The Power of Pumpkin: A Veterinarian's Guide for Pet Parents

Written by: Dr. Cherice Roth


From pumpkin-spiced lattes to hearty autumn stews, pumpkin is a staple in many of our seasonal delights. But did you know that this vibrant orange fruit (yes, it's a fruit!) can also offer many health benefits for our pets? As a veterinarian, I've often recommended pumpkin as a natural remedy for various pet concerns. Let’s dive into why pumpkin is more than just a fall favorite and how it can positively impact your pet's health.

Dog with pumpkin

Benefits of Pumpkin for Pets

Digestive Health

Pumpkin is an excellent source of dietary fiber. Adding a spoonful of plain canned or cooked pumpkin to your pet's Yummers food can aid in regulating their bowel movements. Whether your dog or cat struggles with diarrhea or constipation, pumpkin is a natural balancer for their digestive system.

Addressing Anal Gland Concerns

Pets, especially dogs, have anal glands on either side of their rectum. These glands secrete a fluid that typically gets expressed during defecation. However, when the stool is too soft, it may not adequately express the glands, leading to potential blockages or infections. Thanks to pumpkin's fiber content, it can help bulk up stools, ensuring a more consistent and firmer poop. This, in turn, aids in naturally expressing the anal glands, reducing the risk of anal gland issues. Try pairing with Yummers Digestive Supplement for the ultimate digestive support.

Weight Management and Stool Quality

With its high water and fiber content, pumpkin provides a feeling of fullness without loading your pet with excessive calories. As it assists in weight management, it concurrently ensures the production of quality stools - not too hard or soft - ideal for maintaining healthy anal glands.

Urinary Health

Pumpkin seeds are known for their rich content of essential fatty acids and antioxidants. These can support urinary health in pets by preventing kidney stones and promoting overall kidney function. Moreover, the oils in pumpkin seeds have been shown to promote a healthy urinary tract.

Essential Nutrients

Pumpkin is packed with essential nutrients beneficial for pets. It's rich in vitamins A, C, and E and minerals like potassium and iron. Vitamin A, in particular, plays a vital role in vision, growth, and muscle health.


Pumpkin has a high moisture content. Including it in your pet's diet can be an additional source of hydration, especially for those pets who may not drink water as frequently as they should.

Natural Deworming

The cucurbitacin in pumpkin seeds has been known to act as a natural agent against intestinal parasites. Ground pumpkin seeds can help eliminate certain types of worms from the intestines. This doesn’t replace traditional deworming medications for active infestations, but it’s nice to have a little extra protection to keep these critters at bay!

Cat with pumpkin

Tips for serving Pumpkin to Pets

When introducing pumpkin to your pet's diet:

  • Always opt for plain, unseasoned pumpkin. Canned pure pumpkin is fine, but avoid pumpkin pie fillings or preparations with added sugars and spices. The extra sugar and spices can cause GI irritation and, in cases of alternative sweeteners, can be toxic.
  • Start with small amounts and monitor your pet for any adverse reactions.
  • Remember, pumpkin is a supplement, not a replacement. It should complement, not dominate, a balanced diet. I recommend pairing with Yummers Complete and Balanced Dog Food.

As pet parents, our ultimate goal is to ensure the well-being and happiness of our four-legged companions. Pumpkin isn't just a festive treat; it's a boon for pet parents concerned about their furry friend's digestive health, stool quality, and anal gland wellbeing. 

Watching our pets lead a comfortable, healthy life, with the added bonus of them relishing their pumpkin-infused meals using Yummers Dog Food, is a joy unmatched. Introducing them to the natural goodness of pumpkin can be a step in the right direction. It's heartening to see their tails wagging with joy, knowing that behind that tasty treat are numerous health benefits. 

If you're considering adding pumpkin to your pet's diet or have any concerns about their nutrition, always be sure to let your pet’s veterinarian know that you’re adding it - it won’t cause any harm, but you’re a team! After all, our pets rely on all of us, and we have the joy of seeing them thrive.

Dr. Cherice Roth

Dr. Cherice Roth

Dr. Roth is a practicing veterinarian with a background in telemedicine and a passion for equitable access to veterinary care for all pets. She knows how vitally important mealtime is for pets and shares Yummers' devotion to giving them what they want and need.