Cranberry and Your Pet's Urinary Health

Updated: January 22, 2024

As pet products continue to evolve to give us a helping hand in taking good care of our furbabies, you will probably notice cranberry supplements for dogs have become a staple for many. But, are can dogs eat cranberries or are cranberries bad for dogs? 

Cranberry-containing products are often marketed for your pet's urinary health. But why? Can dogs eat cranberries for UTIs? Let's take a look at the types of cranberries that dogs can have, the benefits of cranberry for dogs, and how to safely give your dog cranberry.

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Can Dogs Eat Cranberries?

Are cranberries bad for dogs or can dogs eat cranberries? Can dogs eat dried cranberries? Can dogs drink cranberry juice? Cranberry for dogs is wonderful for immune system support and inflammation. Cranberries are packed with antioxidants which can help keep your dog healthy. But one of the biggest uses of cranberries for dogs is urinary health.

Urinary Tract Infections are the most common urinary concerns we're faced with. It can be extremely painful for our dogs and extremely stressful for us, as a UTI can prohibit us to continue our day-to-day activities. But cranberry helps flush out the bacteria causing the UTI so much faster, relieving your dog from pain

Cranberry for Dogs UTI

Can cranberry juice help dogs with UTI problems? Cranberry is believed to acidify the urine but that is false. Cranberry actually loosens up the bacteria from sticking to your furbaby's bladder wall, making it easier to be flushed out by the system the next time your dog urinates, flushing out the infection faster.

Many studies from research labs have found out that cranberry extract is a great natural urinary tract infection treatment for dogs. It is also a means to support a dog's urinary health and helps strengthen the bladder to alleviate the symptoms of urinary incontinence as it encourages healthy urine flow. For this reason, cranberry for a dog's UTI is beneficial. However, you must be careful with cranberry juice, which we will discuss later in this article.

"Cranberry actually loosens up the bacteria from sticking to your furbaby's bladder wall, making it easier to be flushed out"

Benefits of Cranberry for Dogs

The following are just some of the many benefits cranberry can offer to your dog:

  • Cranberries contain anti-microbial and anti-inflammatory properties brought about by phenolic antioxidants that help ward off bacteria and infections.
  • Cranberries are rich with antioxidants and nutrients that help support your pet’s immune system and decrease inflammation as antioxidants play a major role in keeping dogs healthy, according to PetMD.
  • Cranberry for dogs prevents the growth of pathogens in the Gastrointestinal as the phenolic derivatives of cranberry causes inhibition of urease activity (urease is the enzyme held accountable for the production of ammonia in the body which prevents the stomach from creating a neutral pH) that eventually leads to stomach ulcers and gastritis.
  • They contain low calories and high vitamin C, fiber, and potassium; fiber helps reduce the risk of your furbaby from developing heart diseases, stroke, hypertension, and diabetes.
  • Cranberry prevents the growth of pathogens in the Urinary Tract and can only prevent infections from occurring by flushing out bacteria.
    Note: Cranberry should not be used as a treatment for Urinary Tract infections as it does not have any effect on the bacteria after adhesion.
  • Giving cranberries helps maintain your furbaby's teeth and will help ward it off from oral bacteria as it inhibits acid tolerance in the oral area. It does not destroy oral bacteria but helps prevent it from adhering to the tooth structure. Cranberry for dogs helps fight bad bacteria and reduce plaque buildup.
  • Cranberry helps improve cognitive function, alleviate allergies, and soothe skin problems.

Ways to Provide Cranberries for Dogs

Cranberries are good for dogs. According to the American Kennel Club, both fresh cranberries and dried cranberries are safe to feed to dogs but only in small quantities. Giving your furbaby cranberry tart treats is another discussion. In giving your furbaby fresh or dried cranberries, always remember that moderation is key. Too little of it, your furbaby won’t be getting enough of its benefits. Too much of it can also be very risky as it may lead to bladder stones or stomach upsets.

Whether your furbaby will like this tart treat is another question. Either way, moderation is important when feeding cranberries to dogs, as with any treat, as too many cranberries can lead to an upset stomach.

Can dogs eat dried cranberries?

One of the most common forms of cranberries that humans eat are dried cranberries. But, can dogs eat dried cranberries? Dried cranberries sometimes come mixed with other dried fruits, like raisins. Raisins are very toxic to dogs, and even a few can cause problems for small dog breeds. Pure dried cranberries with no added sugar are safe to give to your dog. However, convincing your dog to eat tart dried cranberries may be difficult.

Can dogs eat cranberry sauce?

Cranberry sauce is safe for your dog if made fresh without extra sugar or artificial sweeteners according to Hepper. However, most canned cranberry sauces contain additional ingredients like grapes and currents which are not good for your dog. So, be sure to read the ingredient label before giving any cranberry sauces to your dog.

Can dogs drink cranberry juice?

Prepared cranberry juices are risky. Juices that contain grape juice are potentially dangerous, as are cranberry dishes that contain large amounts of sugar, alcohol, or other ingredients. In order for juice to be safe for your dog, it would need to be pure cranberry juice with no added sugar. However, this cranberry juice will be very tart and it is unlikely that your dog will want drink it due to the tart taste.

Cranberry in Bladder Supplements

Because your dog is not likely to want to eat pure cranberries or drink pure cranberry juice, a cranberry supplement for dogs is a great and safe alternative. Bladder supplements containing cranberries are powerful supplements that help and support your furbaby's bladder and urinary health. Pet Parents® Bladder SoftSupps® help minimize the occurrence of urinary infections, help keep pH levels normal and help provide your furbaby optimal urinary health.

These are bladder supplements that contain Pacran®, the most scientifically proven cranberry product for urinary tract health. This uses the whole cranberry complex to help promote optimal bladder health. Pacran® is a pure cranberry concentrate that cleans out bad bacteria, resulting in a healthier bladder & urinary tract. Dubbed as a natural solution for urinary comfort, Pacran® is an ingredient mostly used in supplements and contains other important compounds such as organic acids, fibers, phenolics, proteins, sugars and fatty acids – all key elements in maintaining a healthy urinary tract.

Moreover, cranberry supplements for dogs are necessary to take a proactive approach and add help to your furbaby to fight off certain illnesses that can be prevented and help maintain and/or improve overall health.

Cranberry, indeed, plays a great role in keeping your furbaby's urinary health on top and help provide bladder & dog kidney support to your furbaby, promoting happy & healthy slobbery kisses.

"Because your dog is not likely to want to eat pure cranberries or drink pure cranberry juice, a cranberry supplement for dogs is a great, safe alternative"

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