Dragon fruit, otherwise known as pitaya or pitahaya, is a rejuvenating exotic fruit originating from Central America. This colorful sweet fruit came from a cactus that only grows in North, Central, and South America. If you happen to bring one to your household, its colorful skin ranging from pink, red, purple, or yellow might’ve caught the attention of your doggo’s curious eyes! Its benefits are as abundant as its colors, and it’s perfectly safe for your dog to eat.
What Types of Dragon Fruit Can Dogs Eat?
As we mentioned before, dragon fruits vary in four different colors: pink, red, purple, and yellow. The colors will depend on where they were grown, and the color of the flesh will hint at the dragon fruit’s flavor. For example, dragon fruit with white flesh will have a subtle flavor, while dragon fruits with darker or redder flesh will be sweeter. All these dragon fruits are safe for dog consumption.
Pink Dragon Fruit
Pink dragon fruit is the most common type out of all four and yes your pooch can eat pink dragon fruit. It has a bright pink exterior with yellow-green leaves. Meanwhile, the inside is usually white flesh with tiny black seeds, and both are completely edible for dogs to eat.
Red Dragon Fruit
Next is red dragon fruit, also called pitaya roja. It’s red on the exterior and interior. The flesh can vary from pink-red to deep red, indicating how sweet the red dragon fruit is.
Purple Dragon Fruit
The purple dragon fruit also has a red or bright pink exterior with vivid purple flesh. Dragon fruits with richer or darker flesh usually have more antioxidants and vitamins than those with white flesh.
Yellow Dragon Fruit
Finally, yellow dragon fruit has bright yellow skin and white flesh on the inside with prominent black seeds.
Health Benefits of Dragon Fruit for Dogs
Dragon fruit is non-toxic for dogs and is also filled with nutrients and vitamins that are good for your dog’s health. Feeding your dog dragon fruit is more than a treat for them as it takes care of your dog’s stomach and your dog’s body.
Strengthens the immune system with vitamin C
Although dogs produce their own vitamin C, an additional source of the vitamin has never hurt anybody. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that helps promote your dog’s immune system and reduce inflammation.
Calcium and iron help with bone development
Dragon fruit also contains a healthy amount of calcium and iron, which are highly beneficial for puppers to grow with strong bones and decrease the risk for heart disease. Eating dragon fruit occasionally will support your dog’s overall growth and development and promote cognitive, heart, and nerve function.
Packed with antioxidants
Dragon fruits (white or red flesh) are rich in antioxidants that aid in neutralizing free radicals from the body. Free radicals result from oxidation in our body, further leading to cell damage, faster aging, and the development of diseases. Antioxidants help prevent the overproduction of free radicals in the body by slowing the oxidation rate.
Low-calorie fruit for dogs
Another wonderful thing about dragon fruit is that it is low in calories and will not contribute to weight gain or obesity. It’s okay to feed dragon fruit to your dog in big servings after making sure they are not allergic to the fruit. On the contrary, it’s also not recommended to overfeed them as they can get indigestion or upset stomach.
Rich in essential fatty acids
Are you wondering if the dragon fruit seeds are safe for dogs to consume? Yes, they are. In fact, these are great sources of essential fatty acids like Omega-3 and Omega-6. Essential means these fatty acids can’t be produced by their own body, so they need to be obtained through dog food, treats, or supplements.
Omega-3 fatty acids help with skin and coat nourishment, among other things. It also plays a vital role in promoting heart health, brain health, and retinal function. The other fatty acid, Omega-6 or linoleic acid, is responsible for your dog’s overall cell function.
Excellent source of fiber
Antioxidant and fiber-rich. What more can you ask for? Fiber is necessary for proper digestion and maintaining a healthy weight. Additionally, fiber helps lower your dog’s cholesterol levels and stabilize their blood sugar levels.
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Can Dogs Eat Dragon Fruit Skin?
No, dogs should not eat dragon fruit skin. Aside from being colorful and sweet, the dragon fruit is also spiky pink fruit with a hard skin to chew and digest. Only the dragon fruit flesh and seeds are safe for dogs to consume.
The best way to prepare dragon fruit for dogs is to peel off the skin or scoop the flesh. Then, throw away the skin to ensure your dog doesn’t accidentally eat any part of it. Next, you can cut the flesh into small pieces and serve it in a bowl, ready for your dog to dig in. An important reminder is to never feed your dog too much dragon fruit because, as previously said, it contains high fiber. Too much fiber is not good for dogs and can lead to diarrhea and constipation.
Is dragon fruit good for dogs? Absolutely! You can serve dragon fruit to your dog as a healthy treat, and you can guarantee that they will thrive with its incredible health benefits. However, dragon fruits should also be consumed in moderation, like most foods. Overall, it’s a good treat to give your dog occasionally. But, there are also more accessible and less expensive fruits, which almost have the same nutritional benefits as a dragon fruit you can opt for.
Pro Tip: If you want to feed your dog new and exotic fruits other than dragon fruits, always ask your dog’s vet first, as some exotic fruits like passion fruits have seeds that can be toxic to dogs.
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