Can dogs eat watermelon?
Yes! Watermelon is one of the best fruits dogs can eat because it is refreshing and full of nutrients! Eating fruit can help boost hydration and replenish electrolytes, and watermelon has one of the highest water contents.
What are the benefits of feeding dogs watermelon?
- High water content: Watermelon is mostly water (over 92%) but still has high nutritional value with antioxidants, vitamins C, B6, A, lycopene, and fiber.
- The high water content will help dogs feel full sooner, which means they feel satiated without a lot of calories.
- As we mentioned in our complete list of fruits dogs can eat post, melons contain electrolytes and minerals, namely potassium.
- Electrolytes help balance the amount of water in your dog’s body and regulate their muscles and nervous system.
- Lycopene is a plant nutrient in the carotenoid family that gives watermelon its bright red color.
- Lycopene protects the body from free radical damage and oxidative stress with its antioxidant properties!
- Lycopene and vitamin C are both anti-inflammatory antioxidants, which can help prevent or slow the progression of chronic diseases.
- Consuming foods with lycopene could protect the body from sun damage, improve heart health, lower the risk of certain types of cancer, and prevent other diseases (including diabetes, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s).
- Citrulline is a naturally occurring amino acid found in watermelon.
- Surprisingly, citrulline is known to reduce muscle soreness and speed up recovery after exercise.
- Watermelon juice can be shared with dogs as a healthy “sports drink” after a long day of walking and playing outside!
- We know that beta-carotene and vitamin-A work hand in hand to benefit dogs’ health by supporting their immune systems and protecting their skin and eyes.
- Beta-carotene and vitamin A protect the cornea, or the surface of the eye, by keeping it moist and healthy.
- Vitamin A also helps the eye convert light into nerve impulses sent to the brain.
- So, not only can dogs eat watermelon, it is a nutritious choice to boost your dog’s hydration and protect their long-term health. Be sure to read to the bottom for some tips on sharing watermelon with your pup!
Are there any downsides to feeding dogs watermelon?
There aren’t necessarily any downsides to feeding your dog watermelon, however- Can dogs eat watermelon seeds or rinds? No!
Watermelon seeds and rinds are not safe for dogs to consume. Both are difficult to digest and can cause intestinal blockage. Avoid this risk by choosing seedless watermelon and ensuring they don’t get ahold of the rind.
Always watch your dog closely when they’re eating, especially if they’re trying a new food or the food could contain seeds.
Watermelon is not necessarily high in carbohydrates compared to other fruits, but it is still smart to feed your dog watermelon in moderation as a sweet treat.
Keep in mind that treats should not make up more than 10 percent of your dogs’ diet.
Because of the natural sugars in watermelon, it may be best to avoid feeding it to dogs that are overweight or diabetic because the sugars could affect blood sugar levels and increase calorie intake.
What are the best ways to share watermelon with your dog?
You can share fresh or frozen watermelon with your dog! Simply cut seedless watermelon off the rind and into small bite-sized pieces.
Watermelon can also be incorporated into fun homemade dog treats! Watermelon pup popsicles are easy to make and require just blending a couple of dog-friendly ingredients and freezing in molds.
We’re whipping up some new recipes! Be on the lookout for our watermelon dog treat recipes coming soon.
In the meantime, we have some recommendations.
- This recipe, which uses watermelon and plain yogurt: https://barefeetinthekitchen.com/watermelon-dog-treats/
- This recipe, which contains just watermelon and carrots: https://www.peelwithzeal.com/watermelon-carrot-pupsicles/