Can Dogs Eat Cherries? Everything You Need To Know

Can Dogs Eat Cherries

Can Dogs Eat Cherries? Black cherries, along with other types of cherries, are not inherently toxic to dogs. However, it’s important to note that the pit, leaves, and stems of cherries contain cyanide, which is harmful to dogs. It’s crucial to prevent your dog from consuming these parts of the cherry.

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Once you’ve removed the pit, leaves, and stem, fresh cherries can be safely enjoyed by both healthy puppies and adult dogs, but in moderation. Keep in mind that puppies have more delicate stomachs, and the sugar content in cherries might impact them more significantly than it would adult dogs.

Are Cherries Safe and Nutritious for Canines?

When incorporated into a dog’s diet with care, cherries can offer a safe and nutrient-rich addition to their meals, boasting a spectrum of beneficial elements including:

  1. Antioxidants
  2. Melatonin
  3. Vitamin C
  4. Vitamin A
  5. Fiber

However, it is crucial to ensure that the cherries are fresh, untainted, and adequately washed. Moreover, removing the pit, stems, and leaves is imperative. Portion control is also vital, and the following chart provides guidance on appropriate quantities.

Can Cherries Pose Risks to Dogs?

While cherries can be a tempting treat for dogs, their high sugar content could potentially lead to stomach discomfort. Regular consumption of excess sugar may contribute to health issues such as diabetes, obesity, which could exacerbate joint problems, and more. Dogs grappling with diabetes or obesity should steer clear of cherries due to their sugar concentration.

However, the most pressing concern involving cherries is the presence of cyanide in the pit, stems, and leaves, akin to the seeds in apples. Ingesting cyanide can have dire consequences for dogs. The severity of cyanide exposure hinges on factors like the dog’s size and whether they chewed or swallowed the pits. Chewing the pits can trigger the release of cyanide from the seeds within.

Symptoms of cyanide poisoning encompass:

  1. Excessive panting
  2. Hyperventilation
  3. Loss of appetite
  4. Drooling
  5. Difficulty breathing
  6. Abdominal pain
  7. Bright red gums
  8. Dilated pupils
  9. Vomiting
  10. Tremors
  11. Diarrhea
  12. Convulsions
  13. Seizures
  14. Collapse
  15. Shock
  16. Paralysis

Should a dog ingest cherry pits, stems, or leaves, or exhibit any of the listed symptoms, it is paramount to promptly consult a veterinarian and seek immediate medical attention.

Furthermore, it is important to acknowledge that cherry pits, stems, and leaves could pose a choking hazard or provoke intestinal blockages.

Canines and Dried Cherries In moderation, dried cherries could be deemed acceptable for a healthy dog’s consumption. However, crafting them at home using a dehydrator is advisable, as commercially available dried fruit may harbor preservatives, excessive sugar, or even xylitol, a toxic substance for dogs.

Maraschino Cherries: A Consideration Maraschino cherries, while not inherently toxic, lack nutritional value and contain superfluous preservatives and added sugars that could disturb a dog’s digestive system.

Cherry Yogurt, Ice Cream, and Beyond Cherry-flavored yogurt, ice cream, and similar products are inadvisable for dogs. These treats often harbor excessive sugar, potential preservatives, and, alarmingly, xylitol, which poses a grave threat to canine health.

Feeding Guidelines for Cherries Canine treats, including healthful ones, should constitute merely 10% of a dog’s daily dietary intake. The remaining 90% should stem from a well-rounded dog food regimen.

To gauge appropriate cherry consumption, adhere to the following recommendations:

  • Extra-small dog (2–20 pounds): One cherry
  • Small dog (21–30 pounds): Up to two cherries
  • Medium dog (31–50 pounds): Up to four cherries
  • Large dog (51–90 pounds): Up to five cherries
  • Extra-large dog (91+ pounds): A handful of cherries

If concerns about excessive cherry consumption arise, be vigilant for signs of stomach upset:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Lethargy
  • Reduced appetite
  • Distended or painful stomach

Should any of these symptoms manifest, immediate veterinary attention is advised.

Safely Introducing Cherries to Canine Diets To safely offer cherries to dogs, prioritize fresh, untampered cherries that have been thoroughly cleaned and segmented while eliminating pits, stems, and leaves.

Consider these engaging methods for introducing cherries to your dog’s diet:

  1. Cherry Fruit Smoothie: Blend cherries with dog-safe fruits like strawberries, bananas, and blueberries. Administer as a standalone treat, a food topper, or freeze within a KONG toy.
  2. Cherry Yogurt or Frozen Yogurt: Blend cherry fragments with plain, sugar-free, and xylitol-free yogurt. For a frozen delight, freeze cherry pieces overnight before blending with plain yogurt. Serve in moderation.
  3. Stuffed KONG Toy: Fill your dog’s KONG toy with any of the aforementioned mixtures. Freeze for an extended engagement period, particularly beneficial for teething puppies.
  4. Homemade Dried Cherries: Craft dried cherries at home using a dehydrator to bypass additives and excessive sugar.

Incorporating cherries into a dog’s diet can be enriching when executed with caution and attention to the guidelines provided.

