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Can dogs eat fruit? What fruit can they eat?

Jun 18, 2023

Duncan Houston

Dogs are omnivores and can consume a mix of meats, grains, and certain fruits and vegetables. However, not all fruits are safe for dogs, and some can even be harmful.

Fruits that are typically safe for dogs include:

- Apples (ensure to remove the seeds and core)
- Blueberries
- Strawberries
- Watermelon (without the rind or seeds)
- Bananas
- Oranges (in moderation due to high sugar content)
- Pears (make sure to remove the seeds and core)
- Peaches (remove the pit)

These fruits can provide a healthy addition to a dog's diet when given in moderation, offering vitamins, minerals, and fiber. Remember, any new food should be introduced to a dog's diet slowly to ensure they don't have an adverse reaction.

On the other hand, some fruits can be harmful or toxic to dogs:

- Grapes and raisins: These can cause sudden kidney failure in dogs. The precise substance that causes the toxic reaction is not yet known, but even small amounts can prove to be fatally toxic. Early signs of grape or raisin toxicity include vomiting, lethargy or depression, and an irregular heartbeat. More serious cases can result in kidney failure, which can be life-threatening.

- Apples, cherries, peaches, and apricots: The seeds or pits of these fruits contain a natural chemical (amygdalin) that releases cyanide when digested. This is extremely poisonous to dogs, even in small amounts. Symptoms of cyanide poisoning include dilated pupils, red gums, difficulty breathing, panting, and shock. Note: This is cyanide poisoning, not arsenic poisoning, but it is similarly dangerous. Always remove pits and seeds before giving these fruits to your dog.

- Mangoes: While the flesh of the mango is safe for dogs to eat, the pit of a mango can be very harmful. The mango pit is large and can cause choking or blockages in the digestive tract. Furthermore, like the fruits above, the mango pit contains small amounts of cyanide. Always remove the pit before offering mango to your dog.

- Avocados: The pit, skin, and leaves of the avocado plant contain persin, which can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs. The fatty fruit itself isn't poisonous, but it's high in fat and can cause stomach upset, pancreatitis, and possibly blockages if a dog eats a whole avocado.

- Tomatoes: While the ripe fruit is generally safe, green tomatoes, the plant, and the plant's leaves and stem can be harmful.

Even fruits that are generally safe for dogs should be given in moderation and should not make up a large part of a dog's diet. Always consult your veterinarian if you have any doubts or concerns about feeding your dog a specific type of fruit.