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Fruit & Veggies Dogs Can and Can't Eat

Fruit & Veggies Dogs Can and Can't Eat

You would think fruits and vegetables are a great treat for your dog, but not all foods are suitable for pets to eat. Today, our West Salem vets talk about which types of fruits and vegetables you can safely feed your pup. 

Are Fruit and Vegetables Good for Dogs?

Dogs need a mix of nutrients from vegetables and meat in their diets. Modern dog food contains all the nutrients your pup needs to thrive so you don't have to worry about supplementing their diets. That being said, they can still be great treats to offer your dog every now and then. 

If you're adding fruit to the mix be sure to cut back on other treats so as not to overfeed your pooch. Treats should make up no more than about 10% of your dog's diet. 

Introducing New Foods

When feeding a dog any type of fruit you should be sure it is cut into small pieces and that you are removing any seeds, rinds, or pits prior to giving it to your dog—these parts of the fruit often contain toxins that can make dogs unwell, or in some cases even be deadly. 

With any new food introduction, you should go slowly to ensure your dog tolerates the food and does not experience any gastrointestinal upset or allergic reactions. Introduce one type of fruit at a time with just a piece or two a day to see how your dog reacts. 

What fruit is good for dogs?

The following fruits make excellent dog treats:

  • Apples: Give apples to your pet in moderation and be sure to remove the core and seeds first, as they are toxic to dogs. Apples are high in fiber and low in fat making them a great option for overweight or senior pets with slower metabolisms. They also contain vitamins A and C which help maintain healthy bones and tissue. 
  • Apricots: Apricots are high in potassium and contain beta-carotene, which can help fight cancer. Make certain that the pit, stem, and leaves are all removed to make it a tasty treat. 
  • Blueberries: Freeze blueberries for a fun summer treat. Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and a good source of fiber and Vitamin C. 
  • Cantaloupe: Cut the fruit into manageable pieces and remove the skin and seeds before serving it up to your pup as a treat. 
  • Mango: Ensure skin and core are removed. Small pieces are vitamin-packed treats, great for dogs.
  • Pear: Remove the core and seeds before serving. These are high in fiber, vitamin C, and vitamin B6. 
  • Pineapple: Before giving pineapple as a treat, make sure to remove the spiky skin and core. Pineapple contains vitamins and minerals such as folate and zinc, which can benefit your dog's digestion and immune system. They are high in sugar and should not be fed to your dog on a regular basis.
  • Strawberries: Strawberries are great for the immune system and make a great treat for your dog, fresh or frozen.
  • Watermelon: Watermelons are mostly water, so they're a great option for keeping your pet hydrated during the hotter months. They also have the added benefit of being rich in vitamins. 

Fruits That May Be Unsafe For Your Dog

  • Avocado: Never feed the pit to your dog. Avocados have an extremely high-fat content, which can cause pancreatitis or upset stomach in some dogs, so they don't make good treats.
  • Bananas: Bananas are a good source of potassium but are high in sugar and carbohydrates. Because of this bananas should only be given to dogs sparingly. A small slice is okay for an occasional treat. 
  • Blackberries & Raspberries: Blackberries and raspberries are low in sugar, contain fiber and vitamin C, and have anti-inflammatory properties that make them great for older pets. However, they should only be given in small quantities as they contain trace amounts of a sweetener called xylitol which can be fatal to dogs in large quantities. 
  • Tomatoes: While the ripe fruit isn't toxic to dogs it commonly causes stomach upset and should typically be avoided. 
  • Cherries: Cherry pits, stems, and leaves contain cyanide, which is poisonous and potentially fatal if consumed in high enough quantities. Cherry pits can also get stuck in a dog's intestinal system and cause blockages. 
  • Grapes: Grapes are highly toxic to dogs and can cause serious kidney damage that can lead to acute (sudden) kidney failure, which can be fatal.
  • Lemons & Limes: While not toxic, lemons and limes can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs and should be avoided
  • Wild berries: It is always better to err on the side of caution as many wild berries are poisonous to dogs. 

What veggies can dogs eat?

The following list of veggies are safe be for dogs to consume:

  • Carrots: Carrots are high in beta-carotene, vitamin A, biotin, vitamin K, potassium, and vitamin B6.
  • Beets: Vitamin C, fiber, folate, manganese, and potassium are all found in beets. These nutrients benefit your dog's digestion and immune system, as well as his skin and coat.
  • Broccoli: Broccoli contains a wide range of vitamins, including vitamin K, vitamin C, and potassium, which help dogs with bone density, disease prevention, and heart health.
  • Butternut Squash: Butternut squash is high in vitamins and minerals such as A, C, B6, and others that support your dog's immune system, vision, and cardiovascular function.
  • Green Beans: Green beans are high in vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, and vitamins B6, A, C, and K. Green beans are also low in calories and high in fiber, which can make dogs feel satisfied.
  • Kale: Key vitamins in kale, such as K, A, and Iron, support bone health, proper vision, and immune function, fetal development, and energy metabolism.
  • Yams & Sweet Potatoes: Sweet potatoes are great for digestive health because they're high in fiber. They contain vitamin B6, vitamin C, and manganese, plus they are rich in the antioxidant beta-carotene.

What vegetables should dogs avoid?

The following veggies are considered unsafe for dogs to eat:

Garlic, Onions, Shallots, & Chives: These are unsafe for dogs whether raw or cooked. They have substances that may cause anemia and damage red blood cells. Signs of illness may take several days to manifest.

Wild Mushrooms: Wild mushrooms should be avoided because they may be toxic. If your dog consumes a toxic mushroom, he or she may develop symptoms such as wheezing, vomiting, diarrhea, and changes in the heartbeat. Toxic mushrooms can cause organ failure, seizures, and comas in dogs at their most severe.

Rhubarb: Rhubarb contains oxalates, which can cause problems with your pet's nervous system, digestive tract, and kidneys. Rhubarb can also lower calcium levels in your dog, causing renal failure and other health problems.

If your dog consumes any of these foods, take them to the vet or an emergency clinic right away.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Has your dog eaten potentially dangerous food? Contact our West Salem animal hospital right away or contact the nearest emergency clinic.

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