Watermelon is a healthy summertime fruit which seems like a great treat for dogs. It’s loaded with minerals, low on calories and is great for hydration. People enjoy watermelon, sometimes with a pet pooch, especially on hot days.
Feeding a bit of this fruit to your dog is fine but there are some considerations and helpful tips you should know. As refreshing as watermelon is, dogs usually won’t digest fruits as well as we do. This doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy it or benefit from its nutrients.
A slice of watermelon is a great way to cool down for your dog. Since your little guy is probably running around a lot, this could be a great thirst quencher. You should, however, practice moderation when feeding it.
Can I Give My Dog Watermelon? Answer: Yes, in moderation
Providing some can help your pet beat the heat but limit portions.
This amazing fruit contains beta-carotene, magnesium, vitamin A, potassium and especially vitamin C. All of these are great for dogs including for their immune system. Watermelon is a light treat due to it’s high water content. The health benefits combined with it’s taste and usefulness on hot days makes watermelon a wonderful gift from nature. A moderate amount of this melon won’t harm your dog. That said, it should be an occasional treat only.
Speaking of treats, there are actually watermelon-flavored dog treats which get great reviews.
Argument Against Watermelon
Some will argue that since watermelon is slightly diuretic that it isn’t really hydrating you or your dog. We disagree since it’s 91% water by weight. It’s likely that your dog will be better hydrated after consuming some watermelon.
A more valid reason why too much watermelon may not be entirely helpful is that your dog may experience a change in bowel movements after eating some slices. Diarrhea is not uncommon upon feeding canines moderate portions of watermelon. This doesn’t mean it is harmful, just that they may not be so well-suited for smoothly digesting such a melon.
Moderation is the Key
Consider limiting how much watermelon they eat, especially if you notice a change when they empty their bowels. Don’t be surprised if things get messy! This is why starting out by giving them 2 or 3 slices instead of a whole bunch is probably a good idea. Success here would be seeing your dog urinate more instead having irregular gastrointestinal symptoms.
If you think they lost a lot of fluids after a bout of diarrhea, perhaps you may need to replenish their water.
Seedless & No Rind
The best way to feed your dog refreshing watermelon, or cantaloupe, is to remove the seeds first. This way your best buddy is less likely to suffer from an upset stomach. While watermelon seeds probably don’t pose as much of a problem as other pits do, better to be safe than sorry. We like to simplify all the different variables that go into our dogs’ foods as much as possible.
While some cultures in Asia eat the rind part of watermelons, we don’t recommend giving it to your dog. They can be used to make homemade pickles since it’s surprisingly similar to cucumbers. In truth, the rind is not as nutritious as the juicy red center nor will it assist with hydration on a hot summer day.
Dog Digestion & Fruits
We are not against providing some fruits to pets. You must, however, understand that your dog will likely not digest most fruits as well as humans routinely do. Even people are known to experience a change in bowel movements as a result of too much fruit consumption. We’d like to remind you, there are some fruits which are seriously off limits to dogs such as grapes.
Conclusion on Watermelon
Yes, you can feed your dog some watermelon. Moderation is important if you aren’t against feeding certain human foods, including this one, to a four-legged friend. It’s best to start out with a small portion of seedless watermelon when first introducing it to your dog.