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Avocados are trendy fruits — yes, they’re a fruit — that are popular for being both delicious and healthy. But can dogs eat avocado? The answer is yes and no.
Can I Give My Dog Avocado?
Yes, you can let your dog eat avocado, but only give it the fleshy portion of the fruit and in small amounts. Never give your dog the avocado plant’s leaves, stem, seeds, skin, or the fruit’s pit.
Can Avocados be Good for Dogs?
The flesh portion of avocados is a great source of healthy fats and fatty acids, as well as a variety of vitamins and minerals. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that can be beneficial for dogs.
Due to their nutritional value, you can see avocado as an ingredient in certain brands of dog food. Some of the nutrients present in avocado include:
- Fatty acids
- Amino acids
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B3 (Niacin)
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin E
Fatty acids, vitamin B3, potassium, and folate help keep your dog’s fur smooth, shiny, and healthy. Vitamins A, B3, B6, C, and E also support skin and fur health, bone health, eyesight, and more.
As long as your dog doesn’t consume too much avocado and doesn’t eat the pit as well as other parts of the plant, things should be just fine.
What Makes Avocado Unsafe for Dogs?
The fleshy part of the avocado fruits is rich in nutrients that can be beneficial for your dog’s health. However, avocado isn’t totally risk-free.
First of all, avocado contains persin, which is a toxic compound. To be more precise, persin is found in the plant’s leaves, stem, seeds, skin, and just about every other part, including the fruit itself.
Luckily, dogs are mostly resistant to persin. They’d have to eat a very large amount of avocado to suffer any toxic effect. Still, it’s better to feed your dog small portions of the fruit and completely avoid the plant’s seeds, stem, leaves, and bark because they have higher concertations of persin.
Additionally, you should make sure your dog never gets the pit. This is actually the biggest danger of avocados for dogs.
The pit is the golf ball-sized seed in the middle of the avocado. Even if you remove it, your dog may find its way to it and risk serious consequences.
The pit does contain persin, but that’s not the main issue as opposed to it being a choking hazard. Due to its size, the pit can easily get lodged in your dog’s throat and block the airway.
Even if the pit passes the respiratory tract, it can just as easily get stuck in the intestinal tract, leading to a severe blockage.
Take your dog immediately to the vet if it eats an avocado pit.
Avocado contains healthy fats, but they can be dangerous to dogs if consumed in large amounts. Too much fat can even cause life-threatening pancreatitis. So as we mentioned above, keep your dog’s avocado intake moderate.