It is not uncommon for a devoted dog owner to reward his best pal with a tasty treat for being a 10/10 good pupper. As best friends, dogs and humans love to delight in life's simple pleasures, and that includes long walks, snuggles, and all the delicious noms.
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But let's say you've got a yummy deli sandwich on your plate today. Are you caught in a pickle about whether or not you can share a dill with your doggo?
So what about pickles? Are pickles poisonous to dogs? Can dogs eat pickles?
Where do pickles come from?
According to PBS, the word pickle comes from Dutch pekel and the northern German pókel both of which mean salt or brine. Not so coincidentally, the process of pickling, a food preservation technique, has utilized the two elements of salt and brine to further a food's shelf life for centuries.
So what are pickles, really?
Oftentimes, pickles are commonly associated with the salty, crunchy cucumber treat on the side of your deli sandwich or lox, bagel, and cream cheese. And it doesn't stop at cucumbers: pickles can come in many delightful vegetable and fruit forms. But for the purpose of this article, we will stick to the dill and cucumber variety. Got it? Good.
Can dogs eat pickles?
No, dogs cannot eat pickles. Although pickles may not be toxic to dogs, according to AKC, the spices and high sodium content can be problematic to your furry friend, especially if he has an underlying medical condition. Avoid the pickles and stick to vegetables that are safe for your dog to eat.
Pickles come in many forms and flavors, all of which can contain varied spices, sugar, and salt content. For this reason, you do not want to put your pet at risk by feeding him your favorite snack. Try giving him some more dog-friendly treats instead.
What are the concerns with feeding pickles to dogs?
Pickles are not necessarily toxic to dogs, but they can cause unpleasant symptoms in your pet, and are potentially dangerous to dogs with underlying medical conditions due to the high sodium content. According to AKC, if your dog consumes a large amount of sodium in a short time span, he may experience unpleasant side effects including excessive drinking, vomiting, diarrhea, ataxia (loss of balance), or even seizures. It is best not to feed your dog pickles because of these many concerns.
Sodium and your dog
Do not be fooled: similarly to humans, sodium is an essential part of your dog's diet. However, your dog should not be receiving his sodium from a pickle. That is too much sodium all at once for your furry friend! Your dog should be getting all the sodium he needs from his regular diet. If you have any concern with your dog's sodium intake, be sure to have a chat with your veterinarian.
Although pickles are not inherently toxic to canines, dogs should not be eating pickles due to the high sodium content and potential for harmful spices and ingredients. Do not feed pickles to your dog. Pickles can cause unpleasant symptoms in your friend such as excessive drinking, vomiting, diarrhea, ataxia (loss of balance), or even seizures, and be dangerous for dogs with underlying health conditions. If you would like to give your pupper a special treat, there is plenty to choose from that is safe for doggos. Check out our list of foods that your dog can and cannot eat to get some inspiration!
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.