As a pet parent, you know how challenging it can be when your dog is begging for food. You’re sitting and enjoying something yummy, and your dog wants some, too! That’s only natural. However, the problem is that not everything we can eat is safe for our canine companions.
So, what about mandarins? Can dogs eat mandarins? If you’re asking this question, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve put together some information about mandarins and whether they’re safe for dogs. Let’s get started!
What are Mandarins?
Mandarins are a type of citrus fruit that’s pretty yummy. It’s thought these small organs originally came from China, but no one is quite certain about this. The fruit has a dark-orange peel that’s somewhat leathery; however, the inside of the fruit is sweet, tangy, and juicy. Are you hungry at the thought of a mandarin orange? We bet!
While you may hear this fruit called “mandarin organs,” they’re really not related to oranges. They do have an orange exterior similar to the orange, but they are of a completely different citrus family. And mandarins are usually not as round as oranges.
This fruit grows on small to moderate flowering orange trees. The fruit darkens as it matures, going from a dark green to a dark orange when fully ripe.
Different Types of Mandarins
There are several types of mandarins, including the satsuma mandarin (from Japan), the Blanco or Ponkan mandarin (from China, Brazil, Spain, and other countries), and tangerines (from Tangiers & Morocco).
Then there are Clementines, which are also called Cuties. These are the smallest mandarins and usually have a deeper orange color, with a shiny skin and no seeds. While these are usually considered a variety of mandarins, they’re truly a hybrid of mandarins and sweet oranges.
Mandarins: Nutritional Information
Mandarins are a rich source of nutrition and include the following nutrients:
One medium mandarin (about 88 grams) includes the following:
- Calories: 47
- Carbs: 12 grams
- Protein: 0.7 grams
- Fat: 0.3 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Vitamin C: 26% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Magnesium: 2.5% of the DV
- Potassium: 3% of the DV
- Copper: 4% of the DV
- Iron: about 1% of the D
These small fruits pack a punch when it comes to vitamin C. Vitamin C is necessary for healthy skin, wound healing, and to help the immune system to work correctly.
Plus, the fruit has plenty of fiber that’s beneficial for gut bacteria and can help reduce the risk of developing heart disease and diabetes.
How to Store Mandarins
Mandarins can be stored whole at room temperature for up to about one week. However, once they’ve been peeled, it’s necessary to store them in the fridge. While mandarins can be stored in the fridge for up to 6 weeks and they are not good to freeze.
You can also peel the mandarins and divide them into segments before storing in an air-tight container or a bag in the fridge.
Are Mandarins Safe for Dogs?
The answer is yes; however, a dog should never eat an entire mandarin. They can only have a small piece, and that’s very rarely. This should be a treat that’s only given once in a great while.
While this fruit is not toxic to dogs, they shouldn’t eat it very often.
Are Mandarins Bad for Dogs?
Mandarins can be bad for dogs. Let’s take a look at why that is.
High Sugar Content
Mandarins contain a high amount of sugar that can cause tooth decay, diabetes, weight gain, and other health problems in dogs.
So, if your dog is already overweight/obese, has diabetes, or has other health issues related to sugar, he should not eat mandarins.
Mandarins and tangerines contain seeds that can contain trace amounts of cyanide. This substance can make a dog sick if they eat it in high amounts. Clementines, however, do not contain seeds.
Because most mandarins and tangerines contain seeds, it’s best to remove these before giving your dog a small piece of mandarin.
Mandarin peels are typically sour, and this can be hard on a dog’s digestive system. What’s more, the peel can also be challenging for the dog’s digestive tract to break down. The sourness and the peel together can cause a dog to develop an upset stomach, vomiting, and diarrhea.
In addition, peels can also contain pesticides that can be toxic to dogs.
Some dogs don’t tolerate mandarins very well, even if the peel and seeds are removed. The fruit contains a large amount of citric acid that can cause stomach upset, vomiting, and diarrhea in dogs that have sensitive stomachs.
Can Mandarins Be Healthy for Dogs?
The answer is yes, but only in small portions once in a while. Here’s why mandarins can be healthy for dogs.
Mandarins contain high amounts of vitamin C, which is healthy for dogs. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that can fight disease, strengthen the immune system, and more.
Vets sometimes prescribe vitamin C for dogs that have conditions such as kennel cough, bacterial infections, joint disease, cancer, and more.
Vitamin A is also healthy for dogs. It works to protect the dog’s mucus membranes and boost his night vision.
Mandarins are also a good source of minerals, including calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium, and zinc.
These minerals are necessary for the optimal functioning of several organs and processes in the body. They also provide energy to keep your dog healthy and happy.
Mandarins are also a source of water that can help hydrate your dog and work to keep him from becoming constipated.
Summing It Up
So, yes, mandarins are safe for dogs to eat. However, it’s first necessary to peel and remove any seeds before giving your fur baby a small portion of mandarin.
Never feed your dog a whole mandarin. He should only have a very small portion of mandarin as a once-in-a-while snack. Eating a larger portion of mandarin or eating mandarin more often could make your dog sick.
And if you do feed your canine companion a small bit of mandarin and he gets sick, don’t feed him anymore. If your dog becomes very ill with an upset stomach, diarrhea, and vomiting, he probably shouldn’t eat mandarin again.
We hope this article has helped you learn whether or not mandarin is safe for your dog!