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Can dogs have cooked sweet potatoes?

Can Dogs Eat Yams and What Will Happen If They Do?

If your dog likes to hang out with you while you’re cooking or eating, you’ve probably noticed that they are interested in every move you make. Dogs may long for a bite of a burger or bacon, but what should you do when your dog takes an interest in unexpected foods, like fruits and vegetables?

If you’re baking some yams and your dog is sniffing around the oven, here’s what you need to know before you offer your dog a taste.

What Is the Difference Between Yams and Sweet Potatoes?

People get yams and sweet potatoes mixed up all the time. Your grocery store might even mislabel the two. It’s an easy mistake to make.

Sweet potatoes and yams are very similar in a lot of respects. Most people think that the color of the flesh will tell you the whole story, but they’re looking in the wrong place. There are white-fleshed and orange-fleshed varieties of both yams and sweet potatoes.

The easiest way to tell the difference between a yam and a sweet potato is by looking at the shape and feeling the skin. The skin of a sweet potato is often smooth. They’ll have an irregular shape with points on either end. The skin of a yam is often rough, and the yam itself has more of a uniform, tubular shape.

Countries outside of the U.S. sometimes interchange the terms for a yam and a sweet potato. A particular vegetable known in Japan as “purple yam” is actually a sweet potato. Some countries use the term “yam” to refer to taro, which is a completely different root vegetable, though it also boasts a sweet flavor.

Are Yams Healthy?

Yams can be a great part of a balanced diet. One 150 gram serving of yam contains 2 grams of protein, 6 grams of fiber, and significant amounts of minerals like potassium, manganese, and copper. Yams also contain a substantial amount of vitamin C, vitamin B5, folate, and thiamine. They’re a healthy whole carbohydrate that can help to supply the body with energy.

Can Dogs Eat Yams?

Although yams and sweet potatoes are different vegetables, your dog can safely enjoy both. Yams and sweet potatoes are nutritionally similar, can be fed to your dog in similar quantities, and are prepared in similar ways. If your dog already eats sweet potatoes, or dog food and treats prepared with sweet potatoes, chances are good that your dog will enjoy yams just as much.

What Will Happen if My Dog Eats Yams?

Generally, nothing remarkable will happen if your dog eats yams. They might be a little happier if they really enjoy yams. Expect some extra affection if yams are among your dog’s favorite special snacks.

Since yams contain fiber, your dog might experience easier bowel movements. However, if you suspect your dog may be constipated or is having difficulty relieving themselves, don’t rely on foods like yams or sweet potatoes to resolve the issue. You should speak to your vet about concerns regarding your dog’s digestive health.

How Often Can I Feed My Dog Yams?

Although cooked yams are perfectly safe for your dog to eat, they should only play a small role in your dog’s diet. Treats like fruit and dog-friendly vegetables are much healthier than processed foods, but they’re not necessary for your dog’s health if your dog is eating a well-rounded fresh dog food diet.

The right dog food will meet all of your dog’s nutritional requirements. Unless your veterinarian recommends otherwise, your dog shouldn’t require any supplemental foods or additions to their diet to help them stay healthy and maintain a healthy body weight.

Even still, many dog owners choose to give their dog special treats as training rewards or to break up the monotony of a repetitive diet. As long as treats like yams are given in moderation, and your dog tolerates yams without any signs of digestive upset, you can treat your dog with yams and sweet potatoes alike.

When giving your dog treats, it’s important to determine how to properly incorporate them into your dog’s diet. Most experts recommend utilizing something called the 90/10 rule. If 90% of your dog’s calories and nutritional needs come from a well balanced dog food, the other 10% can come from healthy treats. Keep any treat, including yams, within the 10% marker of the treat allowance.

How To Serve Yams to Dogs

Choosing organic yams will limit your dog’s exposure to potentially dangerous pesticides. Thoroughly wash yams before preparing them. Peeling the skin when preparing either veggie also helps to remove potential bacteria or pesticide residue. Since the skin of a yam may be tough to chew and digest, removing the skin is a safer choice.

