Can Dogs Eat Avocados?


While the avocado (Persea americana) contains a multitude of health benefits for humans, the same is not true for cats and dogs. Your pets have different nutritional needs and are built differently so they metabolize foods differently than you or I. What’s good for you doesn’t necessarily mean the same for them. There are two major dangers that avocados pose to your pets: obstruction and cardiotoxicity.

Gastrointestinal Obstruction: The ‘five-second rule’ for food accidentally dropped on the floor does not apply when you have a canine vacuum cleaner that picks it up in two seconds. The avocado seed or pit is not only a choking hazard if Fido swallows one, but as it makes its way through the digestive tract it can create a blockage in the esophagus, stomach or intestines requiring surgery in addition to toxicity risks.

Cardiotoxicity: The avocado meat contains a toxin called Persin. Persin is considered a poison with the highest concentration found in avocado leaves, the fruit, seeds, and the bark. Sources seem to disagree on the toxicity risks to dogs and cats, so until more data is available I would recommend not feeding your dog or cat fresh avocado. Of course, should your dog get hold of a piece by accident, monitor your pet closely and contact your vet.

If you want your pet to reap the benefits of an avocado, try Avoderm dog food. My late Dachshund Baby loved the food. Wet or dry it was the only food she would eat to keep up that silky and luxurious coat of fur she had.

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