Any doting dog parent comes to a time when would like to give their pup a fun fruity snack either as a treat or as a reward for part of their training. But before you indulge in sharing your lunch with your sweet Shih Tzu it’s always best to be sure to find out which fruits/foods are safe and which aren’t. There is a big difference in giving your little dog a strawberry or a grape. One is safe and one is toxic!
Some fruits such as strawberries, apples, watermelon, and pumpkin in moderation can be a healthy treat for your Shih Tzu. Fruits such as grapes, raisins, rhubarb, avocado, pits, and fruit seeds can be toxic and should be avoided completely.
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Fruit pits and seeds usually have a small amount of cyanide in them and could potentially be dangerous for your Shih Tzu, but the fleshy part of most fruits, as well as some peels (like apple peels), contain a lot of nutrients that can be part of your Shih Tzu healthy diet.
Bonus: Some fruits such as apples can also help to clean residue off of their teeth and help freshen their breath.
Most fruit contains fiber, vitamin C, potassium, and Vitamin K as well as small amounts of manganese, copper, and vitamins A, E, B1, B2, and B6.. The peels also contain polyphenols which is a micronutrient that contains antioxidants and other beneficial properties. The fiber in the fruit can be helpful to keep a dog’s digestive tract running smoothly. Not only are apples a delicious and nutritious snack for us, but also very beneficial for our dog!
So if your Shih Tzu is staring you down for a piece of that fruity goodness go ahead a share a little!
According to the AKC (American Kennel Club), 7 vitamins your dog needs for a healthy life are listed below.
- Vitamin A – Important for a healthy coat, muscle strength, and night vision.
- B vitamins – Important for healthy skin and to maintain a proper weight.
- Vitamin C – Promotes tissue repair, and helps prevent some types of cancer.
- Vitamin D – The sunshine Vitamin helps with muscles and bones.
- Vitamin E – Good for the immune system, heart health, liver, and muscles.
- Vitamin K – Important to keep your dog’s blood clotting properly.
- Choline – Supports a healthy brain and liver.
If you are feeding your Shih Tzu commercial pet food, then most likely it is formulated in a way to help them receive all these important vitamins and minerals, but different fruit can provide a natural source for several of these vitamins as well, in a tasty and fun snack.
Always consult with your Vet before feeding your dog any new foods!
Comprehensive List of Fruits That Shih Tzu Can and Can Not Eat
Can They Eat It?
Why or Why Not?
The fleshy part of the avocado could be ok in tiny pieces, but the leaves, skin, and pit contain a toxin called Persin which can be dangerous and lethal in high doses.
Avoid the pit, leaves, and stem. Feed only in small amounts as an occasional treat.
Avoid the peel. The fleshy part is rich in potassium and other nutrients. Feed only in small amounts as an occasional treat.
Yes with caution
Only 1 or 2 for your Shih Tzu, depending upon weight. They have a minuscule amount of Xylitol which is toxic to your Shih Tzu so too many could cause real problems.
High in vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber, they can help boost the immune system.
High in fiber, vitamin B6, niacin, folate, vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. It’s low in calories and high in water content making it a great treat for rehydration without excessive weight gain.
The cherry flesh is safe and even contains health benefits, but there is a great risk of your dog eating a pit and having it cause an intestinal blockage or poisoning, so it’s recommended to just avoid this fruit.
This fruit is non-toxic, but its high acidity and sugar content can cause GI upset in your Shih Tzu.
While coconut is non-toxic, it contains medium-chain triglycerides which can easily upset your Shih Tzu’s stomach.
Yes, with Caution
Cranberries can help boost the immune system and prevent bladder infections. Your Shih Tzu should not have more than 1 or 2 at a time. Also, be careful the cranberries are not mixed with any added ingredients or contain added sugars.
Yes, with Caution
Dates are low in fat, and have a lot of vitamins and minerals, but are also high in sugar and you need to avoid the pit. Only small pieces for your Shih Tzu.
Figs could be beneficial for obese dogs who need to lose weight, but overall this fruit can cause GI upset and should mostly be avoided.
This fruit is very acidic and has a toxin called psoralen that can be lethal in high doses to your Shih Tzu.
Grapes and Raisins
NO, VERY TOXIC
Even one grape or raising can cause kidney failure in your Shih Tzu. While you shouldn’t panic, you should call your vet immediately if they eat a grape or raisin.
With many nutrients and high in water content Honeydew Melon can be a great hydrating treat for your Shih Tzu. As always be sure to give in small portions as this fruit does have natural sugar in it.
