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A Healthy Snack For Dogs – Watermelon
Watermelon is considered to be among the list of healthy snacks for dogs, especially in summer. It is full of nutrients & moisture which keeps your dogs healthy & hydrating during the summer days. It is juicy & sweet fruit with 92% of high water content.
There are some days your dog’s stomach gets upset after consuming new foods they are not used to. In these cases, you can feed your dog some watermelons to balance out indigestion. Feeding watermelon to the dogs can be helpful in many ways but it also needs some precautionary instructions. So first let’s take a look at the healthy benefits of feeding watermelon to dogs.
What Are The Nutrients Content Of Watermelon?
Watermelon is rich in vitamins C, A, B6, and potassium and it is full of antioxidants. It is also enriched in high fibre & lycopene. Even it is considered by the watermelon promotional board as a superfood. Due to its high nutritional value, watermelon is considered to be one of the perfect choices as a healthy snack for your dogs & you as well. Dr Tina Wismer, senior director of ASPCA Animal Poison Control Centre also said that “watermelon is safe for dogs to eat in moderation as long as the rind and seeds are not eaten.”
Let’s take a brief look at the healthy benefits of watermelon :
- Moisture – Watermelon contains 94% of high moisture & it is considered to be a very essential snack for summer or hot weather.
- Antioxidants – Due to climate change & environmental stresses, the cells of our bodies and that of our dogs are damaged. Watermelon protects the cells of the body and prevents them from decaying as our dogs grow old.
- Lycopene – Watermelon has a beautiful red color inside of it. It is because it has lycopene. Lycopene has several health benefits such as it is beneficial for cancer prevention & it supports vision in dogs.
- Potassium – Like other ingredients, potassium has its unique benefits. It supports healthy heart & kidney functions. It also promotes healthy bone density. Helps in developing muscles & regulates fluid levels.
- Fibre – Fibre helps to resolve diarrhea and avoids blockages. It also avoids constipation by keeping foods moving through the intestinal tract.
- Vitamin A, B6, and C – Vitamin A supports the proper function of proper skin, fur coats, muscles & nerves. Vitamin B6 is a coenzyme for the body & brain which regulates fluid balance & hormones & supports neurotransmitters in your dog’s body. Vitamin C is another powerful antioxidant that supports & boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation.
These were some breakdowns of the healthy benefits of watermelon.
Giving Watermelon To Your Dog – What Not To Do!
Avoid watermelon seeds
Watermelon is a moisture-laden & tasty fruit to offer your dog on hot summer days. But there are some precautions you must take when you’re offering this treat to your pooch. Watermelon seeds especially the mature ones are not safe for dogs. Swallowing a couple of seeds will probably not cause any harm but consuming too many seeds can cause your dog’s digestive system an intestinal blockage. This is especially a bigger problem in small dogs as they have smaller intestines. So it will be most suitable if you take the seeds out first & offer the watermelons in smaller pieces to your dogs.
Avoid Watermelon Rinds
Apart from these, watermelon rinds are also not so safe for dogs. However, the lightest green parts of the watermelon can be edible but the hard outer parts are not at all safe to offer dogs. As their digestive system can’t break it down causing intestinal blockages just like the seeds can do.
Avoid Artificially Flavoured Watermelons
Watermelon consists of its natural sugar so if your dog has diabetes you should not offer it to them until your vet has advised you to do so based on your dog’s dietary needs. Also, artificial watermelon flavoured anything are also not a good idea for dogs. Artificial sugar, chemicals, and other substances can make your dog sick. Xylitol, an artificial sweetener can be dangerous to dogs so always prefer natural watermelons that you prepare.
What Are The Creative Ways To Offer Watermelon To Your Dogs?
Chunks – Cut the watermelon into small pieces, remove the seeds & rind and offer the freshly chunked watermelon to your dogs.
Frozen – If you want your dog to feel extra cool during those hot summer days, freeze the chunks. You can put the small cubes of watermelon into ice trays & freeze them in a refrigerator & offer them as a snack.
Watermelon ice cream – you can make some watermelon puree along with some other fruits like pineapple, banana, and blueberry. Mix them all in a blender and your puree is ready. You can also add peanut butter or yogurt and serve them as watermelon smoothies.
Dehydrated watermelon – you can take out the seed and rind. After that, dehydrate your watermelon for a chewy effect. This will omit the hydrating properties of the fruit but your dog will enjoy it for sure.
If your dog hasn’t eaten it before, you must give your dog watermelon in moderation & see how they are reacting after eating the fruit.
Apart from watermelon, dogs can also eat other fruits such as Blueberries, Strawberries, Cranberries, Raspberries, Oranges, Tangerines, Mango, Banana, Pineapple, Apples, Peaches, cucumbers, etc.
There are also some fruits that you should never give to your dog. Coconut, Avocado, Grapes, or Raisins are a big no to a dog’s snack.
In conclusion, we can say that dogs are very essential partners in our lives. They are very delicate as well as very strong. We must deal with them with proper care. We often forget about their appetite & feed them human foods.
But we need to be extra careful in terms of their food habits because that’s where anything can go wrong. We must prioritize their health & take them to vets for frequent visits. Before giving them any treats, make sure to always take notes from a veterinarian or a nutritionist.
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