Can Dogs Eat Pistachios? Are They Safe?
Dogs love to do everything we do. They sit at our feet whilst we work, follow us to the bathroom, and love to eat nearly anything we do. But what happens if you’re tucking into a bag of trail mix? Can dogs eat pistachios? Are they safe for them too?
The good news is that dogs can eat pistachios (so if they hoover them up off the floor you don’t have to worry) but the real question is should dogs eat these nuts? Here’s what you need to know about feeding your pup pistachio nuts.
Are Pistachios Toxic to Dogs?
Pistachios are not toxic to dogs (unlike cherries or macadamia nuts, for example). So if you give your dog a couple of shelled pistachios, they should be OK.
The real problem with pistachios, however, is their high-fat content. Pistachios and other nuts such as peanuts and pecan nuts contain a lot of fat which your pup doesn’t need in their diet. Dogs should be eating high-protein food that’s been specifically developed for canines by professionals – such as fresh dog food. They don’t need extra fat.
Not only can extra fat lead to obesity and pancreatitis, but the fat in pistachios can also cause your pup to vomit and have diarrhea. So, there are other human snacks that are better to feed your pups, such as popcorn, avocado, and pineapple.
Are There Any Benefits to Feeding Dogs Pistachios?
Whilst we don’t recommend feeding your pup pistachios due to their high-fat content, they do have some nutritional value.
Pistachios contain vitamin B6 which promotes a healthy heart, growth, development, and cognitive function. They also contain natural potassium which is essential for cell development and promoting normal electrical charges in your pup’s muscles, heart, and nerves.
Pistachios also contain fiber which is an important part of your dog’s diet. Not only does fiber help your pup feel fuller for longer but it can also improve the regularity of their bowel movements.
What To Think About if You Do Decide to Feed Your Dog Pistachios
If you do decide to feed your pup a pistachio nut or two it’s really important you remove the shells (which is also the case with cashew nuts). Pistachio shells can be a choking hazard, especially for our little fury friends. Because they’re so hard, pistachio shells can also be bad for your dog’s teeth and jaw if they happen to bite into them. They can be very sharp and also cause esophageal injuries when swallowed.
It’s also important that you don’t feed your pups salted pistachios. They may be the tastiest variety of these green nuts but too much salt can be a real problem for your dog’s digestive system. It can cause an upset stomach, vomiting, dehydration, and diarrhea.
What About Pistachio Ice Cream?
How good is pistachio ice cream? Whilst it’s a favorite for many, it’s not recommended that you share a scoop with your furry friend. Ice cream contains lots of sugar which dogs don’t need. Sugar can lead to weight problems and cause tooth decay.
Ice cream also contains dairy which many doggos are allergic to. It’s best to make your dog a healthy pupsicle. Try blending up watermelon and freezing it inside a puzzle toy. Dogs will love the task of trying to lick out every last drop!
How Many Pistachios Can Dogs Eat?
There’s not a huge problem with dogs eating pistachios, just as long as it isn’t too many. In general, pet owners should stick to the 90/10 rule. 90% of your dog’s diet should be well-balanced canine food that gives them all the nutrients they need. 10% can be healthy human snacks such as celery.
Depending on their size and their daily calorie intake, our furry friends can have a couple of pistachios as a snack during the day. Just remember, too much fat can lead to health problems down the line.
Whilst pistachios themselves aren’t actually poisonous, how and where they’re stored can be an issue. Aflatoxins are toxins found in a particular mold that grows on nuts, grains, and corn. If dogs eat pistachios with this specific mold they could suffer from aflatoxin poisoning.
Signs of this pistachio poisoning include loss of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, unexplained bleeding or bruising, and tiredness.
If you suspect your pup has eaten moldy pistachios, contact your vet immediately.
So, Can Dogs Eat Pistachios?
Technically yes. Dogs can eat pistachios and they’re not toxic for our canine friends to eat. But pistachios are pretty calorific and can be a problem in large quantities. Dogs don’t need extra fat in their diets, they should be getting everything they need from their regular dog food.
If your dog eats a couple of pistachio nuts or you decide to feed them to him there’s nothing to worry about. There are, however, many healthier options to feed your pup as a snack!
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