What Fruits Can Dogs Eat?

While fruit is not needed in a dog’s daily diet, there is no doubt that fruit has health benefits for our furry friends. They love sweetness and different textures. Many premium dog food brands even include whole fruit to enhance the nutritional value (and taste) of their formulas. However, just like all types of human food, some of the fruits we eat can be very harmful to our canines. We provide you with a comprehensive guide to the best fruits for your puppy, their health benefits, safe feeding guidelines, and fruits to avoid for your dog.

Healthy Ways to Add Fruit to Your Dog’s Diet

Many fruits can be taken directly from the fridge or pantry to make delicious treats (as long as they are washed first), or you can easily use them in homemade dog treats. They also make delicious food toppings to appeal to picky eaters. Even though many fruits are low in calories, you still need to make sure you share them in moderation with your furry friends. Be sure to consult your veterinarian before giving your puppy any new food.

Experts agree that it is very important to give your dog a proper amount of food, treats, or any other food. “I often come across overweight dogs, and the root cause is often that they have too many treats in addition to dog food,” says Hannah Godfrey, a small animal veterinarian at Cardiff Bridges Veterinary Clinic, Wales.

Godfrey shared an example of how easy it is for owners to fall into snack traps. “I recently saw a young rescue dog and he was a little anxious. The host gave them a lot of snacks and tried to train them to fight boredom and separation anxiety. Thankfully, by cutting back on snacks, swapping them out for healthier raw carrots, and providing other types of rewards and abundance, the dogs lost weight.”

What Is the Best Fruit for Dogs?8 Best Options

Many of humanity’s most popular fruits are also the healthiest choices for our four-legged friends. This makes it easy to get fruit treats for dogs, as you may be preparing these fruits for your family. Be sure to follow the recommendations for necessary modifications and eating safe snacks.

1. Blueberries

Perhaps the jewel in the crown of all fruits, blueberries are an amazingly nutrient-dense superfood with multiple health benefits for us and our furry companions. Another benefit is that for most dogs, they don’t need to be seeded or other safety modifications (other than washing). Fresh and frozen blueberries are popular with most dogs.

For small dogs, you should chop or mash them to avoid the possibility of choking. Dogs can safely eat a handful of blueberries every day. I’ve found blueberries to be great as a low-calorie training snack, especially when you need to give multiple rewards during training.

Advantage
  • Low calorie and low sugar
  • Rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals that help prevent cell damage, have anti-cancer properties, and fight heart disease
  • Plenty of fiber promotes healthy digestion and vitamin C promotes immune health
  • Anti-inflammatory properties
  • Good source of vitamin K, calcium, iron, magnesium, and zinc

2. Apples

Many dogs love the crunchy texture and sweetness of apples, and apple slices are a super healthy food as long as the seeds and pits are removed. When chewed, apple seeds release small amounts of cyanide, which can be toxic to dogs. The core is a choking hazard, and dogs can have difficulty digesting. A moderate amount of apple peel is good for dogs.

Stick to two to three slices of apples with meals. Eating too many apples at once can cause stomach pain or diarrhea. For our cubs, whole apples contain too much fructose (“fruit sugar”). Dogs love raw apples, but you can also add plain apple puree to your homemade baked goods.

Advantage
  • Excellent source of fiber, vitamins A and C, potassium and antioxidants
  • Low in calories
  • Fiber-rich apple peels can help regulate digestion and maintain a healthy weight
  • Helps clean teeth
  • Green apples are slightly lower in sugar and carbohydrates than red apples and slightly higher in vitamin A

3. Pumpkin

Pumpkin is often added to quality dog food, treats, and supplements for its many health benefits, with digestive health bearing the brunt of it. Plain canned pumpkin (without spices) is the easiest way to feed your puppy this fruit, but you can also feed your dog fresh pumpkin meat (raw or cooked). Plain roasted pumpkin seeds are a safe and healthy treat for puppies, but they are quite high in fat, so you should feed them less.

Advantage
  • Rich in fiber, vitamins A and K, and copper
  • An excellent treatment for diarrhea, constipation, and gland problems
  • Good source of vitamins C and E, iron, and folate
  • Supports skin, coat and immune health
  • Low sugar content
  • Small amounts can be fed daily to promote healthy digestion

4. Watermelon

Watermelon contains 92% water, making it the perfect fruit to hydrate your dog on a hot summer day when they’re out and about. Before sharing this nutritious food with your four-legged friend, make sure to remove the seeds and rind as they can cause intestinal blockages. However, watermelon is quite high in sugar, so it’s best to limit your puppy to just one piece.

