Grapefruit is a citrus fruit that grows in clusters like grapes, with a flavour that ranges from sweet to sour. It’s popularly used to make fruit juices, add a tang to desserts or simply enjoy as a snack. It also benefits from being rather healthy for us humans and counts towards one of our five a day, but is it good for our four-legged friends?
Can dogs eat grapefruit or should they stay away? Find out all you need to know about dogs and grapefruit in this article.
Can dogs eat grapefruit?
Yes and no. Dogs can eat grapefruit flesh in very small amounts, but feeding it in larger quantities should be avoided because its acidic nature can irritate the lining of the gut, causing stomach upsets. You should never feed your dog grapefruit skin because it contains chemicals that are toxic to dogs. On top of this, dogs can’t digest grapefruit skin so it could lead to a blockage in the intestines if swallowed. If you think that your dog may have swallowed some grapefruit skin, you should phone your vet for advice.
Can dogs drink grapefruit juice?
No, you should avoid giving your dog grapefruit juice as it’s extremely high in citric acid and will irritate their digestive system, leading to issues such as dog vomiting and diarrhoea. Additionally, supermarket-purchased grapefruit juice will likely contain added sugars which are not good for your dog to consume.
Is grapefruit good for dogs?
Grapefruit does contain vitamins such as A and C and lots of nutrients like fibre, potassium, lycopene and choline, but these are all things your dog will get from their complete and balanced food, so there’s no need to supplement their diet with this fruit. Additionally, grapefruit flesh can be bad for dogs with sensitive stomachs as it’s very acidic and can cause digestive issues.
How to feed grapefruit to your dog
Many dogs actually dislike the flavour of grapefruit as it tastes quite bitter to them, so don’t be surprised if they turn away from citrus fruits such as these. If you’d like to try giving your dog grapefruit, only offer them a very small amount of flesh, making sure you don’t give too much as the citric acid can irritate their digestive system and cause diarrhoea and vomiting. Never give them the rind or seeds as these are toxic to dogs.
So, the take home message from this article? Dogs don’t tend to enjoy the flavour of grapefruits, there’s a risk of gut irritation due to the high citric acid content, plus the seeds and rind are potentially toxic. This means it may be best to try offering them safer fruits instead such as apples or bananas.