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Dog Friendly Veggies You Can Grow in Your Garden

Dog Friendly Veggies You Can Grow in Your Garden

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Do you want to grow a dog-friendly vegetable garden?

It’s easier than you think and no matter if you have a huge yard with lots of space or just a few containers on your deck, there is are dog-friendly vegetables that anyone can grow.

My dogs absolutely adore fresh vegetables.

We started using veggies as snacks when they were young and they’re just as likely to beg for a piece of broccoli stem, as they are to drool over a bite of steak.

Kol, shopping for plants at our local nursery.

A few years ago, when we had a ginormous back yard, we planted a big 200 sq. ft. garden full of dog-friendly veggies and I loved it. So did Kol. That was the year that between 4 prolific zucchini plants, the humans of the house didn’t get a single darn one because that little monster picked and ate everyone. What a stinker, but the truth is? I’d rather he eat fresh veggies that I grew than anything else.

Carrots

Photo by Ben Mater on Unsplash

Well, at least my dogs do. Carrots are easily one of the most loved vegetables we share with the Casa de Kolchak dogs. However, they aren’t the easiest things to grow.

The seeds are tiny as heck and they require a little TLC to plant, but once they’ve started to sprout, there is nothing quite as tasty and sweet as a carrot you’ve grown yourself. Kolchak loves them plucked from the ground, rinsed with the hose and eaten immediately.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Carrots:
Soil: Loose, loamy or sandy soil
Weather: Cooler temps – Spring/Fall
Region: All regions
Suitable for planting in the ground or in containers at least 1 ft. deep

Carrot Dog Treat Recipes

Carrot & Peanut Butter Cookies

Broccoli

Photo by Reinaldo Kevin on Unsplash

Broccoli was such a surprise! Kolchak loves the crunchy broccoli stems, but intensely dislikes the tiny tree part. He’s a dog of very specific tastes, apparently!

Broccoli can be. a little fussy to grow from seed, unless you start them indoors during the winter. I usually buy broccoli seedlings from the nursery and pop them in the ground as soon as the last frost is gone and the ground is workable.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Broccoli:
Soil: Slightly acidic with lots of compost
Weather: Cooler temps – Spring/Fall. This plant will run in super hot temps
Region: All regions
Suitable for planting in the ground or one plant/five-gallon container

Broccoli Dog Treat Recipes

Zucchini

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Zucchini is so easy to grow, it practically plants itself. This plant thrives on neglect and often grows out of bounds creating a ton of zucchinis from even just one plant. Like most squashes, it’s high in fibre, making it great for canine digestive health.

It does need good drainage so it’s roots don’t get soggy and rot, which is why I love planting zucchini in containers with drainage holes punched in the bottom.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Zucchini:
Soil: well-drained soil with lots of compost
Weather: Thrives when the weather is between 70 – 80 F for at least 6 – 8 weeks.
Suitable for planting in the ground or one plant/five-gallon container

Zucchini Crisps for Dogs

Spinach

Photo by Pille-Riin Priske on Unsplash

As a human, I love a spinach salad, but imagine my surprise when I discovered that my dogs loved spinach leaves as well! I use scissors to shred it and toss it in with their regular meals or use it in treats.

It’s also fantastic for lightly cooking and using as a kibble topper or for using as a puree in frozen dog treats.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Spinach:
Soil: Moist, nitrogen-rich soil.
Weather: Spinach thrives in cool weather and short days so it’s best to plant it in the fall for most gardeners.
Suitable for planting in the ground or 6 – 12″ wide containers

Spinach Dog Treat Recipes

Sweet Potato

Photo by Jessica Shipman from Beagles & Bargains

Sweet potato is my favourite kind of potato and 9 out of 10 dogs agree with me. The 10th dog was offered steak, so you know, his decision may have been biased.

They’re extremely hardy and easy to grow. While they sprawl when planted in the ground, they can be grown in containers with a trellis with relative ease.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Sweet Potato:
Soil: loose and rich in organic matter, but avoid excess nitrogen which ill produce big leafy greens and stunted tubers.
Weather: Plant in full sun three to four weeks after the last frost
Suitable for planting in the ground or in well-drained clay containers (avoid plastic & metal)

Sweet Potato Dog Treat Recipes

Green Beans

Photo by Neha Deshmukh on Unsplash

Of all the dog-friendly vegetables I have grown, I think green beans get the most competition for veggies both Kolchak and I don’t really want to share. We both love them and there is no end to the times we’ll eat them or the ways I’ll cook them.

I also love the way green bean vines look while they’re growing. So twisty and green and satisfying. I love planting too many bean stalks and then freezing the excess, so the dogs and I can have beans all winter too.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Green Beans:
Soil: sandy or silty loam
Weather: Consistent moisture and 6 – 8 hours of sun per day
Suitable for planting in the ground or containers, with a trellis for the vines to climb.

Green Bean Dog Treat Recipes

Cauliflower

OK, don’t tell Kol, but I really prefer this one with a nice sharp cheese sauce, but he has no problem eating steamed cauliflower plain.

In my opinion, cauliflower is a bit of a fussy one to grow. It’s much easier to do it from transplants than it is to start cauliflower from seed, but given that a SINGLE CAULIFLOWER was SIX DOLLARS at the market this week, maybe it’s worth fussing with.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Cauliflower:
Soil: Moist, well-drained soil, rich in organic matter and with a pH between 6.0 and 7.0
Weather: Cooler temperatures of early summer or early fall.
Suitable for planting in the ground or containers, at least 12 ” deep and 10-12″ wide

Cauliflower Dog Treat Recipes

Cauliflower Muffin Dog Treat Recipe

Green Peas

When I was a kid, I hate Hate HATED peas. I thought they were squishy and gross and I wanted absolutely nothing to do with them. So you can imagine my surprise when Kolchak enjoyed them so much that he learned how to pull them off the vine and shell them himself.

Since I started growing them, I’ve come to love their flavour – as long as you don’t cook them to a pulp and there’s a certain joy to be found in stripping peas right from the pod and sharing them with your dog.

Ideal Growing Conditions for Peas:
Soil: fertile, sandy loam that drains well
Weather: Temperatures between 55 – 70 F
Suitable for planting in the ground or in well-drained containers, at least 12″ across and with lots of additional water

Have you ever grown a dog-friendly vegetable garden? What did you plant?

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