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Fresh, jewel-colored pomegranates are popular at the holidays for good reason: their seeds make a great garnish, and the fruits themselves are a stunning centerpiece. Not only that, but they’re a staple in Persian food—and their juice has become increasingly available in local grocery stores. Humans benefit from pomegranate, but what about dogs? Can your dog enjoy a pomegranate as a snack? Well, maybe. We did some digging into the research, and it turns out to be a little more complex than a simple yes or no.
First and foremost, pomegranates themselves are not toxic to dogs. In fact, pomegranates have plenty of health benefits to offer our pets in fruit, juice, and extract form. These beautiful fall fruits are rich in antioxidants and high in fiber, potassium, folic acid, and vitamin C. That said, eating a large quantity of raw pomegranate may upset your dog’s stomach, so it’s best to provide small bites or better yet, offer dog treats or food enhanced with pomegranate.
It’s thought that the tannins in pomegranate are what upset a dog’s stomach. However, dog treats containing pomegranate are not so rich in tannins and provide the health benefits of pomegranate without the risk.
Benefits of Pomegranate Extract for Dogs
While raw pomegranate seeds or flesh may cause stomach upset for dogs, pomegranate extracts have been studied as potentially very healthy additions to your dog’s diet.
A recent study has also shown that supplementing a dog’s diet with pomegranate peel extract (PPE) can have a positive impact on their overall digestive and gut health. Don’t give your dog raw pomegranate peel, however, as this is difficult to digest.
Another promising study showed that pomegranate extract had a positive effect on dogs’ heart health. Consult your veterinarian if you’re interested in supplementing your dog’s diet with pomegranate extract, as they’ll have the best recommendations for dosage and sourcing.
My Dog Ate a Pomegranate: Symptoms to Look For
If your dog ate a raw pomegranate, don’t worry too much! Even if they devoured the entire fruit, seeds, peel and all, it’s best to simply keep an eye on their reaction. Provide plenty of water and monitor their symptoms. If your dog does have an adverse reaction to pomegranate, this could cause vomiting, but not much else, and any stomach upset shouldn’t last long.
The dog’s digestive system will simply try to expel the fruit and then quickly recover, so unless the vomiting is severe and prolonged, it’s likely not necessary to take your dog to the vet if they react to eating a pomegranate.
Did your dog eat pomegranate seeds? Small quantities of pomegranate seeds are unlikely to cause any trouble for your dog. In fact, they’d make a fine little snack if your dog is interested, as long as it’s just a few.
For More Information
We have tons of articles about which foods are safe or dangerous for your dog, including various cereals, fruits, and snacks. You might also be interested in reading “Can My Dog Eat Pineapple?” and Safe and Dangerous Spices for Dogs.