With so many different beans to choose from, it can be difficult to tell them apart. One such bean, the lima bean, is the kind of bean that has a creamier texture. They can also be a great source of protein and carbohydrates for people.
But what about your dog? Can dogs have lima beans? Learning more about the lima bean, whether or not your dog can have it, and what it may have to offer is as good a place to start as any.
Are Lima Beans Safe to Eat?
The good news is that you can indeed give lima beans to your dog. Of course, they are probably better as a snack but more on that later. Lima beans are great because they are low in calories and cholesterol while being quite high in fiber, carbohydrates, protein, and essential vitamins.
As is the case with any food, be on the lookout for seasonings or additives. Just like in people, those additives can cause dietary and digestive issues for your dog. Whenever you implement new food into your dog’s diet, make sure to do so in small doses. You never know what kind of effect that food will have on your dog or whether it may be allergic.
Lima beans are just one type among several that can be beneficial to both people and dogs. Black beans, kidney beans, pinto beans, green beans, edamame, and black-eyed peas, among others.
Benefits of Lima Beans for Dogs
Adding to your dog’s diet, particularly if you feel like they need more protein or essential vitamins, can be easily done with the implementation of lima beans. That is, of course, so long as it is in moderation.
High in Protein
Adding plant-based protein to your dog’s diet can be a great idea. The good news is that lima beans are packed full of protein. Adding them in with other animal proteins, typically found in more commercial dog food options, can create the kind of healthy, balanced meal that you are looking for.
Feeding your dog lima beans once or twice a week can provide that extra protein boost. Too much protein can be bad, however. It can play havoc on their digestive system, so don’t overdo it.
Great Fiber Source
Dogs need to have proper fiber content in order to remain regular and have healthy digestive systems. Lima beans have a naturally high dietary fiber content, which can aid
in regular bowel movements, prevent constipation, and keep their digestive tract regular.
Fiber is also beneficial because it helps keep your dog feeling full. For breeds that are particularly sensitive to overeating, it can be a great way to help them maintain a healthy weight.
Tons of Minerals and Vitamins
Part of a healthy diet for your dog includes several essential vitamins and minerals. Legumes – seeds that come in a pod – are a good source for a litany of vitamins and minerals that your dog requires.
Magnesium, potassium, iron, manganese, vitamin C, and folate are just a few. Each has its own list of benefits, including heart health, stronger bones (great for avoiding arthritis), and more.
Low Sugar, Low Calorie
Maintaining a safe, healthy weight is crucial for any dog. When dogs become overweight, it can lead to any number of health issues that only exacerbate with time. Keeping them on a good diet is the best way to ensure that they maintain a healthy weight.
Lima beans are great because they are low in both calories and sugars. If you are trying to get your dog to lose weight, implementing lima beans can be a great option. Instead of wondering can your dog have this sugary snack or that fatty option, go with lima beans instead.
Use Caution Before Giving Them Lima Beans
Don’t just rush out and grab lima beans from your local grocery store. Dogs can have sensitive digestive systems or even allergies. Testing out how they react to new foods is imperative to maintaining a safe, healthy diet.
If you plan to introduce lima beans into their diet, do so in small portions. Monitor them closely, looking for any adverse reactions. If the coast is clear, you can start adding lima beans going forward.
Allergic reactions can be quite easy to spot. Most of the time, it comes in the form of redness, itching, hot spots, and even severe digestive issues. If you notice that your dog is having an adverse reaction to lima beans, take them to the vet immediately.
Talking to your vet is a good idea in general. They can advise you about any changes to your dog’s diet and give advice on other changes that can be beneficial.
Never Give Your Dog Raw or Seasoned Lima Beans
While lima beans can be a good snack option, it all comes down to how you prepare them. Raw lima beans are never advisable because they can lead to potential kidney issues. Boil them in water until they have softened before giving them to your dog.
If you buy lima beans or lima bean snacks, make sure that they are free of seasonings. Generally speaking, their digestive tract will have a tough time handling various seasonings. Even too much salt can lead to ion poisoning.
Things like garlic and onions are toxic and should be avoided. Even spicy foods can have a negative reaction, leading to vomiting, irritated stomachs, diarrhea, and bloating. Keep them free of seasonings; the natural flavors are just fine for your pup.
Do Not Give Your Dog Canned Lima Beans
The easiest and cheapest way of getting lima beans is in the canned vegetable section at your local grocery store. But before you give them to your dog, think again. Fresh lima beans are fine, but there are a lot of additives in canned lima beans that can cause an issue.
For starters, they have a ton of sodium. Remember that too much salt can be dangerous for your dog, potentially leading to ion poisoning. There are also a number of seasonings and preservatives used to can them, all of which can leave them feeling dehydrated or upset their stomach. Frozen, fresh, or dried lima beans (rehydrate them) can all be fine, however.
Moderation is Key
One final matter of importance is serving size. Lima beans can pack a lot of nutritional value into a relatively small punch. That said, they are only valuable to your dog’s diet in moderation.
Don’t go using them in every meal, or they can have a negative impact on the dog’s digestive traits. As a healthy snack, they are a great option that your dog will appreciate.
Lima beans can make for a great addition to your dog’s diet, so long as it is in moderation. If anything, it makes for a delicious snack that packs a nutritional punch for your pooch. Which beans can your dog eat? In addition to lima beans, they can also eat garbanzo beans, pinto beans, black beans, black-eyed beans, green beans, and more. They offer a plethora of health benefits that can be beneficial to your dog’s diet.