Like humans, dogs can benefit from the nutrients derived from fruits, such as vitamin A, vitamin C, fiber and potassium. Some fruits, however, can have toxic effects on a dog and cause serious illness. In order to stay safe, you should remain aware of the foods you feed your dog and make sure only to stick with safe fruits.
Apples contain useful nutrients, such as vitamin C and fiber, and can supplement your dog's diet if served appropriately. Always core apples before serving them to your dog, because the seeds contain cyanide, which is potentially toxic to dogs (and all living things). If your dog mistakenly swallows a few seeds, it should not experience any health problems, but in large doses they can cause toxic reactions.
Some citrus fruits are healthy for dogs in moderation, including oranges. Your dog can benefit from the vitamin C, but beware of feeding your dog any food with excess sugar (oranges included). While oranges themselves present no health threat to dogs, excess sugar can cause canine obesity. As a result, reserve oranges as an occasional treat, and do not make them a daily snack.
The grapefruit is another citrus fruit that dogs may enjoy in moderation. Like an orange, it contains ample amounts of natural sugars, so do not feed it to your dog on a daily basis. Some dogs may not enjoy this fruit due to its sour flavor, but if you find that your dog loves the grapefruit, you can take comfort knowing that it provides vitamin C and potassium while being completely non-toxic.
The pear is another fruit rich in vitamin C and fiber. Like apples, pears also contain trace amounts of cyanide. If you want to feed pears to your dog, cut them into slices and remove the seeds. And as with all fruit, limit your servings to the occasional snacks in order to prevent canine obesity.
Additional Safe Fruits
On occasion, your dog may also enjoy other non-toxic fruits, which include bananas, red tomatoes, peaches, plums, mangoes, cantaloupes, and pineapples. Never allow your dog to eat the leaves or pits from any of these fruits, and remember to serve them in moderation.
Fruits to Avoid
Certain fruits can cause severe toxicity in dogs, and as a result, you should avoid feeding them to your dog at all costs. These include grapes and raisins, green tomatoes (and green parts of tomatoes), avocados and persimmons.