Never give your dog raw or whole yams. Yams are very starchy and hard. You wouldn’t want to eat an uncooked yam, and your dog won’t want to either. They can be difficult to chew and may pose a choking hazard.

Serve your dog plain, cooked yams that have been cooled to room temperature. Don’t serve your dog yams that have been prepared with butter, oils, sugar, or spices. A yam casserole is nutritionally very different from a plain yam. Added sugars and added fats can be harmful to your dog’s health and can lead to excessive weight gain or other health issues.

Cut cooked yams into bite-sized pieces before serving them to your dog. If you cut the cooked yam to the size of treats your dog normally eats, your dog won’t have trouble chewing it. The amount of pieces you give your dog should be proportionate to your dog’s size. A large dog can consume up to half a medium-sized yam. A small dog can have a two-inch slice of a cooked yam.

How To Make Yam Dog Treats

Golden yams can be turned into jerky treats for your dog. All you need to do is slice the yam into thin coins and put them in a food dehydrator. If you don’t have a food dehydrator, you can put them in the oven on a baking sheet at 200 degrees Fahrenheit for about four hours, flipping the yams halfway through.

Yam jerky can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for about two weeks. If your dog really loves yams, you can make up a big batch and keep them fresh until you run out. This is a great way to keep a supply of healthy, simple, homemade treats handy in a multi-dog household.

Supporting Your Dog’s Health Holistically

VETCBD Hemp is all about holistic animal wellness. Whole foods like cooked yams are great treats for your pet, as long as they’re prepared appropriately, and served in suitable quantities. Your pet’s diet and digestive health are two key aspects of their overall wellness, and yams can play a great role in supporting both.

If you’re interested in supporting your pet’s digestive health in more ways, try VETCBD Hemp’s CBD oil. Our American-grown hemp oil is third-party lab tested for safety and purity. CBD works to support regular gastrointestinal health, support joint mobility, and could help maintain your pet’s sense of calm. Ask your vet about incorporating CBD into your dog’s holistic wellness plan.

Can Dogs Eat Sweet Potatoes?

Jack Russell Terrier holding in mouth little rake

You’ve probably clicked on this article because you’re a dog owner and curious to know if your pup can have sweet potatoes and the short answer is- yes! Sweet potatoes offer a ton of different benefits and are flavourful for your pup to enjoy. At Dog Child, we have created tons of different recipes and products that your pup can enjoy featuring sweet potatoes. This blog post, it is going to go in-depth on the benefits of sweet potatoes, ways you can make them for your pup and how we have incorporated sweet potatoes into our products at Dog Child!

Health benefits of Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes offer a variety of health benefits for your dog, they are high in fiber which helps with your dog’s digestion. Sweet Potatoes are also high in vitamin A, vitamin B6, and vitamin C as well as calcium, potassium, dietary fiber, antioxidants, and iron. Sweet potatoes are also low in fat making them the perfect treat. There are a couple of different reasons why these vitamins are essential within a dog’s diet, one being vitamin A helps keep your pup’s eyes healthy, muscles, skin, and nerves. Vitamin C is also another important vitamin within a dog’s diet as it helps keep their immune system functioning well and they continue to have a healthy dog. Sweet potatoes are also very easy to find at your local grocery store making them accessible.

How you should prepare sweet potatoes

To prepare sweet potatoes for your pooch you want to ensure they are cooked. Raw sweet potatoes are difficult for your pup to chew and can cause an upset stomach to your pup. There are tons of different ways you can incorporate sweet potatoes into your pup’s diet. You can make dog treats like dehydrated sweet potatoes; all you need to do is 2 sweet potatoes. Rinse, peel and cut your sweet potatoes into slices. Lay them onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Preheat the oven to 250F and put them in the oven for three hours. Once they are shrunken and dried out, take them out of the oven and let them cool before serving. Store them in an air-tight container and they are perfect in your fridge for three weeks.

Other ways you can cook them is by baking them in an oven at 450F until cooked. Mash up the potato as topper or spread it on your dog’s favourite lick mat. Freeze the healthy mashed potatoes in the freezer in ice cube trays and a low-calorie snack for your pet.