It’s best to remove the skin, and only give in small portions as a special treat. Although Kiwis are a very nutritious treat for us, our Shih Tzu have different nutritional needs than we do and don’t get the same great benefits from this fruit.
The high citrus content of lemons makes it very undesirable for your Shih Tzu, so they most likely won’t eat it on their own. Eating lemon could give your Shih Tzu a very upset stomach and cause diarrhea or vomiting.
Mandarins are not toxic to your Shih Tzu, but their little stomachs are not made to digest high citrus fruit so it could cause them to get an upset stomach. Also, the high sugar content in Mandarins can cause problems for your dog.
Make sure to avoid the peel and the pit. Never allow your dog to chew on fruit pits as most are toxic. Because of high sugar content only give your Shih Tzu a very small amount.
A small number of ripe mulberries are not toxic but have the potential to give your Shih Tzu diarrhea.
Yes with Caution
Olives are non-toxic. Plain pitted olives can be ok for your Shih Tzu, but avoid canned olives high in sodium. Olives are also high in fat so only occasional pieces.
This fruit is non-toxic, but has a lot of sugar, and can cause GI upset in your Shih Tzu.
Peaches are loaded with vitamins and minerals and can be a healthy treat. As always only small amounts are ok.
Your Shih Tzu can eat Pears in very small pieces. Pears are high in fiber, vitamin A, C, and K. Be sure to avoid the pits and seeds.
Yes with Caution
Pineapple has vitamin C, along with thiamin, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6, and folate. Very small portions of pineapple can be ok, but beware the natural sugar content is high and can be too much for some Shih Tzu. Avoid canned pineapple because the sugar content is a lot higher.
NO, VERY TOXIC
Plums contain hydrogen cyanide, which is extremely toxic to Shih Tzu if eaten.
Pomegranates are non-toxic, but will most likely cause your Shih Tzu to have an upset stomach if he eats them.
Prunes should be avoided. They have too much fiber and sugar and can cause your Shih Tzu to have an upset stomach and diarrhea.
Pumpkin can be a very beneficial treat for your Shih Tzu. Besides providing many vitamins and minerals, pumpkin can aid in digestion and help your Shih Tzu regulate their system if they are experiencing constipation or diarrhea.
Yes with Caution
Raspberries are rich in nutrients, including magnesium, potassium, and vitamin K. They do however have trace amounts of Xilotol in them which can be very toxic to dogs so with very small Shih Tzu’s I would avoid giving them this fruit. With larger Shih Tzu’s only very small amounts, but consult with your vet first.
Rhubarb stems could be safe, but the leaves are definitely toxic. If your Shih Tzu has gotten into the Rhubarb plant in your garden and eaten any part of it consult with your vet immediately.
Strawberries have a lot of fiber and vitamin C. They also contain an enzyme that can help whiten your Shih Tzu teeth as he or she eats them. As always only in small amounts depending on the size of your dog.
Tangerines are non-toxic, but is high in citrus and can cause GI upset in your Shih Tzu.
Yes With Caution
This is a great snack, especially on hot summer days! Low in calories and packed with nutrients—vitamins A, B6, and C, and potassium. However, do not allow your Shih Tzu to eat the seeds or rind as it could cause intestinal blockage.
How much fruit can I give my Shih Tzu?
There are a few things that are important to remember when giving your Shih Tzu any kind of fruit. Your Shih Tzu should never have more than 10% of their daily calories in fruits. For a small Shih Tzu, that’s not very much. Most fruit has a lot of fiber in it which your Shih Tzu may not be used to. If they eat too much of any fruit it could cause an upset stomach or diarrhea. You should always cut the fruit into very small pieces for your Shih Tzu to avoid a choking hazard.
Just like all people are different all dogs are different as well one Shih Tzu may react very differently to a certain food than another. Please make sure to watch your Shih Tzu for any allergic or bad reactions. Fruits should only be given as an occasional treat and not a staple of their everyday diet.
Are you thinking about getting another Shih Tzu? Read this article I wrote on getting your Shih Tzu a friend first!
Having a variety of things for your Shih Tzu to try including fruits, vegetables, and healthy proteins can enrich their life and make it more fun and interesting for you both. You know your Shih Tzu best and as time goes by you will learn what things they do and don’t like.
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While we strive to give the most accurate and helpful information about your pet’s health that we can, this article is meant to be informational only and not medical advice. Never disregard, avoid or delay in obtaining medical advice from your veterinarian or other qualified veterinary health care provider regardless of what you have read on this site or elsewhere.