Can Dogs Eat Watermelon?

Angela Vuckovic
by Angela Vuckovic
Can dogs eat watermelon? Find out if your pet can enjoy the sweet summer fruit or should you avoid treating them to a juicy watermelon wedge.

Most people spend summer days feasting on the bounty of fruits and veggies that are in season- and one of the favorites is watermelon. There’s nothing better than having a slice of this sweet, juicy fruit on a hot summer day, but should you share it with your four-legged bestie? Can dogs eat watermelon, or is it best to avoid giving them this fruit?

The short answer is yes; dogs can eat watermelon. Of course, you shouldn’t just give them a wedge and call it a day- there are, after all, some precautions you need to take before giving your dog watermelon. When served properly, watermelon is, like all dog-friendly fruits, a fabulous healthy treat. Packed with vitamin and nutrients and high in fiber, watermelon is low in calories- a winning combination. This means that, given occasionally, this yummy fruit can be a perfect alternative to calorie dense store-bought dog treats. Ideal for dogs who are trying to get that bikini bod on fleek… or, you know, just want to keep it healthy!

Read on to find out more about can dogs eat watermelon with or without seeds and rinds, how to properly give your pooch this fruit, and, most importantly, if feeding them watermelon has any benefits- besides being incredibly delicious.

Can Dogs Eat Watermelon? Are There Any Benefits?

Fortunately for pooches, watermelon is on the list of dog-safe fruits. The only real question is can dogs eat watermelon without completely pigging out, and I believe you already know the answer to that one. Since dogs are not picky when it comes to eating, (in fact, they’d actually benefit from being choosier about their foods), it’s up to you to serve them the right amount of the fruit and in an appropriate form.

When it comes to watermelon, this means adequately cleaned of seeds, without rinds and in serving that is appropriate for your dog’s size. Small dogs shouldn’t have more than an equivalent of one slice, while bigger dogs can indulge in a bit more of this fruit- in any case, you shouldn’t let them have too much. Even if it doesn’t upset their stomach, you’ll have to take them out to pee every half an hour!

Apart from being delicious, watermelon is also beneficial for your pet’s health. Watermelon is vitamins A, B6, and C, and potassium. These vitamins and minerals support your pet’s immune system and make sure their health stays in top shape (of course, combined with a well-balanced, healthy diet). In addition to these essential nutrients, watermelon has an incredibly high water content (92 percent), and it will help your pet stay hydrated and refresh them during summer heats.

Additionally, if you have a pet that’s obese but you’d still want to give them a treat from time to time, fruits, (especially watermelon) are an excellent choice! This mouthwatering treat is also low in calories, and it won’t be tipping your pet’s scales anytime soon, so reward your pet with some yummy, fresh watermelon.

Can Dogs Eat Watermelon Rinds?

Is it OK if your dog got a hold of some watermelon rinds? Yes and no. While, technically, there isn’t anything in watermelon rinds that makes them toxic to dogs, it’s still not a great idea to give them to your pet. The dense rind can be quite difficult to digest, and it can cause serious stomach upset, especially in overly sensitive dogs. So, while nothing will probably happen if you caught your pooch stealing a bite or a few of watermelon rinds, you shouldn’t habitually allow them to eat watermelon rinds- after all, it’s better to err on the side of caution!

Can Dogs Eat Watermelon Seeds?

Similarly to watermelon rinds, watermelon seeds should not be fed to dogs, although they don’t contain any toxic substances. The reason why dogs shouldn’t eat watermelon seeds is that they can be a choking hazard and cause intestinal blockage. Smaller dogs, in particular, are susceptible to this, as a smaller amount of seeds is needed to cause issues. Regardless of your pooch’s size, you should avoid giving them watermelon with seeds in it, and stick to either seedless versions of the fruit, or manually pick out the seeds before giving it to your four-legged companion.

Are There Any Risks to Feeding Watermelon to Dogs?

Although watermelon is not dangerous for dogs and doesn’t contain any potentially harmful substances, overindulging in this sweet fruit could cause issues. Too much of a good thing can be bad, especially when it comes to eating! If you get carried away with the serving size, it’s probable that your pet will get diarrhea, or even vomit. Dogs are not the most reliable judges when it comes to deciding how much food is too much, and it’s highly likely that they’d eat watermelon until they get sick of it.

To prevent any mishaps, limit the amount of the fruit you’re giving to your dog. If it’s their first time tasting watermelon, give them a bite or two, to see how they’ll react. If their tummy is not upset by it, increase their dose according to their size- big dogs can have a few slices, but small breeds shouldn’t have more than roughly a cup of chopped seedless watermelon. Otherwise, things might get real poopy real fast!

How to Serve Watermelon to Your Dog

By now, it’s obvious that you shouldn’t wonder can dogs eat watermelon- the real question is how to serve this delectable fruit to your four-legged companion. Considering the way pooches tend to live for moments when they get to gobble something up as fast as canine-ly possible, you’d think that having to consider how to serve them something would be ridiculous, but with watermelon, it’s more about safety than it is about manners.

If you’d just let your pooch munch on a wedge of watermelon as it is, not only that they’d be eating watermelon seeds (which they shouldn’t), but they’d probably just move on to nibbling on the rind as well. Not to mention the mess they’d make doing it!

Unless you want sticky floors and/or carpets and stained furniture, don’t give your dog watermelon inside the apartment. Rather, save that treat for a beach picnic or let them gorge on it outside, if you have a fenced yard. Of course, that’s if we’re talking about plain ol’ watermelon, de-seeded, sliced and cubed for your pupper’s pleasure. But that’s not the only way your pet could get to enjoy the iconic summer fruit. For a special, refreshing treat, you can always freeze watermelon cubes and pop them out when you want to reward your doggo.

Additionally, you can check out our fab Frosty Watermelon Dog Treat recipe, if you’re in the mood for making something special for your furry baby. While these frozen treats look super fancy and taste amazing (if you believe our four-legged taste testers), they’re quite easy to make. All you need is watermelon without seeds, pureed and mixed with coconut water and a tiny bit of honey. Pour the blended mixture into some cute silicone molds- preferably bone-shaped ones, because, ya know, pooches- and let freeze. As simple as it gets!

If you’re curious about more dog-safe nom-noms, including other fruits, veggies, and more, take a look at our food section for more information.

Angela Vuckovic
Angela Vuckovic

A proud mama to seven dogs and ten cats, Angela spends her days writing for her fellow pet parents and pampering her furballs, all of whom are rescues. When she's not gushing over her adorable cats or playing with her dogs, she can be found curled up with a good fantasy book.

More by Angela Vuckovic