Which fruits can dogs eat? Is it safe for a dog to eat oranges and peaches?
As humans we’re bombarded with information about which foods we should eat regularly and which foods we should avoid; what is healthy for us and what isn’t. More often than not, when we’re chomping on a delicious juicy fruit, we have those puppy dog eyes staring right at us, hoping for a small slither.
But, is it safe for us to share our fruit with dogs?
In this article we will take a look at whether our faithful friends can indeed eat certain exotic fruits; oranges, peaches, coconut and mango and if there are any health benefits for our dogs.
Dog Nutrition and Fruit
Top of the list for canine nutritional requirements are protein and fat.
Protein is the building block of every cell in every body and is essential to it’s function. Dietary protein provides dogs with essential amino acids which their bodies are unable to produce by themselves.
Fat, in short, provides energy. There are two types of fat found in the body, saturated an unsaturated:
- Saturated fatty acids are used for energy in general.
- Unsaturated fats are generally found in cell membranes and structures.
Dietary fat also supports the absorption, storage and transport of Vitamins A, D, E and K.
Speaking of vitamins, you will notice that many dog foods are fortified with specific vitamins.
Although there aren’t currently any guidelines for recommended vitamin intake for dogs, we know that deficiencies can cause a whole host of health concerns, for example, Vitamin D deficiency can cause rickets in dogs.
Deficiencies are rare when feeding a well-balanced diet, but if you intend to feed human food regularly, it is worth being mindful of over-consumption of certain vitamins.
As we all know, certain fruits are powerhouses for certain vitamins, lets take a look at the role of certain fruits in a dog’s diet, whether they are safe and indeed healthy.
Can Dogs Eat Oranges?
In short – yes, dogs can certainly eat oranges. Being non toxic, oranges are perfectly safe for your dog to eat.
As humans, we are regularly told that the high levels of Vitamin C found in oranges are super at helping us fight off colds and flu, this doesn’t matter so much to dogs.
Dogs can naturally meet their nutritional requirements for Vitamin C through glucose metabolism in their liver or from their diet, so it is rare that dogs need supplementation of this vitamin. Over-consumption of Vitamin C isn’t often an issue either as dogs will just excrete the excess levels.
180g of orange (i.e. one large orange) will provide the following nutritional value:
- 4.3g of fibre
- 12.6mg of Omega 3 Fatty Acids
- 32.4mg of Omega 6 Fatty Acids
- 95.8mg of Vitamin C
- 54mcg of Folate
- 326mg of Potassium
- 72mg of Calcium
- 156g water
The fatty acids (i.e. omega three and six) found in an orange will contribute to energy levels, water levels will contribute to hydration:
- Potassium levels will support heart function, nerve control, muscle function
- Folate will support cell growth and function
- Calcium levels will support blood clotting and bone development and strength
Oranges are naturally high in sugar, 16.8g in a 180g serving, so be mindful of this and how it fits into their daily allowances.
There have previously been concerns about vitamin C levels in dogs with diabetes, but studies have shown that vitamin C can have a protective factor and actually reduce blood glucose levels.
If you are concerned about the nutritional value of oranges and how this could impact any preexisting health condition your dog has, speak with your veterinarian.
When feeding orange to your pooch, remember to peel it. Orange peel is incredibly difficult for a dog’s digestive system to break down. Also, remove any seeds found in the segment.
Start with small pieces and see how Fido tolerates it, some dogs aren’t keen on the bitter taste some oranges have. Watch for any vomiting or diarrhea which suggests your pooch can’t tolerate this juicy fruit.
Quick Fire FAQs
Can dogs eat oranges? When peeled, and de-seeded, they certainly can. Introduce slowly and feed in moderation, being mindful of his daily nutritional requirements and allowances.
Can dogs eat mandarin oranges? Again, non-toxic to dogs, mandarin oranges are perfectly safe. They are higher in sugar than typical oranges, boasting 21g of sugar per 180g serving. Consider how this impacts Fido’s daily allowance.
Can dogs eat blood oranges? If peeled and the seeds are removed, these are also safe for your dog to eat. You tend to find plenty of orange juices made from blood oranges. Orange juice is not advised to feed to your faithful friend. Most juices have added sugar which your pooch just doesn’t need. Water by far is the best way to keep Fido hydrated.
Oranges, when peeled, and the seeds are removed are perfectly safe to feed to Fido. Ensure you introduce slowly and only feed in small amounts, large amounts can cause gastrointestinal issues. As humans we are told to eat Oranges for the high levels of Vitamin C – this just isn’t something that dogs need as they make it themselves.
Safe for a treat every now and again, but oranges aren’t a necessary staple of nutritional value for your pooch.
Can Dogs Eat Peaches?
Whilst we’ve established that dogs don’t need fruit as part of their diet, if those puppy dog eyes are looking up at you, you can be certain that a slither of peach is perfectly safe for Fido.
Peaches are high in Vitamin A, boasting 570IU per 180g serving (one single peach) and are also high in fibre, containing 2.6g in the same serving.
Fibre is essential in maintaining a healthy digestive system.
Just like oranges, peaches are also high in sugar, boasting 14.7g per 180g serving. For that reason, peaches should also be fed in moderation and in consideration of Fido’s other daily allowances.
