There may be one time or two where you wonder whether your dog can eat something else other than his or her favorite treat. You’re definitely not alone! Dogs are just like humans: there are different kinds of foods they can and can’t eat. One of the most asked questions is: can dogs eat watermelon? How does it affect these furry friends?
What is In Watermelons?
With classic dark-green stripes on the surface and juicy red flesh, this round-shaped fruit was initially domesticated in Western Africa. With tons of nutrients and vitamins like potassium and magnesium, watermelon consists of 91 percent water. The rind itself produces amino acid citrulline, which can improve our athletic performance.
This health-food powerhouse is low in calories, fat, and cholesterol as well. If you’re interested in planning your own watermelon to be added into your dog’s dietary meal, know that it takes three months for them to grow and be harvested.
How Does Watermelon Affect Dogs?Can dogs eat watermelon? Yes, they actually can. However, you should know these good and bad effects first from allowing your dog to consume watermelon.
Not only are watermelons beneficial for humans, but these fruits are also good for your dog. The abundant amount of fiber in them is good for digestion. Besides, it’s why watermelon is safe to be consumed by dogs, even if watermelon contains sugar. The fiber will segregate and slower the natural sugar from being released into the bloodstream.
On hot days, you can give watermelon slices to your dog when he or she starts panting heavily or after exercise. It’s another alternative to help them hydrate besides water.
Your dog can also benefit from vitamin A in watermelons. This fat-soluble substance can help support their bone growth, as well as vision and reproduction. When you notice your furry friend has issues like slower growth and night blindness, he or she probably has vitamin A deficiency.
Consuming watermelons give your dog vitamin B6 (i.e., pyridoxine) as well. When absorbed, your dog’s body will use it to form amino acids in more than 100 chemical reactions. The amino acids will later decrease your dog’s tooth decay and bolster healthy coats.
According to Trupanion, “The antioxidants in watermelon have also been linked to a decrease in inflammation.”
In general, consuming too much watermelon can lead your dog to feel stomachache and have diarrhea or gastrointestinal (GI) upset. This is either because of their stomach’s first reaction to watermelon or the components inside the fruit itself.
Watermelons, like any other fruits, contain an unnatural balance of certain nutrients and minerals. In particular, components like vitamin A, B6, and C, are pretty high in watermelons. Since dogs naturally produce vitamin C in their body, it may not be okay to keep feeding them watermelons.
It’s why you should be cautious and feed your dog watermelon in moderation, especially if they haven’t eaten it before.
Another thing to pay attention to is the watermelon seeds. Although they may look small and harmless, a blockage in your dog’s digestive tract is likely to happen once he or she eats a lot.
Make sure to never get the rinds near your dog as well. Even when they’re edible, watermelon rinds are still super firm and thick. We humans even still think twice about eating them!
Intestinal blockage and GI upset are what happens to dogs who don’t chew watermelon rinds properly and probably swallow it as it is. Some signs shown by your dog include abdominal pain, lethargy, constipation, and constant vomiting. The risks of eating watermelon seeds and rinds are even higher when it comes to smaller dogs.
How to Feed Dogs Watermelon?
The bottom line of serving your dog a tasty snack like watermelon is that it should be in an appropriate amount and occasional. Make sure the amount of watermelon you give to your dog doesn’t pass 10% of his or her daily caloric intake. According to your dog’s weight, age, and body condition, your vet may even suggest another number.
Besides consulting professionals about how much watermelon to give, ask them about whether watermelon itself is necessary. Your dog’s dietary needs may not welcome watermelons into the mix, even if you already follow the proper feeding procedure.
To serve your dog some tasty watermelons, here’s what you can do:
- Cut the watermelon into several pizza-like slices. Alternatively, you can dice it into smaller bite-sized pieces or use a melon baller to scoop the flesh out. This way, your dog can chew on them much more comfortably.
- Remove the rind and seeds thoroughly. If you want to cut this process short, opt for seedless watermelon instead.
- You can directly serve this to your dog or freeze them for later. He or she will surely be happy once they have such a super refreshing summer treat! Just ensure that your dog’s teeth are healthy and strong enough to bite into frozen food. If you’re unsure yet, serve them one or two cubes first and observe their reaction.
One last tip in feeding your dog watermelons is to never refer to artificially watermelon-flavored products as a substitute. These treats always contain a high amount of sugar—and unnatural, on top of that. Besides obesity and diabetes, too much sugar can cause GI upset as well.
Hills Pet quote,
“Artificially flavored watermelon treats or candy might contain other ingredients, added sugars or artificial sweeteners that could harm your pup.”
Xylitol, for instance, are among those that are toxic to dogs.
We hope our information above covers what you’re searching for. So, can dogs eat watermelon? Yes, but with certain precautions! If you follow the guide from the professional vets or experts, you’ll surely succeed in feeding your dogs this delicious treat.