I’m always looking for things I can use to make snacks for the dogs in daycare and boarding. In the summer it gets hot and I like to provide a treat or snack that is not only refreshing but healthy. I like to make popsicles and well as water balls. They are no fun if they are just water so I add things like toys and fruits before or during the freezing process. Below are the fruits that are good for dogs and some that you should never give your dogs.

Good Fruits

Apples are a great source of potassium, fiber, phytonutrients, flavonoids, vitamin C. The seeds contain arsenic so be sure the core and seeds are kept away from your pup. Half an apple slice makes a good treat size.

Bananas offer potassium and carbohydrates for dogs (1 inch is a good size treat).  Bananas are a good ingredient for homemade dog cupcakes or biscuits. It will help keep biscuits soft.

Blackberries are a great source of antioxidants (anthocyans), polyphenols, tannin, fiber, manganese, folate, and omega-3s. They’re also high in vitamins C, K, A and E. Two or 3 blackberries is a good size treat. They stand up to being frozen in a popsicle or adding flavor to a cookie.

Blueberries offer a rich source of antioxidants, selenium, zinc and iron. Blueberries also contain vitamins C, E, A and B complex. 2 or 3 blueberries is a good size treat. This superfood can help your pup’s immune system. 

Cantaloupe is packed with nutrients, low in calories, and a great source of water and fiber. It is, however, high in sugar, so should be shared in moderation, especially for dogs who are overweight or have diabetes.

Cranberries and dried cranberries are safe to feed to dogs in small quantities. Whether your dog will like this tart treat is another question. Either way, moderation is important when feeding cranberries to dogs, as with any treat, as too many cranberries can lead to an upset stomach.

Coconut contains lauric acid, which can help combat bacteria and viruses. It can also help with bad breath and clearing up skin conditions like hot spots, flea allergies, and itchy skin. Coconut milk and coconut oil are safe for dogs too. Just be sure your dog doesn’t get its paws on the furry outside of the shell, which can get lodged in the throat.  Be aware coconut does contain triglycerides that may cause bloating and discomfort. Check with your vet before feeding your dog coconut especially if they have a sensitive tummy or other health issues. Giving coconut milk or coconut oil may be a better option for you to give to your dog.

Mango This sweet summer treat is packed with four different vitamins: A, B6, C, and E. They also have potassium and both beta-carotene and alpha-carotene. Just remember, as with most fruits, remove the hard pit first, as it contains small amounts of cyanide and can become a choking hazard. Mango is high in sugar, so use it as an occasional treat.

Oranges are fine for dogs to eat, according to veterinarians, but they may not be fans of any strong-smelling citrus. Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber, and in small quantities, the juicy flesh of an orange can be a tasty treat for your dog. Vets do recommend tossing the peel and only offering your dog the flesh of the orange, minus any seeds. Orange peel is rough on their digestive systems, and the oils may make your dog literally turn up their sensitive nose.

Peaches are a great source of fiber and vitamin A, and can even help fight infections, but just like cherries, the pit contains cyanide. As long as you completely cut around the pit first, fresh peaches can be a great summer treat. Skip canned peaches, as they usually contain high amounts of sugary syrups.

Pears are a great snack because they’re high in copper, vitamins C and K, and fiber. It’s been suggested that eating the fruit can reduce the risk of having a stroke by 50 percent. Just be sure to cut pears into bite-size chunks and remove the pit and seeds first, as the seeds contain traces of cyanide. Skip canned pears with sugary syrups.

Pineapple is a great sweet treat for dogs, as long as the prickly outside peel and crown are removed. The tropical fruit is full of vitamins, minerals, and fiber. It also contains bromelain, an enzyme that makes it easier for dogs to absorb proteins.

Pomegranate is high in antioxidants and vitamin C. It can be fed as a juice or as the whole fruit. Pomegranate also contains high amounts of punicalagin and tannins which are found to be effective in reducing the risk of heart disease. Peel this fruit before giving it to your dog since the skin is hard for them to digest. In large quantities, pomegranate can cause an upset stomach so only give your pup a small amount each time. 

If your dog happens to eat an entire pomegranate, they might develop an upset stomach but it shouldn't be necessary for a trip to the vet. Just watch for prolonged symptoms and be sure to keep your pup well hydrated. 

Raspberries are fine in moderation. They contain antioxidants that are great for dogs. They’re low in sugar and calories, but high in fiber, manganese, and vitamin C. Raspberries are especially good for senior dogs because they have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help aging joints. However, they do contain small amounts of xylitol, so limit your dog to less than a cup of raspberries at a time.

Strawberries are full of fiber and vitamin C. Along with that, they also contain an enzyme that can help whiten your dog’s teeth as he or she eats them. They contain sugar, so be sure to give them in moderation.

Watermelon flesh is safe for dogs. It’s full of vitamins A, B-6, and C, as well as potassium. t’s important to remove the rind and seeds first, as they can cause intestinal blockage. Watermelon is 92 percent water, so it’s a great way to help keep your dog hydrated on hot summer days.

Bad Fruits

Grapes or Raisins: They have caused many cases of poisoning when ingested by dogs.

Cherries With the exception of the fleshy part around the seed, cherry plants contain cyanide and are toxic to dogs. Cyanide disrupts cellular oxygen transport, which means that your dog’s blood cells can’t get enough oxygen. If your dog eats cherries, be on the lookout for dilated pupils, difficulty breathing, and red gums, as these may be signs of cyanide poisoning.

Avocados: Avocados can cause gastrointestinal irritation and upset tummies

Figs: Figs have caused allergic reactions in some dogs. Also, the fig is grown on the Ficus tree (Ficus benjamina), which causes skin inflammation if your dog comes into contact with it. Ficus plants or trees also cause diarrhea and vomiting if your dog ingests them.

Orange Tree: The orange tree (Citrus sinensis) is toxic to dogs, cats, and horses due to its psoralens and essential oils. You don’t want your pet to ingest the seeds, peel, leaves or stem of this tree or fruit. Symptoms of orange tree poisoning are depression, diarrhea, and vomiting.

Lemon Tree: The lemon tree (Citrus limonia) is toxic to dogs, cats, and horses due to its psoralens and essential oils. You don’t want your pet to ingest the seeds, peel, leaves or stem of this tree. Symptoms of lemon plant poisoning are depression, diarrhea, and vomiting.

While the ripened fruit of the tomato plant is generally considered safe for dogs, the green parts of the plant contain a toxic substance called solanine. While a dog would need to eat a large amount of the tomato plant to make him or her sick, it’s better to skip tomatoes all together just to be safe.