Can Boston Terriers Eat Grapefruit? What You Need To Know (2021)

Have you ever been curious if grapefruit is safe for you Boston Terrier to eat?

Some fruits are safe for Boston Terriers, but grapefruit can be very dangerous even if ingested in small amounts.

Boston Terrier grapefruits

In this article, I will discuss safety concerns for grapefruit ingestion in Boston Terriers and what to do if your Boston has ingested a piece of grapefruit.

Boston Terriers And Grapefruit Consumption

Here is what you need to know about Boston Terriers eating grapefruit…

Is It Safe For Boston Terriers To Eat Grapefruit?

It is not safe for Boston Terriers to eat grapefruit. Grapefruit has toxic compounds that are unsafe for dogs to ingest.

The ASPCA lists grapefruit as “toxic to dogs”. They indicate that the grapefruit plant and the fruit are both toxic to dogs.

If ingested, even in small quantities, grapefruit can cause your Boston to have vomiting, diarrhea, skin issues, and dehydration.

If you suspect your Boston has ingested grapefruit, you should visit a veterinarian right away.

Can Boston Terriers Eat Peeled Grapefruit?

I do not recommend feeding any form of grapefruit to a Boston Terrier. Grapefruit contains toxic compounds that can be highly unsafe to dogs.

While there are fewer toxic compounds in the fleshy part of the fruit as compared to the seeds and rind, there are still some poisonous components within the fruit.

It is not worth the risk because even small amounts of these toxic compounds can cause severe vomiting and diarrhea in your Boston Terrier.


Can Grapefruit Kill A Boston Terrier?

Grapefruit can cause severe stomach upset and dehydration in your Boston Terrier. If left untreated, these issues have the potential to kill your Boston Terrier.

It is vital if your Boston Terrier has ingested grapefruit to get your Boston to a veterinarian immediately so they can administer the proper treatments to reduce the risk of your Boston dying of grapefruit toxicity.

Is Grapefruit Good For Boston Terriers?

Grapefruit, while a healthy food for people, is not fit for Boston Terriers. 

Grapefruit contains many beneficial vitamins and nutrients, but it also has toxic components that can be highly harmful to Boston Terriers.

Other fruits such as apples, mangos, or pineapples can be given if you are looking for a healthy fruit treat for your Boston Terrier.

If you want to know what kind of fruits your Boston Terrier would like, check out this YouTube video, 5 Fruits Boston Terriers Like. Founder of Boston Terrier Society, Donnie Gardner, goes over a survey he conducted with hundreds of Boston parents asking them what their Boston’s favorite fruit is. Here is their response.

Video – 5 Fruits Boston Terriers Love

Why Is Grapefruit Toxic To Boston Terriers?

Grapefruit contains two toxins, essential oils, and psoralens, which are very harmful to Boston Terriers if ingested. These compounds are located throughout the fruit but seem to be highly concentrated in the skin, seeds, and pith.

In addition, grapefruits are highly acidic, which can be harmful to your Boston’s digestive tract. 

Is Grapefruit Essential Oil Safe For Dogs?

Grapefruit essential oil is not safe for dogs. According to the ASPCA, one of the main toxic ingredients in grapefruit is the essential oils.

I do not recommend diffusing, applying, or feeding your dog grapefruit essential oil because of the risk of toxicity.

If your dog ingests or breaths grapefruit essential oils, it could cause a severe allergic reaction, vomiting, and diarrhea. If grapefruit essential oil is applied to your dog’s skin, it could possibly react adversely.

What Happens If A Boston Terrier Eats Grapefruit?

If your Boston Terrier ingests a piece of grapefruit, they will likely develop a severe upset stomach, including vomiting and diarrhea. Also, your Boston may develop lethargy, trembling, or skin problems if they ingest grapefruit. Each of these listed concerns is elaborated on below.

1) Vomiting and Diarrhea

There are harmful substances within the grapefruit that will result in stomach problems if your Boston ingests the fruit.

The most common symptoms of grapefruit toxicity are stomach issues such as vomiting and diarrhea.

2) Light Sensitivity

Interestingly, grapefruit ingestion can cause light sensitivity in Boston Terriers.

The toxic compounds in the fruit cause the skin to become sensitive to light which can result in rashes on your Boston’s body.

The toxicity can cause dermatitis, which can be uncomfortable for your Boston.

3) Lethargy and Trembling

Another side effect of grapefruit ingestion in dogs is a general lethargy or feeling unwell. You may also notice that your Boston begins to tremble or shake.

4) Allergic Reaction

Occasionally, grapefruit ingestion can cause a severe allergic reaction in Boston Terriers.

The symptoms of an allergic reaction include:

  • Facial swelling
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Bumps or hives
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
Boston Terrier Rescues

What Should I Do If My Boston Terrier Ate Grapefruit?

If your Boston has ingested any amount of grapefruit, you should take them to a veterinarian right away.

Grapefruit is extremely harmful to dogs and can cause death if the symptoms of grapefruit toxicity are left untreated.

In addition, consider contacting a pet poison hotline to get additional guidance. Typically, there is a small consultation fee between $50 to $100 that will be charged for using these services.

Here are the two best pet poison hotlines available:

  • ASPCA Animal Poison Control: (888) 426-4435
  • Pet Poison Helpline: (855) 764-7661

Want to speak with a veterinarian? See the Boston Terrier Society Speak with a Veterinarian page to see services where you can talk with a vet, Boston Terrier Society Speak With A Vet Page.

How Do You Treat Grapefruit Poisoning In Boston Terriers?

Once your Boston Terrier has arrived at the veterinary clinic, your veterinarian may try to induce vomiting if it has been less than a few hours since your Boston ingested the fruit.

If too much time has passed, your veterinarian may wish to administer activated charcoal to attempt to bind the harmful ingredients in your dog’s digestive tract.

Your veterinarian will likely recommend hospitalization and IV fluid therapy to make sure that your Boston stays hydrated. Your veterinarian may also administer anti-vomiting medication such as Cerenia.

If your dog is having skin issues, your veterinarian may prescribe medications to treat the skin.


Grapefruits are extremely toxic to Boston Terriers, and you should never feed your Boston Terrier grapefruit. Grapefruit contains two toxic compounds that can cause adverse reactions in your dog.

Grapefruit poisoning can result in severe symptoms including vomiting and diarrhea that, if left untreated, can be fatal to your Boston Terrier.

If your Boston accidentally ingests a piece of grapefruit, take your pet to a veterinarian immediately for treatment.


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Addie Reinhard, DVM

Addie Reinhard, DVM- Dr. Addie Reinhard is an experienced small animal veterinarian. She is a Boston Terrier lover and always enjoys caring for her Boston patients at the veterinary clinic. She is passionate about providing helpful educational resources to pet parents regarding animal diseases and preventative care. She lives in Lexington, KY with her husband, greyhound, and four cats.

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