If you’re the type of person who loves sharing food with their dog, it’s often perfectly safe to let your pooch take a bite of whatever fruit you’re snacking on.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case with cherries. These small and sweet stone fruits may be delicious, but they’re not a safe snack for dogs.
Why can’t your dog eat cherries? Let’s take a closer look at the many health hazards that could pose serious problems for your pet.
Are cherries good for dogs?
Can Dogs Eat Cherries? Glance at the nutritional content of cherries and you could be forgiven for thinking they’re actually quite good for dogs to eat. Cherries are a rich source of vitamins A and C, and contain antioxidants that can help support your pet’s immune system and general wellbeing.
But that’s where the good news ends.
The most obvious hazard of eating cherries is the pit, which can cause intestinal blockages when ingested. This can mean serious health issues for your pup, and some potentially expensive vet bills for you.
But there’s also a hidden danger that many dog owners aren’t aware of: cherry pits, stems, and leaves all contain cyanide. If it’s consumed in large quantities, cyanide is toxic to dogs.
Finally, it’s also worth pointing out that the flesh of cherries could cause an upset stomach for your furry friend.
If you want to feed your dog raw cherries, you can safely give them one or two by removing the pit, stems, and leaves. But is it really worth the risk? From blueberries to bananas, there are plenty of other fruits that are safe, healthy snacks for dogs. The simplest and safest option is to feed them to your pup instead.
Are there any safe types of cherries?
There are many different types of cherries available, including black and maraschino, so are any of them OK for dogs? The simple answer is no, as there are simply too many risks involved in letting your dog eat any of these delicious little fruits.
Take maraschino cherries as an example. Because they’ve had their pits removed, you might think that they’re reasonably safe to give to your pet, right?
Wrong. Maraschino cherries are loaded with sugar, which can not only cause digestive upset but also lead to problems like obesity and diabetes.
What should I do if my dog eats a cherry (or lots of cherries)?
You might be committed to never giving your pet cherries, but sometimes our dogs have minds of their own.
Picture this: A bowl of cherries left unattended on the countertop. A curious dog with a big appetite. An unknown number of cherries eaten before you even realize what’s happened.
In this situation, it’s important to remember that the cyanide in just one or two cherries probably won’t be enough to cause any serious problems for your dog. That said, you should still keep an eye out for signs of intestinal blockage, which can include vomiting, a loss of appetite, and constipation.
If your dog has really gone to town, make sure you also recognize the symptoms of cyanide poisoning. These include:
- Dilated pupils
- Breathing problems
- Bright red gums
It can take up to 24 hours for symptoms to appear, so if you’re at all worried about your pet, seek veterinary attention straight away.
And remember that if you’re searching for a healthy snack to share with your pooch, you’ll find plenty of better options than cherries.