Channel: Puppy Classroom

Detecting Cherry Toxicity Symptoms in Dogs

Cherry toxicity in dogs arises from the potential threat of cyanide poisoning. Manifestations of this toxicity can emerge within a span of 15 minutes to several hours subsequent to your canine companion’s consumption of cherries. These symptoms encompass:

  1. Escalated heart rate
  2. Swift and shallow respiration
  3. Excessive salivation
  4. Watery ocular discharge
  5. Onset of diarrhea and frequent urination
  6. Inducing vomiting
  7. Pallid or bluish mucous membranes
  8. Incidences of muscular spasms

The effects of cyanide act swiftly, and can lead to a dire outcome, with affected dogs experiencing convulsions and potentially succumbing within approximately 45 minutes. The implications of this poisoning extend to prolonged health complications such as anemia and organ impairment, underscoring the urgency of prompt intervention. If you suspect that your canine has ingested cherries and fallen victim to poisoning, it is imperative to seek immediate assistance from the nearest emergency veterinary clinic.

Treating Cyanide Poisoning in Dogs:

Should you observe signs of cyanide toxicity in your canine companion approximately 15–20 minutes after their consumption of cherries, it is imperative to swiftly seek veterinary assistance.

Upon visiting the veterinarian, your pet is likely to undergo oxygen therapy along with administration of sodium nitrite and sodium thiosulfate. These interventions facilitate the expeditious elimination of cyanide from your dog’s system. Additional measures such as intravenous fluid support might also be provided. In cases of pronounced symptoms, your dog may necessitate prolonged monitoring and continuous medical attention during their stay at the veterinary facility.

Choking Hazard of Cherry Pits for Dogs

The peril of intestinal blockage associated with cherry pits should not be underestimated, even if your canine companion consumes only a couple of them. This hazard can manifest itself within a span of 24 hours following ingestion. Particularly, smaller dogs and young puppies with delicate intestines that are prone to obstruction are at a heightened risk. Indicators that your dog might be grappling with an intestinal blockage encompass symptoms such as constipation (leading to difficulty in defecation), loss of appetite, and episodes of vomiting.

Treating Intestinal Obstruction:

Although the occurrence of intestinal obstruction due to cherry pits is uncommon, it remains a plausible concern. For instances of partial obstruction, a prudent approach might involve monitoring to ascertain if the pit is excreted naturally. In situations where a complete obstruction leads to evident distress, surgical intervention may be recommended to remove the pit.

Dental Perils

When a dog crunches into a cherry that still encases its pit, the rigid and compact seed can potentially inflict damage to the teeth, possibly leading to tooth fractures.

Signs indicative of dental damage consist of:

  • Teeth exhibiting unusual shades like reddish-brown, purple, or gray
  • Sensitivity upon contact or pressure applied to the teeth
  • Appearance of a red or black cavity on a tooth’s crown
  • Swelling of the facial region
  • Diminished interest in food
  • Observable cracks on a tooth’s surface

Treating Dental Damage:

In the event of a tooth fracture induced by a cherry pit, the treatment regimen mirrors that of any other broken tooth.

Therapeutic options encompass a spectrum ranging from dental enamel smoothing coupled with vigilant observation to the potential consideration of root canal therapy. In select cases, the extraction of the affected tooth could be advised by your veterinarian.

The duration of recovery varies, contingent upon the chosen course of treatment. Generally, dogs exhibit favorable recuperation outcomes when appropriate pain management and attentive supportive care are employed, thereby ensuring their well-being throughout the process.

Which other food items Contain cyanide?

Numerous edibles intended for humans harbor cyanide content, posing a risk of cyanide poisoning when consumed excessively by your canine companion. Among the commonly encountered foods containing cyanide are:

  1. Apples: The seeds and core of apples house minute traces of cyanide. While a small ingestion of seeds is unlikely to pose a threat to your dog, it’s prudent to consider the potential risks.
  2. Almonds: Almonds are unsuitable for canine consumption due to their poor digestibility and cyanide content.
  3. Apricots: While the flesh of apricots is generally safe for dogs, it’s advisable to remove the seeds, which contain minor amounts of cyanide.
  4. Peaches: Peaches fall into the category of dog-friendly fruits as long as the seeds and pit, which harbor cyanide, are meticulously extracted.

The aforementioned selection offers only a glimpse into the array of cyanide-containing foods that could potentially endanger your pet. Should you ever harbor concerns about your pet’s dietary choices, it’s wise to consult your veterinarian. They possess the expertise to guide you on which human foods are safe for dogs and the appropriate quantities permissible for consumption.

Conclusion | Can Dogs Eat Cherries?

It is paramount to remain vigilant for signs of cyanide toxicity if your dog consumes cherries, acting promptly to seek professional veterinary care if symptoms manifest. The judicious application of oxygen therapy, sodium nitrite, and sodium thiosulfate, along with potential supportive measures, can aid in expediting the removal of cyanide from your pet’s system. Similarly, while the likelihood of intestinal obstruction from cherry pits is low, it is crucial to consider appropriate steps, including monitoring or surgical intervention if necessary.

In cases of dental issues arising from cherry pit consumption, a tailored approach ranging from tooth smoothing to potential root canal therapy or tooth extraction can ensure your dog’s oral health and comfort. Through meticulous pain management and attentive support, dogs can experience favorable recovery outcomes, allowing them to regain their well-being and quality of life. Always consult with your veterinarian to make well-informed decisions for your beloved companion’s health and welfare.


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