Let’s talk about the biggest berry in the world. The most beautiful, juicy and highly instagrammable summer delight that is watermelon.
Watermelon is delicious and many pups adore it.
But CAN DOGS EAT WATERMELON?
YES, they can, but there are pros and cons you need to know before feeding the fruit to your spaniel.
Watermelon is 92% water, which makes it hydrating, especially on a hot day.
It is a source of beta-carotene, vitamin C and group B, calcium, magnesium, potassium and iron.
Antioxidants in watermelon may reduce inflammation, the risk of heart disease, age-related macular degeneration and some forms of cancer (according to human and animal studies)
The fruit is a source of amino acid citrulline that may help with reducing blood pressure.
The juice of the wild watermelon showed potential in inhibiting he replication of influenza virus in dogs (Morimoto et al, 2020)
Another study noted that including watermelon in a diet may reduce the risk of diabetes, protect pancreatic cells (Ahn at al, 2011) and reduce and maintain body weight (Wirth et al, 2020, Shaneley et al, 2020)
Dogs who were given watermelon extract as a drink showed reduction in leptin levels (a hormone involved in weight, inflammation control and diseases associated with canine obesity) and inhibited formation of urine crystals (Miyai et al, 2018)
The WORD OF CAUTION…
High water and fibre content of watermelon means that dogs should only be given small quantities of the fruit – or they may end up with diarrhoea. Start with a couple of small bites and gradually increase to a tablespoon / ice-cream scoop of flesh.
Avoid the seeds! They can cause blockages if swallowed, and also contain anti-nutrients called tannins, phytates and oxalates (Addo et al, 2018)
Do not feed the rind (both the white and green parts) because it can lead to vomiting and diarrhoea.
If your dog has any diagnosed conditions and/or on prescription medication or diet, particularly anything related to urinary or cardiovascular system, always check with your vet before including watermelon in your pups diet.