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Can Dogs Have Pumpkin Seeds? Vet Approved Nutrition Facts & Safety Guide

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By Nicole Cosgrove


Vet approved

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Karyn Kanowski

BVSc MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Pumpkin can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet, but what about pumpkin seeds? While they may be a healthy, nutrient-packed food for us, the same isn’t necessarily true for dogs.

Cooked, plain pumpkin seeds are safe for your dog to eat once in a while, but there are still precautions you should take. This article will outline information about giving your dog pumpkin seeds.

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Are Pumpkin Seeds Safe for Dogs?

Dogs can safely eat cooked pumpkin seeds in moderation, but that’s not the whole story.

In humans, pumpkin seeds are considered a superfood for their antioxidants, magnesium, iron, and zinc, but that nutrition doesn’t translate to your dog. The nutrients in pumpkin seeds aren’t available to dogs since their digestive system isn’t designed to process seeds.

Dogs also get everything they need from a complete and balanced diet, so they don’t need any of the purported benefits of pumpkin seeds anyway.

sliced pumpkin
Image Credit: Pixabay

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats Pumpkin Seeds?

If your dog manages to get into the bin and chow down on some pumpkin seeds, there’s no immediate cause for alarm. The best thing to do is monitor your dog for any signs of vomiting, lethargy, pain or severe diarrhea. Do not starve your dog, but continue to feed it small, frequent meals to encourage the seeds to pass, which they usually will, undigested, after 24 hours.

If they show any signs of illness, contact your vet right away.

If you’re lucky, you might even become the proud owner of a pumpkin vine, like this corgi parent!

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Do Pumpkin Seeds Kill Worms or Parasites?

Pumpkin seeds are among the latest foods touted as a natural treatment for worms and parasites. Unfortunately, feeding pumpkin seeds won’t treat intestinal worms or other parasites.

If you feed a lot of pumpkin seeds, your dog may develop diarrhea and shed some worms, but that’s not a safe, effective, or humane way to get rid of them. Your dog will continue to suffer with a parasite infestation that could be treated quickly and effectively with a deworming medication from your vet—minus the side effects.

labrador puppy getting dewormed
Image Credit: Ilike, Shutterstock

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Pumpkin seeds are generally safe for your dog, but there is no real benefit to feeding them. Many of the supposed health benefits of pumpkin seeds aren’t the same for dogs, and they should  get all they need from a complete and balanced diet.

Featured Image Credit: mattycoulton, Pixabay

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