Can Dogs Eat Oranges?

Published: 03/11/2021
Short answer: Yes! Dogs can eat oranges, although not all canines will find them tasty!

But if your pooch does get a hold of an orange, you don’t have to be concerned. However, there are a few considerations about this sweet, vitamin C-rich treat when it comes to our four-legged best friends. Read on to find out if it’s okay to feed your dog the occasional slice of orange!

Can dogs eat oranges?
The fruit portion of oranges is tart and tasty, and yes, your dog can enjoy oranges!
What is good about oranges for dogs?

Dogs can eat oranges in small quantities. 

Oranges are packed full of vitamin C, which is an important vitamin for wound healing. Vitamin A is also found in oranges, offering support to bone growth and vision.

Oranges also contain fiber, an essential component of a healthy digestive system, and also have carotene. Potassium and magnesium are two other nutrients in this citrus fruit.

What types of oranges can your dog eat? In moderation, dogs can enjoy the vitamins and nutrients in clementines, tangerines, and oranges (navel oranges are a good choice).

Can my dog eat orange peels?

No. Dogs should not eat the peel, pith, or seeds from oranges. For one, you don’t want your dog eating a lot of peels that can bulk up in the intestine, causing a dangerous blockage for your pet.

Orange peels also contain oils that may upset your dog’s stomach. Signs of gastrointestinal upset can be diarrhea, vomiting, and dehydration if the situation gets serious.

Remember, if you do decide to give your dog oranges, start with a slice and see their reaction. Some pooches will balk at the tartness and others may experience stomach upset.

Can eating oranges be bad for my dog?

While the occasional slice or two of oranges is okay, too many oranges on a regular basis can cause problems.

  • Blocked intestine: As mentioned, an intestinal obstruction is a dangerous occurrence for a dog and will likely result in a visit to the emergency clinic and an expensive surgery. 

  • Choking: Oranges have the texture and consistency to be a choking hazard. When letting your dog try oranges, make sure the peeling is removed, the pits are taken out and the pith (the white part between the skin and the orange) is removed also.

  • Stomach issues: Some dogs will react to oranges with diarrhea. If you let your dog sample an orange slice and their next stool is soft, try another fruit, like banana, instead. Pupsters with sensitive gastrointestinal issues should not be fed food that can cause any kind of tummy trouble. For a treat, try something like oatmeal or rice.

Blood sugar spikes: A sudden rise in blood sugar is an issue, in particular, in dogs with diabetes. Canines with diseases like diabetes should be on a vet-approved diet, with treats specific to their condition. Oranges have a lot of sugar, so must be avoided in some cases.
How many oranges can my dog eat?

Dogs who develop a taste for the citrus flavors of oranges should not be fed more than 10% of their calories per day of this high-sugar fruit. This translates to about ½ to 1 slice a day for small dogs, to 3 slices maximum for big dogs.

Remember, your dog does not need the added sugar. The vitamin C in oranges can boost your pup’s immunity a bit, but good quality dog food will contain the necessary nutrients to keep your dog healthy.

The acidity in oranges can be more than your dog’s stomach agrees with, resulting in loose stools and even vomiting. 

Start slowly with a tiny morsel or two and see how your dog reacts. To note, orange juice is a bad idea. It is concentrated, meaning it’s loaded with sugar and with citric acid. Give your pooch fresh water to drink instead!

Fun ways to give your pooch oranges:

  • Mix tiny pieces of orange with some sweet potatoes

  • Make tiny broccoli and orange salad, with both cut into small pieces

  • Mix tiny bits of orange with peanut butter (no xylitol in the peanut butter as it is toxic!) and smear it on Kong, freezing it for a frozen treat

Food Safety Takeaway

There are plenty of fruits your dog may enjoy, and veggies, too! Take a look at these guides to learn about food safety for your dog. When unsure about a certain food, consult your veterinarian first.

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