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Food & Diet
Fruit Frenzy: Can Your Dog Handle The Dragon Fruit?
At A Glance
Can dogs eat dragon fruit? Yes! Dogs can enjoy the exotic dragon fruit as long as it’s served properly and in moderation. The dragon fruit is quite sweet and juicy and can be a healthy, low-calorie treat for your pup.
The fruit is rich in vitamin C, iron, calcium, and fatty acids, and offers numerous health benefits for dogs.
Remember to remove the skin, which can be spiky and cause choking hazards or digestive trouble.
Cut the fruit into small pieces and offer your dog two or three dice-sized cubes.
Despite their rather strange appearance, dragon fruits are non-toxic and safe for dogs.
This peculiar-looking but delicious fruit typically grows in tropical and subtropical regions near Florida, the Caribbean, Southeast Asia, and Australia. However, it is actually native to Mexico and the Americas.
The pointy and sometimes scaly fruit is harvested from a large cactus plant. The fruits from the Stenocereus cactus are sour and juicy, while those that grow on the Hylocereus cactus are sweeter and come in three colors-white, red, and yellow. You’ll also find dragon fruits in pink and purple.
The colors are more an indication of the country of origin than anything else. All of them are safe for your dog. But if your dog has a sensitive stomach, you might want to check with the veterinarian before giving it dragon fruit for the first time.
Dragon fruit is a great option if you’re trying to treat your dog to something new and healthy. As with any new food for your dog, there is still some preparation involved, and you should first check how its stomach responds to a small portion.
Benefits Of Dragon Fruit For Dogs
Can dogs eat dragon fruit? Definitely!
Dragon fruit, sometimes called pitaya, is a tropical fruit with a spiky exterior and sweet, juicy flesh that has several health benefits for humans as well as dogs. The seeds of the fruit are harmless, too.
But is pitaya good for my dog? The answer is yes!
Michelle Blackwood, RN, shares, “Your dog can eat dragon fruit without worry because it is non-toxic to dogs! It is nutrient-dense, sweet, and tasty for your dog.”
While dragon fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals, ensure you only give it to your pets in small amounts. Like I always say, even a good thing given in excess isn’t good for your dog.
Here’s how dragon fruit benefits your dog:
Unlike humans, dogs don’t really require a vitamin C boost, as they can produce it on their own. Still, supplementation with natural sources may offer benefits.
Vitamin C is an antioxidant with anti-inflammatory qualities that can protect against damage from free radicals, slow the aging process, and even improve cognitive ability.
Iron and Calcium
Dragon fruit is an excellent source of iron and calcium, two minerals that help keep your dog healthy and fit. Calcium is vitamin for your dog’s overall health as it helps build muscle, maintains a healthy heart and nervous system, and is essential for strong bones and teeth.
Fruits with high iron content, like dragon fruit, can help your pet maintain healthy iron levels and promote the formation of red blood cells, which are essential for carrying oxygen throughout the body.
Besides being rich in vitamin C, pitaya is also a good source of fatty acids (linoleic acid, oleic acid, and palmitic acid).
Of them, linoleic acid, an omega-6 acid, is crucial, as dogs cannot synthesize it on their own. Omega-6 helps maintain your dog’s skin and coat health.
Which Dragon Fruit Can Dogs Eat?
Dragon fruits come in a variety of vivid colors, like pink, purple, red, and yellow. Its flesh can also be white, nearly red, or purple in color.
Can dogs eat yellow dragon fruit or any of the other colors? Well, yes. They’re all safe for your dog, although they may taste different.
White Fleshed Dragon Fruit
White-fleshed dragon fruit can have pink or yellow skin. In terms of taste, white-fleshed dragon fruit is sweet but a bit more subtle than red or pink-fleshed ones.
Some people may find these to be bland in comparison.
Pink Dragon Fruit
While Vietnamese dragon fruits are distinguished by their bright pink skin and white meat, dragon fruits with pink skin and pink to light pink flesh are grown in Nicaragua and Ecuador in Central America.
They make for a hearty and nourishing treat for dogs.
Yellow Dragon Fruit
Yellow dragon fruit is also dog-friendly, much like its pink counterpart. Dragon fruit, which has a spiky yellow exterior and white flesh with black seeds, is native to South America.
The yellow dragon fruit contains the most vitamin C of all the dragon fruit varieties.
Purple Dragon Fruit
The purple dragon fruit has a bright purple exterior with a darker or more vivid purple interior. It can be grown in tropical or subtropical regions anywhere in the world. It contains healthy nutrients, including beta-carotene, folate, and betalain.
This is sweeter than the white-fleshed kind, so if your dog is a picky eater, give this variety a try.
Red Dragon Fruit
Some purple dragon fruits may appear reddish. The flesh of these fruits will have a deep purple or crimson color.
They are packed with vitamin C, fiber, potassium, and other nutrients. They are grown all year in Costa Rica and other Central American countries.
What Parts Of The Dragon Fruit Are Safe For Dogs?
If you’re thinking of feeding your dog dragon fruit, it’s important to know which parts are digestible and which aren’t.
Can dogs eat dragon fruit skin? I’d say no!
