What Canned Vegetables Are Good For Dogs

What Canned Vegetables Are Good For Dogs?

Last Updated: August 20, 2023

In this article you will know the answer to the query “What Canned Vegetables Are Good For Dogs?“.

There have been canning processes for food for over a hundred years.

In the late eighteenth century Napoleon (the famous French Emperor and military commander) is credited with the idea of preserving food. 

What Canned Vegetables Are Good For Dogs

His soldiers needed a way to preserve their food.

At first attempts were made to preserve food in glass bottles inspired by the wine industry. 

It was an Englishman named Peter Durand who started sealing food in cans in the nineteenth century and the world hasnot looked back since.

Despite the fact that soldiers may be able to store food in sealed cans cans of vegetables may not be appropriate for dogs.

Can dogs have canned vegetables?

As far as convenience and price are concerned canned vegetables are a great addition to your dogs diet.

But canned vegetables are not always the right choice. There are a few things to keep in mind and a few types of vegetables to stay away from.

You should generally head for the “can” aisle in your local store if you want a quick and easy way to add vitamins and minerals to your dogs food. 

Let me start with a history lesson before I talk about the dos and do nots and the highs and lows of canned vegetables. 

How are vegetables canned?

According to all accounts not much has changed since the days of Peter Durand.

Today foods are still canned using the same basic methods. 

We wash prepare and chop up the vegetables.

When the vegetables are blanched (or scalded) they are first killed off any bacteria.

These are then placed in a tin can with water (and sometimes salt but more on that later).

A final heat is applied to the can and its contents to kill any remaining bacteria. 

Our local grocery store for example receives the cans ready for purchase so we are able to buy them. 

Are canned vegetables healthy for dogs?

I find this question to be really interesting.

Is preserving food with a process that is over 200 years old still the best option?

It is only possible to look at this from an alternative perspective.

Overall frozen vegetables are superior to canned vegetables but it might not be for the reasons you think.

It seems to me that vegetables sent to the canning factory are older than those sent to the freezer factory.

Unfortunately this isnot the case- vegetables that are destined for canning or freezing are picked at their ripest. 

There are two ways in which frozen vegetables are better than canned vegetables from a process standpoint.

In the process of canning vegetables they are heated twice- once before they are placed in the can and then again when they are sealed in the can. 

Only one heat is applied to frozen vegetables.

Due to the fact that heating up any food destroys nutrients frozen vegetables contain more nutrients.

The vegetables that seem to suffer the most are those with high vitamin B and C content.

Have canned vs frozen vs fresh- which is the best vegetable for your dog?

I briefly compared canned and frozen vegetables in the last section.

My goal is to provide a more detailed analysis of prices storage and nutrition comparing fresh frozen and canned products. 

Fresh vegetables can not be beaten lets face it.

The problem is that they have different storage requirements and if these needs are not met then they can quickly deteriorate.

Peas for instance will turn starchy within 24 hours of being picked. 

I said earlier that vegetables destined for canning or freezing are picked when they are at their ripest.

Fresh vegetables that are destined for grocery stores are picked before they are ripe so that they will become ripe while in the store. 

When they get home with you. 

A bag of fresh spinach will lose 100% of its vitamin C in a week if it is stored at room temperature and 75% if it is stored in the fridge. Keeping carrots at room temperature for one week reduces their vitamin C content by 27 percent.

Price: canned vegetables vs frozen

Its time to check out the prices at Walmart.

Can canned vegetables deliver a better value per gram than their frozen counterparts?

There will be some randomness in this comparison but I will do my best to keep it fair. 

You will pay $0.50 for a can of 14.5 ounces of cut green beans but you will only get 12 ounces of frozen green beans for the same price.

Thus canned beans win the first round.

The next item on the menu is peas.

You will pay $0.50 for a 14.5 oz can of peas and $0.77 for a 12 oz bag of sweet peas. 

The canned peas win round two

Last but not least carrots.

