Can Dogs Eat Bananas?

Medically Reviewed by Kathleen Claussen, DVM on December 05, 2021
4 min read

Dogs can eat bananas, a rich source of fiber, potassium, vitamin B6, and vitamin C. Read on to learn how much bananas are considered safe for your dog.

If given in moderation, bananas are a healthy, low-calorie treat for dogs. Bananas are good sources of potassium, vitamin B6, vitamin C, fiber, magnesium, and manganese. They are also low in sodium and cholesterol. In fact, veterinarians sometimes recommend bananas as a healthy alternative to salty, fatty treats.

Bananas can be beneficial to the health of your dog. For example, bananas have high fiber content and can help your dog feel better if they have gastrointestinal problems. Also, the magnesium in bananas can promote bone growth and help your dog produce proteins and better absorb vitamins.

Since bananas are good sources of vitamin B6 and vitamin C, they become even more important in your dog's diet. Vitamin B6 is responsible for generating glucose and regulating hormones. It is also essential for the proper functioning of the red blood cells and nervous system. The vitamin C content in bananas also plays a vital role as an antioxidant. It helps to reduce inflammation and remove potentially harmful free radicals. Although your dog can produce vitamin C in their liver, supplementation may be beneficial in some cases.

However, you should not make bananas a part of your dog's main diet because of their high sugar content.

Dogs cannot eat banana peels, so you have to be wary of the peels. Although banana peels are not toxic to your dog, they don't easily digest because of their high fiber content. Feeding your dog unpeeled bananas may cause a blockage in the digestive tract. Furthermore, banana peels may cause stomach upsets and result in vomiting and diarrhea. 

While dogs are primarily carnivores (meat eaters), they are technically omnivores as they also like to eat fruits and vegetables. Their bodies can't handle plants like true herbivores. It is important to ensure your dog only eats small amounts of fruits and vegetables at a time. 

Bananas are safe for dogs, but moderation is key. Bananas are high in sugar, so too much of it can put your dog at risk of developing medical conditions. You should give your dog only a few thin slices of banana once in a while. 

At least 90% of your dog's food should be regular dog food. Only 10% should come from dog treats and fruits/veggies such as bananas. Large dogs can eat one-half of a banana a day, while small dogs should only have two to three small pieces daily.

If you're feeding your dog bananas for the first time, monitor them for signs of allergies. If they have constipation or diarrhea within 24 to 48 hours of eating bananas, you may need to visit the vet for advice. Remember not to feed your dogs unpeeled bananas.

You can give bananas to your puppy as a nutritious snack. About 2 to 3 slices of banana a day is a fair amount for your pup. Feeding your puppy too many bananas (even without the peels) can cause stomach upset.

Puppies usually have special diets to support their growth and development. Therefore, you don't have to make your pup try out most fruits and vegetables. While it's safe to add occasional slices of banana as a treat, remember to do so in moderation to avoid putting too much stress on your pup's digestive system. 

While some dogs like bananas, others aren't particularly fond of them. You can try to give your dog some slices of bananas and see if they like the treat. 

You can feed your dog plain bananas or mix the fruit with dog food or a small amount of peanut butter. Your dog may like plain bananas or may prefer them mixed with other food items or treats.

Moderate amounts of banana bread are unlikely to harm your dog. However, be careful not to give your dog banana bread if they have allergies to wheat or are sensitive to other grains.

Avoid banana bread that has added sugar. And, if the bread contains raisins, beware: raisins can be fatally toxic for dogs.

Overeating bananas can cause problems for your dog. If your dog eats banana peels or too much banana, contact your veterinarian for advice. Inform your vet about questions or concerns on how much bananas your dog can eat.