Can Dogs Eat Peanuts?
Peanuts or groundnuts for the Americans, Monkey nuts for Britishers or Moongfallis for Indians are a quick snack and a key ingredient in a lot of delicious and healthy foods like peanut butter cookies, energy bars or the Indian delicacy ‘Chikki.’ But are these nuts equally healthy for dogs? The answer is Yes, they are safe but in limited quantities.
Do dogs like Peanuts?
Peanuts are high in fats and hence all the recipes like peanut butter, cookies, etc. are equally high in fats. And dogs have taste buds which are fat favoring, just like humans. Hence, they tend to love peanuts and its dishes.
Are Peanuts good for dogs?
Although high in fats, they are yet a healthy food. Not all fat is bad. There are some good fats that humans and dogs need for their growth. Peanuts also are high in protein. They form a key ingredient in most of the protein bars.
Health benefits of Peanuts
Peanuts are a powerhouse of nutrients. They can provide our dogs some very essential nutrients like Vitamin B6, Vitamin E, Phosphorous, Potassium, Niacin and much more. If we see the individual benefits of each of these nutrients, they are diverse.
Vitamins – are a boon for their eyesight, especially for the matured ones, as they help prevent cataracts and helps avoiding night blindness and even dry eyes. They are essential for digesting fats and supports bone growth, reproduction, cellular differentiation and immune response in dogs. They also boost energy metabolism and assists skin tissue maintenance. For the young puppies, they support their overall growth.
Potassium – It aids in the functioning of electrical charges in the heart, nerves, and muscles. It also helps to revive the dogs energy if it is feeling tired all the time
Phosphorous – It is a mineral which helps a dog keep its teeth and bone healthy and also keep the metabolism on track
Niacin – Niacinamide, also called vitamin B3 is a nutritional supplement and immunomodulator used in conjunction with other medications to treat inflammatory skin conditions in dogs, such as lupoid or pemphigoid conditions
All these nutrients in Peanuts make it a good addition to that dog’s diet but does that mean they should be fed lots and lots of Peanuts for them to stay healthy? The answer is – No
How much Peanuts is good Peanuts for your Dog?
Dogs are carnivorous. So, ideally, 75-80% of the dog’s meal should be meat and other non-veg products. And that’s where the dog will get its most of the protein requirement. Also, it is important to note that peanuts are very high in fats and dogs are known to have troubles digesting fats. Only a couple of peanuts once in a while should be allowed for your pet irrespective of the age, size, and weight of your dog.
How can you feed Peanuts to your Dog?
Peanuts are good in moderate quantities for the dog. But how exactly to add Peanuts into the dog’s diet is also important. There are other cautions to note before pouring a handful or peanuts or a spoonful of peanut butter to your dog’s food bowl.
Unsalted – We humans like to spice peanuts with salt or other spices but when feeding them to your dog, use the unsalted ones. But in case your dog ends up eating 1-2 salted ones, do not panic. That much is okay.
Dry roasted or raw – They might not be as delicious as the salted ones but for health purposes its better to go with the dry roasted or even raw ones.
Low sodium – Peanuts naturally contain high amounts of sodium that is harmful for your dog’s gut. So, if possible get the low-sodium ones.
Keep it real – There may be an artificial sweetener called xylitol or companies like to call it sugar alcohol or natural sweetener in the commercialized ones. Make sure you buy the ones without that.
Take a break – Do not feed peanuts regularly to the dog. Take a break of 3-4 days in between 2 sessions
No shells – The fibrous shells can make your buddy choke, especially the smaller ones.
Be ready to enjoy a ton of love in the form of licks after your dog licks off the bowl!
But make sure don’t you fall for the licks and end up feeding it more of it. Stick to the recommended quantities. More Peanutss ≠ More Love. More Peanuts = Allergies and nutrient deficiency
What can happen if your dog eats an unusual amount of Peanuts?
If your dog ate a lot of Peanuts while you were helping your mom with the dishes or trying to lose some weight on the treadmill or just thought of Popeye and ended up feeding more than recommended amount, keep an eye out for the following symptoms of an upset stomach. You should contact your vet right away if you see –
Kidney or bladder stones
Which dogs should not eat peanuts?
There can be some dogs, not specific to any breed which can be more susceptible to stomach harm from peanuts. For them, peanuts should altogether be eliminated and other sources of proteins and vitamins should be looked at. The list includes –
Dogs with Kidney problems – If your dog already has bladder or kidney problems and a propensity to develop stones then avoid it. Peanuts contain a lot of sodium which may worsen the condition
Specific diets – If your vet has recommended a specific diet for your pet for its training or growth purposes or just for basic health purposes then avoid it
Dogs with a higher weight – If your dog is susceptible to obesity or has already been gaining more than usual weight then you might want to avoid peanut butter as it is high in fats and can trigger obesity.
What Other Nuts Can Your Dog Eat?
Not all nuts are toxic, but some are just a little safer to eat. They don’t benefit from them nutritionally, but in case they’re whining for a snack, dogs can eat pistachios and cashews just fine. They still contain high volumes of fat, so they should only be consumed in small quantities. Also, always make sure they’re not salted or seasoned. Here is the list of all the dry fruits your dog should eat.
A couple peanuts once in a while or a spoon of peanut butter to treat your dog for a good training session or good behavior is completely safe. More than safe, it actually comes with a lot of benefits that the dog’s body can extract. Just check for allergies or obesity symptoms before feeding and you’re good to go.
Happy Mood and Health to your Doggo and lots of Love and Licks to you!
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