Happy October, Calgary Humane Society Supporters!
With Halloween just around the corner, it seems like a great time to talk about one of the favorite dog delicacies here at the shelter – pumpkin! Yep! You read that right. Pumpkin! In addition to being a festive decoration for your porch, pumpkin can be a great addition to your dog’s diet!
You probably aren’t surprised to hear that coming to the shelter can be stressful for a dog. At Calgary Humane Society we do everything possible to reduce stress on our resident canines, and our incredible volunteers do a great job of giving extra attention to all of our dogs, but new sights, new sounds and new smells are unfortunately all a source of stress for Fido. For many dogs at the shelter, the move to CHS also brings a new feeding schedule and new diet. Thanks to the generosity of Hill’s Science Diet, all of our dogs get a regular diet of high-quality, nutritious food while in shelter, but for some dogs the new feeding schedule and sudden change in diet can sometimes lead to some temporary digestive troubles. Thankfully, we have a secret weapon…. its pumpkin to the rescue!
Pumpkin puree is high in fiber, nutritious and many dogs love the taste, making it a delicious and healthy addition to any meal. For dogs experiencing temporary digestive upset adding a small amount of canned pumpkin to each meal can help to promote more regular poop. The high fiber content of pumpkin helps to improve digestion and can absorb excess water when unhappy poop is too runny. On the flip side, if unhappy poop is no poop at all, canned pumpkin can help get things moving again. One word of caution: If you suspect an underlying medical condition may be causing your pet’s digestive issues you should consult your vet before giving your pet any treatment, including pumpkin. At CHS, our veterinary team monitors the health (and poop) of all the animals in shelter.
Pumpkin isn’t just for digestive upset though! Many dogs enjoy pumpkin as a regular treat! At the shelter, our volunteers love to create “pumpsicles” (pumpkin popsicles) by stuffing Kong toys with pumpkin and freezing them. Many CHS dogs LOVE the taste of pumpkin and licking frozen pumpkin out of a Kong toy gives them a fun (and tasty!) activity to fill their time.
We hope this blog has given you a new appreciation for the noble pumpkin as you decorate this Halloween! Would you like to help us give every dog at CHS a pumpkin fix? Pop an extra can of pumpkin (plain pumpkin, not pumpkin pie filling please!) into the cart and bring it by the shelter. Our puppies will appreciate it!