We humans love pears and it's natural to want to share the things we love with our dogs. Sometimes, however, this inclination gets our dogs into trouble. Most pet owners know that not all fruits and vegetables are safe for dogs, but can dogs eat pears? Fortunately, for our canine companions, the answer is yes.
Are pears safe for dogs?
Yes, the flesh of pears is perfectly safe for dogs. The pear should be ripe to make sure it is soft enough for your dog to chew easily. You should also make sure that you cut the pear into bite-sized pieces so that it doesn't become a choking hazard.>
Unfortunately, many dogs also love the taste of pears, so they can be an easy and satisfying treat for your furry friend.
Pear pits, however, contain traces of cyanide, which can be toxic to dogs if ingested in large quantities. Pear pits can also be difficult for dogs to digest, so you should never feed your dog the pits or the casing of a pear.
Are pears healthy for dogs?
Okay, so dogs can eat pears - but should they? Once again, the answer is yes, but only in moderation.
Pears are a good source of fibre, which aids digestion, and also contain important nutrients such as vitamin C and potassium. And since they are also low in calories, a small amount of pear every now and then is a healthy snack for dogs.
The high sugar content of pears makes them a good source of fibre.
However, the high sugar content of pears can cause stomach upset, so dogs should only eat pears occasionally.
1% vitamin A:
Vitamin A supports a dog's vision, immune system, bones and muscles, skin and coat.
7% vitamin C:
Vitamin C supports the immune system and promotes joint health.
4% vitamin K:
Vitamin K supports your four-legged friend's body in proper blood clotting.
5% potassium (electrolytes):
Potassium maintains fluid balance and supports nerve and muscle function.
9 mg calcium (minerals) per 100 g:
Calcium ensures strong teeth and bones.
8% dietary fibre:
Fibre aids digestion and makes faeces firmer.
Carbohydrates provide your dog's body with energy.
9% copper (minerals):
The mineral copper ensures a healthy immune system, shiny coat and supports bone formation.
Risks of feeding pears to dogs
Although pears can provide good nutritional value for dogs, there are also some risks associated with feeding pears. Keep these risks in mind before deciding whether or not to treat your dog to a snack made from chopped pears
Pear pits are toxic
As we mentioned earlier, pear pits contain cyanide, which can be toxic in large quantities. Never give your dog pear pits and never give him a whole pear to nibble on
Pears contain a lot of sugar
Pears have a sugar content of about 10%. Combined with the fibre content of pears, this can cause diarrhoea or upset stomach if your pet eats too much. This also means that pears are not a suitable treat for dogs that suffer from diabetes.
Pears must be ripe
Unripe, rotten or mouldy pears can also cause stomach upset and should never be fed to dogs.
If you are unsure whether your dog should eat pears because he has health problems, ask your vet for advice.
Are canned pears safe for dogs?
No. Canned pears (and many other canned fruits) are high in sugar and should be avoided at all costs. Too much sugar can not only cause gastrointestinal problems, but can also lead to weight gain and obesity in dogs
Stick to fresh, raw fruit if you want to share a pear with your dog.
How should you prepare pears for your dog?
Pears are good for dogs and if prepared properly, they are safe. Be sure to wash the pear to remove any chemicals that might be on it. Then remove the core, seeds and stem. You don't want your dog to eat the seeds because they can contain traces of cyanide. This is the general rule for any fruit with pips, seeds or stones. They may contain amygdalin, a compound that breaks down into hydrogen cyanide and is toxic to dogs. Don't worry if your dog has eaten a few seeds, he would have to eat more than a few to get sick.
Also, pitted fruits like pears, if swallowed, can cause your dog to choke. They can also get stuck in their digestive tract.
Summary of how to prepare pears:
- The ripest pear - be choosy!
- Remove the leaves and stem.
- Wash thoroughly to remove all chemicals and residues.
- Cut the fruit in half, then cut one half of the fruit into two pieces.
- Remove all seeds and cut away the casing of the fruit.
- Cut the two pieces into 2-3 cm thick slices.
- Medium to large dogs can safely have two fresh slices, small dogs only one slice.
- You can make several treats out of one slice by cutting it into small pieces.
- Freeze a few pieces for a cool treat on a hot day.
How much pears can dogs eat?
Just because pears are safe for dogs doesn't mean your dog should eat pears regularly. In moderation, pears are a healthy snack, full of vitamin C, vitamin A and fibre. But as with any other food you give your dog, too many pears can cause an upset stomach. So how much is too much? Vets recommend limiting treat intake to 10 per cent of your dog's daily diet. For small dogs, this means that a slice of pear now and then is enough, a whole pear is probably too much. If in doubt, ask your vet.