Who doesn't love avocados? Whether they're on toast or on top of a taco, they add a creamy, delicious flavor that's full of good fats. But after you're done Instagramming your avocado toast, you might be wondering whether you can share some with your pooch - can dogs eat avocados?
CAN DOGS EAT AVOCADOS?
This one's a little bit complicated, but in general we would recommend against feeding your dog avocados. They present a few risks, both in terms of being choking hazards and containing some things that can be poisonous to dogs.
ARE AVOCADOS GOOD FOR DOGS?
Avocados actually do have some health benefits for dogs. Those healthy fats that are so good for humans are good for our four-legged friends as well, and in fact they have some anti-inflammatory properties. They also contain a number of vitamins and nutrients that are good for dogs. For this reason some dog foods actually contain avocado or avocado oil (though even dog foods that contain them only have small amounts).
RISKS OF GIVING AVOCADOS TO DOGS
First, it's important to remember that the pit of an avocado is just about the right size to get lodged in a dog's throat, so under no circumstances should dogs ever be allowed to handle the pits.
Second, while avocado does have good fats in it, overdoing them can lead to pancreatitis, which is a potentially painful and severe condition that can be life-threatening for dogs.
Lastly, avocados contain persin, which is a fungicidal toxin that can cause serious health issues and even death in large enough quantities. Persin is primarily located in the leaves, the skin and the pit of the fruit, so if you are going to give your dog avocado, make sure to remove everything except the actual flesh of the fruit. Even that, though, does contain minor amounts of persin, so it's critical that avocado consumption be kept to a minimum.
SO CAN DOGS EAT AVOCADOS?
Much like millennials' relationships, it's complicated. The reality is that avocado does have health benefits and can be safely fed to dogs. If you are set on giving avocados to your dog, though, make sure that you remove the pit as well as all of the skin and only provide small amounts of the fruit itself to your dog. The combination of fat and toxic persin mean that in any significant quantities, avocado can pose meaningful health risks to dogs.
So with that in mind, our recommendation is just to stay away from it entirely. There's nothing good in an avocado that you can't find in other foods that don't contain toxins. Keep the avocado for Instagram and let your pup snack on something more pup-appropriate, like blackberries or eggs.
Of course, if you're looking for something healthy and packed with nutrients to feed to your dog, the best place to start is clearly with our Pupsicle Starter Kit. Nothing dangerous in there - just high-quality ingredients that will make you and your pup happy!