Bananas are a great treat and the peels have a lot of nutritional value too. So, as a dog parent it is common to wonder if you can feed the peel to your dog. Well, you’ve come to the right place with your question.
The simple answer is no but there are many reasons why you should not let your dog feed on banana peels. Take a look.
What’s the Deal with Bananas?
Bananas are a great addition to any dog’s diet. This fruit has a lot going for it.
It has vitamins B6 and C and also has high potassium content. It is also a great alternative to salty and fatty treats and comes highly recommended by many vets.
In addition to that, bananas also have a lot of fiber which can help dogs with gastrointestinal problems.
Then there is magnesium which is good for their bones. It is also a great way to help the dog absorb vitamins and produce protein in the body.
But there is such a thing as too much, which means you must ensure that you give the right amount of bananas. This is because the fruit is also rich in its sugar content.
Bananas also contain healthy amino acids and a good deal of manganese which is great for athletic breeds. It gives them a lot of energy and helps the sugars metabolize soon.
A banana that is about seven inches contains:
- 422 milligrams of potassium
- 105 calories
- 27 grams of carbs
- 14 grams of sugar
- 3.1 grams of fiber
- 1.2 grams of protein
- 0.04 grams of fat
But the story is not the same with banana peels.
About Banana Peels
While banana peels aren’t in themselves toxic, these are difficult to digest. In fact, they might even cause blockage.
Even without the peels, you must remember that too much of this fruit is capable of causing an upset stomach in dogs. The right quantity isn’t math that you should wing.
Consult your vet to find out what is the appropriate amount for your dog’s breed. Now, let’s look at the lethality of banana peels.
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Can Banana Peels Actually Kill My Dog?
While there are a lot of health benefits from bananas, they are not something you should give to your dog. You might have heard that certain viruses on your dog’s skin can be cured by placing a banana peel on the surface.
You might have also heard that banana peels can kill fleas in the vicinity. But before you try these you must remember that if you can’t control how your dog reacts to the peel, it is best not to get the peel anywhere near them.
As is the case with apple peels, banana peels are not toxic on their own. But if your dog ingests a peel, rest assured that they will have trouble digesting it because of the amount of fiber it contains.
Apart from blocking the intestines, it also causes your dog to vomit, which can be a dangerous thing. This is because sometimes they get serious enough for your dog to need emergency surgery.
If you have a small dog, you might have noticed that they tend not to chew their food properly which makes eating a banana peel, even if accidentally, a bigger problem than it is for large dogs. Smaller breeds are also likely to experience blockage more severely.
All of this aside, there is another simple reason why you should not even consider giving your dog a banana peel. The taste is terrible.
This is primarily why neither humans nor monkeys eat peels. The rules don’t change for your dog either.
Now, some dogs look like they can chew and digest just about anything. Even in those cases, a banana peel qualifies as the exception.
So, keep your dog away from banana peels and vice versa. This might even require guarding your trash cans.
Now, an intestinal blockage is no joke and yes, that is the element that has the potential to actually kill your dog. Bananas might be a treat but their peels most definitely are not.
While most dogs do not traditionally have allergic reactions to tropical fruits, if they do experience it, the result could be lethal. Just another thing to keep in mind if you are prone to leaving bananas out in the open in your house.
What If My Dog Ate One Accidentally?
If your dog accidentally eats even a little bit of the peel, watch them closely for the next few hours. They are likely to vomit and in that case, recovery should not be all that difficult.
But if the vomiting is severe or doesn’t happen at all, you should call your vet and find out what to do right away. You might be asked to monitor your dog for the next few hours, which is something you should be doing anyway.
If you notice that they have an upset stomach, call your vet again and get the next set of instructions. You might even want to take a picture of the vomit and send it to your vet so that they understand the situation even better.
That whole “a picture is worth a thousand words” thing has never been truer than in medical emergencies.
Your dog might also experience diarrhea because of the amount of fiber a banana peel has. What’s happening is that your dog’s system is going into shock.
Apart from that, there are a few other symptoms that indicate that the danger is more present. Those are:
- Absent or reduced stools
- Trouble passing stool
- Tiredness or lethargy
- Stomach pain that makes them stretch unusually or stay in the praying position
- Loss of appetite
As you might have figured by now, any of these symptoms are a good reason to rush your dog to the vet. It is important to get there as soon as possible so that the treatment can begin.
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What Should the Vet Ideally Do?
Once you take your dog to the vet, they will start an examination to assess the amount of risk. By this time, you should know how much of the peel was ingested so that the vet is able to determine the severity of the situation.
- They might want to run tests like taking an X-ray to figure out where the peel is and how much blockage is likely. An ultrasound scan is another possibility because it helps them scan the organs of your dog with minimal invasion.
In more serious situations, an endoscopy is also a possibility. If you don’t know what it is, a flexible camera will be sent into your dog’s stomach to see where the peel is.
- The vet might try to get your dog to puke so that the peel can be removed with the least discomfort to the dog. You must not try to do this at home because if you don’t get it right you might end up causing more damage. Peels are notorious for getting stuck in the esophagus which makes it hard for them to breathe. This can lead to choking.
- If the peel is already in the intestines, your vet might suggest surgery to remove the peel. This is also an opportunity for them to see firsthand the extent of damage that the peel has caused. The surgery’s success will depend on the amount of damage the peel has already caused. But the chances of recovery are pretty high so there isn’t too much cause for concern.
- With or without surgery, your vet might want to keep your pup in observation for a few days. During this time, they will monitor your pup’s reaction to ingesting the peel and see what needs to be done. If the induced vomiting has caused dehydration that will be taken care of during the hospitalization.
How to Feed Bananas to My Dog?
If you want to give your dog a banana without the risk of them ingesting a peel, there are a few safe ways to do that.
You can mash it into their food or mix it with peanut butter that is made for dogs. You can also freeze the banana and give them little pieces while making sure they don’t choke on it.
The simplest way, of course, is to peel the banana and give your dog the slices while getting rid of the peel safely.
You can also make a treat with a banana, some peanut butter meant for dogs and just a touch of cheese. Put them in the blender until the consistency is smooth and put it in a toy and freeze it.
Your simple banana treat is ready.
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Bananas are a good snack for your canine but you can totally lose track of the number of things that could go wrong if they ingest a peel. It could lead to an upset stomach and cause diarrhea or get worse and block their intestines.
When it gets serious, anything from induced vomiting to surgery is a real possibility. So, while banana peels are not toxic, they can totally be fatal.