As the air cools around us and leaves begin to change colors, it’s time to say goodbye to summer and hello to fall. During fall, we look forward to creepy costumes, food-filled festivities, and family gatherings. The kiddos jump into piles of freshly raked leaves and go trick-or-treating for candy. Furthermore, your adorable dog bounces through the kitchen to await those yummy table scraps. Undoubtedly, pumpkin is the most notable of fall flavors and pups have come to love its delicious taste! As you’re sneaking bits of Thanksgiving food to Fido, you might be wondering: can my dog eat pumpkin?
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Can Your Dog Eat Pumpkin: Yes!
By and large, pumpkin is astoundingly safe and nutritious for your furbaby to gobble up. In fact, multiple resources note that pumpkin is not bad for your dog in any way! Many dog parents love the idea of giving wholesome and homemade snacks to their pup, but are worried about the possible side effects. Fortunately, pumpkin is a wonderful choice that comes action-packed of antioxidants and nutrients.
A Bit About Pumpkin
The pumpkin vegetable is native to North America and can come in a vast array of colors, shapes, and sizes. Yet, its most notable form is round in size, fairly large, and deep orange in color. As you probably know, this variation is a favorite among families for Jack-O-Lantern carving and homemade pies. Also, the plant grows along the ground’s surface as a creeping vine. Additionally, it is often referred to as “garden gorilla,” because of its size and the space needed to grow.
While most resources refer to the pumpkin as a vegetable, the classification is up for debate. Pumpkins contain yummy seeds, which can be roasted and eaten. In fact, containing seeds is a defining trait of fruit. Vegetable or fruit, the classification is open to interpretation.
The Benefits of Pumpkin for You and Your Dog
Top Dog Tips note, “Pumpkin is considered a type of superfood as it provides multiple vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can help with weight loss, cancer prevention, and cholesterol control.” Not only is the winter vegetable healthy for humans in many ways, but you can share its benefits with your drooling pup! That being said, we have yet to find a resource that concludes differently.
According to Top Dog Tips, one cup of pumpkin contains: 49 calories, 12 grams of carbs, 3 grams of fiber, 2 grams of protein, vitamin K, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin B6, Potassium, Copper, Manganese, Riboflavin, Iron, Folate, Niacin, Pantothenic Acid, and Thiamin. All things considered, we recognize that this information may vary depending on your source.
Essentially, all of these vitamins and nutrients have beneficial effects for your furbaby. First, pumpkin is 90% water. By the same token, a pumpkin snack or spoonful to kibble is a sure way to bring moisture into their diet. Second, the vegetable’s oils, antioxidants, and fatty acids help to improve Fido’s urinary tract function. Third, it contains fiber which is great for digestion and weight loss. Additionally, the increased fiber helps with constipation, diarrhea, and eliminates the growth of harmful bacteria in the gut. Overall, pumpkin is your go-to snack for gastrointestinal problems!
A Closer Look at Pumpkin’s Vitamins
Noted above, three essential vitamins found in pumpkin include vitamin K, vitamin C, and vitamin E. You may be wondering, what can these vitamins actually do for your loving pup? Next, we’ll dive into the details to help you gain a better understanding.
Dr. Sarah Cohraine, PhM, explains that vitamin K is broken down into two categories: K1 and K2. Vitamin K1 helps to improve the liver and blood, while vitamin K2 is excellent for heart and bone-related diseases. Also, both are fat-soluble and can be found naturally in a variety of foods, such as cabbage, spinach, etc.
Uniquely, dogs naturally produce vitamin C in their bodies. In fact, under normal circumstances, no added supplement is needed. In contrast, some veterinarians recommend added vitamin C during times of stress, sport injury recovery, or joint pain. However, too much vitamin C can be harmful!
Petmd.com indicates that vitamin E is a potential antioxidant that, “stops the cycle of cellular injury” caused by free radicals. Moreover, the vitamin forms cell membranes, helping to restore molecular damage. That being said, it is great for keeping your dog’s skin and coat healthy. Also, It is fat-soluble and can be found naturally in foods like plant oils, coconut, etc. Nevertheless, too much vitamin E can cause an overdose.
How to Feed Pumpkin to a Dog
From our research, we found that all sources indicate that it’s safe for your dog to chow down on pumpkin. Ideally, the best way to incorporate the vegetable into Fido’s diet is through treats or adding a spoonful on top of their meal. In any event, you should make sure to only use fresh, cooked, or canned pumpkin when doing so.
