Pet parents often feel compelled to share their favorite foods with the pups. Really, how can you say no to that adorable face? And fruit is no exception. However, some fruits should be the exception or fed with care. Fortunately, most fruits make for a great snack for your dog. Read on to find out which fruits dogs can eat and which should be avoided.Dog owners should be mindful when introducing new foods and avoid feeding high amounts of any new food to avoid stomach upset.
The most common ways of feeding apples include:
- Cutting up apple slices (or smaller chunks for small dogs)
- Blending into dog-friendly applesauce
- Feeding with xylitol-free peanut butter--just be cautious of weight gain
Apples are a great source of fiber. Dietary fiber fermentation in the gut produces short-chain fatty acids, which benefit digestive health! Dogs who are sensitive to fiber, diabetic, or are working on losing weight may want to skip the apples and the higher sugar content. On the other hand, apples are an excellent choice for senior dogs, as they can often require more fiber for healthy elimination.Apples are a good source of vitamins B, C, and E. They also contain essential nutrients for dogs like manganese, potassium, magnesium, and beta-carotene (vitamin A). Apples are rich in antioxidants and have been shown to benefit cardiovascular health in humans and animals. Apples are also low in phosphorus and calcium, which helps to ensure the extra foods you provide are not interfering with the absorption of minerals in your dog’s larger, balanced diet
While avocados are safe fruits to feed your dog, you’ll want to make sure to avoid feeding the avocado pit or avocado seed, as it poses a major choking hazard and can get stuck in your dog’s intestinal tract. The entire avocado tree, including avocado leaves and skin, contain persin, which is toxic to dogs. While the avocado flesh contains a low concentration of persin, pet parents will want to make sure to feed small pieces to their dog as large amounts of avocado fruit can cause side effects such as gastrointestinal upset.
While the avocado plant contains high fat content and calories, there are many health benefits of avocados tied to their healthy fats. Avocados are very healthy fruits that are rich in nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, Vitamins A and C, niacin, and Vitamin E. These beneficial fatty acids found in avocados are anti-inflammatory and can also improve heart health.
The best way to feed avocado to your pup as a healthy dog treat or addition to dog food is to avoid feeding the dangerous parts of the avocado, guacamole, and large quantities of the avocado flesh, even for large animals.
Dog owners often grab a banana for a healthy snack or a tasty treat, knowing this yellow fruit is packed with beneficial nutrients, but are bananas good for dogs? Yes! This human food contains a high amount of Vitamin B6, potassium, biotin, Vitamin C, prebiotics, and fiber content, aiding in your dog’s digestive system and boosting their immune system
Bananas are a sweet treat that contains a decently high sugar content, so it’s best to feed your dog small quantities of banana in order to avoid gastrointestinal problems or weight gain. You also want to make sure that you avoid feeding your pooch the banana peels, as it can upset your dog’s stomach.
There are several creative ways to feed your dog bananas: mash up this superfood as the occasional treat, freeze banana slices to make frozen ‘banana chips’--perfect for a hot summer day--or make some tasty peanut butter banana dog treats.
Blueberries are not only safe for dogs but can also provide them with numerous benefits. Feeding blueberries requires minimal prep compared to other fruits and veggies and are also low-calorie.
If you are unsure how to feed blueberries, start by giving a half gram per pound of body weight. When feeding your dog blueberries, opt for fresh blueberries--frozen blueberries are good too but avoid canned berries. This small superfood can be a choking hazard for small dogs, so try mashing to reduce risk.
Blueberries are a great source of fiber. However, each dog has a unique tolerance to fiber. For that reason, too many blueberries can cause an upset stomach.
Blueberries are known to be an antioxidant powerhouse! Blueberries also contain manganese, B, C, and E vitamins, potassium, and magnesium. Blueberries provide an anti-inflammatory effect in the body and therefore support the immune system of the dog. The phytochemicals found in blueberries and other fruits are often not found in kibble, making this fruit a great treat or addition to your dog’s diet!
The short answer is yes; however, there are some important considerations when feeding your furry friend cherry fruit. Similar to other fruits (like apricots), you should not feed your dog the pits, stems, and leaves of cherries, as they can cause cyanide poisoning. Symptoms of cyanide poisoning in dogs can include tremors, abnormal heart rate, dilated pupils, collapse, difficulty breathing, hyperventilation, and even death.
