Also known as a German turnip, kohlrabi is a vegetable belonging to the same family as cabbage. If you have ever prepared the vegetable for yourself, you might have wondered if you could share it with your furry friend. Read on to find out more about dogs and kohlrabi.
What Is Kohlrabi?
The name of the vegetable is derived from two German words: kohl (meaning cabbage) and rabi (meaning turnip). It is more popular in Austria, Italy, Spain, and Germany.
The vegetable has recently become more common in the United States. It weighs about 200 to 250 grams, with a net weight of about 150 grams when its leaves are removed.
The leaves and stems are edible; some claim they have a better texture and taste than broccoli and cabbage.
Common varieties of kohlrabi include:
- White Vienna.
- Purple Vienna.
- Grand Duke
Is Kohlrabi Safe For Your Dog?
Dogs can eat cabbage and are also known to enjoy some Brussels sprouts now and then. This makes kohlrabi safe for dogs to eat both cooked and raw, as they all belong to the same family.
Dogs find kohlrabi to have a mild but slightly sweet taste when cooked. Other canines prefer the raw version, which has a sharper taste.
Compared to other vegetables from the same genus, kohlrabi is not considered a classical part of a canine’s diet, even though it is packed with many health benefits. There are still chances that your dog might have an upset stomach when consuming it.
Before putting the vegetable in your dog’s diet, serve just a bit of it as initial testing to observe your pup’s reaction.
Nutritional Contents Of Kohlrabi
The vegetable is highly nutritious to dogs. Much like with dogs eating broccoli, kohlrabi is an excellent source of minerals and nutrients such as phosphorus, calcium, and folate.
Some of the nutritious benefits of kohlrabi include:
The vegetable contains carotenoids and other antioxidants that protect your dog’s body tissues from damage caused by free radicals.
Dogs are naturally carnivorous and largely meat-dependent, so it is necessary to include alkaline additives in their diets. Kohlrabi is phosphorus-rich and can be helpful to your dog, especially when balancing its calcium-phosphorus ratio.
One of the reasons for feeding kohlrabi to your dog is because of its mineral content. You can get the same benefit when feeding your dog kale. These highly nutritious vegetables contain several minerals that help maintain the canine acid-base ratio.
The abundant vitamins in the vegetable are nutritious to dogs. Vitamin C is present in high amounts, helping prevent infections and reduce inflammation. The vitamin also improves your pup’s overall health and helps lower its cholesterol levels.
The vegetable helps strengthen your dog’s metabolism. Kohlrabi has very low sugar levels and is helpful for glycemic control in dogs, making it the perfect addition to a dog suffering from diabetes. You can also substitute it and feed your dog cauliflower to get the same benefits.
Calcium and Magnesium
These minerals strengthen a dog’s bone density. Calcium is pivotal in a puppy’s life as it plays a significant role in developing its musculoskeletal system. This improves its strength, cardiovascular health, and weight management. It also reduces the dog’s need for medication to treat injuries and pain as they develop.
Kohlrabi contains generous traces of potassium- an electrolyte that is necessary to regulate water balance and reduce bloating and gas buildup.
How Much Kohlrabi Is Fine For Your Dog?
Feeding anything in excess to your dog can lead to stomach upset, and you wouldn’t want that. Therefore, the appropriate amount of veggies to feed your dog is about 150g.
Can Dogs Eat Kohlrabi Leaves?
The leaves are safe to feed your dog and even have more nutrients and fiber concentration than the vegetable tuber. When preparing the dog’s food with the leaves, avoid serving them raw as it can be hard for them to digest.
How To Prepare Kohlrabi For Your Dog
Follow these steps when preparing the vegetable for your dog:
- Put the kohlrabi in a steamer and steam until it becomes soft and tender.
- Place the vegetable in a masher and mash until the puree is smooth.
- Serve the mash to your dog.
You can also steam some vegetable leaves and mash them to add them to the puree for additional fiber and nutritional content.
- Thoroughly wash with running water.
- Gently peel out the outer layer of the veggie.
- Finely chop and serve to your dog.
Risks Of Feeding Your Dog Kohlrabi
Raw kohlrabi has psoralens which can cause skin burns when your dog is exposed to sunlight (when fed in excess). Though cases of allergies from dogs consuming the vegetable can happen, they are relatively rare.
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You should always practice moderation to reduce these chances. This lets you observe if it will negatively affect your dog and allows you to react accordingly.
Kohlrabi can be a great addition to your dog’s diet. Although it is safe for your dog to eat the vegetable raw, it is better to serve when cooked; it is easier for your dog to eat and prevents possible choking hazards.