Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Nuts?
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As pet owners, we often make the mistake of assuming that food that is considered healthy for us is also healthy for our dogs. While it may be alright sometimes to share human food with your dog, it is important to know what is safe and what isn't. Nuts are a popular snack for humans, but that does not apply to dogs in the same generic way. Nuts are rich in essential nutrients, including healthy fats, proteins, vitamins, and minerals.

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While some nuts can be a safe and occasional treat for dogs, others are highly toxic and should be strictly avoided. When given in moderation, certain nuts can be a healthy snack for your dog, as these nuts have nutrients. They can work well, especially if you use them to supplement your dog's regular food with additional healthy snacks.

What is most important, though, is for you to be well-informed about which nuts are safe and to understand how much of them can be given to your dog. In the case of most nuts, it is important that they are given in moderation. You can make an informed choice only if you completely understand the risks and benefits of including nuts in your dog's diet. Always consult with your veterinarian before introducing any new foods into your dog's diet.

Things To Remember When Feeding Nuts to Dogs

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All nuts should be plain and not seasoned with salt, sugar or any other seasonings. This is extremely important, as salt can lead to poisoning, and seasonings like garlic or onion powder can be toxic.

Moderation is key. Even safe nuts should be given in small quantities and as occasional snacks, as they have a high-fat content. Dogs usually find it difficult to digest fat, and eating too many nuts can cause issues such as obesity and pancreatitis.

The nuts have to be small in size or you will need to crush or break them into smaller pieces to prevent the dog from choking. You need to be more careful, especially with smaller dogs.  Make sure you remove the shell for some nuts that come with shells because the sharp edges may hurt the dog. 

Just like humans, dogs can have allergies. When introducing a new food, start with a small amount and monitor your dog for any adverse reactions, such as itching, swelling, or gastrointestinal upset. Always check with your vet before including new things in your pet’s diet and also check with them if you feel there have been any allergic reactions once your pet has eaten a nut.

Nuts That Can Be Given To Your Dogs In Moderation


Peanuts are the safest nuts for dogs. You just need to make sure they are unsalted and unseasoned. They contain protein and healthy fats. However, peanuts should be given in moderation as their fat content is high. Peanut butter is a popular dog treat and is often used in cookies made for dogs. This is safe as long as it does not contain xylitol, a sugar substitute that is toxic for dogs. When you choose peanut butter, though, make sure you look for brands that have no added sugars or salt.

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Your dog can eat cashews but only in small quantities. They are rich in vitamins and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, and antioxidants. However, like peanuts, cashews are high in fat, which can lead to weight gain and pancreatitis if eaten in excess. The cashews, too, need to be unsalted and unseasoned.


You need to be careful with almonds. While almonds are not toxic for dogs, they are not easy to digest either and can cause gastrointestinal issues, especially if eaten in large quantities. If you choose to give your dog almonds, make sure they are plain and unsalted. Ideally, avoid this as much as possible and considering this can upset the digestive system, give it in very small amounts if need be.

Nuts That You Should Avoid Giving Your Dogs

Macadamia Nuts

Though they aren’t popularly eaten in India, you may come across them at some stores.  Macadamia nuts are highly toxic for dogs. Even a small amount can cause severe symptoms such as weakness, vomiting, tremors, hyperthermia (an elevated body temperature or fever), and lethargy. If your dog eats a macadamia nut by mistake, make sure you call your vet immediately and ask him what to do next.


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Walnuts, too, are dangerous for dogs. Especially black walnuts can be toxic for dogs. They can cause gastrointestinal distress, including vomiting and diarrhoea. Mouldy walnuts can contain tremorgenic mycotoxins, which can cause seizures or neurological symptoms in dogs. It is best to keep your dogs away from walnuts.


pecans are often used in pies, dessert and granola for humans. However, you must strictly keep them away from your dog. Pecan contains a toxin called juglone and when it gathers mould, it produces mycotoxins that are harmful to dogs. It can give your dog a tummy upset, cause seizures and also cause other neurological issues. 


Pistas are not recommended for dogs. They are high in fat, and when they develop mould,  they produce aflatoxin, a potent arcinogen. The shells of the pistachio are sharp and if eaten by mistake, they may choke your pet or cause intestinal blockage.

Nut allergies can be of various types and the symptoms for these could include vomiting, diarrhoea, lethargy, weakness, tremors, hyperthermia and difficulty walking or coordination issues. If you suspect your dog has eaten a harmful nut or is showing signs of an allergic reaction, contact your veterinarian immediately.