Can Dogs Eat Limes? Risks, Poisoning, and Best Solutions

Most dog owners treat their pups just like a member of their family, thus feeding them the leftovers from the dishes, which are human food. But dogs have their tolerance for food, and they cannot digest all human food. Dog owners often find it challenging to know which human food is appropriate to dogs and not. One of the healthiest foods for humans is limes, as it has so many health benefits for humans. A question arises here, ‘Can dogs eat limes?’.

Before answering, you must know all sides of lime and what it does to dogs. Limes is a citrus fruit that is bright green in colour, round in shape, and sour in taste. There are many species of lemon available out there. These species are namely key lime which is scientifically called Citrus Aurantifolia; Persian lime, which is scientifically called Citrus Latifolia; desert lime which is scientifically called Citrus Glauca; and makrut lime, which is scientifically called Citrus Hystrix.

Potential benefits of lime

Can dogs eat limes? Well, as lime is a citrus fruit, it contains a substantial vitamin C. This antioxidant helps increase iron absorption and helps keep healthy skin and an immunity boost. Along with that, lime also holds the properties of being an antibacterial and an antibacterial component. Not only that, but all parts of lime such as the fruit itself, lime juice extracted from lime fruit, the pee, and the zest are all useful for different purposes. 

However, after all the good parts, the question remains, ‘are limes bad for dogs?‘. The short answer to this question is, yes. All these benefits are not for dogs. Leaving aside the beneficial parts, lime produces aromatic oils and phototoxic compounds named psoralens, limonene, and linalool. Though these psoralens are safe for humans, it causes gastrointestinal disruption in the case of a dog’s stomach, and prolonged exposure to limes can even cause liver failure in dogs.

Health hazards of limes for dogs

Are limes bad for dogs? Most of the time, yes. If a dog accidentally consumes limes in a large amount, it can lead to severe illnesses. This is called lime poisoning for dogs. Essential oils like limonene and linalool are present in lime, along with a phototoxic compound known as psoralen, which can be toxic for dogs, even though they are beneficial to humans. 

Although tiny amounts of lime are unlikely to cause any severe health hazards, dogs can suffer from gastrointestinal upset because of it. However, if your dog ingests large amounts of lime or the trees these limes grow on, it can lead to severe complications. Though this is unlikely as dogs, being carnivorous, are unlikely to find lime or lime treats palatable to their taste.

Let us look at the causes of lime poisoning in dogs due to the presence of Limonene, Linalool, and Psoralen –


Limonene, found in all citrus fruits, is a terpene which is the primary constituent of the aroma found in all citrus fruits. D-limonene, an artificially synthesized version of limonene, is often used as a fragrant in flavouring compounds used in the making of shampoos and fragrances for dogs. However, ingestion of limonene can cause fatal effects in dogs, leading to severe gastrointestinal issues, kidney failure, and in some cases, death.


Linalool is another terpene found in Limes that can be fatal if consumed. Linalool is a compound that gives citrus fruits their characteristic floral scent. Linalool is also used as an insecticide in soaps, proving it can be toxic to dogs. Consumption of Linalool can lead to blockage in the GI tract.


Psoralen, found in citrus and other plants, is the most toxic compound present in limes which can be fatal to dogs. It is a phototoxic compound used as a medication for skin disorders but can lead to phototoxicity if consumed by dogs.

Symptoms of Lime poisonings in dogs

Can dogs eat limes? Well, they should not because it can lead to lime poisoning.. Due to the consumption of limes, toxic reactions in dogs are primarily from phototoxicity induced from psoralens and essential oils like Limonene and Linalool. The symptoms of lime poisoning in dogs are varied and vast, and thankfully, easy to notice. They are –

  • Limbs of your dog get cold.
  • Sudden collapsing of your dog.
  • Depression signs are detected in your dog.
  • Failure of the liver.
  • Your dog drools excessively and is lethargic.
  • Symptoms of Low blood pressure.
  • Your dog loses coordination of muscles.
  • A sudden photosensitive nature.
  • Sudden skin rash or irritation.
  • Uncontrollable vomiting and tremors.
  • Signs of weakness.
  • Diarrhoea syndromes.
  • A sudden death.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Lime Poisonings 


Initial diagnosis of lime poisonings in dogs involves looking for the plant that caused the poisoning and monitoring the signs and symptoms in your dog. When you take your dog to the vet, be prepared to answer about the time and amount of lime ingested and which part of the lime plant was consumed. 

A urinalysis, blood chemistry profile, and a complete blood count will help identify the toxin which has caused the poisoning. Vomit and stools will also be analyzed for signs of the poison, along with skin irritations. The vet may also advocate neurological testing to measure abnormal reflexes and coordination in your dog.


  • Parts of your dog’s skin that was exposed to Limonene and Linalool will be washed with mild soap and water.
  • Gastric irrigation will be performed on your dog to wash away as much of the toxin as possible and active charcoal will then be applied to your dog to absorb the toxins further.
  • IV fluids can be administered in cases of dehydration in your dog and to restore any imbalances.
  • Oxygen will be provided to your dog in case he faces breathing issues.
  • In cases of acute tremors, antiseizure medications may be administered.

Usage of Lime sulfur dips in dogs

Lime sulfur dip for dogs is the only known product of limes that can be beneficial to dogs. What is lime sulfur dip for dogs? It is a lime and sulfur concentrate that cures generic dermatoses and parasites in dogs. You can bathe your dog in a lime sulfur dip containing 97.8% sulphurated lime solution by adding 4 ounces of it to 1 gallon of water to get rid of parasites and germs.

Before applying the lime sulfur solution to your dog, mix well and shake it. Apply a dog collar to prevent your dog from ingesting it.

Renewed Radiance for Your Furry Friend – The Perfect Samsons Rescue Balm Advantage

In conclusion, give your dog the gift of revitalized skin with Perfect Samsons Rescue Balm. With its unique blend of nourishing ingredients, this balm is more than just a skincare solution – it’s a testament to the care and commitment you have for your four-legged companion. Watch as their skin transforms, radiating health and vitality. Elevate your dog’s well-being with the unparalleled benefits of Perfect Samsons Rescue Balm, because every pup deserves to shine with renewed radiance.

All in all, are limes bad for dogs? Yes, they are. With the possible exception of lime sulfur dips, the consumption of limes is very harmful to dogs. Contact your vet immediately in cases of consumption of lime by your dog.

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