Can Dogs Eat Chestnuts?

In sea of many different foods and nutritive additions, we are always considering to add something new to our dogs diet. As a dog lover myself, I am always on the lookout for new ways to enrich my dog’s diet and to make it healthier and interesting for my dog to eat.

Unlike humans, dogs can’t eat everything we serve them since their delicate stomachs can’t process every food we can. Some types of food are more dangerous for dogs such as sweets and even some types of meat and dairy.

In order to avoid giving your dog something he shouldn’t eat, it is always good to get information from your veterinarian or to do a thorough research of every food before you include it in your dog’s diet.

In today’s text we are going to talk about chestnuts and whether they are good or not for your furry pet. We are going to dig deeper into the nutritive value of chestnuts and see how big of a difference they can make in your dog’s daily meal.

Chestnut nutritive information

The fruit is chestnut reddish-brown and has smooth surface. Grows within the prickly shell that falls off in the fall when the fruit ripens.

Chestnut wood was known in China and Japan long before the Roman legions brought them to Europe. Baked chestnuts were sold on the streets of Rome in the 16th century as they are sold today in many European cities.

When purchasing chestnut, note that the fruits are bigger, shinier, without the pricks on the shell and keep them in a cold place for up to 2 weeks. Although the chestnut fruit is very nutritious, it is very difficult to digest. In 100 g of crude chestnut contains: 2 g fat, 8.1 g diet fiber, 2 g protein and 45 g carbohydrates. Most minerals are sodium and potassium, and vitamin C and B12.

Chestnut is a food with a distinctive smell and mild sweet taste with wide application in culinary and pastry. Of the other nuts, it is distinguished by the lower fat content, high starch content and the only vitamin C content.

Unlike walnuts and beans, where the main ingredient is fatty oil, the main constituent of chestnut is starch, which is about 44% in crude seeds. Due to its high starch content, flour can be obtained from chestnut which is used only or mixed with flour to produce bread and rolls. Chestnut flour, due to its light digestibility, is suitable for the elderly and children.

Chestnut also contains minerals, vitamins B groups, vitamins A and C. It is rich in minerals and potassium and phosphorus, and contains calcium, magnesium, sulfur, chlorine, iron, copper, manganese. Since it is rich in potassium and poor in sodium, it is recommended to be in the diet of patients with renal and cardiovascular diseases.

Chestnut is a food of high energy value; 100 grams of roasted chestnut contains 245 kcal. Baked or boiled chestnuts are a very popular and delicious meal, especially those of large and varied species (marunas). Baked chestnut has a higher energy value, a higher amount of protein, fat, vitamins and twice as much carbohydrate. It also contains vitamin E and phytochemicals that are not present in cooked chestnut. Cooked chestnuts contain a larger amount of mineral ingredients.

In addition to the other benefits of using sweet chestnut, it is well known that the healing effect of wild chestnut is particularly known; which, unlike the domestic, is not edible because of the extremely bitter taste. The seed of wild chestnut contains: 40-60% starch, 8-28% of raw saponin (escin), about 9% sugar, 8-10% protein, 2.5-7% fatty oil, about 2% tannin, flavonic, coumarin derivatives and other ingredients.

It also contains vitamins B1, C and K, and some mineral salts. It is used to obtain starch from which alcohol or lactic acid can be obtained after hydrolysis in sugar and fermentation. Saponins isolated from seeds can be used for washing, hair care, and making other cosmetic preparations, and also as an ingredient in fire extinguishers.

Because of its therapeutic ingredients (flavonides, coumarin, saponosides), it is used in the production of pharmaceutical preparations – primarily for the treatment of venous diseases, primarily for enlarged veins, hemorrhoids, thrombophlebitis and so on.

Can dogs eat chestnut?

Now that we have established how nutritive and valuable they are, it is time to answer the question we asked in the first place. Yes, your dog can eat chestnut but with few catches you need to take care of. Sometimes foods that are healthy for us are equally healthy for your pets, but we can’t really compare our digestive systems in total. We are, obviously very different in that are therefore we have to be careful about the food we give o our pets.

Chestnuts are very rich in omega fatty acids and fiber as well, and they will definitely give your dog a boost of energy. They will make your dog’s diet overall much healthier and you don’t have to be worried about hurting your dog by giving him chestnuts. When giving your furry pet chestnuts, be careful and don’t give him too much. The key advice when feeding your dog in general is to be moderate. The smaller the portions the better it will be for your dog and he will be healthier.

If you really want to make your dog healthier you can always add a little bit of chestnut paste into his meal. If your dog really likes the taste, then you can add a little more but make sure you don’t just feed your dog with simple chestnut paste or don’t make his meal into a meal made out of only chestnuts. Some dogs don’t like the taste of chestnuts and are going to sense its presence in the meal instantly; therefore it is best to add this fruit according to your dog’s preference.

Some types of chestnuts, or ways of preparing it, are better than others. Salty and grilled chestnuts are not good for your dog for obvious reasons. Dogs shouldn’t be given too many salt or raw chestnuts because their digestive systems can’t handle them as well as ours. Dogs have problems digesting starch, which is why you should avoid giving your dog starchy foods. They will only cause your dog discomfort and possibly even diarrhea.

Salt is never good for dogs. Salt and foods that contain too much fiber are very harmful for your furry friend and should be avoided all together. Nuts in general contain a lot of fatty acids and nutrients, but can sometimes be too hard for our dogs to process and digest. People’s digestive system, on the other hand, is very different and digesting these foods is not a problem at all. Unless, we eat too much of these foods.

How to sneak chestnut in your dog’s diet?

If you really want your dog to eat healthier and to be more vital, then you can always add a little bit of chestnut in his meal. The best way to add chestnut is by making a chestnut paste and adding into your dog’s food. This way he might not even sense it in his meal but he will get all the necessary nutrients he needs.

Before you make a paste, peel of the skin from the chestnuts because it can be hard for dogs to process as well. Make sure you don’t salt the paste or grill the chestnuts before that. Try boiling the chestnuts and then blend them in your blender to make a smooth paste. This way your dog will be healthy and full of energy, and you will be happy because he is eating something that is good for him.

Are chestnuts necessary in dog’s diet?

Even though chestnuts are crazy delicious and very nutritive, their addition to your dog’s diet is not something that is necessary. Your dog probably gets enough vitamins and minerals from his food, so adding something like chestnuts is not necessary. Of course, since they are good for your dog, you can always add them to his meal. But, remember that this is not something that is necessary or vital for your dog’s health.

Some fruits and nuts can cause allergies in dogs as well, so make sure you take your dog to the veterinarian if you notice anything strange after giving your dog chestnuts. Perhaps your dog has a hidden allergy you are not familiar with and chestnuts are not very well handled by his digestive system. It is always best to add smaller portions of chestnuts into your dog’s diet until you see his reaction. If you notice no signs of allergies or any other unusual behavior, then you can slowly adjust the size of chestnut portions that you add to your dog’s food.

Conclusion

Overall, we know that chestnuts are very healthy and that they contain a large number of various vitamins, minerals and all other nutrients our body needs. Adding chestnut to our own diet is always a good idea and it is something that we should definitely do more often. When it comes to dogs, chestnuts are suitable for dogs and they can eat them, but in small portions. This means you need to be careful when giving your dog chestnut, because he might be allergic to it or he might not like it at all.

It is always best to start with smaller portions and slowly makes them bigger as your dog gets used to the taste of chestnuts in his food. This is, of course, optional and you don’t have to add chestnuts to your dog’s food at all. Add them only if you want to make your dog’s diet healthier and to boost his energy level with something healthy and nutritive.