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Can Dogs Eat Watermelon? Is Watermelon Safe for Dogs?

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By Nicole Cosgrove

can dogs eat watermelons

Few things are more delicious and refreshing for us humans than some juicy watermelon, and for those dog owners who indulge in the tasty fruit, you know your pooch will be interested in indulging too! But before you toss your furry friend a piece of your watermelon, you’re probably wondering, is watermelon safe for dogs?

The short answer is, yes, watermelon is safe for dogs to eat in moderation, but there are some things you should be cautious of when offering some to your pup. Let’s dive in!

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Why Would I Feed My Dog Watermelon?

Dogs get most of their energy from the protein in meat sources and they don’t digest fruits or vegetables very easily or efficiently. As such, you may be wondering why you’d even consider giving your dog watermelon.

Firstly, dogs love watermelon. Most dogs will be delighted to indulge in a juicy piece of this summertime fruit. They love the texture, they enjoy the sweetness, and cold watermelon can be very refreshing for your pooch.

It isn’t all about indulgence, though! Watermelon is packed with antioxidants and vitamins. Most notably, this fruit contains an abundance of vitamin C, which, according to this article from Pets WebMD, dogs cannot synthesize themselves and must obtain from their diets. Not only is watermelon tasty, but it also provides some healthy vitamins for your pooch!

Additionally, watermelon is made up mostly of water, so it can be a great way to keep your pup hydrated, especially if there isn’t a water source readily available.

dog eating watermelon
Image: rangsan lerkngam, Shutterstock

Is Watermelon Safe for Dogs? What About the Sugar?

Generally speaking, watermelon is perfectly safe for dogs. This article from Trupanion explains that watermelon doesn’t contain any toxins for dogs, so it’s perfectly safe for them to eat from time to time.

As far as sugar goes, watermelon doesn’t have a high concentration. It’s a naturally sweet fruit with some sugar, but it shouldn’t pose any health issues for most dogs if given to them in moderation. Dogs with diabetes or those suffering from obesity shouldn’t be fed watermelon at all, but healthy dogs won’t be negatively affected by small amounts of watermelon offered as a treat. This article from the American Kennel Club explains that even fruits higher in sugar than watermelon are safe for dogs in moderation.

Are All Parts of the Watermelon Safe?

No part of a watermelon is toxic to dogs. However, you should always avoid giving them black seeds or the rind. The hard, black seeds often found inside watermelons can pose a choking hazard for your dog, as can pieces of the rind that they may bite off and swallow.

Larger pieces of the watermelon’s flesh can also pose a choking hazard, so make sure to offer bite-sized pieces to your pup without seeds or rind attached to be perfectly safe.

While watermelon flesh is safe for dogs, too much can lead to digestive issues that can cause upset stomach or diarrhea, so make sure you only give your pup a few small pieces every so often as a special treat and not as a part of their regular diet.

Watermelon Rind
Image credit: congerdesign, Pixabay

How Can I Feed My Dog Watermelon?

You may enjoy eating slices of watermelon still attached to the rind, but the first thing you’ll want to do when preparing the fruit for your pooch is to remove all green and white portions of the watermelon.

Once you have just the pink flesh of the fruit removed, take out all seeds that can pose a choking hazard to your dog, and then cut the watermelon into chunks that are small enough for your dog to swallow.

Watermelon can be served to your dog at room temperature, but for an extra refreshing treat, especially on hot days, chill the watermelon in the fridge before serving. These chunks can be hand-fed to your furry friend or added to their bowl.

Jack Russell Terrier eating watermelon
Image: Albina Glisic, Shutterstock

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Wrapping Up

Watermelon is perfectly safe for dogs in moderation. It can serve as a delicious and nutritious treat that offers hydration, antioxidants, and vitamins, all of which are essential for your dog’s health.

However, you’ll want to be careful to remove all seeds and pieces of rind before offering it to your pooch, as these can pose a choking hazard. You’ll also want to make sure you cut up the watermelon into bite-sized pieces that won’t cause choking in even the most overzealous eaters. Lastly, watermelon is safe for your pup, but only in moderation; too much can cause digestive issues and weight gain from excess sugar intake.

Featured Image: Zuzanna Paluch, Shutterstock

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