While dogs can eat cherry flesh, they must not eat the whole cherry, as it can cause an intestinal blockage. Maraschino cherries and other cherries without pits are full of simple sugars and should not be fed. It is safest to feed your dog fresh cherries, like black cherries, without added ingredients.
The primary health benefits of cherries come from phytochemicals and non-essential nutrients. Cherries are low calorie, provided from carbohydrates, and are high in moisture, making them a hydrating, low-calorie snack. When your dog eats cherries, they may benefit from its antioxidants, beta-carotene (Vitamin A), Vitamin C, and fiber.
You must feed your dog cherries properly and remove the cherry pits so that cyanide toxicity or obstruction in the digestive tract doesn’t occur.
You should never feed your dogs grapes, including seedless grapes or dried grapes (raisins and sultanas), regardless of the dog breed or age. The amount of grapes that may result in adverse reactions is not precisely known and, therefore, the safest amount to feed is none at all.
The cause of grape/raisin poisoning is unknown but well documented. Symptoms of grape toxicity or raisin toxicity may include lethargy, vomiting, renal failure, abdominal pain, increased thirst and urine production, kidney damage, and even sudden kidney failure. Depending on the dog, symptoms can occur within hours of ingestion.
Grape consumption will not always result in grape poisoning, but catching it early is key as sometimes your vet can help you induce vomiting. Contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center and your veterinarian immediately. They may run blood work to determine if toxins from grapes are circulating in the bloodstream. Acute kidney failure can result in loss of urination ability and will require veterinarian intervention (dialysis).
Because knowledge surrounding the precise reason grapes/raisins cause ill effects is slim, pet owners must be extremely careful about what their dogs have access to.
Before feeding mango to your dog, peel the mango skin, and remove the mango pit. The skin and pit of a mango are a choking hazard, and the pit contains a small amount of cyanide, making it very unsafe for dogs to ingest. Pet parents should focus on feeding the mango flesh and serving the tropical fruit in small pieces to avoid an upset stomach.
As long as you’re feeding mango to healthy adult dogs and avoiding large quantities, this fresh fruit can be a very healthy, sweet treat for your dog. There are many health benefits of feeding mango as the occasional treat because mango contains essential vitamins like Vitamin B6 and E. It also contains beta carotene, which is a precursor to Vitamin A. All of these vitamins are extremely important for a dog’s immune system. Mango is also a great source of Vitamin C and high in fiber, so it can also benefit a dog’s digestive system if fed in small amounts.
As it does contain a decent amount of sugar, avoid feeding your dog mango in large quantities, even for a large dog. Remember to start small to avoid digestive problems.
The flesh of oranges (along with tangerines and clementines) is relatively safe to feed to dogs. You should not feed the rind, seed, and pith (white lining) to your dog as they contain toxic substances. Orange slices containing just the flesh in small amounts are safe, but significant amounts can cause an upset stomach as this citrus fruit contains higher sugar levels and fiber. Feeding a diabetic dog oranges could potentially disturb blood sugar levels.
Be sure to cut up oranges to the correct size for your dog, as full orange slices may be a choking hazard for smaller dogs. Orange juice has a very high sugar content and may contain harmful substances. Stick to the whole fruit, flesh only when feeding oranges to your doggy.
The health benefits of oranges are numerous- providing essential nutrients, hydration, fiber, and beneficial compounds- many of which cannot be found in commercial pet food.
Before feeding, you will want to remove all of the orange peel, seeds, and white casing. To not overwhelm the digestive system, start by feeding ¼ gram per pound of body weight.
Papaya fruit is an excellent, safe addition to your dog’s diet and provides unique benefits to the digestive system. Papaya is a great source of fiber, moisture, nutrients, and contains plant-based enzyme papain that may help alleviate indigestion, excessive gas, and occasional bloating. Additional health benefits of papaya include aiding in digestion and bowel movements. Papaya includes essential and nonessential nutrients like vitamin K, C, and A.
While feeding papaya to your dog is generally safe, you will want to make sure you do not feed papaya seeds or skin to avoid unwanted side effects. Because papaya is rich in fiber, too much can cause an upset stomach, so you’ll want to feed in small pieces. Dehydrated papaya or dried papaya will be extremely concentrated and can increase the risk of digestive problems. Simply stick to fresh papaya. You can start by feeding your dog papaya one-half gram per pound of dog weight. All in all, this exotic fruit can be a great addition to supporting your dog’s health.
