Can I Give My Dog Beans?

Can I Give My Dog Beans?When we think of a dog eating some beans, regardless of the nutritional value, it seems like a pretty bad idea. Though this food is rich in protein and fiber, let’s be honest and say that most pet dogs are gassy enough!

Everyone knows that beans increase flatulence or gas, which would obviously apply to dogs as well. But if you aren’t concerned about that, you’ve come to the right place to learn more. Basically the biggest factors in feeding beans to Fido will depend on which kind you serve and how often.

So you can feed your dog some, when cooked. They aren’t toxic for canines. However, with so many different varieties, choosing one can be confusing. Green beans, black beans, white beans, chili beans and other several other kinds are all available. It’s a broad topic, let’s take a bite out of it.

Can I Give My Dog Beans? Answer: Yes, in moderation

Serving some with, for example, a rice recipe is safe and nutritious. Just avoid providing them raw and limit portions.

Certain kinds of raw beans may be harmful. In particular, avoid the raw Red Kidney variety since they contain a bad toxin. While healthy in general, keep in mind that beans can’t replace meat proteins which your dog absolutely requires. So don’t overly depend on this human food which is why moderation is important. Even though dogs are considered omnivores by some, they definitely require most of their protein to come from meat sources.

A good compromise is to get a quality dog food that contains green beans as an ingredient.

The Benefits of Beans

Other excellent health benefits are the antioxidant properties within beans which may lower your dog’s cholesterol levels just as it can for people. This type of vegetable also may prevent constipation and other bowel issues by helping to maintain their colon. The fiber found in beans can help regulate sugar levels in the blood. This is particularly helpful for dogs suffering from diabetes.

Green & Black Beans

Green beans and black beans among others are good sources of fiber, protein, vitamins and minerals. They offer high levels of vitamin C, vitamin K and manganese to name a few. These high amounts of nutrients can boost your dog’s immune system. In theory, their system will have more strength to fight certain types of diseases over the course of their lifetime.

Canned Beans & Chili

Avoid feeding your dog any human foods that are canned and preserved. Canned is popular but it’s loaded with preservatives and your pets can’t tolerate those nasty chemicals. We hear about how some dogs favor chili beans mixed in with their regular dog food, but we feel that would be bad for canine health. Any heavily spiced foods can cause stomach problems. The build-up from those spices can even be toxic for dogs. Remember that some basic ingredients in human food, such as onions, are very harmful to dogs.

Some Other Considerations

At least in theory your pet dog can benefit from the high protein, fiber content and overall nutritional value of beans. So this type of food is possibly a good supplement but one drawback to beans, besides the obvious gas issue, is it’s moist texture characteristic. If you don’t maintain their oral hygiene, your pet dog will be more prone to developing cavities and other gum problems over the long term. Keep that in mind when you serve some.

Conclusion on Beans

Yes, you can occasionally feed your dog some beans. Just limit their portions and only serve them cooked. Generally, raw vegetables are more difficult to digest. Your dog may experience stomach problems, in addition to terrible gas, because of the way it’s served. Whether you feed beans or not, focus on your dog’s health by providing the best canine-formulated diet which offers balanced nutrition. High quality dog food is very important. Beans, on their own, just aren’t going to cut it even though they are healthy.

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{ 33 comments… read them below or add one }

Linda March, 2016

Are fully cooked unseasoned Pinto beans okay if I mash them with a fork first and feed sparingly? I soak them for 12 hours to remove a percentage of the starch. All replies are welcome because there’s nothing worse than a 65 pound Doberman with the runs.

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Diane February, 2016

I give my Lab no-salt green beans every day. Can she have the liquid that the beans are canned in?

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Melissa November, 2015

I feed my Yellow Lab cooked chicken, veggies, yogurt and an apple every day. I will occasionally add other items like oatmeal, pumpkin puree and cooked beans. I’ve never had any issues with beans until this last week. I cooked a batch of dry organic beans from Target and fed some to him along with his chicken and veggies.

