Avocados Hanging from Tree Branch graphic | Taste of the Wild

Welcome to “Can My Dog Eat That?,” our new series that answers some obvious (and not-so-obvious) questions about what your dog can and can’t safely eat. Read on!

For people, avocados are a superfood. They are a nutrient- and antioxidant-dense fruit and arguably the best fruit for supplying your potassium, fiber and vitamin E. They’re such useful foodstuffs that there always seems to be a threat of either rising prices or outright shortages here in the United States.

So if avocados are such good foods for humans, your dog should be able to benefit too, right?

Well, yes and no. The actual flesh, or meat (the green part of the avocado that goes in your guacamole), of the avocado is generally pretty safe and healthy, providing that your dog doesn’t eat too much of it.  But avocado peel and pits contain persin, a substance that is poisonous to dogs. Since the peel and pit are typically discarded before prepping the meat, what is left can be safely consumed by most dogs. But too much persin can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs, and there’s a small chance of worse problems, even death, if they ingest a LOT. So make sure the skin and pit are disposed off properly, where your dog can’t get them.

In addition to the dangers of persin poisoning, the pit of an avocado is a major choking hazards. And even the green flesh can be an issue in bulk, because the high fat content that avocados are lauded for can cause pancreatitis.

So if you’re a fan of avocados keep your dog in mind when prepping and disposing of them. Make sure that discarded peels, leaves and pits are thrown away where your dog can’t get to them. If you think that your dog may have ingested the peel or pit, be on the lookout for vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy or abdominal pain.  If you suspect that they’ve eaten the peels, pit or leaves, contact your veterinarian or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435.

So, no. It’s far safer to keep the avocados away from your dog. There are plenty of other ways to give them superfoods!


The Verdict: Dogs Can Eat Avocado Flesh Infographic | Taste of the Wild


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The information in this blog has been developed with our veterinarian and is designed to help educate pet parents. If you have questions or concerns about your pet's health or nutrition, please talk with your veterinarian.