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Can Dogs Eat Raw Pumpkin? What You Need to Know!

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By Nicole Cosgrove

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Humans love pumpkin, so it’s only natural to think that dogs would love pumpkin too. But before you buy a pumpkin, have you thought about the pros and cons of feeding raw pumpkin to your dog? Do you know for sure that raw pumpkin is ok to feed to your dog? To quickly answer your question, no, dog’s should not eat raw pumpkin.

This article answers your questions about whether raw pumpkin is safe to feed to dogs. It’s good to get into the habit of researching foods before feeding them to your pet. Not all human foods are suitable for dogs, and that is especially true if you have a dog who suffers from food sensitivities and allergies. You don’t want to add new food without knowing what the consequences will be, whether good or bad. So, read on to find out how safe it is for your dog to eat raw pumpkin.

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Can Dogs Eat Raw Pumpkin?

No, dogs should not eat raw pumpkin, and there are a few reasons for this. Raw pumpkin isn’t toxic, but it is difficult for your dog to digest if they were to eat a large amount. Pumpkin is recommended to help with digestive issues, but if you were to feed raw pumpkin, it could have the opposite effect.

Pumpkin should be cooked before feeding to your dog. Don’t allow them to chew on the pumpkin stem or let them eat pumpkin seeds. The stem is too difficult for your dog to digest and can cause digestive issues. Pumpkin seeds aren’t toxic to dogs, but they pose a choking hazard because they are difficult for your dog to chew adequately.

Image by Frauke Feind from Pixabay

What to Do if Your Dog Eats Raw Pumpkin

Your dog isn’t going to become immediatley sick from eating the flesh of the raw pumpkin. However, it’s not recommended to let them eat a whole pumpkin, including the rind and stem. This is too much fiber at one time and poses a risk for abdominal discomfort or possibly an intestinal blockage.

Signs that can occur after eating a large amount of raw pumpkin
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal distention
  • Trembling
  • Restlessness

If signs of discomfort continue, consult your veterinarian.

Vet specialist examination sick dog
Image Credit: didesign021, Shutterstock

Signs of an intestinal blockage
  • Continued vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of appetite
  • Bloating
  • Hunching the body
  • Whining and obvious discomfort

If your dog shows signs of a bowel blockage, you need to contact your veterinarian as soon as possible to prevent an intestinal rupture that can lead to death.

When Is Pumpkin OK for My Dog?

Pumpkin offers many health benefits, and some veterinarians recommend pumpkin for treating diarrhea. Typically, though, it is cooked pumpkin that they suggest. Also, when you add spices and flavors to the pumpkin, it can make it difficult for your dog to digest, especially those who have sensitive stomachs already. Pumpkin pie and other pumpkin desserts aren’t safe to feed to your dog. Stick with simple and natural pumpkin because it has plenty of sweetness and flavor.

dogs and pumpkin
Image: Pikrepo

You can grow your own pumpkin or feed it from a can; just make sure your dog can tolerate the addition of pumpkin to their diet. It’s also a good idea to consult with your veterinarian before feeding your dog pumpkin so you can figure out the correct amount to provide. You may even notice that pumpkin is an ingredient in many dog foods because of the nutritional benefits it provides.

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Even though pumpkin is recommended to treat diarrhea and constipation, it is referring to a cooked or canned pumpkin that is softened. Dogs love the taste of pumpkin, and once you get the go-ahead from your veterinarian, then go ahead and feed this superfood to them. Pumpkin has many health benefits, which is why you see it added too many commercial dog foods.

Pumpkin is great in moderation, and all breeds throughout all life stages can reap the benefits. Pumpkin is a versatile and yummy ingredient to add to your dog’s diet, but you want to make sure you are preparing it correctly so your dog doesn’t experience uncomfortable gastrointestinal concerns.

Featured Image Credit: Couleur, Pixabay

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