Many pet parents may be leery of using canned pumpkin with their furbaby. In fact, this method is just as healthy and not worse in any way! Plus, it’s less messy and might save you a couple bucks. Dogs will only experience negative side effects if fed:
- Added spices
- Artificial flavor
- Pumpkin pie filling
Safe and Recommended Pumpkin Dog Products
Fruitables Pumpkin Dog Treats
Variety Pack of 6
Plenty of flavor options
Lots of different variety packs
No wheat, corn, soy, by-products, artificial ingredients, or preservatives
Less than 9 calories per treat
It’s no secret that we are in love with Fruitables dog treats, and their pumpkin variations are no exception! Essentially, the little treats come in a cute flower shape with a crunchy texture, which can be broken up if need be. Creatively, an owner can use them as a healthy holiday training treat!
We love that the Fruitables Pumpkin Dog Treats are USA made at under 9 calories per treat. Not only are they hypoallergenic, but all their ingredients are from real food! In addition, you will happily find no wheat, corn, soy, by-products, artificial ingredients, or preservatives. Also, as a health-conscious snack, you should expect to find it at a premium price. On Amazon, you can purchase the flavors individually or in variety packs. Here, you can see the details of the variety packs Fruitables offers:
Variety Pack of 3. Contains one 7-Ounce pouch each of pumpkin apple, pumpkin banana, and pumpkin blueberry.
Variety Pack of 4. Contains a 7oz bag of each flavor, including pumpkin apple, pumpkin blueberry, pumpkin cranberry and pumpkin banana
Variety Pack of 5. Contains a 7oz bag of each flavor, including pumpkin apple, pumpkin banana, pumpkin blueberry, pumpkin cranberry and sweet potato and pecan
Variety Pack of 6. Contains a 7oz bag of each flavor, including pumpkin apple, pumpkin banana, pumpkin blueberry, pumpkin cranberry, apple bacon, and sweet potato pecan.
Variety Pack of 10. Contains two 7oz bags of each flavor, including pumpkin apple, pumpkin banana, pumpkin blueberry, pumpkin cranberry, and sweet potato pecan.
Variety Pack of 12. Contains two 7oz bags of each flavor, including pumpkin apple, pumpkin banana, pumpkin blueberry, pumpkin cranberry, apple bacon, and sweet potato pecan.
Diggin Your Dog Firm Up Pumpkin Supplement
Natural anti-diarrhea effect
24-month shelf life
2 flavor options
The Firm Up Pumpkin Supplement by Diggin Your Dog is a powder that can be mixed with water or sprinkled over your pup’s meal. Ideally, its purpose is to aid your furbaby in urinary tract and digestive health. In essence, the Firm Up Pumpkin Supplement has a natural anti-diarrhea effect.
Like Fruitables mentioned above, this supplement is made in the USA. Although their packaging lists amount suggestions, customers noted the suggestion might be off depending on your unique pup. Ultimately, the selling factor of the Firm Up Supplement lies within their resealable bag and 24 month shelf life. In contrast, the shelf life of a normal can of pumpkin is no match! Furthermore, customers love how Firm Up is easy to travel with.
Diggin Your Dog offers two options for their Firm Up Pumpkin Supplement: pumpkin or pumpkin and cranberry. Basically, the plain pumpkin option contains pumpkin and apple pectin, while the cranberry version contains the same with the obvious addition of cranberry. All in all, we love how this supplement has limited ingredients and steers clear of unnecessary additives.
In the end, it is completely safe to feed your dog pumpkin. Not to mention, it is considered a superfood among us humans; containing great vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants! While you’re chowing down on pumpkin, consider sneaking some to Fido. Keep in mind, it should not contain any spices, preservatives, or additives.
By and large, feeding your dog pumpkin is an excellent and natural way to aid their gastrointestinal functions. This considered, if your furbaby is experiencing constipation or diarrhea, try adding some pumpkin to their diet.
Above all, dogs love the taste of pumpkin. They will happily gobble it up and feel great in no time! If it is treats and supplements you are looking for, check out Fruitables Pumpkin Dog Treats and Diggin Your Dog Firm Up Pumpkin Supplement. Ideally, both use pumpkin as the main ingredient to provide the ultimate health benefits.