If you’re a dog owner, you might find yourself asking, ‘Can dogs eat olives?’
And you’re right on track with this question.
After all, olives are healthy- if not outright delicious. And that makes us want to give them to our pets, just as much as we want to have them for ourselves.
Olives go great with pretty much anything. Whether you talk a Fettucine Alfredo, a cold salad, a sandwich- or even just as garnish. Olives knock every type of delicacy through the charts in terms of taste and flavor.
So, what about our dogs then?
Can dogs eat olives?
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Is These Safe for My Dog?
In one word: yes and no.
Okay… That’s got to be confusing.
But it won’t be once we explain it to you in a bit more detail.
See the thing is, dogs can have olives but it comes with certain associated risks. And as dog owners ourselves, we believe that the best diet information is complete diet information.
That is why today we’re going to tell you both the upsides and the downsides of introducing olives to your buddy’s meal plan.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Which Parts Are Safe?
The main trouble with olives you see is that they are not toxic to dogs.
However, they do contain pits which can become a serious choking hazard for our dogs if left unchecked.
All fruits which are so small do pose this risk. But luckily, olives don’t really contain anything that can be toxic to our dogs, unlike say- cherries.
So, all parts of olive are apparently safe for dogs to eat. So far, the research in this area shows that olives don’t contain anything harmful which could lead to immediate poisoning.
Except for sodium.
The pits in an olive though, are just the right size to get stuck inside the digestive tract of our canine friend and lead to intestinal blockages.
But the risk can be easily wavered off if the pits are removed prior to feeding.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: What About Olive Oil?
Olive oil, unlike raw olives, offers various health benefits.
And it’s rather easy to find a vet suggesting that you should make it a part of your dog’s meals. Especially whenever you decide to give them a home-cooked meal.
Yes, yes. We know.
Home-cooked meals are hard and cooking is hard not to mention, time-consuming. But our dogs deserve the best care in the world.
That is why, it is essential that we take some time out and offer them the rich nutritional benefits that come with olive oil, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, unsaturated fat, etc.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Nutritional Perspective
And if the oil contains so many health benefits, just imagine all the nutrition that is packed into the original fruit.
For starters, these are full of essential vitamins and minerals our buddies need to maintain healthy bodily functions.
Examples include Vitamin E, which is crucial for proper brain development and to avoid neural problems in dogs.
Next up is iron, which is needed by the red blood cells to form their core haem groups which can then be used to bind with oxygen, thus regulating its transport around the body.
Copper present in olives is also important for dogs as it helps in building connective tissue, collagen, and myelin- a nerve covering which helps in neural transmissions. Other benefits of copper also include the fact that it helps the body absorb iron, making it an important part of red blood cell function.
Antioxidants are something that really helps the body in fighting off inflammation. In aged dogs, there is a phenomenon known as oxidative stress-induced disease, which can often be warded off if antioxidants have been introduced to a pup’s diet from a young age. However, we would only suggest giving olives to slightly older dogs and not too small pups since they run a higher risk of choking from consuming the pits.
Monounsaturated fats present in olives also help to fight off the development of inflammation sites and prevent free radical damage to soft tissues.
Oleic Acid present in olives is also one of the reasons doctors recommend it so much. This is because the chemical composition present within it helps prevent cancer to a certain extent.
White dog breeds such as Chihuahuas find olives helpful since they possess a certain skin type which tends to become very dry very quickly. And the fats present in an olive can help prevent this.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: How Often?
In spite of the nutritional benefits mentioned above, it is imperative to understand that olives are only a treat for dogs and should be treated as such.
What does that mean?
Well, put simply, at any point in time, it should not form more than 10 percent of your dog’s daily meal. So, give olives to your dog if you like. But don’t make them have these every day.
Instead, only offer them one or two (with the pits removed) when you feel like it. But never more than a handful a day.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Potential Risks
As with any diet, certain risks are also to be kept in mind while feeding olives to your dog.
The first of these, of course, is the choking hazards. Signs and symptoms of choking include:
- Drooling in heavy amounts;
- Facial expressions of pain;
- Pawing rapidly at the mouth.
But this should only occur if your dog has snuck up on some pitted olives – and even then, it might only happen in certain cases where say, the dog got too excited all of a sudden and breathed in instead of swallowing the olive.
In either case, if you do find these symptoms in your dog, perform emergency first aid and take your dog to the vet immediately.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Green Olives
Dogs cannot eat green olives.
And the primary reason for this is that green olives are unripe and therefore very difficult for a dog to digest. Giving your dog green olives might lead to them developing gastrointestinal problems and just cause an overall upset stomach.
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Video Guide
Can Dogs Eat Olives: Fun Facts About Olives
So, if you are going to feed these to your pooch, you might be interested in knowing a little more about the diet you’re going to be introducing to your buddy’s routine.
As you’ll read along though, you might find that there is more to olives than meets the eye. And this is true for any species which consumes them, including us humans.
- Number 1: In spite of their color – which would explain the confusion – olives are a fruit and not a vegetable.
- Number 2: Olive trees live for a really long time. And I mean really, really long time. In fact, the oldest olive tree in the world is on the island of Crete. The tree is about 4,000 years old and is still producing fruit to this very day!
- Number 3: This one is the strangest by far. But did you know that olives cannot be eaten without being processed first?
Yup, that’s right. In order for them to become edible, olives must first be treated with brine or lye. Curious, right? Well, this is done to remove the bitter glucoside oleuropein present on the surface-a task which requires curing.
Can dogs eat black olives?
Yes, black olives unlike green olives are ripe and ready to be eaten.
Can dogs eat olives if they’re canned?
Yes. Just be sure to check no extra sodium is present.
Can dogs eat olives as a treat?
Yes. But please remove the pits.
Can dogs eat olives with a salad?
No. Dog salads are very different and specific. Please consult a vet before giving your dog salad.
Can dogs eat olives if they’re stuffed?
No. Dogs cannot tolerate a lot of fillings. Only give your dog a ripe olive that is unstuffed.