Can Dogs Eat Dill Pickles? When it is or isn’t an Emergency
Avoid feeding your dog dill pickles, even if it’s just a small bite. The dill itself isn’t considered toxic or poisonous to dogs. However, the ingredients used to make the pickle could be problematic for pets.
Why dill pickles are bad for dogs
Think about the ingredients that go into making a dill pickle or any type of pickle for that matter. The typical ingredients used as part of the pickling process may include vinegar, mustard seeds, sugar, and sea salt. From this list, there are two ingredients in particular that are bad for dogs.
Garlic as some of you may know is toxic to dogs due to the presence of thiosulfate, which can lead to long-term health conditions like anemia.
The other problematic ingredient in dill pickles is salt. Dogs can suffer from sodium poisoning if they eat too much salty food like dill pickles. According to the USDA, 100 grams of dill pickle may contain around 1,208 mg of sodium! If that represents 50% of the recommended sodium intake for humans then imagine how high that is for dogs.
The above risk also applies to other pickle-based foods like dill pickle chips, dill pickle relish, and dill pickle juice. Make sure these foods are well out of your dog’s reach.
What to do if your dog eats a dill pickle
Was your dog being sneaky and managed to snag a bite of dill pickle when you weren’t looking? First, while we do mention it’s considered unsafe for dogs to eat pickles, it’s not something you have to be super-stressed about unless your dog managed to somehow eat a whole jar of them.
We would recommend taking the following steps. First, make sure your dog has access to clean drinking water as dill pickles can make them thirsty. Second, watch over your dog carefully for the next few days. If the dog shows any sign of unrest or sickness then call the emergency vet for advice. You may want to call the vet sooner if your dog is either a puppy or of the smaller kind. These dogs are more susceptible to getting sick after eating a few dill pickles.
Third, if the dog ate store-bought dill pickles then double-check the product ingredient label to make sure there aren’t any other ingredients that could be dangerous to pets. For example, some dill pickle products may contain a higher concentration of garlic or onion-based ingredients, making them more dangerous for dogs. You can check out our food safety database to find out more about what is or isn’t healthy for dogs.
What can happen to dogs that eat too many pickles
The health consequences of a dog eating pickles will depend on several factors. In the worst case scenario, it’s possible for the dog to exhibit some worrying symptoms, especially from the excessive sodium intake. These symptoms may include but aren’t limited to diarrhea, vomiting, and body tremors.
The intake of onion and garlic content (for dill pickles that contain them) could also lead to the development of other concerning symptoms like excessive salivation and lethargy.