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Can Dogs Eat Cashews? Are They Toxic?


Last Updated: June 21, 2023 | 4 min read | Leave a Comment

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Does your Chihuahua regularly eye up your bowl of cashews? Or maybe your clever Collie is forever finding the hidden bag of nuts? Either way, there aren’t many dogs in the world that would pass over cashews as a treat. But can dogs eat cashews, and are they safe? Yes, and yes. But they are only safe when plain and in moderation.

Cashews are a healthy snack for humans. But for dogs, they can pose a choking risk, lead to health problems, and trigger allergic reactions. And some dog breeds predisposed to pancreatitis should avoid eating cashews altogether. But for most pups, they can be a delicious treat when given in moderation as an occasional treat and under supervision. Plus, they provide them with healthy fats and other nutritional benefits.

This article examines if and why cashews are good for dogs when they should avoid them, what to do if your dog eats one, and more. Plus, we look at some frequently asked questions so that all your cashew queries are answered. Let’s take a closer look.

Are Cashews Good For Dogs?

Yes, cashews are one of the nuts that are generally safe for dogs to eat, but only in moderation. Cashews are not toxic to dogs, unlike macadamia nuts, which are harmful to dogs. Cashews are nutritious because they contain healthy fats and oils, protein, and a range of minerals. Research also shows that feeding your dog a wide range of foods mentally stimulates them, which is good for their brain and delays the aging process.

When Are Cashews Bad For Dogs?

Although giving Fido a handful of cashews is beneficial for their physical and mental health, there are times when you need to think twice about giving them cashews. Generally speaking, plain cashews are the only cashew nuts that are safe for dogs. Here are some of the most common examples of when cashews pose a threat.

Cashews Mixed With Other Nuts

Some nuts are toxic to dogs. So you need to know what other nuts are in the mixed pack. Avoid packs containing almonds, hickory nuts, macadamias, pecans, and walnuts. Macadamias, pecans, and walnuts are toxic to dogs, and almonds and hickory nuts are extremely difficult for dogs to digest. Overall, it’s easier to avoid packs of mixed nuts.

Cashews Mixed With Dried Fruit

Cashews often come in packs of mixed fruit too. Although some dried fruits, such as apples and cranberries, are okay for dogs to eat in moderation, many are toxic. One of the most common dried fruits in packs of mixed nuts is raisins, which are poisonous to dogs. Even a tiny amount can cause kidney failure and death. All dogs react differently, and what might be okay for a Yorkie might not be for Great Dane.

So, avoiding bags of cashews mixed with dried fruit is best. Stick to bags of plain cashews to be on the safe side. If you suspect your pup has consumed a raisin, seek immediate veterinary attention.

Salted & Seasoned Cashews

Salt can lead to dehydration, which is dangerous and can lead to further life-threatening medical issues such as electrolyte imbalances, tremors, and seizures. Salt can also irritate the digestive tract and lead to digestive troubles. Therefore salted cashews are best avoided altogether.

Your dog should also avoid seasoned cashews because many different seasoning ingredients are dangerous. For example, garlic and onion-based seasoning can lead to secondary hemolytic anemia. Allium plants, including garlic, onion, and leeks, can cause oxidative damage to red blood cells. This can cause devastating effects that take several days to show, and by then, it can be too late. Chilli seasoning can make dogs very unwell and usually contains capsaicin, leading to digestive issues.

Cashew Butter

Peanut butter is every dog’s favorite treat, and not many turn their nose up at cashew butter, either. Nut butter is often used as a training treat or to smear inside a toy like a Kong. Unfortunately, many human nut butter contains sugar or a sugar alternative like xylitol which is highly toxic to dogs. Either check the ingredients and make sure it doesn’t have them or purchase a doggy cashew butter.

Other Things To Be Aware Of

cashew nut on white background, Asia
When feeding your dog cashew nuts, there are a few things to be aware of to keep them safe.

Choking Hazard

Cashews can quickly become a choking hazard like many other foods and objects. Dogs do not always chew their food correctly, which can become stuck in their food pipe. And inhaling cashews can become lodged in their windpipe. The smaller the dog, the smaller the pipe, and the more likely it is cashew becomes a choking hazard. Please ensure you know how to act if you suspect your dog is choking.


Cashews are full of healthy fats, but consuming too much healthy fat, or fat in general, can lead to pancreatitis. This occurs when the pancreas becomes inflamed, causing diarrhea, vomiting, discomfort, lethargy, dehydration, and other health problems. Some breeds are predisposed to pancreatitis, including Cocker Spaniels, Poodles, and Dachshunds. If your pup is more at risk, avoid feeding them cashews altogether.

My Dog Ate A Few Cashews. Should I Be Worried?

It is rare for dogs to become seriously unwell if they eat a few plain cashew nuts. It’s essential to monitor them because symptoms of nut-related allergies or health concerns can take days to appear. For your dog’s safety, keep bags of nuts out of paw’s reach, and only give them as an occasional treat under supervision.

However, if you suspect your dog has eaten heavily seasoned cashews or had access to a bag of mixed nuts and fruits, you should contact your vet immediately. Look for symptoms, including coughing, vomiting, lethargy, breathing difficulties, mobility issues, or general signs of poor health.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Do I Know If My Dog Is Allergic To Cashews?

Some dogs can be allergic to cashews, but overall, nut allergies in dogs are rare. Like humans, nut allergies range from mild to severe. Look for symptoms including itchy, red, or sore skin, bald spots, swelling around the face, mouth, or throat, difficulty breathing, and agitation. If you are feeding your dog cashews for the first time, give them one or two cashews, and see how they react over two days.

Why Does My Dog Like Cashews So Much?

Dogs eat anything they can get their paws on even, even poop. So it’s not surprising that most dogs love cashew nuts. Just be sure to give them cashews as an occasional treat in moderation. Just because they love them doesn’t make them the best choice.

Can Dogs Eat Cashew Cookies?

Dogs should not eat human cookies because they commonly contain other ingredients such as sugar, xylitol, chocolate, dried fruits, and other nuts. However, you can make cashew butter cookies at home for a tasty and healthy occasional treat.

Final Thoughts

So, there you have it. Dogs can eat cashew nuts. But only plain cashews in a small amount and as an occasional treat. They contain healthy fats and are super yummy, making them a great training treat. But they must be plain and not mixed with toxic ingredients. Salted, seasoned, or mixed with other nuts or fruits can be dangerous for Fido. Keep cashews out of paw’s reach for everyone’s peace of mind.

Ramekin of plain almonds (caption: Can Dogs Eat Almonds?)

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