A can of 14.5 oz sliced carrots will cost you $0.50 while a bag of 12 oz sliced carrots will cost you $0.84. 

Finally canned carrots win round 3. 

After establishing that canned vegetables tend to be (slightly) more economical I’d now like to discover which process keeps vegetables fresher longer. 

How long will canned vegetables last?

In fact the USDA has extensively studied this issue and believes that canned goods in good condition can be eaten indefinitely.

Although they might lose some of their nutrition texture and taste over time eating the products would not harm you.

Thus the question arises how long can canned vegetables be stored in optimal condition?

Veggies like spinach beans beets peas and pumpkin can last between two and five years. 

What is the difference between this and frozen vegetables?

How long will frozen vegetables last?

Most experts agree that frozen vegetables will last between 8 and 12 months. 

Even though frozen vegetables like their canned counterparts can be eaten beyond these dates they might lose some of their nutritional value. 

Compared to frozen vegetables canned vegetables are cheaper and have a longer shelf life.

Is it possible that they are not perfect?

In my opinion there are two disadvantages with the biggest drawback being what I will discuss next.

Are canned vegetables with added salt good for your dog?

One of the oldest preservation methods is salt.

In addition to adding salt to the canning water manufacturers have traditionally used this method of preservation when canning vegetables. 

This however drastically increases the salt content in the vegetable itself and dogs do not require such high levels of salt.

I’m heading back to Walmart to compare prices. 

A standard 15 oz can of sweet peas contains 1015 mg of sodium.

Sweet peas in a 15 oz can without salt contain 52 mg of sodium.

Thats almost a twenty-fold difference!

People are becoming increasingly health-conscious so this practice is becoming less popular.

Most canned vegetable brands offer a “no salt added” option and the good news is that it would not cost you more.

I want to examine BPA in canned vegetables in my next section which deals with one type of poison to another.

Canned vegetables might be contaminated with BPA

The chemical BPA was historically used on the inside of food cans. 

By protecting the cans sides it prevented things like erosion.

This chemical was undoubtedly unsafe and has been linked to several health problems including high blood pressure and heart disease in adults and hyperactivity in children. 

You will not be surprised to learn that there has been no research into the possible effects of BPA on dogs…

Despite its use in 2018 being 10% of all food cans I do not know how often it is used today.  

There is minimal risk but it is something to consider…

What canned vegetables are bad for dogs?

There are only a few canned vegetables that you should not give your dog since the most toxic vegetables to dogs (such as onions and garlic) do not normally come in cans.

However they come in jars- and you should not feed them to your dog either. 

Although dogs can eat canned potatoes you might want to avoid them since they do not have much in terms of nutritional value.

Asparagus spears are also not recommended for dogs as although they are not toxic they are tough and woody in texture which makes them difficult for dogs to eat. 

Can pickled vegetables replace canned vegetables?

Even though I just mentioned it it would not hurt to mention it again- do not feed your dog pickled onions or pickled garlic. 

The problem with large pickled vegetables such as gherkins is that in addition to soaking in vinegar there is also quite a lot of salt added to the mix.

Vegetables themselves are not toxic neither is vinegar but salt may be according to the amount used. 

Pickled vegetables are sometimes confused with fermented vegetables such as sauerkraut.

Pickled vegetables do not contain the healthy gut bacteria that fermented vegetables do.

Sauerkraut is always a good choice when in doubt. 

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Amanda Dogs Trainer

Amanda (Author)

With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

Osvaldo Maciel Dogs Trainer

Osvaldo Maciel (Content Reviewer)

Osvaldo Maciel, a stalwart in the field with 14 years of experience, is a revered dog trainer. His journey is defined by a profound understanding of canine behavior, shaping unbreakable human-canine bonds. Osvaldo guides owners to connect with their beloved pets, leaving an indelible mark of happiness and transformation. His legacy shines through the countless lives he has touched.

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