Many people enjoy taking their pets for walks on a hot summer day and eating watermelon with them. The refreshing taste of the fruit, as well as its juicy texture, is comforting to those who are looking for something to cool down with. But is it safe for dogs to eat watermelon?
You might be surprised to learn that the question ‘Can dogs eat watermelon?’ has been pondered by veterinarians for years. The answer is yes, but it should be done in a moderate amount.
Here is everything you need to know about watermelon and how you can treat your dog with this summery fruit.
How Should You Feed Watermelon To Dogs?
In order to feed this fruit to your dog, you need to follow a few guidelines. Here are our top guidelines to follow when you give this fruit to your dog:
- First and foremost, make sure you remove all the seeds and the rind before feeding watermelons to your dog.
- You can cut it into small pieces to avoid the chances of choking hazards.
- Scoop out the fruit with a melon baller to efficiently remove any part of the rind.
- You can also freeze the watermelon for an extra refreshing treat for your furry friend.
- If you want to be creative enough, you can always prepare a fruit salad or smoothie for your pup.
- You can also hang on to the rind of the fruit while your dog eats chunks of edible parts from it.
Health Benefits Of Feeding Watermelon To Dogs
Watermelon typically got its name because of its high level of water content (about 92%). It is also full of nutrients like vitamins A, C, B6, amino acids, potassium, calcium, fiber, and lycopene. The fruit is not just a hydrating treat; it promotes your overall health system. Similarly, feeding watermelon to your dog also comes with a handful of health benefits.
Let’s look at how watermelon is good for your pup’s health:
- Watermelon is loaded with lycopene, an antioxidant that causes the cherry red color in the fruit. This antioxidant helps to curb the risks of diabetes and cancer in dogs.
- It is a dehydrating food, which means that it helps to eliminate toxins and waste from your dog’s body.
- This refreshing fruit also boosts your pup’s serotonin in their brain, blood platelets, and their bowels.
- An amino acid called citrulline found in watermelon promotes healthier hearts in dogs by lowering their blood pressure. The acid helps in your dog’s blood circulation throughout the body, hence reducing their blood pressure.
- Watermelon is an excellent source of fiber; therefore, feeding watermelon to your pup can also help in easy digestion.
- Fiber helps to regulate blood sugar levels in dogs by releasing sugar slowly into their body, instead of all at once. This prevents diabetes or other health issues in your pup’s body due to high spikes in insulin levels.
- As the fruit is an excellent source of beta-cryptoxanthin, you can be sure that it will keep your dog’s joints healthy. Beta-cryptoxanthin acts as a natural antioxidant that helps to prevent damage and inflammation in joints.
- Since watermelon contains 9-11% of vitamin A, it also aids in your pup’s eye health.
You may also be interested in Can Dogs Eat Papaya?
When Is Watermelon Bad For Dogs?
Feeding watermelon isn’t dangerous to dogs, but it can be bad when you aren’t aware of what parts of the fruit to provide to your four-legged friend. A watermelon’s fleshy part is safe to consume, however, you should know that watermelon seeds and rind (skin) can be problematic for dogs’ digestive health.
Can Dogs Eat Watermelon Seeds?
Dogs may eat the fruit and its juice but can they eat watermelon seeds as well? Probably not. You should take your dog to the vet if your pup swallows watermelon seeds. It might cause an intestinal blockage, which in worst cases, can require surgery.
While a seed or two doesn’t necessarily cause any problems in larger dogs, smaller dogs can feel obstruction with just a few seeds.
Can Dogs Eat Watermelon Rind/Skin?
It’s not just the seeds that pose a potential health risk. The rind or the outer green skin of the watermelon is also harmful to dogs. Dogs consuming the watermelon skin may experience gastrointestinal upset including vomiting, lethargy, and diarrhea. These symptoms are more likely to occur if your dog has some sort of underlying stomach ailment.
Besides, the hard rind can also be a choking hazard in dogs.
How Many Watermelons Can A Dog Eat?
Watermelon can be given as an occasional summer treat to your dog. As mentioned earlier, the fruit’s excess water content can help your pup remain hydrated and refreshed during hot summer days. But make sure that you feed this fruit in smaller quantities. Due to the fruit’s high fiber content, feeding it in large amounts to dogs can upset their stomach.
We recommend starting small and slowly introducing new foods to your dog. This is especially important when giving watermelon for the first time because it can cause stomach stress.
You can always consult with your vet to determine the exact amount of watermelon to give your pup.
Is Watermelon Safe for Dogs?
Watermelon is undoubtedly safe for dogs to eat. But as we’ve mentioned before, make sure that you don’t feed seeds and the rind part of the watermelon to avoid any gastrointestinal problems.
So, can dogs eat watermelon? Yes, they can since the fruit itself is a healthy powerhouse of nutrients and vitamins. Watermelon can serve as a hydrating snack for your pooch while also boosting their immune system and assisting their overall health. But dogs must be given very small portions of watermelon at first to ensure that they can eat it without negative effects.
Keep in mind, you have to consult your veterinarian before feeding your dog watermelon, or any other human food.
Here are other watermelon-related articles that you might be interested in.
Have you ever given some watermelon to your dog? What was their reaction? We would love to hear from you. Please share with us your stories leaving a comment below.