Pesto, the Italian sauce made with basil, pine nuts, and Parmesan cheese, has recently become quite popular on American dinner tables as well.
However, can dogs eat pesto? It’s not always safe to feed your dog the same foods you eat.
Here’s everything you need to know about whether or not dogs can eat pesto – and which kinds are best for them.
What kinds of pesto can I feed my dog?
Can dogs eat pesto? In some cases, absolutely! Yes, store-bought pesto is usually safe for dogs, but there are a few things to watch out for.
Homemade pesto is best for your dog as you know exactly what is going into it. If you’d like to make your own pesto, as long as you stick to one of the following ingredients, your dog should be fine: basil, parsley, cilantro, kale leaves, spinach leaves.
Basil has a higher level of acidity than most of the other spices so if you do choose it over another ingredient in your pesto recipe then don’t feed them any more than a teaspoon of pesto per day.
Parsley, on the other hand, is very mild and doesn’t add too much flavor to your dish so feel free to use it liberally.
Kale leaves have a high antioxidant content and will boost your pup’s immune system while also acting as an anti-inflammatory agent which makes it great for joint pain.
Spinach can help improve blood flow throughout their body which will help with everything from regulating blood pressure to preventing arthritis.
Avoid feeding your dog pesto that includes these ingredients.
Onion and Garlic: Garlic is one of the ingredients in pesto, and while garlic is healthy for humans, it can have some harmful effects on dogs when ingested. Garlic has tons of health benefits for humans including antibacterial properties that can prevent infections – but garlic can be toxic for your dog! It is safe to feed a dog pesto that does not contain garlic.
However, garlic is toxic to dogs and can lead to upset stomachs, vomiting, diarrhea, and can even lead to death if left untreated. Make sure your pesto sauce does not contain any onion or garlic if you are planning on feeding it to your dog. If you intend on feeding your dog the pesto you are eating, ensure it does not include garlic.
Some nuts: Nuts are safe for dogs in small quantities and can be a great addition to their diet. However, it is important to monitor the amount of nuts your dog eats, as even natural and healthy foods can cause health problems when eaten in large quantities.
In some cases, they may need a vet’s care to recover from more serious side effects like vomiting or diarrhea.
Additionally, there are certain types of nuts that should not be given to dogs because they can have dangerous levels of toxins (such as macadamia nuts and walnuts). It’s not a good idea to feed your dog pesto with walnuts due to the toxins they present in small animals.
Pesto is typically made with pine nuts or walnuts, so it could be dangerous for your dog to consume if you don’t check what type of nuts it contains before feeding it to them.
Pesto made with these above ingredients should be avoided and always make sure you check the ingredients list before giving it to your dog.
How much pesto can your dog eat?
If you do choose to feed your pup some pesto, limit the amount they eat and give them lots of water so they don’t dehydrate as a result.
Pesto can be a calorific food for dogs and easily cause weight gain. It’s also worth noting that anything that is high in fat content should be avoided due to its impact on pancreatitis.
Keep an eye on your pup if you do decide to feed them some pesto, just make sure that you don’t give them too much because it can lead to some serious health issues like liver damage.