Ever since they were first domesticated, dogs have become a man’s best friend. They help humans throughout their hunting, they played with them and they formed unbreakable friendship bonds. Dogs are known to be extremely loyal to their masters and, when treated accordingly, will surround them with love, devotement, passion and unconditional loyalty.
Moreover, dogs can be extremely therapeutic beings, helping people recover better after surgeries or mental illnesses.
Dogs can help alienate grieve, cast away loneliness and depression, and are also good for children to teach them about responsibilities. They make the perfect companions for children with autism and for blind people as well.
Thus, each dog owner aims to provide the best nutrition and care for his pet. Along with a balanced exercising scheme, lots of walks and physical activity, dogs need constant surveillance when it comes to eating habits, because they tend to be gourmands.
Sure, dogs are normally carnivorous beings, but this doesn’t mean that your pet will not drool each time he will see you eating something. Literally, anything. If you have it in your mouth, he wants it too. They tend to put that irresistible puppy face and beg for a slice of pizza, ice cream, your sandwich, soup or stew. In most of the cases, it is ok to feed your pup with regular food.
In fact, fresh fruits and vegetables (see our article on dogs and cauliflower), in balanced amounts, can ensure the necessary amount of vitamins, minerals and fatties required for a strong bone structure, strong teeth, luscious fur and agility. But is it ok to feed your dog anything you eat? Can you, for instance, feed your dog pistachios?
What are pistachios?
Pistachios are actually some of the oldest known nuts and have been used for centuries in daily diets, but also as extracts in various creams. Pistachios were originally cultivated in Middle East, in countries like Iran, Iraq, and Syria, but they were brought to the Roman Empire and, further, to the Americas.
Pistachios are extremely healthy, as they can provide plenty of benefits for humans. They help maintaining a healthy heart, fight against hypertension or weight problems, improve digestion, and are good for the skin and eyes. Pistachios are rich in carbohydrates, proteins, fats, fibers, phosphorus, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper or manganese, but also contain high amounts of vitamins A, C, E, K, and folate.
Moreover, pistachios have a higher intake of proteins by comparison with other nuts, including hazelnuts, pecans, acajou, walnuts or macadamia nuts. They are rich in mono-saturated fats, natural antioxidants, but also have the lowest fat content from all nuts. But, are pistachios ok for your dog as well?
Can you feed pistachio to your dog?
Pistachios are extremely benefic for human consumption and can ensure a long lasting existence, away from important and common health issues. However, when it comes to your dog, things are a little bit more complicated.
Pistachios are extremely rich in fat, meaning they are not necessarily good for your dog. The most important thing when considering feeding pistachios to your dog is to make sure they are out of shell. Unshelled pistachios, if consumed in moderate amounts (up to 5 a day), will not harm your dog whatsoever.
On the contrary, shelled pistachios are extremely dangerous for your dog as they can cause choking. Moreover, the pistachio shell is extremely hard, meaning that your dog could actually break his teeth trying to get to the core.
Even removed from their shell, pistachios are not exactly recommended for your dog. They are not toxic, but are too rich in fats.
What if your dog eats pistachios?
A large intake of pistachios can lead to stomach aches, upset stomach, digestive blockages, bloating and gas. Sure, this doesn’t mean that if your dog ate an important amount of pistachios in a relatively short amount of time he will die or experience excruciating pains. Apart from some loose stools and the previously mentioned stomach aches, he should be fine.
Since pistachios are extremely rich in fibers, make sure your dog will have a balanced diet at least in the next 48 hours. Cooked rice is best in these situations as it absorbs all harmful elements of the body and ensures the intestinal system’s well functioning once more. Make sure to also to give your dog plenty of fresh water to restore the body’s natural fluid necessity.
Luckily, pistachios are not the most poisonous or toxic nuts existing for your dog. Macadamia nuts, walnuts or pecans are highly toxic and should not be fed to your dog under any circumstances because they can cause severe reactions and even poisoning. On the other hand, pistachios and peanuts, while not necessarily toxic, should also be avoided fed in large quantities and for a prolonged period of time.
Dogs can eat pretty much anything they want, with a few exceptions. Aliments like cocoa-based products, caffeine, alcohol, grapes, sweets or nuts should be avoided as they can become extremely harmful and toxic. Sure, having a few unshelled and unsalted pistachios will not make a big difference in your dog’s diet, especially if he has a balanced one.
However, try sticking to safer products and foods when it comes to your dog. Dry dog food can help your canine friend grow big and strong, but do not forget about real food, such as meats, some fresh fruits and veggies.
Avoid introducing nuts, including pistachio, in your dog’s daily consumed aliments, and replace them with more appealing snacks, such as roasted, unsalted, unshelled peanuts, carrots, or dog sticks. Make sure your dog follows a strict diet and has regular eating habits and hours. It is ok to feed your dog a snack or a reward once in a while, but try sticking to the main meals of the day and never offer your dog too much food. Some dog breeds are predisposed to obesity and overweight problems. Thus, you should follow a more strict diet.
In addition, give your dog plenty of fresh water and ensure him lots and lots of physical activity and time spent outdoors.