Can Dogs Eat Bananas?

Bananas are safe for dogs and provide many nutritional benefits, but too many bananas can result in digestive distress.

Lindsay Frankel
Written byLindsay Frankel
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Lindsay FrankelInsurance Writer
  • 5+ years in auto insurance and personal finance writing

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Lindsay is a widely published creator of auto insurance content. She also specializes in real estate, banking, credit cards, and other personal finance topics.

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Ashley Cox
Edited byAshley Cox
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Ashley CoxSenior Managing Editor
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  • 5+ years in insurance and personal finance content

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Updated June 7, 2024 | Reading time: 4 minutes

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If you catch your furry friend gazing longingly as you peel a banana, you may be tempted to give them a taste. While it’s safe to give your dog a few bites of the potassium-rich fruit as an occasional treat, you should avoid feeding your pup too many bananas on a regular basis.

Learn about the nutritional benefits of bananas and other fruits for dogs, when to avoid feeding your dog bananas, and how to safely provide the treat.

Are bananas safe for dogs?

Like many other fruits and vegetables, bananas are safe for dogs in moderation, according to the American Kennel Club (AKC).[1] Bananas also provide several health benefits and may aid in digestion — as long as you don’t overdo it with too much banana.

Bananas are high in sugar and fiber, and too many can cause constipation. To avoid upsetting your dog’s stomach, you should only provide up to 10% of your dog’s calories in treats, including bananas. Dog food should account for the remaining 90% of your dog’s diet.[2]

Make sure to peel the banana before offering the fruit to your furry friend. Banana peels aren’t toxic, but they’re tough on the digestive system and may even cause an intestinal blockage. Surgery for an intestinal blockage can cost thousands of dollars if you don’t have pet insurance, according to CareCredit.[3]

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Can puppies have bananas?

It’s safe to give your puppy bananas in moderation. Start with a small amount to see whether the treat causes any digestive distress, and avoid feeding your puppy more than two or three slices of banana per day.

Read More: Puppy Insurance: The Best Plans for Your Pup in 2024

Read More: Puppy Insurance: The Best Plans for Your Pup in 2024

Nutritional benefits of bananas for dogs

Some veterinarians recommend bananas as a healthy alternative to store-bought treats, which can sometimes contain too much fat and salt. Bananas contain low amounts of sodium and cholesterol, and they’re high in the following essential nutrients:

  • Biotin

  • Copper

  • Fiber

  • Magnesium

  • Potassium

  • Vitamin B

  • Vitamin C

But because bananas contain a high amount of sugar, you should consider them a treat rather than a nutritional supplement.

When bananas are bad for dogs

Feeding your dog large quantities of bananas can lead to gastrointestinal problems. You also shouldn’t allow your dog to eat banana peels. While extra-large dogs may benefit from up to half a medium-sized banana per day, small dogs may only be able to eat a slice or two.[4] You may want to start with just one slice of banana to see how your dog responds.

Watch for the following signs of an upset stomach after feeding your dog bananas:

  • Reduced appetite or thirst

  • Fatigue

  • Gulping and licking

  • Vomiting

  • Diarrhea

Important Information

If your dog gets sick after eating a banana, in most cases, it’ll recover on its own. You can temporarily switch to a bland diet of plain boiled chicken breast and white rice to help your dog feel better more quickly. But you should call your vet if your dog won’t eat or drink; if symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea last longer than 24 hours; or if you notice blood in your dog’s vomit or stool.[5]

Can dogs be allergic to bananas?

Yes. Bananas are generally safe and nontoxic, but some dogs may have an allergy to bananas. It’s a good idea to start with a small amount to see how your dog reacts. Watch for signs of food allergies, including skin issues like itchy paws or ears, and digestive problems like diarrhea and vomiting.[6]

A change in your dog’s behavior or energy level also warrants a call to the vet.

How to give your dog bananas

When introducing bananas or any other new foods into your dog’s diet, start with small amounts. Here are a few ways you can give your canine companion the healthy treat:

  • Mash it up. Mashing small quantities of banana into your dog’s regular food is a great way to make kibble more appealing.