Although the skin of a dragon fruit is technically edible, you should remove it before giving it to your dog. Given its tough texture, your pet might find it challenging to chew and digest a dragon fruit’s skin. It’s also rather spikey, which could irritate their digestive system or pose a choking risk.
What about the other parts? Can dogs eat dragon fruit seeds? While fruit seeds are usually toxic to dogs, those in the dragon fruit are usually small and harmless.
Only feed your dog the flesh of the dragon fruit. The fruit is watery, juicy, sweet, and soft enough for puppies to devour. And, as I mentioned earlier, the color of the fruit or its flesh does not matter.
Are There Any Risks With Feeding Dragon Fruit To Dogs?
Unless your dog is allergic to the fruit or has a sensitive stomach, a few bites of dragon fruit are okay. Pups with sensitive stomachs may experience some discomfort or a slight digestive upset.
Monitor your dog for any adverse reactions, and if symptoms persist or worsen, take it to the vet immediately. This is highly unlikely, though, as dragon fruit is generally safe for dogs.
The only thing to watch out for is the high fiber and sugar content. Like other fruits, dragon fruit has a bit of sugar, and too much of it can cause your dog’s blood sugar level to rise. Overweight dogs or those with diabetes may need to steer clear of the fruit.
Also, too much fiber can throw the digestive system off since it causes food to pass through your dog’s digestive tract rapidly, preventing its body from absorbing vital nutrients. An over intake of fiber can also result in diarrhea.
How Can I Safely Give Dragon Fruit To My Dog?
Here’s a quick guideline on how to prepare dragon fruit so that your dog can enjoy it safely:
Peel Off The Skin
The skin of the dragon fruit is too thick and rubbery and can be hard for your dog to chew and digest. The spikes can also irritate their digestive tract.
Give A Small Bite-Sized Piece
If you want to see how your dog reacts to the new food, try giving it a little bit first.
Monitor Your Dog
Check to see if your dog shows any signs of distress or has difficulty with bowel movements after eating dragon fruit.
If it does exhibit any concerning symptoms, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible.
Prepare Small Bite-Sized Chunks
If your dog develops a taste for dragon fruit, limit it to no more than 2 or 3 dice-sized cubes every day, or save it for rare occasions.
While you can simply cut the fruit into small pieces, you might want to experiment with other ways to give it to your dog. Here are some suggestions:
Cut up some dragon fruit into bite-sized pieces and freeze them to give your dog a cool and tasty treat on hot days.
Serve only two to three cubes per day.
Another easy way to give your dog extra nutrition is to mash up some dragon fruit. Just cut the dragon fruit into small pieces and mash it.
You can give it to your dog directly with a spoon, spread it over a lick mat, or add it on top of its food.
Make your dog a fruit salad with pieces of dragon fruit, kiwi, and bananas. Although feeding your dog these fruits has many health benefits, too much can lead to discomfort in your pet’s stomach.
Serve this tropical fruit to your dog in any way you see fit. Experiment to see what your dog loves, and offer it a tasty and nutritious treat.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can Dogs Eat Dragon Fruit?
Dragon fruit is an excellent canine snack – in moderation! It’s soft flesh with edible seeds make it a hassle-free, delicious, and healthy option, especially as it is high in Vitamin C, iron, and calcium.
The best way to offer it is to peel and cut it into small pieces. Excessive amounts can cause indigestion, so offer small portions.
Can Dogs Have Dragon Fruit Seeds?
Dragon fruit seeds are one of the few seeds not a hazard for your dog. The dragon fruit flesh is soft, juicy, and delicious- and its seeds are edible, too – making dragon fruit a really great snack for your dog.
Offer small portions as excess fruit can cause diarrhea or even indigestion.
How Much Dragon Fruits Can Dogs Eat?
Dragon fruit is a sweet, hydrating, and nutritional treat for your dog. Just two or three dice-sized cubes will give it all the nutrients it needs, such as vitamin C, iron, calcium, and fatty acids.
Too much of the fruit could lead to vomiting or diarrhea, as well as other digestive issues like gas or constipation.
Is Dragon Fruit Plant Poisonous To Dogs?
Pitaya, or dragon fruit, is absolutely safe for canines!
The fruit is a good source of a variety of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients, besides being delicious and refreshing.
The seeds won’t hurt your dog, either. Just be sure to peel the fruit before serving to prevent choking hazards or stomach issues.
Can Puppies Eat Dragon Fruit?
Yes, puppies can eat dragon fruit! Because a pup’s digestive system is still developing, you should probably feed it a comparatively lesser portion than normal due to the fruit’s sugar content.
Give your pup a small sample first to see how its stomach reacts.
Can Dogs Have Frozen Dragon Fruit?
Yes! Some dogs might enjoy the fruit even more when it’s served frozen.
Make sure to peel off the dragon fruit’s leathery, spiky skin and cut the flesh into small, bite-sized pieces. 2 to 3 cubes a day are more than sufficient and make for a healthy treat.
A digital marketing expert by profession, Andrews is a gifted writer and animal lover at heart. A self-confessed "pawrent", Andrews is well-versed in all things dogs. He uses his years of experience of raising puppies into show-quality dogs to help guide first-time pet parents. He believes in spreading the joy that comes with being a dog dad and advocates more families to adopt pets.