Many of us are making the switch to a dairy-free lifestyle, utilizing products such as almond butter instead of milk-based products. But have you ever thought about whether almond butter is good for dogs? Can dogs eat almond butter, or is it toxic to dogs?
Can dogs eat almond butter?
The matter of whether dogs can eat almond butter is a controversial topic! Almond nuts themselves are not toxic to dogs, but they are very difficult for dogs to digest. Almond butter is believed to be easier for dogs to metabolize, but there are so many health risks associated with dogs eating almond butter that it is better to avoid it.
A small amount of almond butter is unlikely to do your precious pooch any harm, but larger quantities will not be good for your dog.
Almond butter is very high in fat, which can lead to weight gain, and, if consumed in large amounts, may trigger health problems such as pancreatitis. High-fat foods can also trigger digestive problems, leading to vomiting and diarrhea.
Some almond butters are sweetened with an ingredient called xylitol, also marketed as birch sugar. This is highly toxic to dogs and can lead to fatalities.
What are the signs of toxicity?
Almond butter is not toxic to dogs, but is very high in fat and can lead to obesity if consumed regularly. Monitor your dog’s weight carefully, and skip any buttery treats if you notice any weight gain.
If a dog eats a pot of almond butter, it could develop a serious medical condition called pancreatitis. Signs of pancreatitis in dogs include:
- Nausea and vomiting
- Abdominal pain, normally characterized by the dog adopting a ‘praying’ position
- Decreased appetite
Never feed almond butter to dogs that contain artificial sweeteners, particularly xylitol. Xylitol causes a sudden and rapid drop in your dog’s blood sugar levels, leading to vomiting, lethargy, staggering, collapse, and seizures.
What to do if my dog ate almond butter?
If your dog had just a small amount of almond butter, there is no need to panic. Watch for any weight gain and switch to healthier snacks such as fruits or vegetables if your pooch starts to pile on the pounds.
However, if your dog eats a whole pack of almond butter, there is a risk it could develop pancreatitis. If not treated promptly, pancreatitis in dogs can be fatal, so it is best to seek veterinary advice straight away.
Another cause for concern is if the almond butter is sweetened with xylitol. If your dog eats even a tiny amount of this type of product, contact your veterinary clinic straight away. Xylitol toxicity is often fatal if not treated promptly, so speed is of the essence.
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