Cashews, and most nuts in general, are fairly expensive. But it’s well known that they are healthy and some dog owners want to share them with their four-legged friends. Indeed, experts say that eating a serving of nuts each day offers tremendous health benefits.
So do nuts, and cashew nuts in particular, have a place in your dog’s diet? Unfortunately, the good things you hear about cashews don’t apply so much to Fido. Honestly, dogs don’t need to consume any nuts. They tend to be high in calories and fat and aren’t digested so well.
How harmful is it to provide your best buddy with a small amount of cashews? Doing so on occasion probably won’t harm your dog. However, if they suffer from certain medical conditions it’s a different story. You also have to consider that your dog may be allergic to them.
Can I Give My Dog Cashews? Answer: Yes, on occasion
You can feed a healthy dog a few cashews but don’t make it a habit.
We’ll weigh the pros and cons of canine cashew consumption here. You should know that there are certain health problems, such as pancreatitis, where cashews are considered harmful and toxic. Further, some people would argue that pet dogs should be following a very specific diet that doesn’t ever include any nuts, including cashew nuts. A better choice would be something like specially formulated chew sticks with built-in antioxidants.
Positives of Cashews
Cashews are an abundant source of dietary fiber and are moderately lower in fat content compared to other nuts like almonds, pecans and walnuts. They’re also a good source of calcium, magnesium, protein, flavonols and antioxidants. If given as an occasional snack, cashew nuts may be a net benefit for your dog’s health. However, consumption should be strictly limited. If you do decide to give your dog some then unsalted low-sodium cashews are the way to go.
Negatives of Cashews
Unfortunately there are many negative aspects and partaking in too many cashews can certainly lead to several undesirable outcomes. First off, they can reduce the overall quality of your dog’s diet because these nuts don’t provide any meat-based protein. The high in fat and sodium in cashews, most nuts actually, isn’t optimal. Too much of this in their diet can lead to weight gain and poor digestion. The’ll also be more exposed to other serious health problems such as artery blockages, gall stones, bladder stones and pancreatitis.
Nuts are one of the most common food allergens for humans as well as dogs. If your dog is allergic to cashew nuts you may see them experience vomiting, diarrhea and excessive thirst. They could even break out in hives. More severe cases involve sodium toxicosis (salt poison) or even anaphylactic shock. Last but not least, feeding these as a snack too often can teach your dog a bad feeding habit.
Even Worse Nuts
Not all nuts are strictly off limits for dogs. Besides cashews, moderate consumption of almonds and peanuts are usually harmless as an occasional treat. But walnuts and especially macadamia nuts are exceedingly toxic for dogs and should never be given.
Nuts, but not usually cashews, can sometimes cause allergic reactions. Dogs are no different in this respect but you can’t know until they try some. For mild cases such as skin rashes and irritation, you may give your dog a couple of milligrams of Benadryl or apply a topical ointment. Benadryl is administered primarily based on body weight but speak with a veterinarian if you’re unsure. Severe allergic reactions, following cashew consumption or whatever else, require a visit to a local clinic.
Conclusion on Cashew Nuts
Under normal circumstances, you can occasionally feed your dog some cashews. If you do so, provide them with small amounts. But understand that nuts in general aren’t a great snack choice for a pet dog. The high levels of fat and calories aren’t well suited as a treat even though there are many healthy aspects associated with cashew nuts. Try not to make a habit of giving your dog these nuts or any kind for that matter.