Fruits are a great source of nutrients for Golden Retrievers as they are rich in both macro and micronutrients while being soft on their tummies.
GRs can eat a variety of fruits like apples, bananas, strawberries, blueberries, apricots, coconut, etc however some fruits like cherries, grapes, and avocados are toxic to these dogs and should be avoided.
Why should you feed your Golden Retriever Fruits?
Fruits are natural sources of essential nutrients that are preservative-free, thus keeping the dog healthy in the most natural way possible. Fruits provide the following nutrients:
These are the proteins, fats, and carbohydrates that a dog needs in abundance for the maintenance of muscle mass, fat layers, energy reserves, and procurement of energy.
An ideal diet for Goldies should contain 5-8 % fats, and about 10% of proteins, and the rest should constitute carbohydrates with small portions of vitamins and minerals.
These natural compounds are essential for the maintenance of different body systems of a dog such as the immune, circulatory, and skeletal systems and vision.
Namely, A, B, C, D, E, and K, their absence can lead to a number of diseases that can be easily avoided just by adding these to your pooch’s diet.
These include the basic elements that we call electrolytes viz sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, copper, iron, etc.
They are required for the functioning of enzymes at the cellular level and also for the development and maintenance of the body’s macro systems like the muscles, bones, and nervous tissue.
Although required in small quantities, their absence can lead to severe organ dysfunctions. Also, their excess can derange a dog’s body functions so they should be kept in their respective ranges.
Fibers are insoluble plant compounds that cannot be digested but they absorb a lot of water. Thus, they give bulk or volume to feces, decreasing the chances of diarrheal stools and allowing easy passage of feces through the digestive system.
Too much fiber, however, can lead to constipation so that should be kept in mind.
All fruits must contain some calories along with nutrients to give energy to a dog’s body so it can perform physical activities without feeling lethargic.
But some fruits like oranges and bananas are rich in calories while others like cucumbers contain too few of them. So it becomes important to know how much fruit to give and whether to give it as a meal or a post-meal snack.
Antioxidants are a variety of compounds that help detoxify toxins and reduce inflammatory mediators thus minimizing the damage to the body tissues by foreign and innate chemicals and reducing signs of natural aging.
Fruits and vegetables are great sources of antioxidants and should be included in the diet. Be sure you know how often to feed your Golden Retriever puppy so you do not overfeed them.
27 Fruits That Golden Retriever Can Eat
Here’s a list of all the fruits that you can give to your Golden Retriever:
Everyone loves mangoes for their sweet taste and consistency but what people don’t realize about mangoes is that they are rich in protein, iron, fibers, and vitamins A & C.
Thus, they help maintain muscle mass, and blood cell count, aid in digestion, regulate vision, and all this while providing adequate calories for everyday activities.
I like mangoes for my GRs particularly because theta is super easy to peel, cut, and serve in small-sized chunks and is very light on the pooch’s tummy.
These contain a lot of fibers that give bulk to the stool, allowing it to pass easily through the gut without much straining. This makes them also a good food during diarrhea bouts.
Peaches also provide some quantities of protein, sodium, and sugar.
It is very easy to remove the seeds and leaves from peaches as most of it is just juicy flesh that your dog will like a lot.
These are rich in vitamins A, C & K which are required for the functioning of retinal pigment cells, collagen deposition, and blood clotting respectively.
The fiber contained in them makes them good for the tummy. Plums also are a good source of calories so they will be a good pre-workout snack for your Goldies too.
Peeling plums is not required as dogs generally can eat their skin, however, you can just cut them into smaller pieces so they are easy to chew and digest.
No list of fruits is ever complete without the mention of apples.
Apples contain about 80% water in them to prevent dehydration. Their vitamin C content makes them good for immunity. The fibers make them make your dog feel full with a small caloric intake, helping in maintaining a good weight.
The number of ways apples can be given is also amazing, you can give them as small chunks alone, mix them into a salad, or make apple juice.
However, apple seeds contain cyanide that is poisonous for dogs so these must be removed before serving.
We all know strawberries for their sweet taste and the fact that strawberry shake is fantastic, but did you know that strawberries also provide fibers and antioxidants?
The antioxidants in them reduce inflammatory mediators and help the body recover from illnesses. Also, these slow down the aging process.
Strawberries are also 90% water thus excellent to cure dehydration. Plus, they are abundant in calories so keep your dog’s energy level high.
Cranberries are essentially fat-free while having moderate calories. They also contain proteins and electrolytes like sodium thus making them good for dogs to recover from strenuous activities.
The sugar content provides energy while the fibers are good for the stomach.
Being abundant in electrolytes like potassium and magnesium, bananas help regulate the function of nerves and heart muscles.
Also, bananas provide vitamins C & B6, required for immunity and cellular enzyme functions. The biotin content is good for the skin and hair of your pooch.
