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Can Dogs Eat Tangerines? Are Tangerines Safe for Dogs?

Can Dogs Eat Tangerines

Tangerines, just like oranges, mandarins, and other citrus fruits, have an irrefutable and longstanding reputation as immune-boosting superfoods for us, humans.

Not to mention, that they also taste incredibly good, and are very much accessible.

So, there’s no wonder why our canine companions are also attracted to the sweet and zesty flavor of this pretty and tasty citrus fruit. But, can dogs eat tangerines?

Can Dogs Eat Tangerines?

Yes dogs can eat tangerine in moderation. This mandarin orange is an excellent source of nutrients. It is rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, beta-carotene, potassium, folate, and other nutrients that are beneficial for dogs. It is also low in fat, sodium, and cholesterol. 

However, tangerines are also high in natural sugar, which is not good for your dog’s diet. So, even if the fruit, in general, is healthy, its high sugar content makes it problematic in dogs. As we know, too much sugar is synonymous with plenty of calories.

So, feeding your dog large amounts of tangerines can make him overweight, and can lead to weight-related health issues that can significantly affect the quality of his life.

Are Tangerines Safe for Dogs?

A small amount of tangerines, when the peel, seeds, and pith are removed, won’t cause significant problems in dogs. As mentioned earlier, the flesh of this fruit is not toxic, so, it’s generally safe for your dog to eat it as an occasional treat.

And though tangerines are not that sweet compared with oranges and clementines, they still have high sugar content. So, if you give them too much of this fruit, your dog will be at risk for obesity, irregular blood sugar, and diabetes.

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The presence of high sugar in his diet can also lead to dental problems since sugars can easily attract the growth of harmful bacteria inside your dog’s mouth.

Moreover, while tangerine is generally safe for dogs to eat in moderation, it’s also not advisable because of its potential side effects on your pet’s overall health.

Additionally, its high vitamin C content won’t really contribute added benefits since dogs can already produce their own vitamin C.

Hence, if you feed your pup large quantities of tangerine, his body might produce more than enough vitamin C which can result in kidney stones.

Nonetheless, tangerines, as well as other fruits and vegetables can be a safer and healthier snack or treats for dogs because they are low in calories, and they are also nutrient-dense.

However, tangerine should not be part of your dog’s daily menu or core meals. Your dog can already get a complete and balanced diet with all the essential nutrients that he needs to thrive each day if you are feeding him high-quality dog food.

So, your dog is definitely not missing something if you won’t include tangerine in his diet.

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When Are Tangerines Bad for Dogs?

Tangerines are generally safe for dogs and they are excellent sources of important nutrients for us, humans. However, it doesn’t mean that they are good for dogs. Just like other human foods, some parts of this fruit can be a choking hazard to your dog.

Some pet parents also think that citrus fruits like tangerines and oranges are helpful to relieve their dog’s digestive issues because of the fruits’ high fiber content. But there is no major study, yet that can support this theory.

And besides, dogs have a shorter gastrointestinal tract, so, if it’s indeed true that its fiber content can help move foods faster through the intestines, then, the body won’t have enough time to absorb the vital nutrients.

Moreover, if your dog has a sensitive stomach, it’s even more not advisable to introduce a new food to his diet, especially acidic and sugar-rich foods like tangerines.

Nonetheless, whether your dog has a sensitive stomach or not, large amounts of tangerines can upset your dog’s stomach causing vomiting and diarrhea.

Taking all of these into consideration, your pup can be better off without tangerines.

Are the Peel, Pith, and Seeds of Tangerine Toxic to Dogs?

We may not eat the entire peel of tangerines or other citrus fruits, but we do grate their peels to add zest to some of our favorite recipes.

And when we grate the peels, we are also releasing the fruit’s essential oils to our food. For us, humans, we may love the added citrus flavor from the oils, but our dogs don’t usually feel the same way.

More importantly, the citrus essential oils from the fruit’s peel can be toxic to dogs when taken in huge amounts. The oil won’t only cause vomiting diarrhea, and other gastrointestinal symptoms in dogs, but it can also irritate their tongue and mouth.

The pith also contains the citrus essential oils that can harm your dog, and it also tastes bitter. So, it’s not really something that will please and benefit your pup.

Finally, the seeds of tangerines and other citrus fruits contain trace amounts of cyanide. And while your dog may not be harmed if he gobbles on a few seeds, you definitely won’t want to add these to your dog’s food.

Just like the pith, and the peel of this fruit, the seeds could also be hard to digest, or may not even be digested by your dog.

Hence, there’s also the risk for intestinal obstruction, especially for smaller dogs who eat large quantities of these toxic and hard-to-digest parts.

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Can Dogs Eat Clementines and Other Citrus Fruits?

Clementines, tangerines, and oranges are very similar fruits, so, yes, your dog may also eat clementines in moderation or as a healthy treat.

However, the same restrictions and warnings should be taken seriously. It may also be best to consult your vet if you are planning to add new food to your dog’s diet.

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How to Safely Feed Your Dog Tangerines?

While most dogs won’t have a problem when fed with tangerines, some may experience digestive issues even from eating small portions of the fruit’s flesh.

So, if it’s your first time letting your dog eat tangerines, it’s best to only give him one or two sections of the fruit.

