It’s summertime in the Treasure Valley, which means there is likely plenty of ripening fruit and veggies around your yard and neighborhood. If you have a peach tree nearby—or if you buy and eat peaches in your household—it’s important to know the dangers that peaches pose to your dog. You may be surprised to learn that peaches aren’t a benign snack for your dog, and could even be fatal.
The Danger of Peach Pits
While peaches themselves aren’t dangerous to dogs, peach pits can be fatal. There are several ways peach pits can harm your dog. First, if your dog swallows a peach pit whole, it could cause choking or an internal blockage resulting in death. Second, if your dog eats enough peach pits quickly—or over a long period of time—the toxic amygdalin in the pit could kill your dog.
There are two types of peach pit poisoning: acute and chronic. Acute poisoning occurs when your dog eats a large number of peach pits at one time. Chronic poisoning happens over a long period of time when a dog eats small amounts of peach pits repeatedly. Chronic peach poisoning can occur when a dog lives close to a peach tree and often eats the windfall fruit from the ground.
Peach pits aren’t the only poisoning part of the fruit tree: the stems and leaves are also toxic and contain a form of cyanide. If you have a peach tree on your property and your dog decides to make a snack of the downed fruit and/or branches, it won’t take much to make her sick.
Symptoms of Peach Pit Poisoning
If your dog has acute peach pit poisoning, you’ll see a swift onset of these symptoms. Chronic peach pit poisoning is harder to spot but has similar symptoms. The signs of chronic poisoning will occur slowly over time, which makes them more difficult to identify. If you suspect your dog is regularly eating peach pits, it’s better to take a preventative approach and bring him or her to the veterinarian immediately.
Peach poisoning symptoms to watch for:
- Abdominal pain
- Respiratory problems
- Cardiac arrest
- Swollen abdomen
Treating and Preventing Peach Pit Poisoning
If you believe your dog has ingested any part of a peach pit or peach tree branch or foliage, it’s time to call your vet. Your veterinarian will be able to advise you on next steps.
It’s important to take steps to reduce your dog’s access to peaches, even if it means storing them in your refrigerator if Fido seems curious about them. Even one peach could mean death for your dog if the pit becomes lodged in his or her throat or intestines, not to mention the toxic effects.
If you have any questions or concerns about your dog’s health, contact us today.