Dogs are well-known for being able to eat almost anything that humans can, but nuts are a different story. When it comes to nuts, most people think of peanuts or almonds. However, there are many different types out there that may surprise you!
For instance, can dogs eat pistachios nuts?
Pistachios are a healthy, delicious nut that we like. But are they good for our fluffy friends? Are they good for our doggo? The answer is not clear.
Some vets say it is okay to give them to our dogs. Others say no! We can eat pistachios with almonds in a bag of trail mix, but not with dogs.
Let’s explore more!
Can Dogs Eat Pistachios? Yes or No?
Pistachios are not toxic for dogs. If your dog eats a few shelled pistachios that fell on the floor while you were making some amazing pistachio dessert, they will probably be fine. We would also love to see what your recipe is for this dessert!
But there are a few reasons why you should not introduce pistachios into your doggo's normal diet, no matter how cute those puppy dog eyes are.
Pistachios are healthy for people, but they can be unhealthy for dogs. Dogs need a diet that is high in protein and low in fat. A few pistachios can make your dog gain weight or even get sick, making them very unhappy.
Also, many of the pistachios have salt on them which can make your dog's blood pressure go up or their kidneys get worse! The shells also might cause blockages or discomfort if they are not removed before being eaten by the dog.
So, as much as you can, keep pistachios away from your dog. You'll be saving them from getting stomach aches and other problems for a long time.
Why Can’t Dogs Eat Pistachios?
Pistachios can be harmful to dogs for a variety of reasons. These are further explained below in detail:
- High in Fats
First of all, pistachios are high in fat and calories. They can lead to obesity and pancreatitis in dogs. This can be especially harmful to dogs that are already obese or are diabetic.
- High in Salts
Many people eat pistachios that have salt or other seasonings. Eating too much can cause diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, excessive thirst, and tremor. It can also increase fluid retention in your furry companion and harm their kidneys. This can be especially dangerous for dogs with heart conditions.
- High Phosphorus Content
Nuts can cause bladder stones. This is because they contain high levels of phosphorus.
- Choking Hazard
Dogs do not chew their food as well as humans. Their teeth are not shaped the same way. If they eat a nut that is hard and large, they can choke on it. This is because of the size and shape of the nut combined with how it feels in their mouth. Dogs may swallow thin pieces of shells from pistachios, which can also lead to choking if swallowed whole.
- Aflatoxin Risk
Aflatoxins in foods are a mild threat to people, but they are very dangerous for dogs. This is because aflatoxin can be found in certain tree nuts, such as pistachios, walnuts, brazil nuts, and almonds. These aspergillus molds can often be found on these nuts
Nuts are high in fat. This can cause Pancreatitis, which is painful for dogs. Signs of Pancreatitis are:
- Heart arrhythmias
- Lack of appetite
- Difficulty breathing
- Weight loss
- Swollen abdomen
- Severe abdominal pain
When are Pistachios Bad for Dogs?
Nibbling on a few pieces of pistachios may not become toxic to your dog, but there are some instances in which pistachios can really harm your fluffy friend. These are as follows:
- High Quantity
“How many pistachios can a dog eat?”
Feeding dogs pistachios sometimes is not bad, so your dog will be OK if they nibble one or two pistachios once in a while. Feeding a lot of them in large quantities, especially along with other nuts can make the dog gain weight, feel sick, and have more serious problems.
- Prior Health Issues
If your dog already has pancreatitis, it is important not to give them high-fat foods like pistachios. Pistachios are not a good treat for dogs who are overweight because they have more calories than other dog foods. One ounce of pistachios has 150 calories!
- High Frequency
In the end, nuts should not be a significant part of a dog's diet. They are better for dogs as an occasional treat. They shouldn’t be fed too often.
So, if your dog picks one or two pistachios from somewhere once in a while then they will be fine. However, Pistachios can’t be a part of their regular diet or they can’t have too many pistachios too often.
What is Pistachio Poisoning? How to Avoid it? How to Treat it?
“What happens if my dog eats pistachios?”
