Should You Share Pickles With Your Dog?

Should You Share Pickles With Your Dog?

Author WDF Staff | Last updated: Jun 09 2023


If you are an experienced dog owner, you probably know which human foods are safe for your dog, and if you are just preparing to become a pet parent, it is good that you are trying to find out which foods are safe and which are not safe for your pupper. If you are wondering, “Can dogs have pickles?”, we will try to help you with some information. 

Pickle is one of the most popular side dishes in America, and we love eating them in our hamburgers and hot dogs. They make great additions to our food; sooner or later, your dog will ask you for a piece of your hamburger. Nice, juicy burgers have a sweet smell as well, and dogs find them irresistible, just like we do. Sometimes, it is hard to resist our dog, and we decide to give them a bite of our food.

To be completely safe, the general advice is that you do NOT give your dog pickles; however, they are not going to be necessarily harmful, and even if they do have nutritional value for humans, that doesn’t mean they are completely safe for our dogs.

can dogs eat pickles

Let’s first take a look at what types of pickles there are.

Before we do that, we need to understand what a pickle is. It is a cucumber that has been preserved in salt water. More often than not, there are additional spices in that salt-water brine that are added to give the pickle some extra taste. They can be mild, hot, or with additional spices since there is no standard in making this delicious side dish.

You must know how your favorite pickle is made and what spices it contains before you decide whether your dog can have pickles.

1. Dill pickle

The most popular type of pickle is the dill pickle. Dill is a fresh herb that is rich in antioxidants, and it is completely safe for your dog to eat, but that does not mean you should allow your pup to eat dill pickles.

These pickles are preserved in salt water, vinegar, and dill, and it is the most common type of pickle across the USA. If you would like your dog to benefit from the great things dill has to offer, it is advised to add the herb to your dog’s food.

RELATED: Is Salt Bad For Dogs? When To Worry?

2. Bread-and-butter pickle

2. The second most popular type of pickle is the bread-and-butter type. It is a lot sweeter than the dill pickle, and the reason for that is that it contains different spices and the production process is different. These pickles contain onion and garlic. Both of these herbs are toxic for your dog, and you should never let your dog eat this pickle.

3. Hot-and-spicy pickle

3. The third most popular type of pickle is the hot-and-spicy type. They have even more spices, and the most important of them all is the chili pepper. Chili pepper can be extremely upsetting for your dog’s stomach and can cause all sorts of problems from diarrhea to vomiting and gastrointestinal problems. Your dog should never have this type of pickle.

It is important to know that pickles are high in sodium, and some dogs that have underlying health problems can be highly intolerant to the high sodium levels. Even though sodium is part of a dog’s everyday diet, you should be careful about how much salt your dog ingests.

The condition can be reversed, and your dog can have sodium insufficiency, and if that happens, we would recommend switching your dog to a more balanced diet.

So, the answer to the questions “Should my dog eat pickles?”, “Are pickles good for my dog?” is not that easy, and the shortest one is - it depends.

Pickles that have additional spices should not be given to dogs as they can contain ingredients and spices that are harmful to them. The basic dill pickle is high in sodium, so you shouldn’t give it to your dog, especially not in large quantities.

dog and bowl

What if your dog eats a pickle?

If your dog somehow got its paws on a pickle or two, that shouldn’t be a reason for you to start panicking. Check the packaging, see what spices and ingredients pickles contain, and calmly call your vet.

If your dog ate a large number of pickles that contain onions, garlic, or red peppers, call your vet immediately and ask them for help. You can also call the National Pet Helpline and find the nearest animal hospital near you.

If you want a healthy snack for your dog, try giving them a fresh, untreated cucumber instead of a pickle.

World Dog Finder team