Cherries are rich in vitamins, such as A and C, antioxidants, melatonin, and fibers. All this nutrition makes them good for human consumption in the summer but can you share these fruits with your pets too?
While some other fruits are safe for dogs, cherries, unfortunately, are not. In this article, we’ll discuss whether dogs can eat cherries and fruits that you can safely share with your pets.
Can Dogs Eat Cherries Safely?
No, dogs cannot eat cherries. The cherry flesh, although rich in antioxidants and fiber, can give your dog an upset stomach. Moreover, the cherry stem, leaves, and pits contain cyanide – a toxin for dogs when ingested in large amounts.
Although a single cherry pit or leaf won’t kill your dog, it’s not worth the risk. Plus, cherry pits can also obstruct your dog’s intestines, causing gastric troubles.
Furthermore, pet parents must not offer cherry-flavored foods to their dogs because these edibles are rich in artificial flavors and sugars.
Risks of Cherries for Dogs
First and foremost, cherries can cause cyanide poisoning. Plus, cherry pits can block your dog’s intestines. In some cases, your pet may need surgery to recover, especially if they’re a smaller breed.
Some cherries, like the sweet maraschino cherries, are pitless. However, they still contain added sweeteners that could pose a health threat to your little friend. Some of these include diarrhea and obesity in the long run.
Since these things are harmful to your dog, you should refrain from sharing even if the little guy is eyeing your cherry-flavored gum.
What is Cyanide Poisoning?
Cyanide refers to any chemical that has a carbon-nitrogen bond. While it’s infamously a poison, its safe-to-consume forms are present in spinach, almonds, soy, and lima beans, among other foods.
Moreover, cyanide is also a component of different medications like cimetidine. Most importantly, you exhale a small amount of cyanide every time you breathe out, and it’s also produced in different bodily reactions.
If cyanide is so commonly present in the body, how can it be a poison? Actually, cyanide is only poisonous when the carbon-nitrogen ion is released from the compound. Some deadly forms include:
- Potassium cyanide
- Hydrogen cyanide
- Sodium cyanide
When someone is exposed to cyanide ion, they can experience the symptoms of cyanide toxicity. These include headache, trouble breathing, loss of consciousness, cardiac arrest, nausea, and seizures.
What To Do If Your Dog Consumes Cherries?
If your dog has eaten cherries, there’s no need to lose your cool immediately. One pit won’t cause cyanide poisoning. Instead, your focus should be on stomach obstruction.
Monitor your pet for the next 24 hours for the following symptoms:
- Less fecal production
- Lower appetite
However, if your dog has eaten a box full of cherries, there’s a risk of cyanide poisoning. The condition’s symptoms start showing in about 15 to 20 minutes. Some common ones include:
- Labored breathing
- Red gums
- Dilated pupils
- Dogs may go into shock at times
If you notice the symptoms, talk to your vet and watch the pet for any other signs of unusual behavior. Depending on what your vet says, you may have to rush to the vet’s office or monitor your pooch for the next few hours.
Your vet may also tell you that the best way to tackle the situation is by inducing vomiting, as it will inhibit cyanide toxicity.
Other Fruits That Are Toxic For Your Dog
Besides cherries, there are some other fruits and veggies that you should keep away from the pets. Here are some of them.
If you’re an avo toast kind of morning person, you should keep the fruit away from your furry friend. While avocados have a host of health benefits for you, they’re unsafe for your dogs due to the presence of a compound called persin.
It can induce diarrhea and vomiting in dogs.
Regardless of a dog’s breed or age, grapes are toxic for them. If your fridge is always stocked with grapes, make sure to keep your dog at bay because grapes can cause acute kidney failure.
Another fruit you need to hide from your dog is tomatoes. Although the ripened part is considerably safer for dogs, the green parts have solanine, a toxin. Upon ingestion, tomatoes can make your dog sick.
Alternatives to Cherries
Although cherries are not safe for dogs, some other fruits can provide your pets the much-needed nutrients.
Oranges are filled with potassium, Vitamin C, and fiber. Fortunately, they’re safe for dogs to consume, as seen in research.
Vets recommend removing the peel off the orange and only giving the flesh to your dogs. Since the peel is hard on your dogs’ digestive system, it can lead to an upset stomach.
While you’re at it, also toss away the seeds.
Did you know that mango is considered the king of fruits in many parts of the world? Luckily, it’s safe and healthy for your dogs since it contains Vitamin E, C, A, and B6.
Additionally, mangoes are rich in alpha and beta carotenes. However, make sure that you remove the pit since it contains cyanide and could pose a choking hazard.
Also, don’t make it a regular habit for your dog to consume mangoes as they’re high in sugar.
Rich in Vitamin C and fiber, strawberries are an excellent alternative to cherries because they also have other benefits. They contain a certain enzyme that whitens your pet’s teeth.
However, feed your dog strawberries in moderation because they’re rich in sugar.
After you’ve removed the crown and the prickly peel off the pineapple, you can feed the inner flesh to your dogs. Besides being rich in minerals and vitamins, pineapples also contain bromelain.
It’s an enzyme that enhances protein absorption in dogs.
Can dogs eat cherries? Not at all. Since different parts of the cherry plant contain cyanide, the fruit is a health risk for your pet. Instead, you can feed your little friend some of the safer fruits we’ve discussed in this article.