Pistachios are not directly toxic to your dog. But, the proteins in nuts can't be digested by dogs. Eating too many or too often can cause problems like stomach aches and pancreatitis. They also may contain fungi which are dangerous to dogs and can make them sick.
These health conditions resulting from excessive pistachio intake are called pistachio poisoning in dogs.
How Do I Know If My Dog Has Eaten Too Many Pistachios?
If you find an empty jar of pistachios, it's possible that your dog might have eaten them. If your dog already has pancreatitis, it may get worse. You should also worry about new symptoms of pancreatitis developing in your dog.
Symptoms of Pistachio Poisoning In Dogs
A sign that your dog has overindulged is when they have:
- Greasy appearing stools
A common outcome of Pistachio poisoning is also pancreatitis. Its symptoms include:
- Difficulty breathing
- Heart arrhythmias
- Lack of appetite
- Orange urine
- Severe abdominal pain
- Swollen abdomen
- Weight loss
Pistachio poisoning also includes Aflatoxin poisoning that shows the following symptoms:
- Liver failure
- Loss of appetite
Diagnosis of Pistachio Poisoning in Dogs
Symptoms of this condition will bring your doctor to ask questions about what your dog ate and how long it has been since they last ate. Your doctor may check their body for other health problems, look at a chemistry profile, and have a complete blood count.
They'll also test urine, stools, and vomitus from the stomach. The doctor might give your pup medicine before the final diagnosis because they think they know what is wrong with Cocco even though they haven't finished checking everything out yet.
If your dog is not feeling well, it will need more tests done to find out what the problem is. This will depend on the symptoms that are shown. If your dog has problems with its esophagus or if they are dehydrated, an x-ray or ultrasound of the throat and chest area may be recommended. Ultrasounds can be used to see inside the belly and might show that there is something wrong with the pancreas or that there is fluid in this area.
Treatment of Pistachio Poisoning in Dogs
If your pet eats pistachios, the treatment will depend on what they ate. For any immediate signs of concern, like dehydration, IV fluids may be given. The veterinarian might give you some medications to help with things like nausea or pain. If there is a serious risk of lasting harm to their liver, they might also give them treatments for that too.
If your pet is vomiting, it may be because of aflatoxin. There is no antidote to this, but there are supportive treatments that can help the problem. If the vomiting persists or becomes severe, your veterinarian may recommend withholding food for days at a time. The idea behind this treatment is to allow the pancreas to heal so swelling goes down.
If the dog can eat on its own, it should eat 3 or 4 meals per day, which are low in protein and fat. High fiber will help to keep the dog healthy. If the dog is not able to eat well, give it some supplements for its stomach pain. They will probably not heal it, but they might make your pet feel better.
Here is a treatment plan that your vet may follow;
When your pet has a health issue, it's important to get them to a veterinarian immediately. Vets will examine the symptoms and prescribe the best therapy. Prepare to answer vet queries regarding what your dog ate, indications, and timeframes.
Your vet will perform a physical examination, biochemistry profile, and complete blood count. They may also take urine, blood, or vomit samples to test for potential diseases or toxins like aflatoxin.
Your dog will just require supportive treatment if the pistachios have poisoned it. For example
IV Fluids - This will help to hydrate your dog while also allowing toxins to be flushed out more rapidly.
Medications - Your vet will give your pet this medication through IV or injection, which could include antibiotics or anti-nausea/pain relief drugs.
Hepatoprotectants and Vitamin K - These will help reduce liver damage.
Fast - A dog vomiting may need a break from food to let the digestive system rest, which also helps reduce inflammation in the pancreas.
Give Bland Food - When your dog can eat, offer them high-fiber, low-protein diets several times a day.
Water - Keep your dog hydrated by giving them enough water, especially if they are vomiting or having a lot of diarrhea.
Supplements of pancreatic enzymes - They won't cure your dog's illness but will help to relieve abdominal discomfort.
X-ray/Ultrasound - If your dog has a history of esophageal/heART damage, his or her stomach could be examined with X-rays, ultrasounds, and other methods. The abdominal region is also checked for an enlarged pancreas or fluid accumulation using ultrasound imaging.
