Can Dogs Safely Eat Cranberries? Read This First

Written by Marisa Wilson
Published: September 22, 2022
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The leaves are falling; the pumpkins are growing; the scent of fall rolls in through your windows, and you’re in bliss. With this fantastic season comes pumpkin pies and a side of cranberries on every dish. As magical as this season is, you know how your dog will be at the table begging for all these autumn meals. 

You may wonder if your dog can have a bite of fresh cranberries while you’re cooking. In small quantities, they sure can have cranberries! Fresh cranberries are the most recommended way to feed them to dogs. The sour flavor of cranberries isn’t going to be a favorite for all dogs. 

Some dogs simply don’t like the taste of cranberries, while others refuse to eat any fruits or vegetables at all. Therefore, even though cranberries can be a tasty snack for dogs when eaten in moderation, your dog might disagree. You’re about to see why fresh is best for your pup, so grab your pumpkin spice latte and start reading!

Benefits of Feeding Your Dogs Cranberries

a bowl of red cranberries

Dogs can eat cranberries, and they can serve several nutritional benefits for them. Just be aware that they should only be given in small quantities.


Your dog can benefit from these antioxidants’ numerous health advantages. Proanthocyanidins shield the teeth of your dog by preventing plaque and tartar accumulation. Food allergies, hypertension, and inflammation are all conditions that quercetin helps to prevent. Cranberries are also rich in potassium and manganese and support bone health and growth. 

Proanthocyanidins can help inhibit the formation of germs that cause urinary tract infections, such as E. coli, by clinging to the bladder wall and guarding your dog’s teeth. Cranberries can be added to dog food to help dogs that experience recurrent urinary tract infections (UTIs). Other benefits are covered below.

Vitamins C and K

A well-known vitamin is vitamin C, a powerful antioxidant that can help your dog’s immune system, increase energy, and relieve UTI symptoms in dogs. Vitamin K offers a lot of advantages. Although most people know its blood clotting abilities, it also works as a potent antioxidant and shields the skin from inflammation. 

It can help promote bone repair and mend wounds. In addition to these advantages, vitamin K is beneficial for allergies-related problems. Vitamin K has been demonstrated to lessen allergy symptoms in people and dogs by preventing mast cells from producing histamine. 

In addition, vitamin K is essential for maintaining healthy bones. Dogs must obtain vitamin K from their diet, either through the dog food they consume or through supplements they take, as they are unable to produce it on their own.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is not only beneficial for dogs; it is also a necessary component of dog food. The fat-soluble antioxidant vitamin E helps dogs’ bodies fight off free radicals, which cause oxidative stress. For dogs, vitamin E supports:

  • Cell Function
  • Liver health
  • Heart health
  • Keeping a strong immune system
  • Muscles
  • Skin and coat, which can also help with dandruff 

Risks of Giving Cranberries to Dogs

Cream-colored dog hiding its face with its paws.

There are a few risks of which to be aware with feeding dogs cranberries.


Although cranberries protect against UTIs, their utility is restricted. Fruits with high acidity, like cranberries, can cause calcium oxalate stones, often called kidney stones. They can develop in your dog’s bladder if too many acids are present. You can avoid this by giving them small amounts. Your dog might also endure severe stomach aches if they consume many cranberries. If you give your dog fresh cranberries in the right amount, then there aren’t any significant risks. 

Dried Cranberries

Dried raisins and cranberries can be combined in some packages, which is one reason to avoid dried cranberries. Raisins are highly toxic to dogs. Another reason is that dried cranberries are often full of sugar. Sugar is well known to not be healthy for dogs or humans. 

Aside from the risk of weight gain, it can harm your dog’s teeth. Even finding sugar-free cranberries can pose the risk of having an artificial sweetener called xylitol, which is toxic to a dog. Trail mix with cranberries should be avoided because of the high sodium content and other ingredients like chocolate. 

How to Feed Cranberries to Your Pup

When feeding your dog cranberries, it can be as easy as you want it to be. Rinsing off fresh cranberries and giving it to them is an option if your dog likes the bitter taste. If you want your pup to have the benefits of cranberries, but they aren’t a huge fan, you can boil them in some water and blend them up. Once they are blended, you can mix a little bit in their wet dog food to hide the flavor. If you’re one of the epic dog owners making their own dog food, you can also add cranberries to it. 

How Many Cranberries to Feed Your Dog

How many should your pup have? One to two cranberries should be plenty if you have a small dog, around five pounds. Adding a few extra berries according to their size for medium to giant dogs is okay. When adding new foods to your doggie’s diet, watch how they do with a small quantity first. Sometimes, like humans, foods don’t sit well with their tummies. This is an excellent snack for pets who need to watch sugar intake due to diabetes or because they need to maintain a healthy weight.


Let’s go back to the smell of autumn. The front lawn is covered in leaves, and your pup is by your side. Everyone, including your pup, can enjoy the season! Since they can eat some of the food that everyone loves this season, they’ll have fun too. 

While not every dog likes cranberries, the ones that do will be happy to eat the people’s food. For dogs that hate cranberries, it may be used as a deterrent when you’re in the kitchen. If they try to sniff for scraps, chase them away by offering a cranberry. 

Rinse the cranberries off before cooking them or offering fresh ones to your dog. There aren’t many risks associated with feeding them to your dog, so why not try and see how they react to it? Dogs can make sour faces, too! Please share this post with dog owners who always enjoy sharing a snack with their pups!

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The photo featured at the top of this post is ©

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About the Author

Creepy-crawly creatures enthrall Marisa. Aside from raising caterpillars, she has a collection of spiders as pets. The brown recluse is her favorite spider of all time. They're just misunderstood. You don't have to worry about squishing the creatures as her catching, and relocating abilities can safely move stray centipedes or snakes to a new location that's not your living room.

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