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Can Dogs Eat Cherries?

Have you thought about feeding your dog cherries? Or any fruit for that matter? We eat cherries because they are delicious and healthy for humans. For dogs, though, it is a different story. Some types of fruit are harmless for your furry friend, but you shouldn’t let them eat any pitted fruits, including cherries. So, if you’re wondering, can dogs eat cherries? the answer is a resounding no, because the cherry pits contain cyanide, which is a potentially deadly poison.

Keep reading about why you shouldn’t be feeding cherries to your dogs!

Dog Smelling a Cherry

The Effects Of Cherries on Dogs

Before planting a cherry tree in your garden, you should think about the impact it might have on your pet. Though cherries contain vitamins A & C, the health benefits of cherry flesh are not worth the risk your dog runs if it ingests cherry pits.

Intestinal Obstructions

Eating cherries may cause an obstruction in your dog’s gut, mostly because of the cherry pits. Because cherry pits are very small, it’s more likely to happen to small dogs, but larger dogs occasionally develop obstructions as well, so why run the risk?

If your dog swallows cherry pits, it may lead to an intestinal blockage. This can make your dog vomit often and develop diarrhea. They will usually have a very sore, bloated abdomen and may hunch over or whine.

If you spot symptoms of intestinal obstruction in your dog and suspect it may have a blockage, then you must take it to the veterinarian. It may be necessary to operate to remove the obstruction.

Can Dogs Eat Cherries - Bowl of Cherries

Cyanide Poisoning

As mentioned earlier, the most dangerous outcome for a dog after eating cherries is cyanide poisoning from the cherry pit. You should also prevent your dog from eating the leaves and stems of a cherry tree because they contain a chemical that is similar to cyanide.

The good news is that for the cyanide to be released, your dog needs to chew and break the pit. That means that if your dog swallowed the pit whole, it will probably be fine, but you should monitor for any unusual behavior just in case.

The signs of cyanide poisoning include abnormal breathing, a fast heart rate, seizures or convulsions, and tremors. The dog may also collapse. If you see any of these signs, then take your dog to the veterinarian immediately because this is not a condition you can treat at home.

Upset Stomach

Because it’s the pit of the cherry that is dangerous, your dog can eat the cherry flesh without running the same risk or suffering any terrible consequences. However, fruits of any kind, especially in large quantities, could give your dog an upset stomach.

If it is a mild case of an upset stomach, your dog should be able to recover quickly. But if your dog’s stomach is badly affected and your pet develops acute diarrhea and vomits frequently, then it could become dehydrated, which is potentially very dangerous.

Cute Dog and a Stick

If your dog eats one or two cherries, then you should watch it closely for signs of an upset stomach. In addition to vomiting and/or diarrhea, your dog may lick its lips, lick the air, gulp, be disinterested in food, and/or be very lethargic.

Most upset stomachs can be treated at home by making sure your dog drinks water regularly and by feeding them bone broth instead of solid food.

If your dog seems to be suffering from a badly upset stomach, then take them to the veterinarian immediately.

Avoid Cherries

To make sure that your dog is safe from developing any sort of sickness, it is far safer to keep them away from cherries to begin with!

Can Dogs Eat Cherries in Different Forms?

Cherries can be purchased in many different forms. Of course, there’s the raw fruit, but you can also buy cherries dried, in cherry jam, as glacé cherries, as maraschino cherries, and more. Most of these versions of cherries are de-pitted, so you might think that they could be safe for your dog, but the answer is still no.

The thing about all these different forms of cherries is that a lot of sugar has been added to them. Although sugar is not lethal, too much of it can affect your dog’s weight and teeth, and can even lead to diabetes.

A dog being examined at the vet's office.

Can Dogs Eat Cherries FAQ

Let’s recap the important information here.

What will happen if my dog eats cherries?

If your dog only eats one cherry, it may get an upset stomach, but should be fine. If it many cherries along with the pit, it might run the risk of cyanide poisoning, bowel obstruction, and upset stomach, any of which could eventually lead to death if the condition is severe and remains untreated.

What should I do if my dog eats cherries?

If you are absolutely certain your dog has only eaten one cherry, then you should watch it to see if it vomits and has diarrhea. This should be the worst that happens. However, if there is any chance that it has eaten many cherries, then take it straight to the veterinarian.

A woman feeding a dog blueberries.

Can Dogs Eat Cherries? No!

I hope this post has inspired you to keep dogs away from cherries. Believe it or not, though, there are some fruits that are good for dogs: fruit without pits! Cherry pits contain cyanide, which is a poison that can have a deadly effect. So next time someone asks you, can dogs eat cherries? tell them to keep the cherry treats for themselves, and also be careful not to chew on that cherry pit. Do you have other furry friends? Read about whether cats can eat cherries to keep them safe, too.

Found a good way to keep your pets away from your cherry tree? That’s great! Next, learn everything else you need to know about cherry trees!