Fruits are packed with nutrients and may benefit your pooch in many ways. Although fruit is an essential part of your dog’s diet, there are some fruits like grapes or raisins that can be fatal to dogs. Pits and seeds contain cyanide, and should not be given to dogs. Phytonutrients are found in all colorful fruits and offer plenty of antioxidant benefits to help with health issues. Let’s find out which fruits are best for dogs!
Is Fruit Safe for Dogs?
The short answer is yes! The best fruits for dogs are blueberries, apples, cantaloupe, mango, oranges, and peaches. But there are some fruits that are extremely dangerous for dogs to eat like grapes, avocadoes, currants, stone fruit pits, cherries, and tomatoes.
If you’re wondering how much fruit is too much for dogs, keep in mind that high-sugar, high-fiber treats may give your pooch an upset stomach. Purina explains that “if you stick to the 90/10 rule, this isn’t likely to be a problem. Excess sugar can lead to diabetes, obesity, and cavities, so you want to limit your dog’s sugar intake. Besides being high in sugar, peach pits, stems, and leaves contain trace amounts of cyanide, which is toxic to dogs. The peach pit, or “stone,” is a choking hazard and can cause an intestinal blockage if swallowed. It’s also rough and abrasive, which can damage the esophagus and intestines.”
You can help your pooch stay healthy by feeding superfruits like cranberries, pomegranates, cranberries, and apples together with a complete and balanced diet. Superfruits like berries are packed with nutrients and offer numerous health benefits.
It’s a great idea to put a little fruit in your doggy’s diet, as long as they’re the right fruits!
Fruits That Are Safe
Apples are safe for dogs and can be cubed, served cold, or even frozen. They provide an excellent source of vitamins A and C, as well as fiber. Keep in mind that the core and seeds need to be removed before feeding apples to your pup. The seeds contain cyanide, which is harmful to dogs. Apples are also good for removing residue on your dog’s teeth—so get to chopping and let those pearly whites shine!
These are the queen of superfruits! Blueberries are a beneficial addition to your pooch’s diet because they contain concentrated antioxidants that help reduce inflammation, while possibly inhibiting the growth of cancer cells. Dogs enjoy the sweet taste of blueberries, and blueberries can be used as a topper for plain organic yogurt. Because blueberries are similar to cranberries, this superfruit may help to inhibit the growth of bacteria in a dog’s urinary tract while preventing infections and other health issues.
Just like humans, dogs really can dig into acai berries. They’re a good source of anthocyanin, which can neutralize superoxides, a dangerous compound released when dogs are anxious and stressed. Acai berries can be used as a source of vegetarian proteins and fats that dogs need as part of a balanced diet. Berries also contain quercetin, one of the most abundant plant nutrients with lots of antioxidant benefits.
Cantaloupe is packed with nutrients, and it’s a good source of water and fiber. Cantaloupe is packed with beta carotene which may help reduce cancer risks, and this delicious fruit contains numerous vitamins like A, B-6, and C. It’s also filled with fiber and potassium.
But cantaloupe is high in sugar, so be cautious when feeding cantaloupe to dogs that are overweight or who suffer from diabetes. Before serving your furry BFF cantaloupe, it’s best to remove all the seeds and the rind.
Dogs enjoy this sweet summer fruit, especially if it’s cubed and served cold. You can combine mango cubes with acai berries and use them as a summer topper, or even freeze this yummy combo for dogs to nibble on during the hot summer months. Yum!
Although dogs can eat an orange, there’s no guarantee they’ll love its strong citrus aroma. The AKC adds that “oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber, and in small quantities, the juicy flesh of an orange can be a tasty treat for your dog. Vets do recommend tossing the peel and only offering your dog the flesh of the orange, minus any seeds. Orange peel is rough on their digestive systems, and the oils may make your dog literally turn up their sensitive nose.”
Peaches are good for dogs, but you have to remove the pit before feeding. Peach pits are a choking hazard to dogs, and they contain cyanide, making them toxic to all pups.
Never feed your dogs canned peaches—or any canned fruits for that matter—because those prepackaged snacks contain tons of sugary syrups. With that said, you can freeze natural peach slices and dip them in plain organic yogurt for a healthy snack that will keep your dog coming back for more.
All dogs enjoy this juicy fruit, but like all other fruits, it’s important to remove all of its seeds before feeding watermelon to your pup. Watermelon can help keep your pooch stay hydrated during the hot summer months. It’s made of 92% water and is best served cubed or pureed. This delicious treat is also packed with potassium, vitamins A, B-6, and C, and fiber, making watermelon good for skin and coat health.
Fruits to Avoid
PetsMD explains that avocados “have something called persin. It’s fine for people who aren't allergic to it. But too much might cause vomiting or diarrhea in dogs. If you grow avocados at home, keep your dog away from the plants. Persin is in the leaves, seed, and bark, as well as the fruit. Also, the avocado seed can become stuck in the intestines or stomach, and obstruction could be fatal.”
Cherries, grapes, currants, as well as stone fruit pits, are dangerous to dogs. Grapes and raisins can result in kidney failure, and even a small amount can be dangerous. PetMD adds that “vomiting over and over is an early sign [of kidney failure]. Within a day, your dog will get sluggish and depressed.”
To prevent confusion, keep the list of good fruits for your pup somewhere and always give it a check before letting them dive into the sweet fruits.
How Much Fruit Is OK?
Always consult with your veterinarian if you have any questions about feeding fruit to your furry best friend. If you don’t want to be stuck cleaning up dog poop, make sure to feed your pooch fruit in moderation. With that said, there are a few things you need to keep in mind when serving fruit to your pooch:
- Always wash fruit before feeding it to your dog.
- When feeding your dog fruit for the first time, start off with a small piece to check for adverse reactions like gassiness or diarrhea.
- Cut fruit up into small cubes to prevent choking.
- Do not feed your pooch seeds or pits.
- Freeze fruit and combine it with cheese or peanut butter for a healthy snack.
- If your dog doesn’t want to try a fruit, try mashing it and adding it to treats, frozen snacks, or even dog food as a topper.
We all enjoy fruits, and there’s no reason to keep your dog away from nature’s treats! In general, purchase high-quality fruits for your dog, and opt for organic when you can. Some dogs enjoy fresh fruits added to their diets, while others may turn away.
You can experiment with a few different fruits to get an idea of what your dog likes. Keep in mind that phytonutrients benefit all dogs throughout all different life stages, and they’re especially beneficial during a dog’s senior years. Just remember to stay away from unsafe fruits and pits… and get ready for your dog to beg for some yummy treats!