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cooling foods for dogs

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What Are Cooling Foods For Dogs

Cooling foods is a diet used to help balance the body’s energies and promote health.  These are called cooling foods or cooling proteins for dogs.  

Is There Science Behind "Cooling Foods For Dogs"

No. The “cooling foods” concept in Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) is not grounded in modern scientific terminology or understanding. Cold food can be given to a dog for enjoyment and refreshment. But it will not decrease their body temperature.  If you are looking to cool them down, you need to give them water either in liquid or “solid form.”

6 Common Ingredients In Frozen Foods You Should Avoid

Cooling foods for dogs is common during hot months. But it’s vital to avoid harmful ingredients. Below is a list of 6 harmful ingredients you should avoid.

Some frozen dog foods may have added sugars or sweeteners, which are unnecessary and can contribute to health issues like obesity.

Such as artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. These may not be suitable for all dogs and can potentially cause allergies or sensitivities.

While dogs need healthy fats in their diet, excessive fat content in treats can lead to digestive upset and obesity, which is common in some breeds like the French Bulldog.  Be mindful of frozen treats with excessive fat levels.

Dairy-based frozen treats may contain lactose, which can be difficult for some dogs to digest, leading to digestive issues. Look for lactose-free options if your dog is sensitive.

High levels of sodium can be harmful to dogs, leading to increased thirst and potential health issues. Check the sodium content in frozen treats and choose those with lower levels.

Avoid treats with artificial sweeteners like xylitol, as they are toxic to dogs and can cause severe health problems

Cooling foods for dogs

31 Food Ranked By Water Content

Cooling foods for dogs keep our furry companions hydrated and refreshed. Especially during hot weather. This is because most cooling foods have high water content. These foods provide hydration and are tasty and nutritious snacks. In this guide, we’ll explore a variety of fruits and vegetables rich in water content.

Good for dogs as a low-calorie, hydrating treat.

Safe for dogs and can be a low-calorie snack.

Generally safe, but it doesn’t provide significant nutritional value.

Safe in moderation, as it’s hydrating and contains electrolytes.

Safe for dogs and can be a healthy addition to their diet.

Best avoided due to the potential for digestive upset.

 Safe in small amounts and offers some vitamins.

Can be beneficial in moderation but should not be a primary food source.

Safe in moderation and provides some vitamins.

Safe and hydrating, but remove seeds before offering.

: Safe in small quantities and can provide fiber.

Safe and a good source of antioxidants.

Safe and a low-calorie, nutritious treat.

Safe and offers vitamins and fiber.

Safe and can help with digestive issues.

Safe and a hydrating option for dogs.

Safe but remove the pit and offer in moderation.

Safe and a healthy, crunchy snack.

Best avoided due to high acidity and potential digestive upset.

Safe in small quantities and can support urinary health.

Safe but may cause gas if fed in excess.

Safe in moderation and provide some nutrients.

Safe and a good source of antioxidants.

Best avoided due to the presence of pits.

Safe when offered in small amounts.

Safe if seeds and core are removed; a nutritious treat.

Safe and a great source of antioxidants.

Safe when core and seeds are removed; offer in moderation.

Safe in small quantities; a source of vitamins and fiber.

Safe in small quantities; a source of vitamins and fiber.

Goat milk has tons of benefits for dogs besides its water content. 

3 Wrong Reasons To Use "The Cooling Foods" Method

Cooling foods for dogs are popular during hot weather. But they do not address allergies. Allergies have various triggers, including food. This discussion explores the difference between cooling foods and managing canine allergies.

Cooling foods can be beneficial during hot weather or for individuals prone to overheating. They are thought to help cool the body from the inside, reducing discomfort associated with heat.

Many cooling foods, such as fruits and vegetables with high water content, can help with hydration, which is important for overall health and maintaining a balanced body temperature.

Allergies often involve an immune response and can cause inflammation and discomfort.

Cooling foods are often recommended for conditions associated with excessive heat and inflammation. For example, in cases of skin conditions like rashes, hot spots, or allergies, cooling foods may be suggested to alleviate symptoms.

2 Right Reasons To Use Cooling Foods

Cooling foods for dogs, consisting of whole and natural ingredients, have been recognized for their potential to promote not only physical health but also digestive and emotional well-being. These foods, rich in nutrients and thoughtfully selected, can positively impact a dog’s mood and overall digestive health. In this exploration, we’ll delve into the benefits of cooling whole foods into your dog’s diet, enhancing their vitality and happiness. If you are looking to feed a dog with no teeth, it can be even harder to provide cooling proteins for dogs to them.  If you are looking to feed a dog with no teeth, it can be even harder to provide cooling proteins for dogs to them. 

If you look at the cool foods, they are pretty much 1)whole foods, or 2) easily digestable. 