I like them for being easily digested, and providing quick calories for dogs, especially before an activity. You can give small pieces to your pooch to eat or mix bananas with other fruits in a salad.
One thing to note is that too much of these can lead to weight gain as they contain a lot of calories, so give these in moderation.
These tropical fruits are full of nutrients. The beta carotene in them helps in vision while vitamin C makes the immune system stronger.
They are also full of electrolytes like copper and potassium that help regulate cellular activities. Plus, they contain adequate fibers.
Before giving your pooch apricots, make sure you have removed the seeds and leaves as they contain cyanide and can be toxic to your pooch.
Most of you already know that pears are a good source of fiber and water to help with loose stools but their nutritional value is little known.
Pears are rich in potassium, copper, and magnesium, these electrolytes are required for the normal functioning of cellular enzymes and for maintaining the electrical activity of nerves.
It is easy to cut pears into smaller chunks before giving them to your pooch, also you can freeze them during summer and serve them cool to fight off the summer heat.
Pineapples are just beautiful to look at but are a very nutritious fruit for dogs. They are a good source of vitamin C, provide moderate fibers, and are low in fats.
Their caloric content makes them a good snack before sports while they are juicy enough to provide some water as well. With that, pineapples provide sodium, potassium, and magnesium to help in electrolyte balance.
However, make sure you remove the crown and peel off the skin and give your dog thin slices to eat.
These sweet fruits provide manganese, folic acid, and beta-carotene to name a few micronutrients. Plus, they help your pooch’s digestive tract through its fibers.
Antioxidants and vitamin C help keep your dog young and healthy by fighting off inflammatory compounds and improving immunity.
The caloric content allows the dog’s energy levels to be maintained during activities.
I like to give persimmons to my dog as treats every now and then after I have removed the seeds.
Clementine is a hybrid citrus fruit that is rich in vitamin C with some quantities of vitamin B6, potassium, and dietary fibers.
I use these as snacks for my GRs and serve them from time to time. If your dog likes oranges, it would definitely like them as well.
Melons contain folate and niacin which are good for nerve tissue development. They also contain enough fibers to help you with digestion.
Contrary to the general belief, melons are not high in calories despite being sweet because their volume is due to their high water content. This also makes them good food to fight dehydration in summer.
Their seeds are pretty much harmless but I prefer removing them as they are a nuisance in the mouth and my dog prefers the pure flesh part to eat.
Kiwis are good for fighting off infections as they contain antioxidants and are rich in vitamin C. Also, they contain adequate electrolytes.
Avoid overfeeding your dog kiwis as they contain a lot of insoluble fibers that may upset your pooch’s gut, moderation is the key here.
The seeds are easy to remove and you can serve them in slices or make icy popsicles in summer by freezing
Although these provide copper, potassium, iron, and calcium, Limes are not a major source of these elements and their high citric acid content makes them unhealthy for the stomach when given in excess.
Plus, their sour taste makes them not a favorite snack for a lot of Goldies. Still, if you find your dog liking Limes, you can give these in moderation after peeling off the skin.
You can add these to your fruit mixture for GRs in small quantities due to their high citric acid levels.
They have a similar taste to lime and not all pooches will like them so have to be careful with these.
Another citrus fruit that is abundant in vitamin C is tangerine although known by different names across the world.
These are also good sources of sodium as well as sugars so help in maintaining the body’s electrolytes with the added benefit of giving energy.
You can put these in the same category as oranges but they are slightly higher in fiber so are good for your pooch’s tummy.
However, their high sugar content means you’d have to be careful with these when you want your GR to lose weight.
Despite being sweet, dates are good for the health of your dog as they contain vitamins A, B, and C with a lot of fiber while being cholesterol free. As mentioned before, these aid in maintaining eyesight, skin, and hair growth.
The calcium content is good for keeping the bones healthy and the potassium keeps the electrolyte balance in the blood.
Sugars in dates are quick to be digested and available for usage, thus they can be given for a quick boost in energy before any exercise.
Golden Retrievers can eat the fleshy part of the coconut after removing the husk and hard coat. This is rich in essential oils that are good for the hair and skin of the pooch.
Also, coconuts contain antioxidants that reduce toxins in the blood and slow the aging of cells.
Dogs with tree allergies will rarely be allergic to coconuts as they do not have most of the proteins involved in inflammation.
Oranges are a big source of vitamin C, keeping the immune system of your pooch healthy. Also, they provide a lot of water and some fibers to ease digestion.
However, not all dogs like their taste, so you need to do your experiments with this fruit to see whether your pooch is a fan or not.
Due to their citric acid content and high sugars, oranges should be given in moderation.
Many people are apprehended by the toxic Xylitol content of raspberries but what they don’t realize is that one would have to give a lot of these berries for the dog to feel ill.