Advantage
  • Rich in potassium, vitamins A, B-6 and C
  • A good fruit option for overweight dogs (contains the amino acid arginine, which helps burn fat)
  • Low in calories and carbohydrates
  • Can keep your puppy hydrated

5. Strawberries

Strawberries are another favorite fruit of humans, and it combines a juicy, interesting texture with a sweet, sour taste that most dogs love to eat. Fresh or frozen, they’re a great treat, but be sure to cut them into small pieces so they don’t suffocate. How many strawberries can a dog eat per day?One is enough for a small dog, two to three for a medium-sized dog, and up to five for a large dog.

Advantage
  • Rich in vitamin C and antioxidants to support cellular and immune health
  • Low in calories and less sugar than apples and bananas
  • High fiber content is good for digestive health
  • Supports heart health
  • Contains omega-3 fatty acids for skin and coat health
  • Contains an enzyme that helps whiten teeth

6. Bananas

Bananas are the most popular fruit in the United States and are a healthy choice for our puppies, as long as you peel them first and feed them in moderation. The peels are not poisonous, but they can be difficult to digest and can cause intestinal blockages. Although bananas contain many nutrients, banana peels contain quite a bit of sugar (sugar and carbohydrate levels continue to rise as bananas ripen).

Therefore, be careful to feed the puppy a small amount of bananas and do not feed it frequently. Also, they are not a healthy choice for dogs with diabetes or being overweight. Still, for many puppies, mashed bananas are a simple and healthy addition to homemade baked dog food. I mix a small amount with frozen blueberries or strawberries to make a paw-perfect puppy smoothie.

Advantage
  • Low calorie and low cholesterol
  • Rich in potassium, fiber, biotin, vitamins C and B6, and copper
  • Helps maintain healthy blood pressure
  • Supports brain, bone, muscle, skin, coat and immune health

7. Cucumbers

Although many people think of cucumbers as a vegetable, they are technically a fruit. While cucumbers don’t taste as good as many other fruits (or vegetables), many dogs don’t lose interest because of their lack of taste. Cucumbers are an excellent fruit for overweight dogs, making up 96% water but rich in vitamins and minerals.

Cucumber skins and seeds are not toxic to dogs (they contain most of the nutrients), but some dogs may have some difficulty digesting them. Therefore, if your puppy has a sensitive tummy, you may need to peel and remove the seeds before sharing the cup slices with your dog. And don’t feed your puppy kimchi as they contain too much salt.

Advantage
  • Very low in calories and sugar
  • Ideal for hydrated and overweight dogs
  • Contains vitamins B1, C and K, biotin, copper, magnesium and potassium
  • Anti-inflammatory properties
  • Medium fiber content

8. Cantaloupe

This juicy melon is packed with nutrients, is an excellent source of water and fiber, and is low in calories but high in sugar, so it’s important to feed in moderation. This is not a great option for dogs with diabetes or being overweight. Although the seeds and peels are non-toxic, they can pose a choking hazard, so it’s best to remove them.

Advantage
  • 90% water, perfect for keeping your dog hydrated
  • Rich in fiber to support digestive health
  • Rich in vitamins A and C for cellular and immune health
  • A good source of vitamins B6 and K, potassium, calcium, niacin, folate, and many more nutrients
  • Supports heart health

What Other Fruits Are Good for Dogs?

Apricot

Apricots are one of several exotic fruits on our list, and they are safe for dogs as long as the pits, leaves, and stems are removed. Apricot kernels are a choking hazard and contain cyanide, which is toxic to dogs. Apricots are best cut into small pieces so that they are easier to digest. The pulp is a good source of vitamins A and C, dietary fiber for digestive regulation, potassium, and antioxidants such as the eye health promoter β-carotene.

Blackberries

Blackberries are lower in calories and sugar than many fruits, and for the safety of puppies, blackberries require very little food preparation. They are rich in vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids, which are very beneficial for whole-body health. However, it is important to feed only one to three berries per day, depending on the size of the puppy. Blackberries contain small amounts of naturally occurring xylitol, which is highly toxic to dogs in moderate to large amounts.

Coconut

Coconut meat is non-toxic for dogs and healthier than coconut oil for our puppies because it is slightly lower in fat. However, both have a higher fat content and should be fed in small amounts. Too much coconut can cause stomach upset and bloating. Both meat and oil contain antioxidants and other nutrients that help boost the immune system, reduce inflammation, and benefit healthy skin.

Cranberries

Cranberries are known for their ability to fight urinary tract infections (UTIs) in humans, but research on dogs is inconclusive. Some cranberries are safe for dogs, but too much can cause stomach upset and lead to bladder stones. Fortunately, given the sour taste of this berry, many dogs are not big fans of it. There are plenty of other fruits that are healthier for our dog companions.

Kiwi

If you’re a big fan of fruit and its low-calorie health benefits, take note. Kiwi contains more vitamin C than oranges and more potassium than bananas. While they are a superfruit for us humans and have some health benefits for our furry friends, there are healthier fruit options for your puppy. You can share a small amount of kiwi pulp with your puppy (chopped to avoid choking, and don’t peel), but too much can cause diarrhea or stomach upset.

