A small amount of lemon water is good for dogs. It’s important to only add a splash of lemon juice to the water. If you add too much, the cons could outweigh the pros. Lemon water is high in Vitamin C and can even help with your dog’s bad breath.
Adding a small amount of lemon juice to a glass of water has become a new trend in health communities. People say that it adds flavor and boosts energy while helping them wake up.
Some people use lemon water as part of their daily routine to help with digestion, while others just do it to motivate themselves to drink more water.
But what is the effect of lemon water on dogs? Is it safe to garnish your pet’s bowl with lemon juice?
What You'll Learn
Lemons and Dogs – The Two Big Problems
Let’s be honest: it’s highly unlikely that a wild dog will go to a lemon tree and start munching on its fruit. Fruits should only make up a maximum of 5% of a dog’s diet.
Lemons are not something dogs would ever seek, but they may trust you enough to eat some if you offer it to them. However, that does not mean that you should feed your dog lemons!
Here are a few problems that dogs can have with lemons.
Perhaps the most obvious component of lemons that makes them less than palatable to dogs is the taste. Lemons are sour, something that dogs are especially sensitive to. Dogs do not like sour foods, including lemons.
The biggest problem with a dog eating lemons is acidity. Citrus fruits contain lots of citric acid, and lemons are definitely not an exception.
Citric acid can cause serious digestive issues for your dog if they get too much of it. The acid dissolves the top layer of the teeth, leaving them at risk of future dental problems.
If the acid gets swallowed, it can irritate or even damage the lining of the stomach. The stomach already has natural acid to help break down food, so adding more acid on top of this is not a good idea.
So Should Dogs Eat Lemons?
The quick answer is no. Dogs do not eat lemons in nature. They should not be fed lemons simply for entertainment, either.
While you may think that it is funny to feed your dog some lemon to see their reaction, it will not sit well with them and could end up hurting your pup.
However, small amounts of lemon juice in your dog’s water bowl could help them in many ways.
The Main Benefits of Lemon Water For Dogs
Feeding your dog lemons is not a good idea by any means. But there are some pros to putting a small amount of lemon juice into their water bowl.
If you decide to put some lemon juice in your dog’s water, you need to stick to small doses. Do not add more than a splash of lemon juice, or the cons of feeding your dog lemon juice will outweigh the pros. That being said, lemon water can provide benefits for your dog.
Citrus fruits are packed full of vitamin C, which has countless health benefits for both dogs and humans. Vitamin C is critical in supporting the immune system. It also helps with skin, nails, and hair.
Vitamin C can even prevent your dog from getting scurvy! Lemon juice is a great way to supplement some vitamin C into your dog’s diet to keep them feeling great.
Bad breath is the bane of every dog owner. Our dogs want to give us kisses, but sometimes the smell that comes from their mouth can make their love unbearable. There are a lot of potential sources of bad breath in dogs.
Dogs love to eat what they can, whether it should be on the menu or not. Sometimes these snacks can lead to nasty breath. Even their regular kibble causes bad breath.
Whatever the cause, a bit of lemon juice in their water bowl can help fight off the bad breath that plagues them. Lemon has antibacterial properties that eliminate the halitosis-causing bacteria that may live in your dog’s mouth.
External Uses of Lemon For Dogs
While the acidity of lemons may make them a less-than-ideal snack for dogs, a dab of lemon juice in their water can bring some great benefits.
However, there are many other uses for lemons that can help your dog. These treatments almost all deal with external issues your dog may have, so the stomach irritation that can come from too much lemon in their diet no longer applies.
Yes, it works! It may sound strange, but a mix of lemon juice and water sprayed on your dog can repel fleas.
This is especially useful if you do not want to risk using the chemical cocktails present in most flea repellents.
Lemon juice is natural, smells great and is inexpensive at the grocery store. Fleas hate the smell of lemon. If they persist, lemon oil is an excellent second option. It has a higher concentration of lemon extract and is even more effective.
However, if you use lemon as a flea repellent, don’t forget to keep it away from your dog’s face. You don’t want to spray lemon juice in their eyes, as it may cause severe irritation.
You can clean your dog’s coat easily with a simple lemon and water mixture. It can help get rid of dirt, allergens, and other problems in your dog’s fur.
As an added bonus, the antibacterial properties of lemon juice will help clean and disinfect any minor cuts or scratches on your dog.
If your dog has an open wound, avoid spraying the lemon water on this area as it may irritate the broken skin. If your dog has a skin condition, consult a vet before trying lemon water as a coat cleaner.
Using Lemon Water to Train Your Dog
Another unexpected use of lemon is to train your dog. In this case, the high acidity and bitter taste of lemons is actually a benefit.
Lemon juice can be used to make your dog avoid things they are not supposed to be chewing or eating. If your dog has a problem with eating poop, adding lemon juice onto their stool will make it repulsive and help break the habit.
Owners also spray furniture with lemon juice if their dog has a problem with chewing. The bitter taste is a great deterrent when your dog refuses to cooperate.
Is Lemon Juice Worth it?
Lemon juice has several benefits for dogs. The key thing to keep in mind is to only use a small amount. Lemon juice is good in small doses, but anything above that can lead to issues for your dog. But if you can reliably give your dog just a little lemon juice in their water, you may notice their breath getting better, their immune system boosted, and other benefits (not to mention the other uses for lemon juice that we covered in this article)!
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