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There are so many fruits available for human consumption and Peaches are one of those we love to consume quite frequently, thanks to their sweet and juicy flesh.
Most pet lovers and keepers alike do have the habit of feeding their pets with whatever they consume, a show of love as it may be, but are peaches suitable edibles for Dogs? This article will explore this question adequately and put you and your furry friend on the right path.
What Are Peaches?
Peaches are small sweet fruits with a red-orange hue on their peel and white or yellow flesh. Peaches are related to plums, apricots, cherries, and almonds. They’re considered drupes or stone fruit because their flesh surrounds a shell that houses an edible seed.
They can be eaten alone or form one of the compliments of a variety of dishes. Peaches are also rich in vitamins and minerals and do pack up a lot of healthy benefits.
Are Peaches Good For Dogs?
Now to the crux of this article, can dogs eat peaches? Yes, dogs can eat peaches. Just like humans, dogs require a healthy diet to stay healthy and peaches make a good component for their meals.
However, there are safety measures to keep and ensure a harmless activity such as consuming a nourishing fruit doesn’t turn into a nightmare for you and your canine buddy. Read on to find out more.
Nutritious Components of Peaches
Peaches are rich in many vitamins, minerals, and beneficial plant compounds. One medium-sized peach (5.4 ounces or 150 grams) provides approximately:
- Calories: 58
- Protein: 1 gram
- Fat: less than 1 gram
- Carbs: 14 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Vitamin C: 17% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Vitamin A: 10% of the DV
- Potassium: 8% of the DV
- Niacin: 6% of the DV
- Vitamin E: 5% of the DV
- Vitamin K: 5% of the DV
- Copper: 5% of the DV
- Manganese: 5% of the DV
Peaches also offer smaller amounts of magnesium, phosphorus, iron, and some B vitamins. In addition, they’re packed with antioxidants — beneficial plant compounds that combat oxidative damage and help protect your body against aging and disease. The fresher and riper the fruit, the more antioxidants it contains.
When Are Peaches Bad For Dogs
Peaches are not directly bad for dogs. However, you may want to exercise some caution while feeding your dogs with peaches.
Peach pits, along with the leaves and stems of peaches, contain a compound called amygdalin. The digestive enzymes in a dog’s gastrointestinal system will break this compound down into hydrogen cyanide, which is toxic in high doses. It is worth mentioning that this compound has trace amounts in Peach pits. Your dog would have to consume a lot of pits before getting cyanide poisoning.
As long as you completely cut around the pit first, fresh peaches can be a great summer treat. Skip canned peaches, as they usually contain high amounts of sugary syrups. Also, fresh peaches have higher levels of antioxidants and appear to be more effective at protecting against oxidative damage than canned ones.
Another danger peaches may pose to dogs is the hardness of the pit. The pits are hard, and if your dog tries to chew one, they can damage their teeth or jaws. A swallowed peach pit can present a choking hazard or cause a dangerous gastrointestinal obstruction. The serrated edges of peach pits can damage the mouth or internal organs.
If your dog manages to swallow one, watch for signs of gastrointestinal distress and contact your veterinarian immediately.
Peaches that have been lying on the ground (Windfall Peaches) for a few days will begin to ferment, and this leads to ethanol (alcohol) production within the fruit. If your pup eats a lot of fermented peaches, then he is likely to be at risk from alcohol poisoning.
Eating too many peaches can cause gastrointestinal upset, vomiting, and diarrhea in dogs, and the fruit contains some sugar. It’s best to keep them as a sometimes-treat given in moderation.
What to Do If Your Dog Eats a Peach Pit
If your dog eats an entire peach with the pit (also called a “stone”), there’s a very small chance he could be poisoned by cyanide, this is because Peaches contain trace amounts of cyanide and dogs will have to consume large amounts of Peach Pits to have Cyanide Poisoning. So, call your veterinarian if you see signs of poisoning.
If possible, take the source of the poison with you to give your vet a clearer picture of the problem.
Signs and Symptoms Of Dog Poisoning
- Drooling or Foaming at the Mouth
- Gastrointestinal Upset
- Seizures and muscle tremors
- Abnormal body temperature
- Laboured breathing
- Behaviour changes
How To Serve Your Dogs With Peaches
If you are the more adventurous type and you want to have fun while at it, there are a few ways to serve your dog with peaches and make it a memorable experience for them…and for yourself too.
Peaches are easy to find and can be added to your diet in many ways.
They can be eaten raw, baked, grilled, broiled, or sautéed and are easily incorporated into warm or cold dishes alike.
For instance, fresh peaches make a great nutrient-rich snack and can be eaten either on their own or topped with yogurt and a handful of nuts.
As a reward
Small amounts of cut-up fresh or frozen peaches are a great source of fiber and vitamin A, and can even help fight infections. You can slice the fruit into small bits to use as a motivational reward during training, mix them with other food for a sweet surprise, or blend them with other healthy fruits in a fruit salad or smoothie.
