Dog parents and dog lovers often wonder what is safe to feed their dogs. It’s important to know which foods to avoid before you let your pup munch on common holiday baking items and goodies.
Disclaimer: Always check with your veterinarian before feeding your pup new treats, particularly if your pup has any allergies or sensitivities to any type of food or ingredient!
Can Dogs Eat Cranberries
Unlike grapes and raisins which are fatally toxic to dogs, cranberries are generally safe for dogs when given in moderation. Cranberries may lead to an upset stomach, so be conservative with portion sizes. Dog parents should use caution when feeding their pups cranberry sauce or cranberry juices as these may also contain forms of alcohol, grape juice, and can be high in sugar.
Summary: Cranberries are safe for dogs to eat in moderation. Avoid feeding your dog cranberry sauces or dishes that could also contain grapes, raisins, alcohol, or are high in sugar.
Can Dogs Eat Onions
Both onions and garlic contain a toxic ingredient called N-propyl disulfide that can cause oxidant damage to red blood cells, or anemia. Veterinarians generally warn against feeding your dog raw onions and garlic; however, if your dog ingests a small portion of onion, he or she is likely not to be in any serious danger depending on his or her weight and size. A Chihuahua will be more at risk eating a small quantity of onions as opposed to a Boxer who eats the same portion size. Regardless, avoid feeding your dog onions and garlic because they could experience a cumulative effect which can result in a serious condition known as hemolytic anemia.
Summary: Avoid onions as much as possible. A small amount may not be harmful, but the cumulative effect can cause significant life-threatening problems over time.
Can Dogs Eat Corn
Corn is a common staple for many dog food manufacturers and so corn is generally safe for dogs to consume. Corn in moderation is not harmful for your dog, however, like humans, moderation is key. Despite corn itself being a safe food item for your dog, corn on the cob can pose a health hazard. Corn on the cob may cause intestinal blockage or could easily cause your pup to choke. Popcorn that is unsalted and unbuttered can be a nice treat every now and then, but do so in moderation, and go easy on the toppings.
Summary: Corn itself is not a danger to dogs, however, corn on the cob should not be given to dogs because it can be a choking hazard and cause intestinal blockage. Several pieces of plain popcorn every now and then can be a nice treat for your pup.
Can Dogs Eat Strawberries
Fresh strawberries can be a great treat for your pup–unlike grapes (repeat: no grapes). However, dogs should not be given strawberries from a can that contains syrup. Fresh strawberries are a good source of antioxidants, fiber, and high in Vitamin C. Strawberries may also help whiten your pup’s teeth, plus, feeding your pup fresh fruit may increase their immune system and aid with weight management. Serving strawberries frozen or fresh makes for a delicious cool treat! It’s best to slice them into smaller servings to prevent choking, particularly for smaller dogs.
Summary: Strawberries make a great treat for your pup! They offer an array of health benefits and are packed with Vitamin C, fiber, and antioxidants. Slice them into smaller servings to prevent choking.
Can Dogs Eat Pistachios
Pistachios are not toxic for dogs, although, they are not recommended either. Pistachios when still in their shells can cause digestive blockages that can cause issues for dogs, and pistachios without their shells contain a high fat content which can be unhealthy for dogs in large portions. It is best to avoid these nuts for your pup.
Summary: Pistachios contain a high fat content which is not recommended for dogs; pistachios with their shells can cause blockages which can be dangerous. While not toxic, it’s better to be safe than sorry and not feed your pup these nuts.
Can Dogs Eat Cashews
Cashews are not toxic for dogs, unlike macadamia nuts which are extremely toxic for dogs. Cashews have a high fat and high protein content, which when eaten in large quantities overtime can contribute to obesity, and more seriously, pancreatitis. Dog parents should be particularly cautious of nut containers which contain a variety of nuts, including macadamia nuts which are very poisonous in even minimal amounts.
Summary: Cashews are not a healthy choice for your dog, although these nuts are not toxic. It is best to avoid them in large quantities because of their high fat and high protein content which can lead to serious health issues overtime. Be extremely cautious of nut containers which may contain a variety of nuts including macadamia nuts.
Can Dogs Eat Peanuts
Peanuts, a legume, are not toxic for your dog but are not necessarily healthy either. If you choose to give your pup a few, it is best to choose raw, dry-roasted, unsalted peanuts. Salted peanuts contain large quantities of sodium that can be harmful to your pup and flavored peanuts, such as honey roasted peanuts, are not recommended for your pup either. Peanuts are a fatty nut and may contribute to obesity or pancreatitis if eaten on a frequent basis overtime. Dog parents should be especially cautious when giving their pups peanut butter, as it may contain the toxic ingredient xylitol. If you decide to give your pup peanuts, remove the shell to prevent a choking hazard, limit their intake to a few per day, and use caution not to feed them salted or flavored peanuts.
Summary: Peanuts are not toxic to dogs but avoid feeding your dog salted or flavored peanuts due to the health risks associated with high sodium treats. Peanuts are also high in fat which can contribute to health issues. Limit peanut intake to a few per day and be certain to remove the shell to prevent a choking hazard.
If you are concerned your dog may have ingested something toxic, contact your veterinarian immediately or contact the Pet Poison Helpline.