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Can Dogs Eat Gourds? (All You Need to Know)

We often love to spoil our dogs with random treats available in our cupboards. In fact, some fruits and vegetables are rather tasty and healthy for our four-legged companion.

One common vegetable we find plenty of in stores is gourd. So, let’s dive in to learn which gourds are safe for dogs.  

Can dogs eat gourds?

Dogs can eat several types of gourds. If cooked, gourds are easy to digest and are beneficial for your dog’s internal organs. Commonly found gourds are not toxic to dogs. Dogs can eat both gourds and gourd seeds. Be careful cause too many gourd seeds may cause discomfort to your dog.   

Not every gourd is edible for your dog. While some are safe for your dogs to eat raw, others are better when cooked.

American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals or APSCA has a list of toxic plants that dogs should not consume. Have a look below to find out which gourds are suitable for your dogs.

Raw gourd:

Remembering which gourds your dog can eat raw from all these alternatives is challenging. Gourds that dogs can eat raw without any drawback are Bitter gourd, Ash gourd, Ivy gourd, Ridge gourd, Sponge gourd.

However, according to their taste preferences, they might prefer some gourds cooked over raw.

Some raw gourds are harmful to your canine friends. They are Bottle gourd, Snake gourd, Decorative gourd.

Bitter gourd:

Dogs can absolutely eat bitter gourd.  Both cooked and raw. It is a fine addition to their diet as it is enriched in fiber.

But remember to keep bitter gourd away from pregnant dogs. Some study suggests it causes health complications for pregnant dogs.

Bottle gourd:

Dogs can eat bottle gourds, but they should be cooked, preferably boiled, before. Bottle gourd has abundant fiber, vitamin c, and minerals. Cooked bottle gourds are easily digestible.

Never feed your dog raw or uncooked bottle gourd because it could harm your dog’s stomach and digestive system.

Ivy gourd:

Yes, dogs can eat Ivy gourds. Raw ivy gourd is toxic if consumed in large quantities. So, it is best to feed your dog cooked ivy gourd.

Ridge gourd:

Fresh ridge gourd could be eaten raw by dogs. Cooking gives it a sweet taste, and it is easier to digest. Ridge gourds are highly nutritious.

Feed your dog cooked ridge gourd cause your dog may find the raw smell unpleasant.

Snake gourd:

Dogs can eat snake gourds without any complications. Buy fresh young snake gourds because mature ones are hard to chew on. Excess consumption will lead to digestive problems.

Ash gourd:

Yes, Dogs can eat ash gourd. It is an excellent source of minerals and vitamins. Dogs can eat both raw and cooked ash gourd. Ash gourd boosts metabolism, which is vital to keep your dog in shape.

Sponge gourd:

Yes, dogs can eat sponge gourd. It’s rich in antibacterial and antifungal properties, which aids your dog’s immunity system.

Decorative gourd:

Decorative gourds are not harmful to dogs in their natural form. You should not feed your dog gourds that are grown for decorative purposes.

Because the artificial components used on decorative gourd will cause stomach upset. If in doubt, it is best not to feed your dog decorative gourds.

Luffa gourd:

Do not feed your dog Luffa gourd. They are poisonous to dogs.

Anything in excess is not healthy. This goes for your dog’s diet too. Pay extra care not to feed your dog too much gourd. Routinely feeding a healthy amount yields the best result for your dog.

Can puppies eat gourds?

Puppies can eat gourds, but it is best to avoid giving gourds to growing puppies. Growing puppies should only be fed puppy foods because they contain all the essential nutrition. You can give gourds to your puppies as treats.

Puppies older than 3 months can have gourds in addition to their diet. Puppies don’t usually require gourds in their diet but giving it to them doesn’t cause any complications. Scroll up to see the toxic gourds to stay away from.

What happens if dogs eat gourds?

Most of the gourds are safe for dogs to eat, but not all. Your dogs may look fine, but some symptoms get looked past if you don’t give attention.

