Let us be clear of one thing from the beginning – you should always avoid giving cherries to dogs. These fruits are not beneficial to their health. Red berries can be highly toxic for them, but they can cause a choking hazard and can lead to obstructions in their bowels and stomachs.
Like avocados, cherries have hard center pits that can break or damage their teeth, causing blockages that might necessitate surgery. It can even tear their throat linings.
Are cherries bad for dogs?
Stone fruits contain hard pits that both people and dogs should avoid ingesting.
Within a cherry fruit, you would find a wide range of pits. The commonest among them is the double-layered center that comprises a hard outer shell and an inner seed that is even harder.
Are cherry pits bad for dogs?
There are several ways in which cherries could be bad for dogs, as enumerated below:
- Hard pits damage the teeth
- Pit shells can tear through the delicate throat linings
- The pit could be a choking hazard if the dogs swallow it
- Pits lodged in the intestine, bowel, or stomach could cause obstructions
- Rotten pits can lead to stomach aches and gastrointestinal issues related to them
- Spoiled fruit fresh could intoxicate them
- Pits can lead to trace cyanide poisoning
- They can cause diarrhea
At its worst, these hard pits can break a tooth sufficiently enough to cause a fracture right up to the nerves of the gums and can lead to immense pain. In addition, these fruits’ pit shells are textured and possess razor-sharp ridges.
If your dog swallows a pit, it can lead to a choking hazard – in that case, and it would not matter how big or small the pit is. In addition, the obstructions caused by these pits are dangerous and painful for your dog, and you may have to resort to surgery to remove them.
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The thing with rotten pits is that they can be found within fresh fruits as well. Spoiled fruits lead to the intoxication of dogs by fermenting and changing natural sugars to alcohol.
In addition, the pits have cyanogenic natural chemicals that get turned into cyanide by a dog’s body. This is why cyanide poisoning happens in dogs when they eat cherries. Cherry flesh causes diarrhea because it is rich in fiber.
Signs of cyanide poisoning in Dogs
The following are signs of cyanide poisoning in dogs:
- dilated pupils
- labored breathing
- appetite loss
- vomiting and gagging
- red gums
However, it is essential to know in this context that it is rare for the cyanide compounds within cherry pits to cause toxicity unless your dog has consumed a lot. While avoiding cherry-containing seeds or pits for your dog is safer, accidents happen.
So, if your naughty one gets a bowl of cherries and gulps all of them down, you should take them to a doctor, as such massive ingestion could lead to poisoning.
Are there any cherries that dogs can have?
No, never feed any cherry to your dog. There are different types of cherries, as given in the following:
While Maraschino cherries do not contain any pit, they consist of sugar, thus making them unsuitable for dogs. Dog nutritionists say you must never offer any canned fruits to your dog as they contain excess sugar. It can lead to problems like diabetes.
What to do in case your dog swallows a whole cherry?
If your dog swallowed a cherry when you were looking, don’t panic. Because a single cherry pit would not lead to cyanide poisoning. However, keep an eye out for symptoms of an intestinal blockage, including the following:
- decreased appetite
- lower fecal production
These symptoms may appear 24 hours after your dog has swallowed the fruit. Please remember that smaller dogs have a higher chance of experiencing an intestinal blockage. However, if your dog ate several of these fruits, look for signs of cyanide poisoning.
Read Also: Tips On How to Stop Dog Food Aggression?
Are dried cherries safe for dogs to eat?
If your dog is healthy, you could feed them dried cherries in small portions. However, in this case, you should be able to let them know about your dehydrator. Dried fruit sold in stores often has preservatives such as extra sugar that might lead to stomach ache, and xylitol is toxic for dogs.
In much the same way, cherry-flavored yogurt is not the right option for them too. All types of flavored yogurts have excessive sugar.
Can dogs have cherries without pits?
If you throw away the stem, leaves, and pit of the cherry, you can safely give a few such fruits to your dog without worrying about cyanide poisoning. But you need to ask yourself if making all this effort to feed cherries to your dog is worth it or not.
Remember that cherry flesh that is safe for your dogs is from natural cherries. It means you cannot give them Maraschino cherries, cherries that have been soaked in syrups, or dried cherries brought from stores, as they all contain preservatives and added sugars.
The relation between cherries and cyanide poisoning
Cyanide can be described as a chemical compound that leads to poisoning by lowering the ability of body cells to use oxygen, thus hastening their death. It is found in the shape of hydrogen cyanide in pits, leaves, and stems of cherry trees and is supposed to work as a deterrent against animals that eat cherries and damage the tree.
In this particular form, it is inactive, but as an animal chews them, chemicals known as “cyanogenic glycosides” get released from the plant cells before combining with an enzyme to change the cyanide to an active form.
Read Also: 10 Foods Your Dog Should Never Eat – Toxic Food for Dogs
Which fruits are safer for dogs?
The following fruits are considered safe for dogs, but with some caveats:
- apples without skin and seeds
- strawberries but only in limited quantities as too many would upset their stomachs
- bananas without the peel
- carrots in a size that would not choke them
- oranges without the stem, seeds, or pulp
So, now that you know about these, you should not worry too much about feeding them fruits. This way, you can be sure they would not be chewing those cherry pits.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Are cherries safe for dogs?
A: The main problem with cherries is that their pits, leaves, and stems contain cyanide. It is a poisonous chemical, and if your dog consumes it in high-enough quantities, it could prove to be lethal for them. In addition, Cherry tends to get lodged in their digestive tracts. Hence, it can block their intestines and could be painful for them.
Q: Can dogs eat cherries without seeds?
A: If you remove the stem, leaves, and pits of cherries, you can give your dog a couple of cherries, and you would not have to worry about any poisoning too.
Q: What happens when a dog eats one cherry?
A: One of the issues dogs face when they eat cherries is an obstruction of their intestines. It could happen even if they have had only one such fruit. Such problems could become evident even 24 hours following ingestion.
Q: Do dogs like the taste of cherries?
A: Cherries are naturally sweet fruits. Therefore, there is a high chance that your dog may love their taste too. If your dog loves having cherries, they will convey their liking through positive body language.
If your dog eats a couple of cherries, including pits, leaves, and stems, your pet will be doing fine. Because, in that case, they have not consumed a sufficient amount of cyanogenic glycoside, the toxin in cherries that leads to illness.
However, if they have eaten a lot, there is a reason to be concerned. Please call your vet if you are worried about your naughty one as soon you can. If you need to share cherries with your dog, limit yourself to a couple and leave out the stems and pits.