We all love to give our dogs a tasty treat from time to time, but it can be difficult to know what is safe. Giving treats with natural ingredients has become more popular in recent years, as has given fruit and veggies. There are plenty of foods that can be given safely in small amounts that will actually give your dog added nutrients as well as a delicious snack. so, can dogs eat apricots?
Risks of Apricots for Dogs
Apricots are a great snack for humans, but can dogs eat them without risk of health issues? Well, in certain circumstances they can, but there are certain parts of the fruit that must not be ingested. The seeds of an apricot contain trace amounts of Cyanide, as do the leaves, stem and pit (stone in the middle) which can be harmful or even fatal in large doses.
If you dog does manage to get hold of a whole apricot, it is important that you keep an eye out for signs of apricot poisoning, which would present with the following symptoms:
- Difficulty breathing
- Red gums
These symptoms can show as quickly as 15 minutes after your dog eats apricot, so you will need to keep a close eye on him. If you suspect apricot poisoning, you should get your dog checked by a vet immediately.
The flesh of an apricot provides lots of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Potassium is important for the function of blood vessels and muscle. It also works to regulate the acidity of bodily fluids. Fibre is essential for a healthy digestive system and is the best remedy for upset stomachs and bouts of diarrhoea. Apricot also contains beta carotene which is important for a variety of functions. It works as a precursor to Vitamin A, since dogs cannot make this vitamin on their own. Beta Carotene is also necessary for eye health and can help prevent ailments such as cataracts.
Conclusion – Can dogs eat Apricots?
So, how can you give your dog apricots safely? Before giving your dog an apricot treat, you must ensure that you remove the leaves, stem, pit and all seeds. An occasional treat of chopped apricot flesh, is a healthy alternative to processed dog treats. Dried apricots, however, should be avoided as they contain concentrated sugars and calories which can cause weight gain. Apricot should only be given in small amounts as too much can cause a build-up of fibre, leading to digestive distress.
Some ideas if you want to give apricot are simply chopping the flesh into treat sized pieces or mixing the flesh into their food. Alternatively, you can give your dog healthy grain free and gluten free treats like these alligator chews by Whimzees. The medium size is great for Patterdale Terriers and the chews help to remove build up around the teeth and support good dental health.
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