In answer to your question "Can dogs eat pineapple?" yes, raw pineapple is a tasty treat for both humans and dogs alike. You can feed your dog this tropical fruit as a healthy treat or incorporate it into their balanced diet as a dog food topper.
However, there are parts of the pineapple that you should avoid feeding so Fido doesn’t end up with an upset stomach. The amount of pineapple you feed your dog is also very important.
Keep reading to uncover the safety measures you should take when feeding your dog pineapple and to learn about the health benefits you can expect from this fresh fruit.
Can Dogs Eat Pineapple? Yes, But ...
We've already answered the question, "Can dogs eat pineapple?" Feeding your dog small quantities of fresh pineapple is safe and even nutritionally beneficial. But, as dog owners, we should be careful when introducing any new food into our dogs' diet. Here are a few other things to consider before you feed pineapple to your dog.
Feed Small Quantities
As with any new food, fresh fruit can upset your dog's stomach when your dog eats it in large amounts. Pineapple has a relatively high fiber content. While some fiber can help relieve constipation and keep your dog's digestive tract on track, too much fiber can cause digestive problems. To help your dog avoid an upset stomach, consider supporting their digestive system with a doggy probiotic or a pumpkin supplement.
Be Mindful of the Sugar Content
Pineapple flesh contains natural sugars that most dogs tolerate well, but if your dog has reacted poorly to whole foods with high sugar content, avoid feeding them pineapple. And if your dog has diabetes or any other issues with their blood sugar, talk to your vet before feeding this fruit.
Avoid Canned Pineapple and Pineapple Juice
Canned pineapple often contains added sugars and syrups that give the fruit an unnaturally high sugar content and are not healthy for dogs. Too much sugar can upset your dog's digestive system, and over time, it can lead to more serious health problems like obesity.
You’ll also want to avoid store-bought pineapple juice, as it also typically has added sugar.
Only Feed Pineapple Flesh
Don't give your dog any of the parts of the pineapple that humans don't eat. This means your dog should not eat the pineapple skin, core, or crown (the spiky green leaves on top of the fruit).
If they're swallowed whole or eaten in large quantities, these parts of the fruit are difficult to digest and could present a choking hazard or cause a blockage in your dog’s digestive system, which will require veterinary care. The pineapple core is also extremely fibrous and could lead to an upset stomach.
The safest part of the pineapple is the fleshy part, which both you and your furry friend can enjoy. Stick with feeding pineapple chunks that you scoop from the fresh fruit.
You can also purchase already prepared, fresh pineapple chunks (with the skin and core removed) from the produce section of your grocery store, but these pieces can still be quite large. Make sure to dice the pineapple into smaller portions before sharing it with your pooch. Feed pineapple in small bites so it doesn’t become a choking hazard or lead to an upset stomach.
What Are the Health Benefits of Pineapple?
Pineapple contains essential nutrients that are important for a dog’s overall immune system, digestive system, and general health. This healthy fruit provides a long list of vitamins, minerals, and digestive enzymes.
We’ve highlighted some of the most beneficial vitamins, minerals, and enzymes below, but keep in mind that this fruit also contains other essential vitamins and minerals, including folate, calcium, potassium, and magnesium. These nutrients are some of the many reasons fresh pineapple makes a great occasional treat for dogs.
Bromelain is part of the enzymes known as proteases, which assist with breaking down protein and help with nutrient absorption. Dogs who are prone to malabsorption issues may benefit from enzymes like bromelain.
For this reason, pineapple is often used to treat coprophagia (the bad habit of eating poop). Some dogs participate in coprophagia to overcome a nutritional deficiency, which bromelain can help with — though, for many dogs, eating poop is merely a behavioral issue. Talk to your veterinarian to figure out what's causing your dog's bad habit.
Although it's not considered an essential nutrient for dogs, vitamin C is an excellent way to support your dog’s immune system. It can fight free radicals and oxidative stress and keep cells healthy. Pineapple is one of the fruits with the highest vitamin C content, so it’s a great way to give your dog’s body an antioxidant boost.
B6 is also present in high quantities in raw pineapple. This water-soluble vitamin is necessary for several bodily functions, including protein, fat, and carbohydrate metabolism. Vitamin B6 is also important for keeping Fido’s skin, coat, and nails healthy.
This water-soluble vitamin is also known as vitamin B1. Thiamin has some anti-inflammatory properties and is essential for turning carbohydrates into energy and supporting the brain and nervous system.
Niacin is also known as vitamin B3. This nutrient helps keep cholesterol under control and can help manage arthritis pain and boost brain function.
Another member of the B vitamin group, riboflavin is also known as vitamin B2. This is an essential nutrient because it helps with the production of red blood cells throughout the body.
Raw pineapple contains a fair amount of manganese, which is a mineral that helps dogs develop and maintain strong bones and connective tissues.
How to Feed Pineapple as a Healthy Treat
There are a few ways to feed pineapple to your dog. You can feed raw pineapple in small bites as an occasional treat, or you can give your dog pureed pineapple.
To create a fun food puzzle for your pooch, freeze pieces with water or put the pureed pineapple into freezer-safe molds. Your dog will have to spend time working on the ice cube, licking at it to get to the pineapple. On a hot day, try this recipe to give your pet a tasty treat.
Pineapple Ice Cream Dog Treats
- 1/2 cup of plain yogurt or Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup of raw pineapple chunks
Optional ingredients: 1/8 cup of watermelon or blueberries or 1 tbsp of peanut butter
- Blender or food processor
- Silicone freezer-safe molds
- Place your raw pineapple chunks and yogurt in the blender with any of the additional ingredients, and blend until smooth.
- With a spatula, add your pureed mixture into silicone molds.
- Give your dog one of these frozen treats each day, or save them for special occasions.
There Are Many Pros of Feeding Pineapple to Your Pet
So, can dogs eat pineapple? Yes, like people, our pets benefit from a diet rich in minimally processed whole foods. We just have to be careful about which human foods we share with our furry friends. For example, you should never give your dog grapes. Pineapple, on the other hand, is a healthy fruit to share with your dog. As for vegetables, dogs can eat zucchini and a wide range of other options.
Feel free to feed your pet this nutrient-dense whole food. Just make sure you only feed them the flesh of fresh pineapple and not the skin, core, or crown of the fruit. Also, be mindful of the size of each chunk and portion so you don't upset their stomach. And whenever you introduce a new food into your dog's diet, consider supporting their nutrition with all-natural pet supplements.
Find more advice to keep your pet happy and healthy (plus more DIY dog treat recipes) on the Native Pet blog.