Are you a fan of dragon fruit? Have you wondered if dogs can eat dragon fruit? Despite the rubbery, spiky petals on the outside of the fruit, the soft, tasty inside of dragon fruit is perfectly safe for your dog to eat. In fact, it’s rather sweet and many dogs like it. As long as you remove the outer covering of the fruit, the fruit is safe to give to your dog in small amounts.
What Is Dragon Fruit?
Dragon fruit – also known as pitaya or pitahaya – is fruit from several different cactuses that are native to the Americas. Today dragon fruit is cultivated in southeast Asia, Florida, the Caribbean, Australia, and in many tropical and subtropical regions of the world. The fruit has a leathery skin with prominent scaly spikes.
Some dragon fruit, commonly grown in the Americas, is more sour and juicier, though refreshing. These fruits have a stronger taste. Sweet pitayas are generally grown in southeast Asia.
The color of the fruit’s flesh can vary from white to pink to red, depending on the species. The leathery skin can be bright pink. Dragon fruit imported from Vietnam is usually sweet with white flesh inside. This is usually the mildest of the dragon fruits. Dragon fruit from central America can be a deep maroon color inside and may have a stronger taste that is slightly more sour. If the fruit is grown in the Middle East it may have a bright pink interior and taste mildly sweet. All of the dragon fruits are full of moisture.
The texture of the fruit is often compared to the kiwi and it contains small black seeds like the kiwi.
Is Dragon Fruit Healthy?
The seeds of the dragon fruit are rich in lipids which can be good for your dog’s skin and coat. A general analysis of dragon fruit shows that it has 4 percent protein and 82 percent carbohydrates, with 14 percent fats. It is high in vitamin C and calcium. Dragon fruit is high in antioxidants which are good for your dog.
Dragon fruit is low in calories. Since dragon fruit is so high in moisture, giving your dog some as a treat is a good way to help him hydrate.
The fruit is also high in fiber which can be good for your dog’s digestive system. The fruit tends to be very easy to digest.
How to Give Your Dog Dragon Fruit
Most dogs will probably prefer the sweeter varieties of dragon fruit. It’s very important to remove the leathery exterior of the fruit. This husk is hard to digest and it wouldn’t taste very good so don’t give it to your dog. Only the soft inside of the fruit is considered to be edible.
Once you have removed the outside of the fruit, you can cut up the dragon fruit into small slices. You can give your dog 2-3 spoons of dragon fruit in his bowl. Or, you can mash some of the fruit up and add it to his regular dog food.
Be careful not to give your dog too much dragon fruit, especially in the beginning. As with any fruit, too much can lead to digestive problems such as diarrhea. As we mentioned, dragon fruit, like other fruits, contains lots of fiber. Too much fiber can upset your dog’s stomach.
Many dogs will enjoy dragon fruit since it is often mildly sweet and soft to eat. However, not all dogs will like it. If your dog doesn’t like fruit in general or dragon fruit in particular, don’t feel bad. You can probably find another healthy fruit or vegetable that he enjoys as a treat. If your dog does like dragon fruit, that’s great. The fruit has some good health benefits and it makes a nice treat for dogs.