He threw up while I was gone after that. I figured he had some tummy issues and didn’t think anything about it until I gave him some more today. Less than 1/2 a cup, with his food, and within 30 minutes he threw up. It’s gotta be the black beans from Target.

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Hailey June, 2015

My dog will only eat vegetables. If we nearly force him, occasionally he’ll have a bit of meat but he’s happy with frozen veggies. His favorites are peas and sweet potato.

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D June, 2015

Can I feed my dog cooked Lima beans, like the ones in mixed vegetables?

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DorrieL November, 2015

Yes but dry dog food is so far removed from real food that you have to introduce new foods gradually. I cook for my dogs daily which includes a starch, a veggie, a protein, some fat and some Dr. Good pet enzymes. I try to use fresh organic foods as much as possible. A dog not used to real food might feel funny and get the runs until he gets used to it. Dogs need a fresh balanced diet just like you with the exception of onions, nutmeg, certain nuts, grapes, raisins, avocados or alcohol.

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Mary Anne March, 2015

I often cook a 5 liter pot of bean soup with red kidney sugar beans and share it with my dogs. One day after feeding my Boerboel what was left over from the bean soup, she developed a severe stomach contortion at only age 3. That evening I had to take the snap decision to euthanize her. It was so terribly severe. It will remain etched into my memory for the rest of my life. It was like my dog had been poisoned and right after she had eaten the bean soup! I still feel responsible and realize it could only have been the beans that triggered it.

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Hailey June, 2015

You don’t think it could have possibly been any of the seasonings? Was there onion in it? Dogs are horribly allergic to onion and garlic as well.

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Jo January, 2015

I once was out with my pet and one of the kids at the house there left a plate of chili with beans where my Bichon Frise was able to get it. By the time I realized he had eaten it, he was outside playing. He never had any reaction at all. I prepared for the worse, and my dog just licked his chops and swaggered contently away. However, I realized I was very Lucky there was no after effect!

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Mark January, 2015

Just read an article where a Bramble, a Blue Merle Collie, lived to be 27 years old eating a vegan diet. It flies in the face of “dogs must eat meat” doesn’t it?

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Sharron January, 2015

Hi Mark. I also don’t think that dogs need all that meat protein. I have a Yorkie/Chihuahua, she’s not an overly active dog, just a typical little house dog. She prefers canned dog food compared to dry. I do mix dry and canned food together. The dry is mostly made up of plant protein rather than meat and she is doing well on it. I have had her on the dry foods that have a lot of meat in them but she doesn’t care for them and won’t eat it. If I mix veggies in with the dry food, she eats the veggies and leaves the dry behind.

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Carol November, 2014

I feed a mixture of dry and cooked organ meats ground up with beans including black, kidney navy, split peas and lentils. They love the treat on top.

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Sharron November, 2014

I feed my Yorkie/Chihuahua mix 1/8 cup of dry food 3 times a day. What amount of green beans per serving do I mix in with the dry food?

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Christie November, 2014

Hello Sharron. I would give your little guy about a tablespoon once a day for about a week and then if you want give a little more up to two times a day. You can also give your beloved pet other veggies if you want. Just make sure they are cooked very well and mash them up. If you make a big batch, you can freeze it in the size you need for a week at a time. They will stay up to 3 months in the freezer. I’m so happy you are feeding your dog good and safe food. If you need anything else happy to help out.

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Sharron November, 2014

Hi Christie. Thanks your reply. What is your opinion on Royal Canine dog food? Should I be giving a holistic food? High protein, high fat, lots of calories? She isn’t a very active dog and she wouldn’t be able to burn off those calories. Also, she doesn’t like those foods. I have tried many over the past 4 years including raw, dehydrated and home cooked meals. Thank you.

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Tiffany November, 2014

I’ve used Royal Canine for my Westie and she loves it. They’ve got various lines, including a mature line of dog foods that should be more suited if your dog is not very active and if she’s older. Mine is 5 years old but needs to lose weight and just hangs around and sits at the bench to watch people pass by most of the time, with the exception of her nightly walks.

