Question: Can dogs eat grapefruit? Or is grapefruit bad for dogs?
Answer: Personally speaking, I’m not a huge fan of grapefruit myself, it’s too sour for my taste and just not my type of fruit.
For my fruit, I prefer something that tastes sweeter (such as oranges, for example) and not as bitter tasting as grapefruit.
But hey, none of that matters because you obviously like it and want to feed some of it to your dog because you believe they’ll enjoy it just as much, so there’s nothing wrong with that thinking! As they say, different people, different tastes!
The health benefits of grapefruits to us human beings are many, much more than I would like to talk about in this section since that’s not what you’re really here for. With that being said, we do know for a fact that not all human foods (especially when it comes to fruits and vegetables) go down well with our dog’s digestive systems.
So, what’s the deal when it comes to grapefruits and dogs? Can dogs eat grapefruit? Or is grapefruit bad for dogs?
Can Dogs Eat Grapefruit?
The answer to this question is, unfortunately, a big NO.
Grapefruit is toxic to dogs because of the essential oils and psoralens this citrus fruit contains (both of which can be very dangerous to dogs), and should hence not be given to dogs as food.
Most of the times, you can make the assumption right off the bat by checking the acidity level of any food under the spotlight – anything this acidic should never be given to dogs for consumption, although a few exceptions do indeed exist.
And as if the high toxicity level itself isn’t enough, some dog owners also make the mistake of feeding their canines grapefruit with the peel and seeds as well, which just multiplies the toxicity risk to frightening levels.
So, while grapefruit can be tremendously beneficial to us people, and poses no toxicity risk to us, grapefruit should be kept off-limits when it comes to our dogs.
Symptoms Of Grapefruit Toxicity In Dogs
If your dog eats even the tiniest amount of grapefruit, you have to carefully look out for toxicity symptoms they might exhibit, such as:
- Vomiting, which signals that your dog’s system is trying to eliminate the toxic elements it just ingested
- Depression and behavioral changes
What Should I Do If My Dog Ate Grapefruit?
The minute you suspect or know that your dog has consumed grapefruit, or any dog food that contains grapefruit, you should immediately take your dog to the vet.
Cases of grapefruit toxicity require professional animal health care to properly dispose of any toxins forming inside your dog’s body and system.
Some severe cases of grapefruit toxicity in dogs have even seen requirements for blood transfusions, but hopefully you and your dog will never be put in such a situation now that you know the facts.
Different Levels Of Grapefruit Poisoning In Dogs
Depending on how much of a portion of grapefruit your dog consumed, and whether they consumed only the grapefruit flesh on its own or they consumed the grapefruit flesh along with other elements of the grapefruit, the levels of toxicity could differ quite a bit.
For example, a dog that ate a small slice of grapefruit won’t have a condition as serious as a dog that ate 2 grapefruits all at once, and a dog that consumed only a small slice of grapefruit flesh won’t have a condition as serious as a dog that ate a large portion of grapefruit along with its seeds and peel/skin.
This is why it isn’t enough for you to not actively feed your dog grapefruit yourself, because if grapefruit is easily available within your dog’s reach, they can consume some of it on their own without your permission.
So, to avoid huge potential problems like this from happening, always make sure any grapefruit you have at home is physically impossible (at least make it as hard as possible) for your dog to reach and eat from by themselves.
Alternatives To Grapefruit For Your Dog
After reading all what has been stated above, why would anyone still want to take the risk of feeding their dog grapefruit?
Some people might say that they want to feed their dogs grapefruit in small amounts, and only feed them the flesh of it, because they have been told that grapefruit contains very high levels of vitamin C that their dog can benefit from.
Not only is this not true (because dogs don’t need the same amount of vitamins from human food just like you and I do, they get all the vitamins, minerals and nutrients they need from the dog food you buy for them), but supposing that your dog does indeed make use of the vitamin C from grapefruit just like you and I do (which again, they don’t), why don’t you consider feeding them oranges instead?
Oranges are just as high in vitamin C levels, and they are good for dogs to eat!