Cooling foods may be recommended to help calm the mind and reduce stress or irritability, particularly in cases where an excess of heat is thought to be contributing to emotional imbalances.

Cooling proteins for dogs and upset stomach

Traditional Chinese Medicine Trend

Cooling foods for dogs are foods believed to have a cooling effect on a dog’s body. These foods are chosen to help balance internal energies. Particularly when there is an excess of heat or “yang” energy. They are often recommended to reduce inflammation and heat-related conditions in dogs. Examples of cooling foods for dogs include cucumbers, watermelon, and leafy greens.

Cooling's Food Is Based On Holistic Medicine & Energy, Not Temperature

Cooling foods for dogs are determined by taste, texture, and color. Not their actual temperature. The classification of cooling foods is based on their perceived effects on organs, such as internal energies and balance. They aim to reduce excess heat or “yang” energy.
Cooling Foods

Cooling foods inTraditional Chinese Medicine often have flavors that are considered sweet, bitter, or salty. Sweet flavors are thought to have a moistening and cooling effect on the body. Bitter flavors are believed to clear heat and toxins, while salty flavors may help to soften hardness and resolve stagnation, contributing to a cooling sensation.

Many cooling foods have a juicy, watery, or moist texture. This quality is thought to help counteract heat and dryness in the body. Examples include watermelon, cucumber, and certain fruits and vegetables with high water content.

Cooling foods tend to have colors associated with yin energy, such as green, blue, and purple. These colors are believed to have a calming and cooling effect on the body, promoting balance and reducing excess yang energy.

Neutral Foods

Neutral foods in TCM have a balanced taste profile and are neither strongly cooling nor warming. They typically have flavors that are considered sweet, bland, or mild in nature, contributing to a sense of balance.

Neutral foods often have a moderate texture, neither too dry nor too moist. This balance is thought to support the body’s equilibrium and maintain harmo

The color of neutral foods varies widely, and they may encompass a range of colors.

Warm Foods

Warm foods in TCM typically have flavors that are considered pungent (spicy), sweet, or savory. Pungent flavors are believed to have a warming and dispersing effect on the body. Sweet flavors are thought to provide nourishment and energy, while savory flavors may help build strength.

Warm foods may have textures that are hearty, dense, or substantial. These qualities are associated with providing warmth and energy to the body.

Warm foods are often associated with colors that are indicative of yang energy, such as red, orange, and yellow. These colors are believed to have a heating effect on the body, promoting circulation and energy.

Food Related Allergy Symptoms

Symptoms of allergies in dogs can vary. Watch for signs such as itching, skin rashes, digestive upset, or ear infections. Allergies can manifest as discomfort and irritation. They lead to excessive scratching, paw licking, and even hair loss. Consulting with a veterinarian. It is is crucial to identify allergens and tailor a diet that helps alleviate symptoms.

Itching (Pruritus): This is one of the most common signs of allergies in dogs. Dogs with allergies often scratch, lick, or chew their skin excessively. They may target specific areas like the paws, face, belly, or ears.
Redness and Inflammation: Allergic reactions can lead to red, inflamed, and irritated skin.
Hot Spots (Acute Moist Dermatitis): These are localized areas of intense itching and inflammation that may develop rapidly. Dogs may chew and lick these spots, leading to further irritation.

Allergies can contribute to ear problems in dogs. Symptoms may include ear itching, head shaking, ear discharge, and odor.

Some dogs with food allergies or sensitivities may experience digestive problems, including diarrhea, vomiting, gas, or abdominal discomfort.

Dogs with food allergies may experience recurrent issues with their anal sacs, leading to scooting or licking the anal area.

Over time, excessive scratching and licking can lead to hair loss and skin lesions, particularly in areas prone to irritation.

Dogs with food allergies may chew or lick their paws excessively, leading to redness and inflammation.

Inflammation in the joints is a common cause of lameness in dogs, especially in older individuals or those with underlying joint conditions like osteoarthritis.

Balanced Eating A "Lifestyle" For Overall Health

Cooling foods for dogs have gained attention. This is because of the growing trend of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Owners are applying these principles to pet nutrition. In this discussion, we’ll explore the concept of cooling foods in the context of TCM. And how they can contribute to the well-being of our four-legged companions.

-Cold Foods Are Wholefoods Which Are Better For Digestion

Whole foods are easier on a the digestive tract. This is because of their natural composition and higher fiber content. These foods promote regular bowel movements and a healthy gut. They lack artificial additives and excessive sugars or salt. This reduces the risk of gastrointestinal distress and food sensitivities. Nutrient-rich, whole foods support the body’s natural digestive processes. This aids in the efficient absorption of vital nutrients.