If your grilled peaches are just raw, cooked peaches, don’t worry. Let them cool off and they’re dog-safe. But if you’ve added some extra stuff to make it more delicious, like butter, consider giving your pup just a small taste and not a full dog bowl.
Do you want a peach treat that cools off dogs and still tastes great? Freeze some small peach pieces (cut small to avoid choking) and offer those on a hot day.
First, cut the peaches into small pieces and mix them in a bowl with the yogurt. Then, add the water and blend. You can either blend the mixture until it is smooth, or you can leave it chunky if you think your dog would prefer some bigger bits of peach in their treats.
After that, pour the mixture into an ice tray or mold and freeze. Best served on a hot summer day.
How to Select and Store Peaches
Peaches come in a wide range of varieties — some white, others yellow. White peaches are sweeter, while yellow ones tend to be more tart. When selecting peaches, typically the sweeter their smell, the riper they will be. Try to avoid brownish, bruised, or wrinkled fruits, which are either damaged or overripe. Instead, look for peaches with hard or only slightly soft flesh.
You can tell a peach is ripe and ready to eat when you press down on its flesh and feel it slightly give.
Peaches continue to ripen after they’re picked. So if your peaches are too firm, try setting them on your countertop in a single layer for one to three days.
Ripe peaches last about one week at room temperature. If you don’t plan to feed them to your dog within this timeframe, it’s best to store them in your refrigerator to avoid over-ripening.
Ripe peaches can also be frozen, but it’s best to first slice them and coat their flesh with a bit of lemon juice to avoid browning.
Any Side Effects of Peaches on Dogs?
Peaches are nutritious fruits that have a lot of health benefits for both humans and dogs. However, like most things in life, moderation is the best way to gain all the benefits it has to offer.
Most of the notable side effects of peaches have risen as a result of excessive intake. So don’t start worrying yet, just make sure you are not feeding your pups with an overt amount of peaches.
Here are some of the side effects to be mindful of:
Too Many Antioxidants Are Bad
Peaches are rich in antioxidants like Vitamin C, Vitamin A, and other antioxidant compounds like phytonutrients, flavonoids, etc. These antioxidants fight with the free radicals of our body stabilizes them, and thus prevent them from causing oxidative damage to our body cells, thus reducing the risk of various types of cancers like skin cancer, lung cancer, breast cancer, etc.
Although antioxidants provide several benefits too much of everything is bad and the same goes with antioxidants. A high level of antioxidants in our body can increase the risk of various cardiovascular diseases.
Too Much Potassium May Cause Hyperkalemia
Peaches contain a good amount of potassium and eating peaches regularly is very beneficial for dogs. This benefit of peach is mainly due to the presence of vital minerals like potassium in it.
Potassium is a vasodilator that relaxes blood vessels, improves blood circulation, and thus reduces the risk of high blood pressure (Dogs can suffer from high blood pressure too).
In addition to this, peaches are also low in sodium and this also helps in controlling blood pressure.
Although potassium is very beneficial for our health and provides several benefits, still it is better to eat peaches in moderation. This is because the high level of potassium in our body can drop the blood pressure to a dangerously low level and give rise to hypotension.
Excessive Dietary Fiber Maybe Bad
Eating peaches regularly is very beneficial for the stomach and helps in keeping the digestive system healthy. This benefit of peaches is mainly due to the presence of dietary fibers in them.
The dietary fibers present in peaches act as a natural laxative. It aids in digestion and ensures the smooth elimination of waste from the body.
Consuming too much fiber can interfere with the absorption of nutrients by the intestines and may also give rise to problems like cramping, diarrhea, malabsorption, constipation, intestinal gas, intestinal blockage. These GI distress symptoms can end up in a visit to the Vet.
Health Benefits of Peaches for Dogs
May Aid Digestion
Peaches may contribute to healthy digestion. One medium-sized fruit provides about 2 grams of fiber — half of which is soluble fiber, while the other half is insoluble.
Insoluble fiber adds bulk to stool and helps move food through the gut, reducing the likelihood of constipation in dogs.
Peach flowers are another part of the fruit that may benefit digestion. They’re commonly used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat digestive disorders.
Animal research shows that compounds found in the flowers may effectively increase the strength and frequency of gut contractions, which helps maintain the proper rhythm to push food along smoothly.
May Improve Heart Health
Regularly eating fruit including peaches may promote heart health.
Peaches may lower risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure in dogs and cholesterol levels.
Test-tube studies show that peaches may bind to bile acids compounds produced by the liver from cholesterol.
The bound bile acids together with the cholesterol they contain — are eventually excreted through feces, which may help lower blood cholesterol levels.
May boost immunity
Peaches are rich in immune-boosting nutrients and antioxidants. Test-tube studies report that they may also fight certain types of bacteria.
Final Thoughts On Peaches for Dogs
Peaches can be eaten by dogs and they are good for dogs. Most of the side effects should be easily avoided as long as great care is taken regarding its usage. If however complications arise, quickly visit the nearest vet.
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