NOTE: Always check with your veterinarian first before giving your dog any new foods, especially “people foods.” What might be OK for one dog might not be good for your dog, depending on multiple factors, such as their age, health history, health conditions, and diet. Dogs on prescription diets should not be fed any food or treats outside the diet.
Are you wondering what fruits are safe to feed your dog? There are some fruits you’ll want to keep away from your pup, but cantaloupe is one of the safe ones!
Cantaloupe is safe for your adult dog or puppy to eat, and it also contains many health benefits. Here’s why cantaloupe can be beneficial for some dogs, plus tips on the safest way to feed cantaloupe to your dog.
Is Cantaloupe Good for Dogs?
Yes, cantaloupe is good for most healthy dogs. If your pup loves the taste of cantaloupe, you’ll be happy to know that it contains many nutrients. Cantaloupe is low in calories and high in fiber, which helps with digestion. It has no fat and no cholesterol, and it’s 90% water, so it’s a great hydrating fruit. It also contains the following vitamins and minerals:
Can Cantaloupe Be Bad for Dogs?
There are a few concerns to watch out for when feeding cantaloupe to your dog. One is that cantaloupe is high in sugar, so it’s not good for dogs that are overweight or have diabetes. And eating too much sugar over time can lead to health problems like obesity and diabetes as well.
Also, make sure to remove all seeds and the rind before feeding any to your dog. The seeds aren’t toxic, but they could become a choking hazard. And the rind of a cantaloupe—or any melon—can be a choking hazard or cause an intestinal blockage.
If your dog accidentally eats cantaloupe rind, contact your veterinarian and take your dog to the vet clinic immediately.
How Much Cantaloupe Can Dogs Eat?
It’s important to feed your dog cantaloupe in moderation in bite-size pieces. Even healthy snacks like cantaloupe should only make up 10% of your dog’s diet at most. The other 90% should come from a well-balanced dog food diet.
Here’s a guideline for feeding your dog cantaloupe. For reference, each “piece” should only be about a 1/2-inch cube.
Extra-small dog (2-20 pounds) = one or two pieces of cantaloupe (Examples: Yorkies, Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, Pugs, Shih Tzus)
Small dog (21-30 pounds) = up to three pieces of cantaloupe (Examples: Basenjis, Beagles, Miniature Australian Shepherds)
Medium dog (31-50 pounds) = up to five pieces of cantaloupe (Examples: Basset Hounds, Border Collies, Australian Cattle Dogs, Siberian Huskies)
Large dog (51-90 pounds) = up to six cantaloupe pieces (Examples: Pit Bulls, German Shepherds, Labrador Retrievers, Australian Shepherds)
Extra-large dog (91+ pounds) = handful of cantaloupe pieces (Examples: Newfoundlands, Bernese Mountain Dogs, St. Bernards, Great Pyrenees)
What If Your Dog Ate Too Much Cantaloupe?
Although cantaloupe is healthy and safe for dogs, there’s always a limit. And eating too much can cause gastrointestinal upset. Watch for the following symptoms:
If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your veterinarian.
How to Safely Feed Your Dog Cantaloupe
Cut the cantaloupe into small, 1/2-inch pieces. Feed it to them in moderation, and always remove the rind and seeds. And if you’re looking for some fun ways to upgrade snack time for your pup, here are some ideas:
Cantaloupe Food Topper
If you want to make your own food topper, just mash up a little cantaloupe and mix it into your dog’s usual dog food.
Frozen in Their KONG Toy
Mash up some cantaloupe, stuff it into your dog’s KONG toy, and freeze it for a refreshing treat later.
Cantaloupe Fruit Smoothie
Blend cantaloupe with some other dog-safe fruits, like apples, bananas, blueberries, and strawberries. Then put a little in a bowl as a treat, use it as a food topper, or freeze it in your dog’s KONG toy for later. You should only use about 2 tablespoons of fruit for every 10 pounds of your dog’s weight.
Blend or mash up the cantaloupe and mix it with plain, sugar-free, xylitol-free yogurt (xylitol is toxic to dogs). You can serve it to your pup like this or add other dog-safe fruits to really mix things up! Serve no more than 2 tablespoons of cantaloupe for every 10 pounds of your dog’s weight.
Put your fruit and yogurt mixture (from above) into an ice cube or popsicle tray, then freeze it for some yummy doggy popsicles.
Cantaloupe Doggy Ice Cream
Freeze chunks of cantaloupe overnight. Then blend them up with some plain yogurt to make cantaloupe ice cream. (You can add other dog-safe frozen fruits, too.)
If you have a dehydrator at home, you can make dehydrated cantaloupe. Just remember that the sugar is more concentrated now, so feed it to your dog in smaller portions. Make sure the pieces are small to avoid choking accidents. Avoid store-bought dehydrated fruits—they usually add quite a bit of extra sugar, and sometimes other preservatives.
Featured Image: iStockphoto/chendongshan
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