It’s hard not to like cantaloupe. It’s sweet and delicious — not to mention full of healthy vitamins and fiber. But are dogs allowed to eat cantaloupe?
As a matter of fact, this sumptuous melon can actually make for a great little treat for your pooch. Cantaloupe is best served as a snack instead of as a meal replacement though, as dogs still need a very high protein diet.
Are you thinking about letting your dog give it a try? Check out these facts and guidelines first.
Is Cantaloupe Good for Dogs to Eat?
This melon isn’t just delicious, it’s super healthy. Cantaloupe is a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, niacin, folate, potassium, and dietary fiber. And these are all very important nutrients for dogs. It’ll help to regulate your dog’s digestive tract, help keep their coats healthy and shiny, boost their immune system, and even help them to absorb more nutrients from other food!
The biggest benefits for your dog will come primarily from four micronutrients:
This vitamin is a critical part of your dog’s diet because it’s absolutely essential for great eyesight. Proper levels of vitamin A can even help older dogs minimize the effects of macular degeneration. It’s also a powerful antioxidant that helps your pup to fend off infections, manage inflammatory conditions, and reduce stress-related ailments.
You can never really get enough vitamin C, and neither can your pooch! Vitamin C has an innate ability to help promote the development of collagen. And collagen is essential to healthy bone, tendon, ligament, cartilage growth. Vitamin C is also known for its immune system boosting properties, so it can help keep your pup feeling their best.
Beta-Carotene is actually a precursor to vitamin A, so you know it’s got to be good for your dog. This molecule helps to keep your dog’s skin, hair, and nails healthy and shiny. It also helps in bone development which is an absolute necessity for active dog breeds.
This is one of the most important minerals for your pup. Potassium intake has a direct positive effect on your dog’s neurological and nervous system functions. It also helps to facilitate communications between your pup’s vital organs with its brain in order to keep your dog’s bodily functions operating properly.
But that’s not all. Cantaloupe isn’t just full of vitamins and minerals — it’s got a really high-water content as well. This will help to keep your dog hydrated and prevent constipation.
Cantaloupe’s also another great snack for obese dogs. It helps them to get them rehydrated without putting on even more weight. However, like every other snack, you should still feed this treat to them in moderation.
The Risks of Feeding Your Dog Cantaloupe
There are a few things you should consider first before feeding your dog cantaloupe:
The Cantaloupe Rind
You don’t eat this part of the melon and for good reason. It’s so thick, fibrous, and all-around not pleasant to taste. So why would you feed this to your dog? These rinds can cause your pup’s GI tract to become upset leading to a bevy of problems. And let’s not forget, the rinds pose a severe choking hazard especially for dogs that seemingly swallow their food whole such as Labrador Retrievers.
One of the things that makes cantaloupe so delicious is its sweetness. But its high sugar content doesn’t agree with diabetic dogs. If your dog is a diabetic, you should avoid giving them cantaloupe.
There is definitely such a thing as “too much of a good thing”. Just like any snack or treat, you should only feed your dog cantaloupe on occasion and in moderation. Overfeeding them can further their chances of obesity. And for obese dogs — this food should be avoided altogether.
How to Feed Your Dog Cantaloupe
When preparing cantaloupe for your pup, you should do so as if you were preparing it for yourself. First, thoroughly wash the fruit before slicing. This will clean off any unwanted grime and bacteria. Next, you’ll want to cut the melon in half and remove all of the seeds. Then using any method, remove the rind from the melon’s flesh. Slice the melon into bite-sized pieces for your pooch, and you’re good to go.
These pieces are great morsels to put inside puzzle toys or a Kong toy to help stimulate your dog, or you can feed it to them as is.
Cantaloupe is a great, healthy alternative snack for your dog. Just be sure to avoid giving them the rind and remember moderation. As long as you’ve got those bases covered, you’ve got the green light to share this deliciously refreshing treat with your four-legged friend.