Can dogs have pistachios? Or will they kill them? The last thing you want to do is hurt your little pooch and, although he/she might like them as a tasty treat, it might not be worth the risk.
But why would you be able to feed your dog pistachios? I mean… They taste good to us and they are very nutritious for us, so it can’t be that much different for dog, can it?
And besides that, it seems like a common courtesy to feed your dog a little bit of what you are having. After all He/she probably stares at you as you munch on those tasty pistachios with that hungry look, just waiting to be fed.
While this may be true, the truth is that humans and dogs are not the same, and they do not react the same to certain foods. Who would’ve guessed… I mean there isn’t much difference between the two. Besides of course the walking around on all fours, being covered in hair, slobbering all over the place, barking at every noise, and all that stuff (joke).
Seriously though… Back to the point of this post, which is that pistachios can potentially be harmful to your dog.
Now this is nothing to go crazy ever. If you just fed your dog a handful of pistachios, you shouldn’t go racing them to the vet. There is a lot of mixed information out there, some articles saying that no one should be feeding their dogs pistachios while others claim they are pretty much harmless, but none are that concerning.
What I’m going to do here is first go over three reasons you should avoid giving your dog pistachios, followed by why you might actually want to feed your dog pistachios. I know, this sounds confusing… But you will see what I mean.
3 Reasons to Avoid Giving Your Dog Pistachios
#1 – Can cause an upset stomach
Number one (in no particular order) is that feeding your dog a diet of pistachios can possibly cause them an upset stomach. And this is obviously something you do not want.
Besides causing your dog discomfort and pain, which no happy dog owner should be okay with, you might also have to get out the cleaning supplies and scrub up vomit off that new rug you just bought, or if you are lucky you will be able to wipe it up off the hardwood floor.
Foods with high fat content, as pistachios have, are known to be culprits of upset stomachs for dogs.
If you did just recently add pistachios to your dogs diet and they have been acting a bit strange, or you notice the telltale sign of vomiting, then I would recommend backing off for a bit and seeing if the symptoms disappear with the discontinued consumption of these nuts.
#2 – They aren’t quite as healthy for dogs
Pistachios our absolutely packed with nutrients. Besides your dog staring at you like he/she wants a bite, you probably figured that this would be nice nutritious treat that could aid in improving your dog’s health.
Some of the many nutrients that pistachios contain a good deal of include the following…
- Fiber – Good for digestion.
- Thiamin – Needed for a lot of things, optimal brain health and carbohydrate digestion being a couple.
- Vitamin B6 – Important in energy metabolism. However, lack of this in your dog is probably not a concern.
- Vitamin K – Needed in small amounts. This is actually used to treat certain types of poisoning.
- Vitamin E – Powerful antioxidant. Can boost immune system and help increase the shine of your dog’s coat.
- Calcium – This well-known mineral keeps your dogs bones/cartilege strong and healthy.
- Manganese – Needed for effecient functioning of many enzymes in the body.
- Phosphorus – Required in high amounts and needs to be balanced with calcium intake. Defficiencies of this in dogs is rare.
- Magnesium – Needed for cellular processes requiring ATP, which are many. Lack of this mineral can cause defficiency in many others.
- Iron – Important for hemoglobin formation in the blood, which is important for just about everything.
- Potassium – All dogs need it.. Potassium is imporant for muscular, nerve, and enzyme function.
- Zinc – Also important for immune system function and more. Zinc deficiency in dogs is fairly common.
- Selenium – This trace mineral has a lot of antioxidant properties and is essential for humans and dogs.
However, the proteins that pistachios contain will not be able to be digested by your dog. In addition to the problems that these strange proteins pose, the high fat content that pistachios contain can pose a problem and will not be able to be utilized to be, which brings me to my next point…
#3 – They are high in fat, and this can be a problem
If you were reading other articles about pistachios in dogs before come across mine, you probably came across how they are high in fat and can cause serious problems for your dog.
Yes, high-fat diets fed to dogs have been linked to severe problems such as pancreatitis, which can be fatal, but they’re not as much to worry about as you may think.
Pistachios contain a good amount of fat… Much more than they do carbs and protein. According to Self Nutrition Data about 67% of the calories from pistachios comes from the fat it contains… Which is about 56 g of fat per every 1 cup (123 g).
That is some pretty high amounts of fat… But this isn’t necessarily a problem. Yes, high-fat diets can really tax your dog’s pancreas. But usually this is only a problem if your dog is also getting a lot of carbs. It is usually a combination of the two that poses the problem. If most of your dogs fuel is coming from fat, then this might be nothing to worry about.
Can I Feed My Dog Pistachios or Not?
As I mentioned earlier, there are many mixed opinions on whether or not feeding your pooch these nuts is something you should be doing. Some articles will tell you yes while others will tell you no.
In my opinion… Why not? Just think about it… Think about all those peanut flavored treats, peanut flavored dog foods, and just the peanut butter in general that we feed our dogs. Peanuts are actually higher in fat and their protein is also going to pose problems to your dog, but that doesn’t seem to stop people.
While pistachios do have the potential to cause your dog problems, so do peanuts.
If You Do Want to Feed Your Dog Pistachios…
That said, if you are going to give these to your dog, keep in mind that moderation is key. Do not overfeed him/her and it is best to start out with small amounts, making sure that they do not have adverse reactions. And, if they do, they will hopefully be nothing to worry about since the amount given was small.
There is no Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) or anything like that that I can provide you with. Small dogs are obviously going to be much more susceptible to problems associated with overconsumption or overdosing, see just have to be careful.
I would also recommend giving them of the unshelled pistachios, although you probably already knew this. With the shelled pistachios it is possible that splinters could break off from the shelves and get lodged inside the stomach or digestive tract.
Comments or questions? Leave them below and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can 🙂 Also be sure to share this post if you liked it and found it helpful!