But I have had another dog who also disliked dog food in general and preferred home-cooked meals. So what I did was I still gave her home cooked meals and used the dog food as treats or fillers to her diet. I would feed her a small serving of dog food first then finish off with the yummier food, just to make sure she didn’t miss out on nutrients from both types of food.

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Barbara June, 2015

I have 2 dogs, an American Eskimo and a Sheltie/Collie mix. I feed them a home cooked meal every morning of dried beans with some lamb, eggs, a little oil that the vet recommended, butternut squash, lots of sweet potatoes and carrots, green and yellow squash, carrots and bone meal. I puree everything after cooking well and I soak the beans. The dogs love it! At night, I feed them a quality dry food in case I miss a micro-nutrient and this also gives their teeth a work-out.

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Esther February, 2015

We let our Corgi-mix fill up on as many greens beans as he wants. He always thinks he is hungry, but needs to lose a little weight.

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Tiffany October, 2014

Do you just feed your dog the green beans with the pod (outer layer) or do you take that out?

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Christie October, 2014

Hi. Are you cooking peas or green beans? I don’t give my boys peas, they have lots of natural sugar in them. But the green beans, you can give them the whole thing. Just remember to blend them up well as with any veggies you might give them. You can make up a big batch of veggies and freeze them in the size you want, they will last up to 4 weeks.

If you feed your beloved pet home-made food you will see a big change in them for the good. I know it can be hard at times to cook all this stuff, but it’s well worth it. You can even buy big bags of mixed veggies that are all ready frozen. Works just as good. Best of luck.

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Tiffany November, 2014

Thanks, Christie! It’s just green beans and I am going to try cooking up a batch for my doggie and see how it goes!

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Sher February, 2015

Christie, you have some great ideas. I gave my two big guys some broth from my cooked beans. I had a variety of beans that I made a soup out of. Instead of a ham bone in it, I used small pieces of pork. The dogs loved it. I’ve got one picky eater and that helped. I mixed it with their dry food.

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Esther February, 2015

We feed them to our dog whole. He loves them!

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Sarah October, 2014

Is it okay to give my dog baked beans with some rice or baked beans alone?

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Shelley October, 2014

Hi Sarah. Always be careful when feeding your dog human food. Sometimes there can be quite a bit of spices in baked beans as well as sugar. It would be better to give them just plain black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, etc. with no salt or pepper, no spices of any kind – just rinsed off, right out of the can. I have a Westie and she loves all those beans, as well as green beans, raw carrots and bananas.

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Christie June, 2014

I feed my dogs a mix of cooked beans and fish, like white, tuna and salmon (no bones and cooked) and very well steamed veggies and puree them. My boys are doing very well and are happy. I don’t feed them the crap that is in the big bag stuff. Yes, at first it was hard to keep up with the cooking but well worth it in the long run.

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Maria June, 2014

This information was very helpful due to the fact that my 2 year old dog loves Peruvian beans, cooked of course. I glad to know they are not harmful.

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Tori April, 2014

Thank you. The information I got from your website was very helpful.

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Clinton Obhielo February, 2014

I give my dog cooked beans and indomie mixed with grinded fish. Is it good enough?

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Samantha Dew May, 2013

I love your site and use it all the time as I am in the process of launching a dog treat business. I was wondering if dogs can eat black turtle beans, pinto beans and haricot beans provided of course that they have been soaked and cooked properly.

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Anna November, 2012

Beans give dogs and humans gas.

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Sharron November, 2014

They don’t bother my dog.

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Lorene January, 2016

Raw beans must be soaked in boiling water, let cool, soak for at least 4 hours and the water discarded before cooking. This lessens the gas effect and allows the beans to cook faster to preserve nutrients. Best when then combined with cooked yams, green beans, carrots, beets for the added nutrition and flavor. Only 1/8 to 1/4 of a meal, with fresh meat or dog food.

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