Could cranberries, and the juice in particular, help your dog with a stubborn urinary tract infection or otherwise be healthy for them? Some claim this is a nutritious solution for humans so why not for pets!
Contrary to popular belief, cranberry juice doesn’t actually raise acidity of urine. If it’s effective for your dog, it may be by pure chance. Nevertheless, the juice is a good source of vitamin C and dietary fiber but normally contains added sugar.
Consider that cranberries have a bitter taste and you may have trouble getting your dog to consume it. Besides, fresh water is the best way to hydrate your best buddy. You really need a very good reason to deviate from this.
Can I Give My Dog Cranberries? Answer: Not Recommended
There’s actually no evidence that it helps with infections of any kind.
You probably shouldn’t be feeding your dog cranberries, for any reason, as this is something that they may have trouble digesting. Cranberry juice may, in fact, alter the amount of bacteria in your dog’s bladder and/or the entire urinary tract system but it is likely not a fix. If you want to try it, get a quality organic cranberry juice to avoid all the industrial grade sugar. It may cost more, but it’s not as if you’re going to give this to your dog on a daily basis.
As the Theory Goes
The theory is that cranberry juice helps clear a UTI for humans so it may apply to dogs. Lots of people think it works by preventing bacteria from sticking to each other which creates a bad chain reaction in the urinary tract. But several studies have shown that it isn’t very effective. This is a controversial topic for sure!
Curing Canine UTIs
Before giving your dog an at-home treatment, identify an actual urinary tract infection beforehand. Too often owners end up using all sorts of treatments that aren’t needed or cause harm. It’s very helpful to take notes and jot down some things you believe are indicative of a UTI. This way, if things worsen, your observations will be useful if a vet’s services become necessary.
To have a professional make an diagnosis is peace of mind but we understand you may be considering cranberry juice in order to avoid vet bills. Honestly, we recommend that the family dog get a conventional prescription medication for such an infection. Cranberries, unfortunately, aren’t going to be nearly as effective compared to what a veterinarian can prescribe.
For Dietary Reasons
Not many people consume cranberries on a regular basis and dogs should be no different. They aren’t one of the more common berries, taking a backseat to strawberries, blueberries and even blackberries. Some people do like to eat dried cranberries which is healthy but they aren’t recommended for dogs.
Most fruits tend to take on a different characteristic once it’s been dried and often there are preservatives added to such packaged treats. Ideally, your dog is already getting all the nourishment and sustenance needed from their daily meals. You definitely don’t need to depend on cranberries.
Juice Form & Added Sugar
Will cranberries, in whatever form, spike your dog’s glucose levels? That could be the case. Yet another reason why you probably shouldn’t provide it, even when your dog has a confirmed UTI. As you know, most cranberry juice products contain lots of additional sugar and even unknown preservatives.
Conclusion on Cranberries
Cranberry juice, or in edible form, very likely won’t improve or cure your dog’s UTI. Have a veterinary professional diagnose your pet for an infection, urinary or otherwise. They’ll prescribe something much more effective than cranberries. Besides, this type of beverage typically contains too much sugar for canines. From a dietary standpoint, providing this berry fruit to your pet dog doesn’t make much sense. More cranberries for you!