Autumn Series: Benefits of Pumpkin

14th October 2023 5 min read

Autumn (especially October) is the time when Pumpkins are abundant and not only for carving and putting a candle in! These vibrant fruits have wonderful benefits for your dog, read on to find out more.

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Benefits of Pumpkin

Pumpkins are packed with nutrients and for that reason and many others, it makes them a wonderful addition to your dog's diet. Most dogs love the taste of this juicy fruit, so it shouldn't be too hard to introduce to meals.

Let's take a look at the main benefits of feeding your pooch Pumpkin:

  • Fibre - this is a very important part of your dog's diet. Fibre is essential for digestive health. Not only does it help with making your dog feel fuller for longer, the soluble fibre content can help solidify loose stools by absorbing water. On the flip side of this, it can also help with loosening stools during constipation by breaking this down.
  • Antioxidant - pumpkin contains an abundance of plant pigments called 'carotenoids'. These plant pigments, including Beta-Carotene help to fight against free radicals in the body and can fight against diseases such as cancer. Not only this but they can also help slow down the ageing of cells, reduce inflammation and support heart health.
  • Antiparasitic - the seeds of the pumpkin contain an amino acid called 'cucurbitin' which fights against worms and parasites in the digestive tract. It's a brilliant, natural way to remove worms, plus the seeds are very tasty! These should be crushed up and put in the food rather than given whole.
  • Eye Health - we mentioned above an antioxidant called beta-carotene. This is in fact a precursor of Vitamin A. Once the beta-carotene enters the intestines it is converted into Vitamin A which is essential for healthy eyes and vision and also supports the immune system too.
  • Vitamins and Minerals - pumpkin contains an abundance of Vitamin E, C and A which are all very important for skin and eye health as well as brain and immune system function. Not only this but also contains iron, manganese and potassium which are all wonderful for supporting healthy cell function.

How to Feed Pumpkin to Your Dog

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds will need to be ground up and not fed whole. Once the seeds have been ground, add half a teaspoon to their meal once or twice per day. For larger dog breeds you can feed 1 teaspoon with each meal.

Pumpkin Flesh

You can feed up to 100g of pumpkin flesh per day. This can be given raw or gently cooked.

If you want to feed raw pumpkin flesh, it's best to blend this up first to make it more digestible and bioavailable for your dog. To feed it cooked you can do this by cutting into cubes and boil on a low heat. Please note that cooking the fruit does deplete some of the nutrients.

So, when you are carving pumpkins this Halloween, don't forget you can save the seeds and the flesh and use them as a great, healthy addition to your dog's diet!

Further Reading

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