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Food & Diet

Can Dogs Eat Macadamia Nuts?

At A Glance

Macadamia nuts are toxic for dogs and under no circumstances should you feed any to your pet.

In case of accidental ingestion, please consult your veterinarian immediately.

Last Updated on: May 03, 2022

No, dogs cannot eat macadamia nuts.

Also known as Queensland nuts, these have the appearance of a rather suave cousin of chickpeas and are a superfood. But just for us humans! These little guys are an absolute nightmare for dogs to eat, although experts are yet to figure out why macadamia nuts are harmful to dogs.

So the next time you reach out for that trail mix or decide to do some fall baking with macadamia nuts, keep them safe from your dog.

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An image of black dog sitting with some macadamia nuts lying on the floor

Why Are Macadamia Nuts Unsafe for Dogs?

Macadamia nuts are extremely low on carbohydrates and equally rich in fats. Just 100 grams of these nuts contain as much as 70 grams of fats. Although 80% of the fats contained in macadamia nuts are monosaturated, they’re still not great for canines. The fat content in these nuts can irritate your dog’s stomach lining and make it fall sick.

Add to that the fact that most processed macadamia nuts are coated in sugar or sweeteners like xylitol and you know they aren’t good for your dog.

That said as I mentioned at the very beginning, macadamia nuts could also contain certain other nutrients or biochemical compounds that could cause toxicity in dogs. However, we don’t know about it just yet.

We also cannot overlook the fact that macadamia nuts can pose choking hazards to our dogs if nothing else.


Telltale Signs of Macadamia Nut Poisoning in Dogs

But as every dog parent knows, even the most well-behaved dogs cannot be trusted around food. Despite your best efforts to tow that pack of macadamia nuts in the darkest corner of your pantry, your pet might accidentally ingest some.

And the signs of poisoning could become evident anywhere between 3-24 hours after your dog eats the forbidden nut.

From lethargy to muscle tremors, stomach ache, and vomiting — the initial symptoms could be any or a combination of several. And you need to act on it immediately because these symptoms will worsen over time.

In severe cases of poisoning, your dog might lose control of its hind legs and be unable to walk, develop a high fever, and show continuous tremors. Some of the more serious symptoms of macadamia nut poisoning include:

Although macadamia nut poisoning is treatable and in most cases, not of severe concern, sometimes it can prove to be fatal. Why take the chance and put your pooch at risk when you can completely avoid such a situation, right?

How to Treat Macadamia Nut Poisoning in Dogs?

If you suspect that your dog has eaten macadamia nuts by mistake, call your vet immediately. That’s the best course of action you can take. Forget about home remedies and do not try anything funky — it might cause irreparable damage to your dog.

Your vet might recommend the use of laxatives to help your dog naturally defecate the macadamia nuts out of its body. They could also induce vomiting with activated charcoal. There are several treatment options available.

But in cases of severe poisoning, your pet might need to spend the night at the hospital, get IV injections, or anti-histamine shots. Do not freak out, timely treatment will cure your dog without causing any major harm.

An image of macadamia nuts on a brown sack

Safe Alternatives to Macadamia Nuts That Dogs Can Eat

If you really want your dog to enjoy nuts while you munch on some trail mix, there are a few safe alternatives you can try:

  • Peanuts : Both raw and roasted peanuts are safe for your dog to munch on. In fact, peanuts are a healthy snack. Just make sure that the peanuts you feed your dog are not salted.
  • Cashews : These too are quite safe for your dog to eat. But do remember that cashews have a high-fat content. So feed your dog cashews in moderation only.
  • Hazelnuts : Your dog can definitely enjoy some hazelnuts once in a while. Exercise the same cautions as you would with cashews. You can try hazelnut butter that’s free of sweeteners or preservatives to fill your dog’s kong.

Pro Tip: As is the case with any food you feed your dog, be mindful of the number of nuts you’re feeding it. Take your vet’s advice if you’re unsure of anything.

In the end, never forget that not all food items we can enjoy are safe for your pet. No matter how tempted you may feel, always do your best to know what’s best for your dog to eat.

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Meet Paul, a devoted dog dad to the delightful French Bulldog, Cofi. With a flair for humor and a deep understanding of Frenchie quirks, Paul brings a lighthearted touch to his writings. His relatable stories and practical insights are a blend of laughter and valuable advice and resonate with fellow dog owners.

Through his words, Paul aims to celebrate the joys and challenges of being a dedicated pet parent, reminding you that life is simply better with a four-legged, snorting sidekick by your side.