As the weather begins to warm up, many owners start looking for tasty treats to help their dogs stay cool. Fruit can make a great, healthy treat for dogs, but you should always know beforehand which ones are safe for your dog to eat. Thankfully, pineapples are a delicious way for your dog to beat the heat and they pack a nutritional punch as well. However, there are a few precautions you may want to consider before giving your dog pineapple, so read on to learn more.
What Are the Health Benefits of Pineapple for My Dog?
Pineapples offer many great health benefits—not only for you, but for your dog as well. Let’s take a look at some of the health benefits they offer:
- Hydration: Pineapples are very hydrating. They are made up of about 82% water and therefore carry excellent hydration properties for the days when your dog could use an extra boost of hydration.
- Vitamin C: This helps boost your dog’s immune system and functions as an anti-inflammatory agent within your dog’s body. Reduced inflammation can mean less chances of developing inflammatory diseases later down the line.
- Antioxidants: These help repair damage cells in your dog’s body, keeping him healthy.
- Vitamin B6: This is an important coenzyme for brain and body functions that helps regulate fluid balance, regulate hormones, build proteins, and support neurotransmitters in your dog’s body.
- Bromelain: This is an enzyme that provides powerful anti-inflammatory properties and is thought to be nature’s histamine. It may also be able to help your dog if he is dealing with skin issues.
- Minerals: Having enough minerals in your dog’s diet helps support healthy skin and coat, strong ligaments and tissues, and overall well-being.
Is Pineapple Safe for My Dog to Eat?
Yes. Pineapple is safe for dogs to eat. You can give your dog small pieces of pineapple chunks to have as a healthy snack. But as with most human foods, there are a few precautions you may want to consider before giving them to your dog to eat.
To be safe, you should always start out by only giving your dog a small amount of pineapple in bite-sized pieces. This is to see how your dog handles them before you give them larger amounts or more frequently. Smaller dogs should always have fruit in smaller portions than larger dog breeds would since they can’t tolerate the same amounts. You’ll also want to keep in mind that pineapple cannot be a replacement for a regular meal for your dog and it should only ever be 10% of your dog’s daily caloric intake or less. You want to make sure that you’re still feeding your dog high-quality, balanced dog food at its regular mealtime.
What Parts of the Pineapple Are Safe for My Dog to Eat?
Just like there are parts of the pineapple that a human wouldn’t eat, there are parts of the pineapple that a dog shouldn’t eat as well. Only the soft, ripe inner fruit of the pineapple is safe for your dog to eat. This means that you should be sure to remove all of the spiky outer skin, as well as the hard inner core of the pineapple before serving it to your dog. If your dog happens to eat either of these parts, it can cause an upset stomach or even worse—an intentional blockage. These parts can also pose a choking hazard, so you should always be sure to remove them before serving pineapple to your dog.
- Contains natural fiber and antioxidants
- Lean protein for added muscle mass
- Good for digestion
- Contains Vitamins A, E and C
Does Pineapple Have Too Much Sugar to Give to My Dog?
Even naturally occurring sugar found in fruits and vegetables can lead to obesity or high blood sugar levels when consumed in excess quantities. Pineapples have a 10% sugar count, so if your dog already has any health issues such as diabetes or obesity, the high-sugar content may impact those conditions. Your vet will be able to advise you on whether it is safe for your dog to consume pineapple.
Whenever you introduce a new treat to your dog you should always watch to see how it reacts to it. This is so that you will know if the new food gave your dog an upset stomach or if it is experiencing any other gastrointestinal issues such as straining to poop, vomiting, or experiencing diarrhea, as these things can happen sometimes when dogs eat something new. If you observe any of these symptoms in your dog after he has eaten pineapple, you should stop offering it to him and consult your vet.
Is It Safe for My Dog to Eat Canned Pineapple?
Canned pineapple is safe for dogs to eat unless it has added sugar. Added sugar in canned pineapple can negatively impact your dog’s blood sugar levels—especially if your dog has diabetes. There is also the chance that some of the nutrients that would have been found naturally in the pineapple got reduced during the canning process. Because of this, it is always better to give your dog fresh pineapple over canned pineapple whenever possible. If canned pineapple is all that you have available in your area, just be sure to get the kind that has no sugar added on the label and rinse the fruit off with water before serving it to your dog.
Can Pineapple Stop My Dog From Eating Poop?
Unfortunately, many pet parents have witnessed their dogs having the very unappealing habit of ingesting dog poop. It’s definitely an unwanted behavior and many owners look for creative ways to stop it. This behavior is actually quite common among dogs and there are many theories about why they do it and ways to discourage them from doing it again.
One of those theories is that feeding your dog pineapple will stop it from eating dog poop. This is because pineapple contains bromelain which is an enzyme that is also present in meat tenderizers (another additive that dog owners believe will stop the bad habit, but it is an unhealthy remedy). Some owners believe that once bromelain has been ingested, it makes the poop taste foul to your dog, therefore making it unappealing for your dog to continue the behavior. This behavior is known as coprophagia, and is actually a common phenomenon with dogs, so try not to feel too bad if you’ve witnessed your dog doing this.
Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence that bromelain in pineapple will actually curb the issue. Many vets believe that the only sure way to discourage your dog from eating poop is to clean up immediately after your dog has gone to the bathroom in the yard, leaving no available poop for your dog to ingest.
Other Ways to Prepare Pineapple for My Dog
There are many ways you can prepare pineapple for your dog as a treat and there are lots of great recipes available online. Here are a few simple ways you can prepare pineapple as a snack for your dog:
- Frozen pineapple: This is a refreshing way to serve pineapple to your dog, especially on hot summer days. It is a tasty way for your dog to stay hydrated that your dog is sure to appreciate.
- Mixed with yogurt: You can mix pineapple together with yogurt along with other dog-safe fruits like mangos or bananas to create a healthy fruit salad that your dog can enjoy. Just be sure that your dog doesn’t have too much. You can follow the 10% rule we mentioned earlier in which your dog’s diets consists of no more than 10% calories from fruit. This ensures your dog doesn’t consume too much sugar in a day.
- Pureed pineapple: You can serve your dog pureed pineapple that has been frozen into ice cube trays as another cool, refreshing treat on hot days.
- Dog-safe ice cream: To make this you can puree yogurt and pineapples as well as some cooked, pureed sweet potatoes and then freeze them. Once the mixture is frozen, you can scoop it out and offer it to your dog as a fresh, ice cream snack.
- Smoothies: Add fresh fruit, including pineapple and veggies pureed with pineapple juice or yogurt for a healthy, smoothie treat that your dog will love.
Pineapple makes a wonderfully healthy alternative to many pre-packaged commercial dog treats that may contain too many fats or additives. If you’re looking for a healthy, refreshing treat that is full of beneficial nutrients for your dog, you should consider incorporating pineapple into your dog’s diet as an occasional snack. As always, when introducing any new food that your dog isn’t familiar with, you should start off in small quantities to see how your dog handles it. Small dogs should always be given a smaller portion size than a larger dog would. Pineapple is safe for dogs when given in small, reasonable amounts. It shouldn’t comprise more than 10 percent of your dog’s daily caloric requirements, as the amount of sugar in pineapple is considered to be high. If you have any concerns about whether or not your dog should eat pineapple or if your dog has any pre-existing health issues, you should always consult your vet for further advice.
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