You don’t have to worry about the flesh of the peach, that is also safe, but as you would for a human, remember to remove the pit. Peach pits contain a compound called amygdalin, which when ingested, breaks down into hydrogen cyanide. Whilst accidental ingestion isn’t always something to worry about, deliberate eating of the pits could eventually lead to poisoning. There is also the risk that the pit could become lodged in Fido’s throat, causing an obstruction.
Quick Fire FAQs
Can dogs eat peaches? In moderation and with the pits removed, peaches are perfectly safe for Fido to eat as an occasional treat.
Can dogs eat canned peaches? Not generally advised, canned or preserved peaches contain high amounts of added sugar. Some even contain added sweeteners which can upset your dog’s stomach.
Can dogs eat peaches without the pit? If you are feeding peaches as an occasional treat, you should always remove the pit. Firstly, it could become lodged in Fido’s throat, causing an obstruction and secondly, the pit poses a risk of poisoning.
So, just like oranges, peaches are perfectly safe to feed to Fido.
Dog’s will tolerate the flesh of the peach, just ensure you remove the pit. Due to the high sugar content, peaches should be fed in moderation. Introduce slowly and watch for any signs of digestive discomfort.
Can Dogs Eat Mango?
The next exotic fruit on our list is Mango but can a dog eat mango safely? He certainly can.
This is the biggest powerhouse so far, boasting an impressive 1262IU of Vitamin A in a 165g serving (i.e. one small mango) and 45.7mg of Vitamin C. In human terms, these would be 25% and 76% of the human adult recommended intake respectively. The same serving would contain 0.2mg of Vitamin B6 also. High in water content, 135g would certainly contribute to hydration.
Again, as much as dogs are able to produce Vitamin C on their own, excess Vitamin C levels aren’t often an issue as it’s just excreted from the body.
The high levels of Vitamin A would certainly play a part in healthy teeth, skin, bones and soft tissues. Vitamin A also promotes good vision. Provitamin A is most commonly found in plants and fruits.
The most common type of Provitamin A is Beta-carotene which actually acts as an antioxidant. Antioxidants play a role in protecting cells from damage.
Mangoes however, also boast a high sugar content, 24.4g in a 165g serving so again, be mindful of how much your dog can eat in a single serving.
Like pineapples, the sweet taste of Mangoes tends to be a favorite with dogs. So if you do decide to treat your pooch occasionally, ensure you remove the skin; whilst they are able to eat it, dog’s don’t tolerate it very well. Also, as you would with a peach, remove the pit. Slice the mango and introduce it slowly, watching for any signs of digestive discomfort such as vomiting or diarrhea.
Quick Fire FAQs
Can dogs eat mango? Mangoes are perfectly safe for Fido but due to the high sugar content, should be fed occasionally and in small amounts.
Can dogs eat mango skin? Whilst dogs are able to eat the skin, it wouldn’t be advised as it often causes digestive discomfort.
Can dogs eat dried mango? Whilst it’s not toxic to dogs, dried mango often loses some of its nutritional value during the drying process. Dried mango is often higher in sugar also. For these reasons, it’s not advised to feed dried mango to Fido.
Can Dogs Eat Coconut?
If you’re a dog owner, you have probably spoken to someone who swears by giving their dog coconut oil.
Whilst coconut oil has a range of health benefits for your pooch, the coconut meat has just as many. The bonus is, coconuts are perfectly safe to feed to your pooch.
Coconut is high in the medium-chain fatty acid, lauric acid. On average, it makes up around half the fat content in a coconut. Lauric acid, whilst providing energy, also plays a part in fighting off bacteria, viruses, yeasts and a range of other pathogens.
Lauric acid is also known to have anti-inflammatory properties.
For this reason, not only is it safe to feed to Fido, it could help him fight of infections or ease those aching inflamed joints.
If you do decide to feed coconut meat to your pooch, ensure you remove the shell. Cut the coconut into small pieces and introduce slowly.
Feed in moderation and watch for any signs of digestive discomfort such as vomiting or diarrhea. If this occurs, stop feeding it.
Its high fat content could be of concern to those dogs suffering with pancreatitis so speak with your veterinarian if you are concerned anything you may be feeding your dog may affect existing health conditions.
Quick Fire FAQs
Can dogs eat coconut? Yes! In moderation and as the occasional treat, coconut meat is perfectly safe. It also boasts a range of health benefits.
Can dogs eat coconut oil? Just like the meat, coconut oil is safe to feed to Fido. It is potentially anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and anti-microbial. Just be mindful of the high fat content and whether this could impact on any existing health issues.
Can dogs eat coconut milk? Coconut milk carries the same health benefits as the meat and oil, but often, during production, sweeteners and preservatives are added which aren’t of any nutritional benefit to Fido. Check labels for additives. In a pure form, coconut milk is useful in making dog friendly ice cream and home-baked treats.
So next time Fido is looking up at you when you are chomping down your fruit snack, you can be safe in the knowledge that oranges, peaches, mangoes and coconuts are all perfectly safe to feed to him.
Be mindful of the sugar content and how this fits in with his daily allowances.
Whilst dogs get most of their nutritional value from protein and fat, fruits aren’t a necessary addition to their diet – just nice treats occasionally.
Follow our top tips for feeding, introduce slowly and watch for any digestive discomfort.
As always, if you ever have any concerns over feeding Fido, speak with your veterinarian.