This will lessen his chances of having stomach upset. And once you are aware that your dog can tolerate the fruit, you can increase the portions gradually.

However, tangerines are considered as alternative dog treats so you should also observe the 90/10 rule or 90% of your dog’s daily caloric intake should be from his dog food, and only 10% should be from his treats.

Bonus Recipes

If you rather prefer to make a treat out of Tangerines for your beloved baby, below are 3 recipes that we have compiled just for you. Enjoy!

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Can Dogs Eat Tangerines? Are Tangerines Safe for Dogs? 4

Tangerine Jellies

Charisse Yu
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 5 mins
Chilling Time 30 mins
Total Time 6 hrs 40 mins
Servings 6 jellies
Calories 31 kcal


  • 1 cup Tangerine juice (or any fruit juice you want)
  • 1 tbsp Gelatin unflavored
  • 1 tsp Honey


  • In a small sauce pan, pour fruit juice.
  • Mix in gelatin and simmer for at least 5 minutes.
  • Add honey and stir until well combined.
  • Pour into silicone molds and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Serve one treat at time.
Can Dogs Eat Tangerines? Are Tangerines Safe for Dogs? 5

Tangerine Fruit Leather Recipe

This Mama Cooks
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 8 hrs 10 mins
Total Time 8 hrs 20 mins
Servings 8
Calories 58 kcal


  • 4 cups Tangerines peeled and segmented
  • 1 tbsp Ginger fresh, minced
  • 2 tsp Lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon
  • pinch Sea salt


  • If using an oven, set it to the lowest setting (probably 170 degrees F).
  • Place all ingredients in a high-performance blender or food processor. Blend on high until fruit is frothy, about 20-30 seconds.
  • Pour liquid into a medium saucepan. Make sure to scrape down the sides of the blender or food processor bowl with a spatula to get everything into the saucepan!
  • Bring liquid to a boil over medium-high heat. Keep liquid boiling over medium heat.
  • Stir frequently with a whisk. Cook for 10 minutes until the liquid has thickened into a puree. (It should be like runny applesauce.)
  • If using a dehydrator, pour it into 1 or 2 trays. Bake for 8 hours or so until the puree is no longer sticky and you can peel it off the trays without it sticking.
  • When it’s still warm, peel it off and wrap the fruit leather in parchment paper, if desired.
  • If using an oven, place a silicone baking mat on an 11 x 17 baking pan. Pour orange puree on silicone baking mat and spread evenly with an offset icing spatula. Leave a half-inch of room around all sides.
  • Bake for 8 hours or so until the puree is no longer sticky and you can peel it off the silicon mat without it sticking.
  • When it’s still warm, peel it off and wrap the fruit leather in parchment paper, if desired.
Can Dogs Eat Tangerines? Are Tangerines Safe for Dogs? 6

Tangerine Crinkle Cookies

Rachel Rappaport
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 12 mins
Cooling Time 30 mins
Total Time 47 mins
Servings 18 jumbo cookies


  • 1/2 cup Butter at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup Sugar
  • Zest of 2 Tangerines about 1-1 1/2 tablespoons
  • 3-4 tbsp Tangerine juice
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 1/2 Flour
  • 1/4 tsp Baking powder
  • 1/8 tsp Baking soda

For Dusting

  • 1/4 cup Sugar, granulated orange color
  • 1/2 cup Confectioners sugar optional


  • Preheat oven to 350. Line two baking sheets with parchment set aside.
  • In a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, and zest. Beat in the egg and juice until smooth. Add the remaining dough ingredients. Set aside.
  • Whisk together the dusting ingredients in a small bowl.
  • Scoop 1 1/2 -2 tablespoon-sized balls of dough (I used a cookie scoop) and roll them into balls. Roll in the sugar mixture, if desired.
  • Place on the pan 1 1/2 inches apart. Repeat for the remaining dough. Bake for 12 minutes or until the tops look set and the edges are just the barest hint of brown.
  • Cool on pan for 2 minutes then remove to a wire rack and cool completely.


  • Can't find tangerines? Sub in oranges or clementines aka Cuties or navel oranges
  • The granulated sugar helps the confectioners' sugar stick to the dough.
  • Recipe can be doubled
  • If you'd like smaller cookies, roll them in 1 tablespoon balls. These are jumbo cookies!

How much tangerine can a dog eat?

Share just a few sections of tangerine (two to three) with your dog only periodically. But, when possible, offer your dog a treat that isn't so rich in sugar.

Can a dog eat oranges?

Yes, dogs can eat oranges. Oranges are fine for dogs to eat, according to veterinarians, but they may not be fans of any strong-smelling citrus. Oranges are an excellent source of vitamin C, potassium, and fiber, and in small quantities, the juicy flesh of an orange can be a tasty treat for your dog.

Is Citrus bad for dogs?

All citrus fruits contain essential oils and a chemical compound that are toxic to dogs. These are found in the plants, tree parts, the skin, and the pithy white parts.

Why do dogs hate lemons?

Thanks to their nose's ability to identify certain smells as edible or dangerous, this self-preservation trait allows your dog to reject scents and items that they know might be bad for them. Most dogs find lemons highly repulsive and that is one of the reasons they act so odd around them.

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