All of our Dog Meal Mixes have freeze dried sweet potatoes in them. Great way to easily give this healthy vegetable to your dog. If you’re looking to cook from scratch, we also have our sweet potatoes and beef meal.

How many sweet potatoes can your dog eat?

With any sort of human food that you are feeding your pup, you always want to ensure you are feeding it in moderation. Sweet potatoes are not meant to be your pup’s full meal, only served as a snack. When introducing new foods to your dog you want to ensure you keep an eye on them to ensure they don’t have a reaction. It can seem tempting to give your pup leftovers but ensure to not give your pup sweet potatoes that are mixed with marshmallows, seasonings, butter, and brown sugar. Another important aspect is to ensure pieces are small enough for your pup to chew as too big pieces can be a choking hazard.

Sweet Potatoes vs White Potatoes

When choosing between sweet potatoes or white potatoes it is a better idea to choose sweet potatoes if you can. Sweet potatoes are a more nutritious option rather than white potatoes as sweet potatoes have higher levels of antioxidants and vitamins. Sweet potatoes also have less sugar than white potatoes making them better for pup’s blood sugar to stay stable. Sweet potatoes are higher starchy and carb than white potatoes and white potatoes are typically more popular in dog food since it is a cheaper starch. White potatoes have a high glycemic index than sweet potatoes. If you have a diabetic dog, ensure to check with your vet or nutritionist on what is best for them to ensure the best pet health.

How Dog Child incorporates Sweet Potatoes into our Meal Mixes

At Dog Child, we have created Dog Meal Mixes that you can add to ground proteins your pup likes with oil and water and it contains all the essential nutrients that your pup needs to thrive and support their overall health, digestive system, and wellness. This is different than traditional kibble and provides tons of nutritional value for your pup. With Dog Child, we have created multiple different Dog Meal Mix flavours so you are able to mix up the different meals you are giving to your pup so your pup is never bored of meal time. We have created many recipes on our blog that can inspire you to cook for your dog creatively. Our Mixed Veggie Dog Meal Mix includes sweet potatoes that help make fresh dog food a great alternative to commercial dog food. The Mixed Veggie Dog Meal Mix has dark green superfood veggies and a blend of probiotics and prebiotics. Our Dog Meal Mixes support digestive and gut health.

We have tons of recipes listed on our website under the recipes tab. One of these recipes includes our Doggy Burgers and sweet potato fries. Our Doggy Burgers and Fries are super easy to make and are a great dog food substitute to give your pup a break from pre-packaged or dehydrated dog food. In order to make the Doggy Burgers and Fries you need, 1 lb lean ground beef, 1 ¾ Dog Child Mixed Veggie Dog Meal Mix, 1 cup of water, 3 tbsp of olive oil, 1 Sweet potato, and Shaved iceberg lettuce (can use any type). To make Doggy Burger and Fries you need 1lb of lean ground beef in a bowl. Add 1 ¾ Cup of mixed veggie meal mix to the bowl. Add 1 cup of water to the bowl. Add 3 tbsp of oil to the bowl. Thoroughly mix all ingredients together. Roll mixture into 2-inch balls and place on greased pan. Flatten balls with a spatula and flip when browned. Cut sweet potato into 1-inch rounds. Place sweet potato in the oven at 300 degrees for 1.5 hours. Remove potatoes from oven and let cool. Place burgers on a plate with shaved lettuce and sweet potatoes on the side and let your pup enjoy. This Doggy Burger and Fries will have your pup begging for more and it gives you the ease of mind to know that they are getting everything that they need in a meal to thrive. Our recipe page on our website is full of other recipes that you can make for your pup so feel free to mix up their meals just like how we mix up our meals every day! Dog Child has three different Meal Mix flavours, Mixed Veggies, Oats and Berry, Grain Free and the newly launched Nutrient Mix! We can ensure you that your pup will never be bored of mealtime again and they will be getting all the nutrients that they need to thrive.

How Much Sweet Potato Can I Give My Dog?