Diarrhea:

Your dog is fine as long as it eats gourds on a moderate diet. Eating excess gourds will upset your dog’s tummy. Contact a veterinarian if your dog eats too many gourds.

Upset tummy:

It is bad for dogs to eat some raw gourds, such as bottle gourds and decorative gourds. Sharp edges of gourds could tear your dog’s intestine.

Also, artificial substances used in decorative gourds are harmful to dogs.

Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar):

Excess ingestion of gourd leads to hypoglycemia. It’s hard to see symptoms of hypoglycemia in naked eyes. Common symptoms include a change in behavior, seizures, and sightlessness.

What to do if your dog eats a gourd?

Check what’s in mouth:

Certain gourds are harmful to both dogs and puppies. If you doubt what gourd your dog ate, check what is in their mouth as fast as possible. Get it out of your dog’s mouth.

Look for surrounding to get an idea, your dog is safe if the gourd is nontoxic. Contact a veterinarian as soon as possible if your dog bites a chunk of toxic gourds. (Scroll up to see toxic gourds for your dog)

Keep notice frequently:

Even though it is a harmless gourd, your dog might feel some discomfort. Quickly contact a vet if you see any changes in behavior.

Contact vet:

Accidents may often happen in this decorative season. You cannot always keep your dog away from decorative gourds. If they take a bite off decorative gourds, contact a vet as soon as possible.

How do you prepare gourds for your dogs?

The main component of a dog’s meal should be meat as they need a heavy protein diet. Gourds and other vegetables shouldn’t be more than 1/3rd of your dog’s diet.

A generally accepted rule as treats or meal additions shouldn’t be more than 10% of your dog’s diet. Here’s a complete list of how you can prepare gourds for your dogs.

Blanching:

Immerse freshly cut gourds in hot boiling water, take them out instantly, and submerge them in cold water. This is an excellent alternative to feeding your dog raw gourds because it cleans the dirt away.

Do not follow this method for gourds that your dog cannot eat raw.

Boiling:

It is the safest way to feed your dog, but it kills many nutrients. Cut gourds in small sizes, not larger than one inch. Boil them in large quantities at 212-degree Fahrenheit. Boil for 12-15 minutes.

Do not throw off the water as it is nutritious. You can use it to soften dry foods. Your dog can even drink it.

Steaming:

Steaming is a better alternative to boiling as it retains all the nutrients. Cut all the gourds into equal pieces.

Pour water into the steamer so that it doesn’t touch gourds. Add gourds to the steamer basket and close the lid. Steam at medium heat for 5-8 minutes. Different gourds require different periods. 

Raw:

Your dog can eat some gourds raw. Wash the gourds thoroughly and chop them into small pieces. (Scroll up to see which gourds you can feed your dog raw)

Even though gourds are good for your dogs, you should not feed them gourds every day. You can feed them gourds two to three times each week.

Another thing to consider is different dogs have different personalities. Some may eat gourds with no hesitation, and others may prefer other foods. Do not add seasonings or spices, these cause burning sensations to the dog’s stomach.

Are there any poisonous gourds for dogs?

Yes, you should not feed your dog Apple gourds and Gooseneck gourds. They are poisonous to dogs. These gourds are for decorative purposes only.

Do not feed your dog ornamental gourds. They contain toxins that are detrimental to your dog’s health. Generally, do not feed your dogs gourds that are sold commercially for decorative purposes.

What vegetables can dogs eat every day?

Dogs can eat these vegetables every day but remember not to overfeed them because eating vegetables in large quantities cause various health problems.

  • Apple
  • Carrot
  • Blueberry
  • Green Bea
  • Snap pea
  • Broccoli
  • Beet
  • Celery
  • Cucumber
  • Pumpkin
  • Zucchini

Final Thoughts 

Dogs can eat gourds. Gourds are rich in vitamins and minerals that keep our dog’s vital organs in sound condition. A fantastic cost-effective alternative to regular dog treats but harmful if given without moderation. Try mixing it with other vegetables if your dog doesn’t find it exciting at first.