Can I feed my dog ‘TOFU’?

Looking to fill your dog’s bowl with some tofu?

While tofu food is a healthy addition to a human diet, there are reasons why you might want your dog to skip this meal. Read on to find out more!.    

Tofu is basically compressed soybean milk compressed down into blocks. The soya beans that form tofu are also processed into foods such as soy sauce, tempeh, and soybean oil. Tofu is a great vegetarian protein, and it is loaded with nutrients (think calcium, selenium, and phosphorus).    

It is low-calorie and has touted benefits such as reduced heart risk for humans. But the question is, is tofu a healthy choice for your dog. It is not toxic for dogs, but it should not be a primary source of protein in their diet. Your dog will thrive on commercial, veterinarian-approved foods containing animal protein sources, such as chicken, beef, and fish.   

Feeding dogs only tofu as a protein source leaves them lacking in protein. You may want to allow a little bit of tofu every once in a while for your dog’s companions. Watch for signs of intolerance in your pupster afterwards, just to be sure. If you try tofu a couple times with your pupster, and they balk at eating it, it could tell you tofu does not agree with them.   

Tofu is low in carbohydrates and fat and high in protein — a pooch carrying some extra pounds might benefit from some tofu mixed into their meal from time to time. Adding tofu helps curb the appetite (that is what protein does), which could satisfy your dog in losing weight since there is no need for them to beg for snacks. Tofu doesn’t have much fat or carbohydrates, making it pack on pounds. Tofu is high in protein: A 100-gram portion of tofu has 8 grams of protein.   

Protein is the building block for muscle strength and recovery. Protein is essential to a healthy dog because it helps with tendons, nails, cartilage, etc. Your dog’s system is also better at digesting animal proteins than many plant proteins.  

Tofu might be a good choice for dogs with liver disease:

 Dietary management of dogs with liver disease can be optimized using plant proteins. Dogs with conditions like congenital portosystemic shunts may be better off with a diet that includes soybeans. 

Potential problems with feeding your dog tofu:

Tofu can increase the chances of bloat: Bloat is a dangerous condition where the stomach becomes distended, even rotating.    

A dog suspected of having bloat should immediately see a vet. Some dogs experience gas and bloat as a result of soy. Tofu can trigger allergy symptoms: diarrhoea following a soy meal is usually a sign of an allergy.    

You might also see persistent licking, ear infections, inflammation in your eyes, and itchy skin. Tofu can trigger hormone disruption: Phytoestrogens found in soy are thought to trigger hormone disruption. The result may be a lack of hair quality, skin problems, or even thyroid problems.   

Feeding dogs tofu is not necessary for their health. The fact that it is not a food that provides many benefits or even has risks suggests many great options available for replacing tofu. Before trying out new foods or treats with your dog, getting your veterinarian’s input is always good. 

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