Can Dogs Eat Cucumber?

Cucumber Facts

  • Cucumbers are available in hundreds of varieties and dozens of different colours. 
  • The edible version of cucumbers, and the one that is most commonly found in our local supermarkets, are known as the pickling or slicing cucumbers.
  • Many people considered cucumber as a vegetable, but they are actually a fruit! 
  • The cucumber belongs to the Cucurbitaceae family, which also includes melons.

What is the Nutritional Profile of a Cucumber?

Cucumbers are one of the healthiest foods in the world because they are an excellent source of phytonutrients. 

Phytonutrients are plant chemicals like lignans, flavonoids, and triterpenes. These chemicals have protective and preventive properties of diseases such as antioxidant properties, anti-inflammatory properties and anti-cancer properties.

If we review the nutrient profile of cucumber, one cup of chopped cucumber contains approximately the following nutrients:

  • Water 137 g
  • Protein 0.8 g
  • Calories 17
  • Carbohydrate 3.1 g
  • Fat 0.2 g
  • Calcium 19.9 g
  • Fiber 1.0 g
  • Magnesium 17 mg
  • Iron 0.3 mg
  • Potassium 193 mg
  • Phosphorus 29.8 mg
  • Sodium 2.8 mg
  • Folate 19.9 mcg
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin 22.7 mcg
  • Vitamin c 4.5 mg
  • Vitamin k 10.2 mcg
  • Beta carotene 44 mcg

Can Dogs Eat Cucumber?

So, we are all aware of the benefits of cucumbers for humans, but what about for our four-legged friends?

Can dogs eat cucumber?

The answer is yes, dogs can eat cucumber, but only in moderation. The sliced cucumbers that humans eat are an excellent treat for your dog in the summer season. 

And, they can also help keep your dog hydrated due to the volume of water contained (see the values below for the approximate make up of a cucumber) and are a great nutritious snack.

dog-eating-cucumber

Health Benefits of Cucumbers for Dogs

This section will discuss the benefits of cucumbers for dogs and how they can impact a dogs overall health and wellness. 

Hydration

A cucumber contains around 95% water, which makes a cucumber one of the ideal foods to stay hydrated during the summer season. Depending on the size, a cucumber can be equal to a glass of water.

If you feed cucumber as part of your dogs diet, it will satisfy around 20-30% of their fluid needs.

Cucumbers not only have high water content but also contain certain essential nutrients like magnesium and potassium. These nutrients play an essential role in maintaining hydration status.

Anti-Cancerous Properties

Being a member of the Cucurbitaceae family, a cucumber contains nutrients such as cucurbitacin.

Cucurbits have been found in recent research to help prevent cancer by stopping the reproduction of cancer cells. Cucumber skin also contains fiber, which is reported to also help protect against cancer.

Skin

You may have seen images of people relaxing and having cucumber slices on their eyes. 

Cucumbers can have calming and refreshing effects on the skin, whilst reducing irritation, swelling, and inflammation when used appropriately. 

Also, if your dog ever suffers from sunburn, you can treat it by placing cucumber slices on the affected areas.

Healthy Bones

In the past few decades, Vitamin K has been found to be essential for bone growth and health. Depending on the size, one cucumber can contain the recommended intake of Vitamin K that your dog needs.

In one study, it also found that Vitamin K intake reduces fracture in older dogs because it combines with Vitamin D to increase bone density and also balance calcium in the body.

Antioxidant

Antioxidants are present in cucumbers that can help the dog’s body function properly.

Cucumbers contain many antioxidants such as beta carotene, Vitamin C, manganese, triterpenes, lignans, and flavonoids. 

Vitamin C is beneficial for the immune system and beta-carotene helps improve vision.

Digestion

Cucumbers can also improve the digestive system of dogs. 

They help relieve constipation due to their large volumes of fiber and water.

Weight Loss and Control

Cucumbers play a part of different human diet plans, because it’s classed as a low-calorie food.

The same can be said for dogs. 

When cucumbers are used as a dog treat in place of commercial treats, they can also help with the weight control for your pet. 

Brain Health and Memory

The cucumber contains a good amount of fisetin flavonoid. 

The role of fisetin is associated with improving memory, protecting nerve cells, and decreasing the risk of Alzheimer’s in animals. 

labrador retriever eats vegetables from a plate

Frequently Asked Questions - Dogs and Cucumbers

Can Puppies Eat Cucumber?

Puppies can start to eat cucumber when they are weaned and eating solid food. 

When first starting to feed cucumber to a puppy, feed in small amounts and as an occasional treat.

If your puppies’ digestive system is developing and they are still receiving milk, we suggest not to feed them cucumber as it can cause an upset stomach.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Cucumber?

Dogs love to eat raw cucumbers because of their crispness. Also, raw cucumber contains all the nutrients that makes them so healthy!

Some people boil cucumber before feeding, however we have found with our dogs that the best and most tasty way is to feed them raw.

Can Dog Eat Cucumber Skin?

Some humans eat cucumber with its skin, but is it safe to feed your dog with the skin left on?  

Most vegetables and fruits have their vitamins and nutrients in the skin

However, it’s difficult for dogs to digest cucumber skin.

If you want to feed your dog cucumber with its skin on, make sure to cut it as thin as possible.

Also, sometimes cucumber skin can contain pesticides and can be dangerous for your four-legged friend.

Therefore, before feeding your dog cucumber, wash it thoroughly. 

Alternatively, if you want to ensure 100% safety, remove the skin of the cucumber before giving it.

Are Cucumber Seeds Safe for Dogs?

The seeds of some fruits, such as plums and apples, are toxic to dogs, but cucumbers seeds are not.

Cucumber seeds are perfectly safe for dogs and they are as nutritious and healthy as the rest of the cucumber.

Can you Feed Pickled Cucumber to your Dog?

In general, cucumber is highly nutritious for dogs, but avoid feeding the pickled cucumber variation. 

The pickled cucumber (or otherwise known as gherkins) form contains spices and sodium that can cause dangerous effects on the dog’s health.

Can Cucumbers Treat Bad Breath In Dogs?

Cucumbers are an excellent source of phytonutrients and phytochemicals. 

These chemicals can destroy the odor-producing bacteria in the dog’s mouth and refresh the dog’s breath.

Cucumbers help eliminate bad breath, but they cannot be used as substitutes for toothpaste. In fact, after using cucumbers, dogs still need to brush their teeth regularly.

How Best to Feed Dogs Cucumber?

It’s recommended to feed the cucumber in small amounts first, and then wait for twenty-four hours.If there is no reaction, then take it as it’s safe to feed your dog cucumber. If the cucumber doesn’t adapt to your dog’s digestive system, the dog can respond in several ways. For example, diarrhea or sickness to name a few.

Also, cut the cucumber into small pieces. Dogs are not exactly the best chewers and if your dog is greedy, they may try and eat it in one bite! It is possible for them to choke when a piece gets stuck in the throat.

Also, always wash the cucumber before giving it to your dog.

dog-looking-up-into-camera

Are there any Disadvantages of Feeding Cucumber to Dogs?

The cucumber has many health benefits, but there are some situations where a cucumber will not agree with the dog.

Cucumber contains a lot of water and fiber. When you give your dog too much cucumber, it can cause gastrointestinal issues like gas and diarrhea.

If your dog has a sensitive stomach, they can feel a slight stomach ache and, at some point, can cause serious illness. If this stomach ache continues, you should immediately take your four-legged friend to the vet.

Also, don’t let your dog eat cucumber if they have recently consumed milk or a dairy product. It can also cause stomach problems.

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