Dogs love treats from their humans. Many of the fruits and vegetables that we enjoy as treats can be given to your dog. Sweet potatoes are one such example. They are a healthy vegetable that provides certain vitamins and minerals for people and pets. However, sweet potatoes are also a component in many of the grain-free commercial dog foods that have recently come under investigation by the FDA due to their possible increased risk of dilated cardiomyopathy in dogs and cats. So, if you’re giving it to your dog as a treat, how much is safe to give?

What are sweet potatoes?

Sweet potatoes are tuberous root vegetables that have been eaten for hundreds of years. They existed in the Americas but gained popularity when Christopher Columbus brought them back to Spain in the early 1500s. Sweet potatoes soon spread to gardens all over Spain, England, and France. At the time, they were considered an aphrodisiac, likely due to their novelty. Sweet potatoes are different from yams which are drier and starchier than sweet potatoes, however, many Americans use the two terms interchangeably. Sweet potatoes are more common than yams which makes them easier to find in grocery stores. They are an excellent source of vitamins like A and C, more so than white potatoes, and they contain minerals like iron, calcium, and selenium.

Can dogs eat sweet potatoes?

Yes, it is safe for dogs to eat sweet potatoes in small quantities. For now, most veterinarians agree that you can give sweet potatoes to your dog as a treat as long as it does not make up more than ten percent of their diet. And until we know more about grain-free diets from the FDA investigation, it is best to avoid feeding a grain-free commercial diet to your dog. Many of the health benefits purported by sweet potatoes for humans are thought to carry over to dogs. Sweet potatoes are rich in beta-carotene which is an antioxidant and a precursor for vitamin A. Without vitamin A, your dog will have vision problems, especially at nighttime. Antioxidants help break up harmful free radicals and, by doing so, may help reduce the risk of cancer and heart disease. Beta-carotene is also a pigment that gives the sweet potato its signature orange color. However, sweet potatoes are also known to come in other colorful varieties like yellow and even purple. They are an excellent source of fiber, even more so than white potatoes, and they contain fewer carbohydrates.

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How much sweet potato can a dog have?

Dogs should start out with very small amounts of sweet potato, usually no more than one or two ounces per serving. Toy breed dogs should start with a quarter or half of an ounce (about two to three teaspoons) and large breed dogs can have a little bit extra if they tolerate the first serving well. It is important to make sure that the sweet potato is prepared properly. Boiled, baked, and mashed sweet potatoes work very well because it softens the potato, making it easier for your dog to swallow. Raw sweet potato is safe as long as it is chopped into smaller pieces or slices. Do not use any salt, butter, or other seasonings when giving it to your dog. When giving your dog his first serving, you can mix the sweet potato into his regular dog food. Some dog owners will use sweet potato and bake it into a treat. If he likes it and tolerates it well, sweet potato can become a regular treat for your dog. If he has any signs of gastrointestinal upset such as vomiting, diarrhea, increased flatulence, etc., avoid giving him more sweet potato and contact your veterinarian. Remember that sweet potato are the main component for many of the commercially available grain-free diets. On the list of ingredients on the back of the bag, you will usually see sweet potato mentioned within the first ten ingredients. For your dog’s safety, make sure that he is on a diet that contains grain, i.e. rice or corn or wheat. The grain ingredient should be listed within the first ten ingredients, and if this is the case, it is safe to have sweet potato as a regular part of your dog’s diet regimen.

Sweet potato is a healthy and tasty treat when given every so often. It can be prepped in a variety of ways and can be given to your dog as long as it does not exceed ten percent of his daily diet. Raw sweet potatoes are firm enough to be a choking hazard, so be sure to cut the sweet potato into smaller pieces or slices, or you can boil or bake them so that they are softer. Start by giving your dog very small amounts and stop giving them if he has any signs of gastrointestinal upset.

Meet The Author

Dr. Erica Irish DVM Veterinarian Erica has worked in the veterinary field since 2006, starting out as a veterinary technician before graduating from the UF College of Veterinary Medicine in 2013. As a general practitioner in an animal hospital, she has many interests and is especially interested in dermatology, cardiology, internal and integrative medicine.

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