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Many people find pineapple a delicious, nutritious treat – but can you give it to your dog?
Generally, moderate amounts of pineapple are safe and healthy for dogs. It contains a variety of vitamins and minerals that can help boost immune system function, improve digestive health, and provide other benefits.
However, you also want to limit your dog’s pineapple consumption, and avoid giving them certain types. Here’s more about how to safely give your dog pineapple.
Benefits of Giving Your Dog Pineapple
Pineapple has many of the same benefits for dogs as it does for people, including:
- Vitamins A, C, and B-1 – Helps protect against illness, improve skin, reduce inflammation, and more.
- Bromelain – This enzyme also has anti-inflammatory properties.
- Hydration – Pineapples are over 80% water, making them an excellent treat for hot days.
- Minerals – A variety of minerals helps improve coat and skin health.
To be clear, high-quality dog food provides all of the nutrients your dog needs. Pineapple isn’t a necessary part of their diet, but it is a nutritious treat.
Types of Pineapple
Not all types of pineapple are safe for dogs. Here’s a rundown:
Fresh pineapple is the best type for dogs. Remove the spiky skin and inner core. Give your dog only the soft, inner fruit (often called the “flesh” of the pineapple). Cut it into smaller chunks for easy portion control.
Stick some pineapple chunks in the freezer for an hour or so. They make a tasty treat to help your dog keep cool on a hot day. As with fresh pineapple, only give your dog the soft parts, avoiding the skin and core.
Some dogs enjoy cooked pineapple. You have several options, including cooking it in the oven or outside on the grill. When giving cooked pineapple to a dog, make sure it’s not too hot. Dogs don’t always show the restraint they should, and hot foods can burn their throat and mouth.
Only give your dog canned pineapple if it has no added sugar. Excessive amounts of sugar can harm them. It can affect their blood sugar levels, contribute to obesity, and cause other problems. Avoid canned pineapple with either light or heavy syrup.
Don’t give dried pineapple to your dog. Removing water from fruit shrinks its size, but doesn’t reduce the sugar content. Even a few pieces of dried fruit can give your dog excessive amounts of sugar.
Potential Concerns about Feeding Your Dog Pineapple
As mentioned above, excess sugar is a potential concern when giving your dog pineapple. Fortunately, as long as you don’t give them canned or dried pineapple, and only feed them moderate amounts, your dog should be fine.
Constipation is another concern. Pineapple contains high amounts of fiber. While fiber does help alleviate constipation, too much can end up causing it. Dogs need to drink a lot of water when eating fiber.
Finally, gastrointestinal issues can occur. Even small amounts of skin or core are a choking hazard. If swallowed, they can cause intestinal blockage.
Does Pineapple Help Stop Dogs from Eating Poop?
No. This is a common but incorrect belief about feeding pineapple to dogs.
Pineapple contains an enzyme called bromelain. When ingested by an animal, it makes that animal’s waste taste foul. The foul taste discourages dogs who try to eat poop, a condition called coprophagia.
Unfortunately, no evidence exists that this remedy works — at all. The problem could even worsen, as feeding your dog lots of pineapple can cause gastrointestinal issues. Instead, you’ll need to consult with your vet to develop an effective treatment plan.
Pineapple Treats You Can Make for Your Dog
Is your dog a pineapple fan? Here are a few dog-safe treat ideas they’re sure to enjoy:
- Ice-Cube Puree – Puree the pineapple chunks, then freeze the result in an ice cube tray. Give the pineapple ice cubes to your dog on a hot day for hydrating relief.
- Yogurt Mix – Add pineapple chunks to plain yogurt for a healthy snack. Packing the mixture into a Kong is an effective interactive toy that keeps your dog out of your hair.
- Sweet Potato Treat – Bake pureed pineapple, mashed sweet potato, oats, and brown rice flour at 350 degrees. Allow to cool before giving to your dog.
Other Fruits Your Dog Can Eat
If your dog enjoys pineapple, they might like other fruits and veggies, too. Here are a few common ones that are safe for dogs to eat:
- Apples – Remove the core and any seeds from apples before giving them to your dog.
- Bananas – They’re a low-calorie treat typically suitable for overweight dogs. As with pineapples, stay mindful of the high sugar content.
- Pumpkin – Small amounts of canned pumpkin are a healthy treat that provides various digestive benefits for dogs.
Remember, the key is always moderation, especially with fruits that contain lots of natural sugars.
Foods Your Dog Should Avoid
Many common “people foods” can cause vomiting, diarrhea, or even more serious medical problems when eaten by dogs. Avoid the following:
- Chocolate – Aside from high levels of caffeine, chocolate also contains theobromine, a compound that’s toxic to dogs. All chocolate is dangerous to dogs, with dark and baker’s chocolate especially potent.
- Grapes and Raisins – They can cause kidney failure, even in small amounts.
- Onions and Garlic – They can damage red blood cells. Aside from avoiding the food directly, make sure you don’t give your dog any meat flavored with onion or garlic seasonings.
Never feed your dog any type of people food without first checking its safety.
Can dogs eat pineapple?
Yes, as long as it’s fresh instead of canned or dried. While pineapple is healthy for dogs, it’s not necessary, because it doesn’t provide any nutrients not already found in dog food. Still, it’s appropriate to give as an occasional treat.
As long as you follow the tips above, your dog can safely enjoy pineapple in many different ways.