  • Bananas
  • Applesauce
  • Steamed potatoes
  • Boiled chicken (especially if served cool)
  • Yogurt
  • Avocado (in moderation)
  • Carrots
  • Steamed vegetables
  • Gelatin
  • White rice
  • Plain toast
  • Plain crackers
  • Oatmeal
  • Baked fish
  • Scrambled eggs
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Pumpkin
  • Rice cakes
  • Pasta

-Cold Foods Are Wholefoods Which Are Better For Mood & Anxiety

Cooling foods for dogs help them feel better and less anxious. Balancing their diet is key in cooling foods for dogs. These foods have vitamins and minerals that keep them healthy, including their emotions

Whole foods contain essential nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. These nutrients are important for maintaining proper brain function and neurotransmitter balance. For example, B vitamins, magnesium, and omega-3 fatty acids are crucial in mood regulation.

Whole foods, such as whole grains, fruits, and vegetables, provide a steady release of energy due to their fiber content and complex carbohydrates. This helps stabilize blood sugar levels, preventing mood swings and irritability associated with blood sugar spikes and crashes.

Whole foods are typically anti-inflammatory, whereas processed foods and sugary snacks can promote inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation has been linked to mood disorders and anxiety.

Whole foods often provide a balanced combination of carbohydrates, proteins, and healthy fats, important for stable energy levels and mood regulation.

Whole foods like fruits and vegetables have high water content, contributing to proper hydration. Dehydration can lead to mood changes and cognitive impairment.

Whole foods are rich in antioxidants, such as vitamins C and E, selenium, and various phytochemicals. Antioxidants help protect the brain and nervous system from oxidative stress, which can be a contributing factor to mood disorders and anxiety. These compounds neutralize harmful free radicals that can damage brain cells and interfere with mood regulation.

Whole foods like fatty fish (e.g., salmon, trout), flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts are excellent sources of omega-3 fatty acids, particularly eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Omega-3s have been linked to improved mood, reduced symptoms of depression, and decreased anxiety. They help support brain structure and function, including neurotransmitter production and inflammation regulation.

-Temperature Of Food Only Affects Core Temp Temporarily

Food can affect a dog’s temperature but doesn’t provide lasting internal cooling. Certain foods, like cooling foods for dogs, aid heat regulation temporarily. They don’t impact core temperature. To ensure lasting comfort, focus on hydration and a comfortable environment

When you eat, your body expends energy to digest, absorb, and metabolize the nutrients from food. This process generates heat, leading to a temporary increase in body temperature. However, the TEF is relatively small and typically doesn’t have a significant impact on overall body temperature.

Spicy foods containing compounds like capsaicin (found in chili peppers) can lead to a sensation of warmth or increased body heat. This is often temporary and related to the stimulation of heat receptors in the mouth and digestive tract. It doesn’t result in a sustained change in core body temperature.

Consuming cold foods and drinks, especially in hot weather, can provide a temporary sensation of cooling. This is because they may lower the temperature of the tissues in the mouth and throat. However, this effect is localized and doesn’t influence core body temperature.

Consuming alcoholic beverages can cause temporary vasodilation (expansion of blood vessels), which may make you feel warmer. However, this effect is mainly due to changes in blood flow near the skin’s surface and doesn’t significantly alter core body temperature.

-Cold Foods=High Hydration Levels Which Help Regulate Temperature

Staying well-hydrated is super important, especially when it’s hot outside. Hydration helps your body sweat. This keeps your body cool and makes you feel more comfortable.

Cucumbers have a high water content and are a low-calorie, hydrating snack for dogs.

Watermelon is composed mainly of water and provides hydration along with vitamins and minerals.

Like watermelon, cantaloupe is hydrating and offers essential nutrients.

Celery contains a significant amount of water and is a low-calorie option for dogs.

Plain ice cubes can be a fun way to provide dogs with extra hydration, especially on hot days.

Iceberg lettuce and romaine lettuce have high water content and can be added to a dog’s diet in moderation.

Low-sodium, plain broth (chicken, beef, or vegetable) can be a tasty way to hydrate dogs, especially when mixed with their regular food.

Apples have water content and can be a refreshing treat when given in small, sliced pieces without seeds or the core.

Blueberries have a good water content and are rich in antioxidants.

Fresh pineapple pieces can provide moisture along with vitamins and minerals.

Strawberries contain water and are a tasty and hydrating fruit option for dogs

In moderation, coconut water (not coconut milk) can provide hydration and electrolytes to dogs.

Plain pumpkin puree (without added spices or sugar) can add moisture and dietary fiber to a dog’s diet.

Zucchini has a high water content and can be cooked or served raw for added moisture.