These are harmless in the amount you would naturally give to your dog.
Folic acid and vitamin content make them good for immunity, skin health, and nerve tissue maintenance.
Being rich in antioxidants makes them good for dogs that are ill and would result in quicker recovery. Also, they contain a lot of electrolytes like copper, manganese, potassium, and magnesium.
Blackberries are not just soft and juicy but also contain many antioxidants, helping your pooch fight off infections and people, the cells, and in turn the dog, young and healthy.
They also partly fulfill the vitamin needs of vitamins A, B, C, E, and K.
Moderate amounts of plant fibers increase the stool volume and help in voiding without much straining.
Blackberries can also be given in summer as frozen berries as snacks that also help cool your dog.
These small little bluish purple berries are rich in antioxidants and vitamins that help protect your dog from inflammatory mediators and age-related health issues.
Also, these are delicious while being low in sugar so you can easily give them to your dog as snacks without worrying that it might gain weight.
This fruit belongs to the family of melons and is super soft to eat and sweet to taste. Cantaloupes are rich in electrolytes such as sodium, magnesium, and potassium which help regulate cellular function.
Iron content allows for the maintenance of a good Hb level while vitamin C allows the dog’s body to have a good immune system.
Also, cantaloupes contain some fibers which are good for the gut.
This is a particularly soft fruit that you can easily cut into pieces to serve your dog without the need for softening it further.
Botanically regarded as fruit, cucumbers are a great source of fiber with very low calories so we can use them for dogs that need bulk in their stools and need to lose weight.
Plus, they contain water mostly, thus helping prevent dehydration.
27. Dragon Fruit
Also known as pitaya, this fruit is native to America that is rich in proteins, fiber, iron, and magnesium.
The proteins help in muscle development while the fibers give your pooch’s stools bulk. Iron helps in maintaining red blood cell function while magnesium along with other electrolytes keeps the cellular electrical activity intact.
You would need to peel off the pink layer and give the inner white fleshy fruit in small pieces to your dog.
Fruits That Are Toxic To Golden Retrievers
Some fruits have chemicals that are toxic to Golden Retrievers and most other dog breeds and your pooch needs to be kept away from them.
Grapes can be toxic to most dogs as they cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. This is usually mild but still, you should avoid giving your dog grapes.
Unripe tomatoes contain tomatine and solanine which are poisonous to dogs and lead to vomiting and diarrhea. When severe enough, it can lead to dehydration, lethargy, and circulatory collapse, hence these should be avoided by all dogs.
Ripe tomatoes are safer but they have oxalate in them which can combine with calcium in the blood to form calcium oxalate stones in the kidney. They also decrease calcium absorption from the gut by making insoluble complexes.
Thus, tomatoes should be given in moderation only once in a while.
Raisins are toxic just like grapes but more potent and they can lead to vomiting in your Goldies leading to lethargy, weakness, and dehydration. Hence, these should be avoided in dogs.
Persin is present in avocados which leads to diarrhea and vomiting thus leading to severe dehydration. Too much of it can lead to the death of your pooch.
Hence, all parts of avocados whether the seeds, flesh, or stem should never be given to dogs.
All parts of cherries contain cyanide, a poison that causes disruption of cellular function leading to hypoxia, and can cause instant death in large amounts.
Can Goldies Eat Fruit Every Day?
Yes, they can, fruits cover almost all the nutrients needed by a Golden Retriever, but these should be given in small portions every day in the form of small slices that are easy to chew and digest.
However, having fruits every day can become mundane for the dog.
The way I prefer is to rotate different fruits on several days and then have a fruit-free interval for a couple of days where I give my dog meat or dog food, sometimes with vegetables, and then introduce fruits again.
This helps keep the pooch’s tastebuds alive and does not make fruits a routine that needs to be followed every day.
Can You Give Golden Retrievers Fruits Only?
Although fruits contain all sorts of nutrients, your pooch shouldn’t rely solely on them as they contain a lot of fibers that can lead to indigestion and constipation.
Also, most fruits are rich in sugars while being poor in proteins. Such a diet will lead to muscle wasting in dogs with the deposition of abundant fats. This will make your pooch weak and prone to cardiovascular illnesses.
The best way is to have a balance between the different types of foods a GR can eat like fruits, vegetables, meat, and dog food. This reduces any chances of over or undernutrition and keeps the dog fit and healthy.
Moreover, if you want to vary the diet, you can follow my list of vegetables that golden retrievers can eat.
Final Words – Wrapping Up
Fruits are an excellent source of macro and micronutrients for Golden Retrievers and come in a vast variety for the GRs to have and enjoy. However, some fruits are toxic and need to be avoided.
Read the article to know about the many fruits that GRs can have and why these are essential.
Source: Dog Nutrition PDF