Can Dogs Eat Macadamia Nuts?
Who doesn’t love crunchy macadamia nuts? This Australian delicacy is in almost all pantries nowadays, but are macadamia nuts suitable for dogs? If you’re wondering if this is a safe food for your pup, keep reading.
Here’s everything the experts have to say about macadamia nut toxicity for dogs.
What Are Macadamia Nuts?
Macadamia nuts, also known as the Queensland nut, is the fruit of the Macadamia tree, originally endemic to Australia. Nowadays, macadamia production has expanded, and the trees are grown around the world in other hot, dry climates, such as in South Africa and California.
These round nuts are high in fats (76 grams per 100 grams of macadamia) and have plenty of B vitamins, making them a favourite in kitchens worldwide.
However, as we have mentioned, some cooking staples are very toxic for your pup. Are macadamia nuts toxic to dogs? Here’s what you need to know:
Can Dogs Eat Macadamia Nuts?
Macadamia nuts are one of the most toxic human foods for dogs, even though other animals don’t seem to be so adversely affected .
Unfortunately, researchers aren’t sure about the exact compound that causes intoxication, so there is no specific antidote either. If your dog has eaten macadamia nuts, they will be treated based on their presented symptoms.
While macadamia intoxication in dogs isn’t generally life-threatening, senior or young pups can be at greater risk of complications. Macadamia nuts affect your dog’s nervous system and cause vomiting, meaning your dog would be at higher risk of choking or severe dehydration. If left untreated, this can become serious and threaten your dog’s life.
Signs of Macadamia Nut Intoxication
Macadamia nut intoxication, also known as macadamia nut toxicosis , has diverse symptoms that will change according to the amount consumed as well as your dog’s individual characteristics (weight, size, age, etc). According to Merck’s MSD Manual, the most common symptoms are:
Symptoms of intoxication usually resolve within 12 to 48 hours, and dogs return to their usual health at that point. Intoxication doesn’t appear to permanently damage dogs’ health, except in a few rare cases.
How Much Macadamia Is Toxic For Dogs?
The specifics depend on your dog’s size, age, and weight. In most cases, veterinarians only have an approximative calculation of the amount ingested before diagnosis.
According to Merck’s veterinary manual, dogs show intoxication symptoms after eating 2.4 grams of nuts per kilo of body weight. To put that into perspective, a single macadamia nut is usually 2.5 grams. Therefore, a 1-kg dog will show symptoms after eating a single nut!
What To Do If Your Dog Ate Macadamia Nuts
Are All Nuts Toxic To Dogs?
Not at all.
Although macadamia nuts are toxic for dogs, other nuts are completely safe. You can safely feed peanuts, almonds and hazelnuts, as long as they are crushed to avoid intestinal blockages. Nut butters are also a good option when eaten in moderation.
PRO TIP: Nut butters are especially useful to mask pills or medicine before giving them to your dog. Just put the medicine in a spoon with some peanut butter. They’ll like it so much they won’t even notice they had a pill!
Meanwhile, walnuts are not safe for dogs and should never be fed to them. If you’re unsure about giving your dog a nut variety, do your research first. If you want to find out more, we have a whole article on this topic.
Have you ever had a scare with macadamia nuts? Hopefully, with today’s article, it will be easier to plan for food safety in the kitchen. Want to learn more about what types of food dogs can and can't eat?
Check out our full list below:
- What Food Can't Dogs Eat?
- Can Dogs Eat Tomatoes?
- Can Dogs Eat Grapes?
- Can Dogs Eat Raw Chicken?
- Can Dogs Eat Peanut Butter?
- Can Dogs Eat Cheese?
- Can Dogs Eat Avocado?
- Can Dogs Eat Mushroom?
- Can Dogs Eat Cauliflower?
- Can Dogs Eat Eggs?
- Can Dogs Eat Bread?
- Can Dogs Eat Nuts?
- Can Dogs Eat Blueberries?
- Can Dogs Eat Strawberries?
- Can Dogs Eat Orange?
- Can Dogs Eat Pineapple?
- Can Dogs Eat Zucchini?
- Can Dogs Eat Garlic?
- Can Dogs Eat Apple?
- Can Dogs Eat Mandarin?
- Can Dogs Eat Broccoli?
- Can Dogs Eat Sweet Potato?
- Can Dogs Eat Capsicum?
- Can Dogs Eat Watermelon?
- Can Dogs Eat Carrot?
- Can Dogs Eat Cucumber?
- Can Dogs Eat Peas?
- Can Dogs Eat Potato?
- Can Dogs Eat Beetroot?
- Can Dogs Eat Vegemite?
- Can Dogs Eat Onions?
- Can Dogs Eat Yoghurt?
- Can Dogs Eat Pasta?
- Can Dogs Eat Rockmelon?
- Schmid, R. & Brutlag, A. “Macadamia nut poisoning.” VCA Animal Hospitals. Retrieved February 9, 2023. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/macadamia-nut-poisoning
- Gwaltney-Brant, S. November 2022. “Macadamia nut toxicosis in dogs”. Merck & Co, MSD Veterinary Manual. Retrieved February 9, 2023. https://www.msdvetmanual.com/toxicology/food-hazards/macadamia-nut-toxicosis-in-dogs
- Hunter, H. & Downing, R. “Ataxia in dogs”. VCA Animal Hospitals. Retrieved February 9, 2023. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/ataxia-in-dogs