Recovery of Pistachio Poisoning in Dogs
When someone is recovering, try to be calm and quiet. Make sure the pet takes all of their medicine. The doctors may prescribe antibiotics, stomach protectants, or antacids to help stop symptoms like upset stomachs or vomiting.
Dogs with aflatoxin poisoning need follow-up appointments to check how the liver is doing. You may not be able to change the course of the disease, but pancreatic enzyme supplementation might help. It also may provide relief from abdominal pain.
What to Do If Your Dog Eats Pistachios?
If your dog has eaten pistachios, you need to think about what happened. Did the pistachios have a date on them? Were they shelled? How many did your dog eat? How big is your dog compared to the nuts?
This means you should watch your dog carefully if he eats the pistachios. If your dog is small, then it could have a bowel obstruction that you will need to watch for. If your dog is big, then it might be at risk for mycotoxin poisoning, so you should watch them closely.
If your dog ate some nuts on the ground, it may be best to wait and see before taking any course of action.
When are Pistachios Safe for Dogs?
Pistachios do offer many nutrients to your dog. They have a lot of protein and fiber. They also have some fat, but most of it is unsaturated fat, which might be healthy in moderation. It is up to you whether or not your dog eats pistachios from time to time as they can get the nutrients from other foods too.
Pistachios have some nutrients that dogs need. These include:
- Vitamin B6: Pistachios are an excellent source of vitamin B6 which can be good for your dog. It helps with growth, makes the brain work better, and also is good for the heart.
- Potassium: Pistachios are a healthy snack for your dog. They provide potassium and it helps with the cells in your dog's body. Potassium is also good for the cells in their heart, nerves, and muscles.
- Fiber: Pistachios are a good source of fiber. Fiber is good for proper digestion and regular bowel movements. Eating other foods like pistachios can help your dog feel full for longer and might relieve some cases of constipation or diarrhea.
- Thiamine: Thiamine is an important vitamin for dogs. It is good for their brains and other parts of the body.
- Manganese: Manganese is good for extracting and digesting protein and carbohydrates in the body.
Can Dogs Eat Pistachio Ice Cream?
No, you should not give your dog pistachio ice cream.
According to the vets, dogs cannot drink milk after they are weaned. Milk is hard for them to process because it has lactose in it. The sugar levels could lead to obesity for dogs. This is why we discourage giving your dog ice cream of any sort.
Can Dogs Eat Salted Pistachios?
No, they can not!
Pistachios are often salted which makes them taste better, but it also makes them less healthy. Salt is not good for people and the same is true for dogs. Do not feed your dog any salty treats, including salty pistachios.
Can Dogs Eat Pistachio Shells?
“Can dogs eat pistachios without the shell?”
Pistachio green nuts are good for dogs. But the shells are not. The shells can cause intestinal obstructions or other damage to your dog's digestive tract. So you should shell the pistachios before feeding them to your pup.
Alternatives to Pistachios for Dogs
When you and your furry friend want to share a snack, there are healthy and delicious treats that you can choose from. These include:
Other Dangerous Nuts that Dogs Should Avoid
“Which nuts are toxic to dogs?”
As mentioned earlier, there are other kinds of nuts your dog should not eat. One is macadamia nuts which could make your dog very sick. It might make them very sleepy, have a fever, have stiff muscles, and tremors in their body. It could also cause vomiting or do damage to their muscles or nervous system.
Black walnuts and pecans are on the naughty list. Dogs get sick when they eat these nuts because of the toxin in them.
Whenever you are making a decision about your dog's diet, talk to your vet first. Ask them before you feed any human food that includes pistachios as well.
If you’re an ESA owner, it is essential to have a valid ESA letter from a licensed mental health professional. Take the next step towards having your emotional support animal by getting an ESA letter today!
Can dogs eat pistachios? Yes. But only in moderation.
- Be careful with the shells of the pistachios because they can be harmful.
- Salted pistachios are unhealthy and shouldn't be eaten by a dog.
- Pistachios are high in fat and calories, so they shouldn't be eaten if your dog is overweight or has pancreatitis, or any other medical condition.
If you remember these things, then pistachios are safe for dogs!