or boil them. The first option is to use a pressure cooker and do the same thing with lentils as you would do with rice. Add water and lentils in moderate amounts and wait after pressing the button.

  • Add Lentils and Water to 3:1 Ratio
  • Whole Lentils Takes About 15 ~ 20 Minutes to Cook
  • Mix or Just Use Cooked Lentils as a Supplement

If you don’t have a pressure cooker or don’t know how to steam, you can always use a cooking pot as your last resort. Throw together some lentils with an adequate amount of water and cook it for twenty minutes, and then, you can mix it with some meat and veggies as a homemade meal.

I hope that this article on can dogs eat lentils was helpful. If you are interested, please visit the Dog Food Category for more posts regarding this topic! As always, feel free to share if you think that people are looking for information like this.

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