Can Dogs Eat Lentils? Here’s What You Need to Know

can dogs eat lentils

When it comes to our furry friends, we want to ensure they have a healthy and balanced diet. As dog owners, we often wonder if our pets can enjoy the same foods we do. One such food is lentils. Can dogs eat lentils?

Lentils have gained popularity due to their nutritional value and they form a staple in many households around the world. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore the benefits and risks of feeding lentils to dogs, discuss the different types of lentils, and provide tips on how to safely incorporate lentils into your dog’s diet.

In Short – Can Dogs Eat Lentils?

The short answer is yes, dogs can eat lentils. Lentils are a nutritious legume that can provide valuable nutrients to your furry friend. They are rich in protein, fiber, iron, and other essential minerals (which is why they’re also good for us). Lentils can be a great addition to your dog’s diet, but you should only feed them to your pup in moderation and make sure to prepare them correctly.

Are Lentils Good for Dogs?

Lentils offer several health benefits for dogs. They are a great source of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B6, folate, iron, phosphorus, potassium, and thiamine. Lentils are also high in fiber and protein, which can help regulate your dog’s digestion and keep them feeling fuller for longer. This means that lentils can be a good treat for overweight dogs looking to lose a few pounds.

Additionally, lentils provide energy, support healthy blood circulation, and contribute to the overall well-being of your dog.

Risks of Feeding Lentils to Dogs

While lentils are generally safe for dogs to consume, there are a few risks that dog owners should be aware of. Eating lentils can be a problem because they’re hard for dogs to digest and this may result in gastrointestinal issues such as gas or diarrhea.

Additionally, lentils contain lectins, which are plant proteins that can interfere with nutrient absorption and cause inflammation when consumed in large amounts. It’s important to soak and cook lentils properly to minimize lectin content and feed them to your dog in moderation.

orange lentils

Can Dogs Eat Green Lentils?

Yes, it’s safe to feed pups green lentils. Green lentils are packed with antioxidants and minerals, although they may have a slightly peppery taste that some dogs might not find as appetizing as other types of lentils. Ensure that the green lentils are properly soaked and cooked before serving them to your dog.

Can Dogs Eat Black Lentils?

Black lentils, also known as beluga lentils, are safe for dogs to consume. These lentils are rich in protein and nutrients and can contribute to a balanced diet for your pet. Like other lentils, black lentils should be cooked properly before being fed to your dog.

Can Dogs Eat Red Lentils?

Red lentils are safe for dogs to eat, and they offer similar nutritional benefits to other types of lentils. They are quick to cook and have a sweeter and nuttier flavor compared to other lentil varieties. However, red lentils have slightly less fiber than brown lentils since they have been hulled. Ensure that the red lentils are thoroughly soaked and cooked before serving them to your dog.

Can Dogs Eat Lentil Soup?

While a small amount of plain lentil soup may not harm your dog, it’s important to exercise caution when feeding them this dish. Lentil soup often contains spices and seasonings, such as garlic and onions, which can be toxic to dogs.

Additionally, lentil soup may contain high levels of sodium, which can be harmful to your pet and even cause salt poisoning if given in high quantities. It’s best to avoid feeding your dog lentil soup or any other store-bought lentil dishes.

lentil soup

Can Dogs Eat Cooked Lentils?

Sure, dogs can eat cooked lentils. Cooking lentils properly helps break down lectins and makes them easier for dogs to digest. Boiling or steaming lentils is the best way to cook them for your dog. Avoid adding any seasonings, spices, or salt, as these can be harmful to your pet.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Lentils?

While small amounts of raw lentils are generally safe for dogs, it’s important to note that lentils contain lectins, which can be toxic and difficult to digest for dogs. It is recommended to cook lentils before feeding them to your dog to eliminate lectins and reduce the risk of digestive issues.

Can Dogs Eat Canned Lentils?

Canned lentils are not recommended for dogs. They often contain high levels of salt and preservatives, which can be harmful to your pet. It’s best to opt for fresh or dried lentils and cook them yourself to ensure they are safe for your furry friend.

How Many Lentils Can Dogs Eat?

When it comes to feeding lentils to your dog, moderation is key. Lentils should be given as part of a balanced diet and not as the main source of nutrition (your pup should be getting this from their regular pet foods).

Generally, it’s best to follow the 10% rule. This means that 10% of a dog’s daily calorie and nutrient intake can be healthy human foods but the rest should come from canine-specific dog food.

lentils and spoon

How to Feed Your Dog Lentils

There are several ways to incorporate lentils into your dog’s diet. Here are a couple of our favorite ones:

  • Add them to their regular dog food for a bit of flavor and texture variation.
  • Combine them with other healthy veggies such as broccoli or zucchini for a little treat.
  • Whisk them up and spread them on a pooch lick mat to keep your pooch entertained.
  • Serve them plain! Your pooch might love having lentils as a snack on their own.

Be creative and experiment with different ways to serve lentils to your furry friend.


In conclusion, dogs can eat lentils as part of a healthy and balanced diet. Lentils provide essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that can contribute to your dog’s overall well-being. However, it’s important to feed lentils in moderation, cook them properly to minimize lectin content, and avoid adding any harmful ingredients such as spices, seasonings, garlic, or onions.

As always, consult with your veterinarian before making any changes to your dog’s diet to ensure their specific dietary needs are met. With proper preparation and moderation, lentils can be a nutritious addition to your dog’s mealtime.