Raw pineapple is a healthy treat for both humans and dogs alike! Since this fresh fruit is high in fiber, start with adding a small amount of pineapple to your dog’s balanced diet. You can feed raw pineapple chunks fresh to your dog, pureed pineapple, or even freeze pieces for a cold, tasty treat on a hot day.
Fresh pineapple contains natural sugars that dogs can tolerate, but pineapple juice and canned pineapple contain added sugar and may contain xylitol, a sweetener which is highly toxic to dogs. There are several parts of the pineapple you should avoid feeding your dog: the pineapple core, rind, and pineapple skin, which can cause a blockage in the dog’s digestive system.
Pineapple contains a long list of vitamins and minerals, including vitamin B6, vitamin C, thiamin, niacin, manganese, and riboflavin, which helps with the production of red blood cells throughout the body. Fresh pineapple also contains digestive enzymes like bromelain, which are often used to help battle the bad habit of coprophagia (eating poop). These nutrients are some of the many reasons fresh pineapple makes an excellent snack and antioxidant boost for your dog’s body!
Strawberries are a sweet, low-calorie summer fruit that can be safely enjoyed by dogs. Curious about how to feed strawberries to your dog? Stick to fresh, whole strawberries--frozen is okay, too! As conventional strawberries may contain higher amounts of pesticide residues, it is recommended that you purchase organic strawberries to be safe. Remove the tops (greens) and prepare in sizes that are appropriate for your dog. If you are unsure how much to feed, start by feeding a half gram per pound of body weight.
Strawberries contain natural sugars, just like raspberries, cranberries, blackberries, and blueberries. Strawberries also contain essential nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, vitamins C and B, and manganese, a mineral that is important for the function of the body’s antioxidant defense system and is also critical for healthy joints. While providing an extra boost of essential nutrients is great, strawberries stand out because of the non-essential phytonutrients and antioxidants they provide. Because strawberries are particularly rich in polyphenolic antioxidants, there is growing research in regards to humans and the benefits of strawberries on cardiovascular health.
Yes--this high-quality fruit offers many health benefits for your pooch! Even though tomatoes are a fruit, they are part of the nightshade family of vegetables, along with eggplant. The leaves of the tomato contain solanine, which, when fed in large quantities, is a toxic substance to dogs and can lead to tomato poisoning, also known as tomatine poisoning. Contact your DVM if your dog consumes any green parts of the tomato plant and has symptoms of tomatine poisoning, including muscle weakness, allergic reaction, drooling, difficulty breathing and loss of coordination. There is some solanine found in the ripe tomato, but it is such a low amount that red ripe tomatoes are generally safe when fed to dogs in small amounts.
Your dog’s health can benefit from a small amount of tomato due to the high amount of lycopene, beta carotene, and Vitamin C present in this fruit. Tomatoes are low in calories and high in fiber, which can aid in digestion. Tomatoes are also rich in folate and potassium, which are both beneficial for maintaining healthy muscles.
Avoid feeding green tomatoes, unripe tomatoes, and tomato sauce--stick to red tomatoes. You can feed any variety of fresh tomatoes to your dog as long as it’s ripe, and you are making sure to avoid feeding the green parts of the tomato. Cherry tomatoes are particularly easy to feed a dog!
The short answer is yes; your dog can enjoy watermelon as a healthy summer treat! While it’s generally safe to feed your dog watermelon, you’ll want to make sure to avoid feeding the watermelon rind. While non-toxic, the watermelon rind can’t be easily broken down in your dog’s digestive system and can cause an intestinal blockage. You’ll also want to make sure to remove the watermelon seeds, whether white or black, before feeding it to your dog to avoid any tummy troubles. You can feed seedless watermelon but make sure that your dog doesn’t eat excess white seeds
Dog owners should make sure to feed their dog an appropriate amount of watermelon based on the dog’s size. So if you have a small dog, don’t feed an entire slice of watermelon or your dog is likely to wind up with a tummy ache.
Watermelon is roughly 92 percent water, 7.5 percent carbohydrates, and very low in calories. It’s great for hydration and has the potential to help alleviate muscle soreness as well. Watermelon is also rich in Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin C, and phenolic antioxidants such as lycopene that can boost the immune system.