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*Can Dogs Eat Nectarines?*
Along with the heat, summer also comes with different varieties of fruit. Nectarine happens to be one of them. It is at times like these that you might want to diversify what your pup eats.
Therefore it is not bizarre for you to want to know if your dog can eat nectarines. This fruit is rich in vitamins and minerals. On top of that, it is juicy and quite tasty.
Even though nectarine seems to have many nutritious benefits, is it safe for your canine friend to eat? Will it cause harm?
Let’s delve into nectarines and how they might affect your dog. We’ll talk about the safety of nectarines, health benefits, and risks associated with their consumption. However, first things first, what are nectarines?
What Are Nectarines?
Nectarines are in the same family as the peach. It is a smooth-fleshed fruit with dense flavor, bald skin, and firm flesh.
Just like many other fruits, you don’t need to cook or peel nectarines before eating. Although, the inner pit isn’t edible so should be discarded.
Nectarines can also be used to create other foods like jams and jellies. It can also work well in dessert dishes.
Nectarines have deep, round and sugary flavors. It can be easily used in a wide variety of dishes. Now back to the main topic, dogs and nectarines.
Can Dogs Eat Nectarines?
Yes, dogs can eat nectarine. The right question is, should dogs eat nectarine?
Nectarine is a fruit, therefore, a source of natural sugar and fiber. In moderation, these are useful nutrients for your dog’s body. However, when taken in excess it can cause problems.
Since sugar is involved, we can’t skip weight problems. Compared to humans, dogs are small, therefore sugar and carbohydrate affect them more.
Excessive consumption of sugar, even in the form of fruit can still lead to weight gain and obesity. This isn’t something you’d want for your pooch, it comes with a load of health issues.
As I’ve said earlier, the pit or center portion of the nectarine isn’t edible. However, it also contains cyanide. You’ll have to be cautious whole feeding nectarines to your dog to prevent them from eating that part.
Are Nectarines Safe For Dogs?
It is not news that certain fruits are bad for dogs. Luckily, nectarines aren’t one of them. Too much of a good thing is bad, that applies to nectarine as well.
While eating this succulent fruit isn’t bad for your dog, excessive consumption is worrisome. Since nectarines contain quite a high amount of fiber, too much of it can cause stomach upset.
Regular consumption will also overload your dog’s body with sugar and this might lead to weight changes. Therefore moderation is the key when it comes to feeding your dog nectarines.
Something you should always avoid is canned nectarines. Since nectarines are basically summer fruits, companies can them with preservatives to retain their color and flavor. However, all that extra preservative is not good for your pooch.
Always feeding your dog sugary food such as nectarine can be a risk factor for diabetes and dental issues. Nectarines are not toxic or poisonous to dogs, however, you must apply moderation.
Benefits of Dogs Eating Nectarine
Nectarines are known to contain lots of fiber. This is important for gut motility and the digestive health of your pooch. It’ll help prevent both constipation and diarrhea.
Vitamin A and C are found in abundance in nectarines. Vitamin A is essential for good vision and overall better eye health. It also helps nurture their skin and fur, making them look full and healthy.
Vitamin C on the other hand isn’t so necessary. This is because your dog’s body produces its own vitamin C. Although it has been postulated that increased intake of vitamin C in dogs can be helpful when they ingest toxins. However, this has not been proven.
Potassium is a micronutrient that is required for your dog’s body to function normally. It helps in fluid balance, nerve transmission, muscle movement, heart contracting, enzymatic activity, etc.
Magnesium can also be found in nectarines. It is an important micronutrient because it helps in the absorption of other nutrients and minerals in the gastrointestinal tract. Additionally, it also helps with bones and the activity of certain important enzymes.
Dangers Associated With Dogs Eating Nectarines
Nectarines have a lot of nutritional value to offer your dog. However, is there a price to pay?
Well, the bad effects of nectarine only arise on two occasions. First when your dog consumes this sweet fruit in excess, and secondly when he eats the pit of the fruit.
Let’s take a look at the dangers that can result from eating nectarines.
Naturally, introducing new food to your dog’s meal can lead to gut irritation. And this usually manifests as vomiting and diarrhea.
Some dogs are more sensitive than others. Therefore you should carefully observe your dog if it’s the first time you’re giving him nectarine.
The best way is to start small and increase as you go.
Avoid Nectarine Pit
While nectarine is a sweet juicy fruit, its pit can be a source of hazard to your dog. First, when swallowed, it can be a source of choking hazard for your dog.
Also, this nectarine pit can easily lodge in the intestine and block it. This will cause severe abdominal discomfort and pain to your pooch. And removal usually requires surgery.
Worst of all, the pit contains cyanide. It might not be enough to bring down a big dog although it could still cause complications. The case is different for smaller dogs because a single pit could even lead to death due to cyanide poisoning.
Some of the symptoms you’d expect from a dog that has cyanide poisoning include;
- Dilated pupils
- Fast and difficult breathing
- Erratic behavior
Your best bet, in this case, would be to call animal poison control or visit the vet immediately. Each country has an assigned phone number for animal poison control.
How To Feed Nectarine To Your Dog
Nectarines are a nice way to satisfy your dog’s sweet tooth. However, you need to feed it to them in a safe way.
Most importantly, you have to remove the pit from each fruit. This is to prevent any case of accidental cyanide poisoning.
It’s best to start with tiny slices of the fruit first, to gauge your dog’s reaction to it. If your pooch can stand it, then you can gradually increase the amount you give.
Basically, remove the pits from each nectarine and feed it to your dog slowly. You can then gradually increase the amount based on your pup’s response.
Avoid Canned Nectarines
It looks logical to preserve this summer fruit and have it available all year round. To do that, loads of preservatives are added just to retain their flavor and color.
However, is all that extra preservatives healthy for your dog?
The answer is no. If you want to diversify your pup’s meal by adding nectarine, then make sure it is a fresh one. Never feed canned nectarine to your dog.
How many nectarines Should My Dog Eat?
Well, this totally depends on the size of your dog. Bigger dogs can eat more nectarine without having any bad effects.
In essence, if you have a smaller dog, feed them tiny portions that their stomach can handle. The best course of action would be to consult your vet and ask for a specific amount to feed your dog.
Alternatives To Nectarine
Nectarine is a healthy source of sugar, minerals, and vitamins. It contains a lot of fiber that helps with the digestive health of your dog.
However, if you’re afraid of the pit and would want to go for a safer option, there are some fruits you can try. They include;
Just like nectarine, regular consumption of these other fruits can predispose to weight changes due to high sugar content. They can also be a risk factor for diabetes and dental caries if consumed daily.
Recap: Can Dogs Eat Nectarines?
Yes, they can.
Nectarines are sweet and juicy fruits that contain important nutrients necessary for the good health of your pup. Therefore you’re free to share some nectarine with your dog while eating yours.
However, you must exercise moderation. The amount of sugar in nectarine can predispose your dog to weight gain and obesity if eaten regularly. Therefore you have to do portion control.
Moreover, before feeding nectarine to your dog, make sure you remove the pit. It can be a choking hazard and can also cause intestinal or esophageal obstruction. In addition to that, swallowing the pit can cause cyanide poisoning. You obviously don’t want to see your pooch go through that suffering.
Giving your dog a treat as sweet and juicy as nectarine should be a summer experience and should remain so. You wouldn’t want it to be an experience with the vet because of poisoning, stomach upset, or weight gain.
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