Mango

Mangoes are high in fiber and contain vitamins A, B6, C, and E, so they are a healthy treat for puppies. However, tropical fruits like mangoes tend to be higher in sugar than other types of fruits, so they’re only suitable for occasional enjoyment. Before sharing a mango with your puppy, it is essential to remove the pit as it contains a small amount of cyanide and poses a choking hazard. The skin is not poisonous, but it can cause stomach upset, so peeling is a good idea.

Orange

Oranges (along with citrus and nectarines) are an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber, and are very useful for your puppy’s immune system. But veterinarians recommend only giving your dog one or two tablets, removing the peel and seeds. These citrus fruits are moderately sugary, but too many slices may cause an upset stomach in your dog due to the high citric acid content.

Papaya

Unlike many other tropical fruits, papaya is lower in sugar and calories. Its pulp is rich in fiber, vitamins A, C, E, and K, calcium, and potassium. It’s an excellent treat (in moderation) for your pup’s digestive, immune, heart, skin, and coat health. But you first need to remove the seeds and peels that contain trace amounts of cyanide, which can cause choking or intestinal blockage.

Momoko

Although most dogs love the sweetness of peaches, peaches are relatively low in sugar, which makes them a great healthy treat for dogs. However, it is crucial to remove the pit because it contains cyanide. Chopped fresh or frozen peaches are a great source of vitamins A and C, antioxidants, fiber, and more, but avoid canned peaches because they are rich in syrup.

Pear

Pears contain many nutrients that puppies need, including fiber, vitamins C and K, and copper. As with apples, you need to remove the pits and seeds, which release cyanide when chewed. Pear peels are not toxic to dogs, so it is safe to feed pear slices with the skin.

Pineapple

Pineapple is another sweet and tangy tropical fruit that is safe for dogs, rich in fiber and many vitamins and minerals. It also contains bromelain, which helps our body absorb protein more efficiently. However, pineapple is quite high in sugar, so moderation is key.

Raspberries

Raspberries are close relatives of blackberries and have similar multiple health benefits to our canines and do not require food preparation (other than washing) to share with our puppies. They are low in calories and sugar, but high in antioxidants, anti-inflammatory properties, vitamin C, fiber, manganese, and other minerals. However, like blackberries, they contain trace amounts of natural xylitol, so it’s wise to share them in small amounts.

Tomato

Ripe (red) tomatoes are healthy for our puppies, as long as you remove the leaves, stems, and any other green parts as they contain solanine, which is toxic to dogs. Tomatoes contain a lot of fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and folate, which contribute to overall health. But they are also high in acidity, so it’s important to feed in moderation to avoid stomach upset.

What Fruits Can’t Dogs Eat?

Grapes and Raisins

Grapes and raisins (raisins) are among the top fruits that should never be given to your puppy. They are highly toxic to dogs and can even cause acute (sudden) kidney failure. Vomiting is an early symptom, followed by depression and low energy. While this doesn’t happen to every grape-eating dog, you certainly don’t want to risk it.

Cherry

While cherries are nutritious for humans (and a delicious cocktail ingredient), they are a no-no for our canines. Stems, leaves, and pits contain cyanide, which is toxic to dogs. The pit can also pose a choking hazard or cause intestinal blockage. Additionally, while the meat around the pit is not toxic to dogs, it can often cause stomach upset. Symptoms of cyanide poisoning include difficulty breathing, red gums, and dilated pupils.

Avocado

Avocado is a super healthy and beloved fruit that is generally not recommended for puppies. Avocados contain Persin in the leaves, peels, pits, and flesh of avocados, a dangerous toxin for many mammals. Veterinary experts say canines are more resistant to this toxin than other animals, but it can still cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs.

The amount of Persin in avocado pulp is not high, so in rare cases, it is enough to feed a small amount to your puppy. But this meat is also high in fat, and eating too much can lead to stomach upset, pancreatitis, and weight gain. Keep in mind that pits pose a choking hazard.

Lemon and Lime

Even though dogs don’t usually like the smell of these citrus fruits, they are not safe for our furry friends. First, they contain a lot of citric acid, which can cause digestive problems. But what’s even more worrying is that the peels and peels of lemons and limes contain psoralen, which is toxic to dogs. Swallowing the peel can also cause gastric obstruction.

What Should I Do if My Dog Eats Poisonous Fruit?

If you suspect that your puppy has eaten a poisonous fruit, kernel, or seed, call your veterinarian immediately. You can also call the Pet Poisoning Helpline at (855) 764-7661. Do not attempt to induce vomiting without consulting a veterinarian or calling a poison hotline as the toxin may cause further harm during vomiting.

Depending on what your dog eats and how long your dog is being treated, it can affect the total cost of the veterinarian. The cost can exceed $1,000, depending on your dog’s health. Pet insurance can cover claims related to the dog’s ingestion of toxic substances.

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