Fruit is a tasty and (most of the time) healthy snack for a dog, but not all fruits are safe for our furry friends. When it comes to cherries, specifically, there are some dangers you should be aware of.
Use Extreme Caution With Feeding Dogs Cherries
The main danger of cherries is that their pits, stems, and leaves contain cyanide, which is poisonous and potentially lethal if consumed in high enough quantities. Cherry pits can also get lodged in a dog's digestive tract and cause intestinal blockages.
What about maraschino cherries, which already have the pits removed? They may be pit-free, but maraschinos are not a good dog treat because they have been sweetened with tons of sugar.
What to Do if Your Dog Swallows a Whole Cherry
If your dog gets his paws on a whole cherry when you're not looking, don't panic. A single cherry pit will not cause cyanide poisoning. But you should look out for symptoms of intestinal blockage, including vomiting, decreased appetite, constipation, and decreased fecal production.
These symptoms may appear up to 24 hours after your dog swallowed a cherry pit. Keep in mind that smaller dogs are more likely to suffer intestinal blockages from a small pit.
If your dog eats multiple cherries, you should look out for symptoms of cyanide poisoning. These include labored breathing, bright red gums, and dilated pupils. If you find that your pooch ate multiple cherries without pits, it's a good idea to call your vet as a precaution. Your vet may decide that the best course of action is to induce vomiting to prevent cyanide toxicity.
Is It Safe for Dogs to Have Cherries?
What is the final verdict on cherries? Dogs can eat unprocessed cherries, but you must use extreme caution when preparing them, and always keep cherries that have not been pitted well out of reach.