Can dogs eat lychee? Yes. It’s safe to treat to give your dog.
What is Lychee?
Lychee is a common Asian fruit that has a high level of fiber, low calories, and contains protein. It also happens to be a natural diuretic for humans, so one can assume the same will apply to dogs. There are multiple spellings for this fruit: litchi, lichi or lychee are all spellings of the same fruit. There’s not a lot of long-term research on it to know about lychees long-term health effects but its general properties lead us to believe it has no ill effects on dogs.
2 things to avoid when feeding your dog lychee
Do not feed the dog’s lychee skin or the pit.
These items are choking hazards and not enough research has been done on the plant to determine if there are toxins in the skin or pit. If you do decide to give your dog lychee, only feed them the portion of the fruit that is edible for humans.
Avoid feeding them canned lychee.
In the US, you can most likely find canned lychee in stores. Avoid giving your dog canned fruit as it contains too much sugar. Too much sugar is bad for their long-term health if ingested on a regular basis.
Health Benefits of Lychee for Dogs
Did you know that in moderation, lychee can be good for your pet? You can view the nutritional data for raw lychee fruits here.
100 grams of lychee fruit contains modest amounts of potassium, phosphorus, iron, copper, and manganese. It also provides small amounts of B vitamins along with 119% of your daily recommended value of vitamin C. The fruit contains a little bit of protein and fiber as well.
Vitamin C isn’t just great for you—it is also great for your dog! The American Kennel Club writes, “Vitamin C is an important antioxidant. It scavenges potentially harmful free radicals in the body and can help reduce inflammation and cognitive aging. Dogs can actually synthesize vitamin C on their own in their livers, but in some cases supplementation may offer health benefits.”
The AKC also talks about the importance of B vitamins for your dog’s metabolism, enzyme function, hormone regulation, and more.
The protein in lychee can support the health of muscles, hair, and skin. The fiber is good for your pet’s digestive system. Meanwhile, the minerals in the fruit are good for muscle and nerve function.
Risks associated with dogs eating lychee
Can Dogs Eat Lychee? There are several things to avoid with lychee both for people and for dogs. Never eat green, unripe lychee. Lychee can disturb blood glucose levels affecting your (or your dog’s) blood sugar, and cause inflammation of the brain in the case of those suffering from malnutrition. Avoid eating the outer skin and inner seed and only have the fleshy fruit. Enjoy lychee in moderation.
Should your dog ingest a lychee seed, be watchful for any of the following symptoms:
- Muscle spasms
- Dark urine
- Stomach cramps or upset stomach
- Diarrhea, also look for signs of bloody stool
- Head shaking
Should you detect any of these symptoms after suspecting a lychee seed was swallowed, be sure to seek medical assistance from your local veterinarian as soon as possible. Intestinal blockage is a concern here and must be managed by your vet.
If a lychee seed gets stuck impeding your dog’s ability to breathe, you can perform the Heimlich maneuver to try to dislodge it.
Can a Dog Be Allergic to Lychee?
Can Dogs Eat Lychee? Whenever you introduce any new food to your dog, be alert to the possibility of an allergy. Most dogs are not allergic to lychees, but canine lychee allergies do exist.
If you notice itching, indigestion, hives, facial swelling, or ear or paw infections, those could be signs that your dog is allergic to lychee.
What foods can you give to your dog instead of Lychee?
While lychees are not harmful to your dogs and have a high vitamin content, they have a high sugar content as well. And since high-sugar foods aren’t ideal for dogs, consider using alternative fruits such as bananas, cucumbers, and specific berries such as raspberries. These fruits contain the same amount of vitamins as lychee (if not more), and because the sugar content is lower, you won’t have to feed them in moderation.
Can dogs eat lychee? It is generally safe for dogs to eat in small amounts, there is just not enough research on whether it is actually good for your dog yet.