  • Mix it up. For a tasty treat, mix small portions of banana with a small bit of dog-safe (xylitol-free) peanut butter.

  • Stuff it in a dog toy. Stuffable dog toys, like Kong toys, offer a fun way to give your dog small servings of banana. You can also blend banana with natural peanut butter and mild cheese before putting the mixture inside a fillable toy. You may want to freeze the toy before giving it to your dog to avoid a mess.

  • Freeze it. Some dogs love frozen bananas. You can freeze the entire unpeeled banana — just make sure to peel and slice it before offering it to your four-legged friend — or slice it first and store it in a freezer bag.

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Other fruits that dogs can eat

Bananas aren’t the only human food you can give to your dog as a healthy snack. Several other dog-safe fruits can provide a good alternative to fatty treats, as long as you avoid large amounts to prevent health issues.

The AKC has a comprehensive list of fruits and vegetables that dogs can and can’t eat.

Fruits that are safe for dogs

  • Apples

  • Blueberries

  • Cantaloupe

  • Mango

  • Oranges (without the orange peel)

  • Peaches

  • Pears

  • Pineapple

  • Pumpkin

  • Raspberries

  • Strawberries

  • Watermelon

Fruits you shouldn’t give to dogs

  • Avocado

  • Cherries

  • Grapes

  • Tomatoes

Can dogs eat bananas FAQs

If you still have questions about adding bananas to your pup’s diet, this additional information may help.

  • How much banana can a dog eat?

    While dogs weighing more than 90 pounds may be able to safely eat up to half a banana, dogs less than 20 pounds should only eat one or two quarter-inch slices. As a general rule, start with one slice and observe how your four-legged friend responds.

  • Does banana firm up dog stool?

    In some cases, the dietary fiber in bananas may help with diarrhea by removing water from the feces. But not all dogs will react the same way to bananas, and portion sizes matter.

    You can try giving your dog a slice of banana, but you should call your vet if diarrhea persists for more than 24 hours.

  • Can dogs eat banana peels?

    No. You shouldn’t give your dog an unpeeled banana. While the banana peel isn’t toxic, it can be hard to digest and may lead to an intestinal blockage.

  • Can dogs eat banana bread?

    No. While bananas are typically safe for dogs, many of the other ingredients in banana bread are not. Raisins are toxic to dogs, nuts may upset your dog’s stomach, and some dogs are allergic to wheat. Banana bread also contains added sugar, which can lead to weight gain and other health issues.

  • Do bananas help a dog’s upset stomach?

    Bananas may improve or worsen gastrointestinal distress in dogs, depending on your dog and the portion size. If you’ve never given your dog bananas before, you’re better off treating your dog’s upset stomach with a bland diet and following up with your veterinarian if you don’t see improvement.

Sources

  1. American Kennel Club. "Can Dogs Eat Bananas?."
  2. Purina. "Can Dogs Eat Bananas?."
  3. CareCredit. "Cat and Dog Intestinal Blockage Surgery Costs and Financing."
  4. PetMD. "Can Dogs Eat Bananas?."
  5. Texas A&M University Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences. "When to see a Veterinarian for a Dog's Stomach Ache."
  6. VCA Animal Hospitals. "Food Allergies in Dogs."
Lindsay Frankel
Lindsay FrankelInsurance Writer

Lindsay Frankel is a content writer specializing in personal finance and auto insurance topics. Her work has been featured in publications such as LendingTree, The Balance, Coverage.com, Bankrate, NextAdvisor, and FinanceBuzz.

Ashley Cox
Edited byAshley CoxSenior Managing Editor
Headshot of Managing Editor Ashley Cox
Ashley CoxSenior Managing Editor
  • 7+ years in content creation and management

  • 5+ years in insurance and personal finance content

Ashley is a seasoned personal finance editor who’s produced a variety of digital content, including insurance, credit cards, mortgages, and consumer lending products.

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