-Allergies Are Not Specific To Chinese "Warm Foods"

Based on studies of allergies, you need to avoid triggers. There is no connection between Chinese warm foods and common dog allergies. It’s best to avoid potential triggers rather than follow TCM.  Allergies are one of the main reasons people are interested in cooling foods for dogs

  • Beef is a frequent culprit in dog food allergies. Dogs can develop allergies to proteins found in beef, leading to various symptoms, such as itching, skin irritation, and digestive problems.
  • Chicken is another common protein allergen in dogs. Allergic reactions to chicken can manifest as skin issues, gastrointestinal problems, or ear infections.
  • Wheat is a grain that can trigger allergies in some dogs. Wheat allergies may lead to digestive problems or skin reactions.
  • Corn is another grain that some dogs may be allergic to. Corn allergies can result in skin irritation and digestive symptoms.

  • Soy is a source of protein used in some dog foods. Dogs can develop allergies to soy, which may lead to skin problems or gastrointestinal issues.
  • Many dogs are lactose intolerant, which means they have difficulty digesting lactose, the sugar found in milk and dairy products. This can lead to gastrointestinal upset, including diarrhea.

-Inflammation Are Not Specific To Chinese "Warm Foods"

Foods that can cause inflammation in dogs should be avoided. Especially if your dog has a history of inflammation-related issues, these foods are not considered warm foods according to TCM principles.

Bacon is high in saturated fats, sodium, and preservatives, which can lead to inflammation in dogs when consumed regularly.

Hot dogs often contain processed meats with additives and high salt content, contributing to inflammation in dogs when consumed frequently.

Sausages are similar to hot dogs, often containing processed meats, additives, and high levels of sodium, which can lead to inflammation in dogs.

White bread lacks essential nutrients and fiber, causing spikes in blood sugar and potential inflammation in dogs when consumed excessively.

While not inherently harmful, white rice lacks the nutrients and fiber found in whole grains and may contribute to inflammation if it becomes a primary food source.

Pasta made from refined white flour can be high in empty carbohydrates, potentially contributing to inflammation in dogs if it forms a significant part of their diet.

Dairy products like milk and cheese can cause inflammation in dogs due to lactose intolerance. Many dogs lack the enzyme needed to properly digest lactose, leading to digestive upset and potential inflammation when dairy products are consumed.

Butter, being high in fat and dairy content, can be difficult for dogs to digest and may lead to inflammation when consumed in excess.

Tomatoes contain a substance called solanine, which can be harmful to dogs in large quantities. While ripe, red tomatoes are generally considered safe in small amounts, consuming green, unripe tomatoes or tomato leaves can lead to digestive issues and potential inflammation in dogs.

Eggplants contain solanine, a naturally occurring toxin that, when consumed in large quantities, can lead to digestive issues and potential inflammation in dogs.

While bell peppers are not inherently harmful, they contain compounds like lectins that can be problematic for some dogs and may contribute to inflammation when consumed excessively.

Potatoes, especially when fried or prepared with added fats, can contribute to inflammation in dogs due to their high glycemic index and potential digestive issues.

-Anti-inflammatory Are Not Specific To Chinese "Cold Foods"

If cold foods help with allergies, you would think they would be a list of anti-inflammatory foods. However, they are mixed, cold, warm, and neutral. Instead of focusing on energy, I would focus on anti-inflammatory foods. The nutrients of the foods we eatcan make a huge impact on the quality of life for dogs according to the VCA

Rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which have anti-inflammatory properties.

Another fatty fish high in omega-3s.ons.

Provide omega-3s and are often well-received by dogs.

Contains omega-3s but should be fed in moderation due to potential mercury content.

A source of plant-based omega-3 fatty acids.

Rich in omega-3s and fiber.

While less common than some other allergens, eggs can also trigger allergies in dogs. Allergic reactions to eggs can include skin problems or gastrointestinal symptoms.

Some dogs can develop allergies to fish proteins, such as those found in salmon or tuna. Allergic reactions to fish can manifest as skin issues or gastrointestinal discomfort

Contain omega-3s and omega-6s in a balanced ratio.

High in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds.

Contains curcumin, a natural anti-inflammatory agent.

Has anti-inflammatory and digestive benefits.

Rich in fiber and beneficial for digestive health.

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Another leafy green packed with nutrients.

Contains antioxidants and vitamins.

Rich in beta-carotene, a powerful antioxidant.

Known for its anti-inflammatory properties.

Hydrating and soothing for dogs.

A cruciferous vegetable with anti-inflammatory benefits.

Can help support urinary tract health.

Provide fiber and antioxidants.

Contains healthy fats with potential anti-inflammatory effects.

May have anti-inflammatory and joint-supporting properties.

A source of iodine and other minerals, which can support overall health.

Contains antioxidants that may help reduce inflammation.

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