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Can dogs eat peanuts?

Updated on February 19, 2012

We know that kids and dogs form a legendary relationship. We also know that kids are practically raised on peanut butter sandwiches. Guess what human food the dog will develop a taste for because of the close relationship. It is highly possible that peanut butter sandwich is the first human food that is tasted by a puppy. The kid will tear off a part of the sandwich and offer it to the dog. A spoonful of peanut butter will be offered to the dog as well. Large appetite is inherent in dogs. The enticing smell of the peanut butter will not fail to catch the attention of a curious puppy. The small piece of PB sandwich will be followed by another and another so that the dog will develop a taste for plain, salted, roasted and honeyed peanuts.

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Can the dog eat peanuts?

The dog can certainly eat peanuts but is this human food safe for the dog? We often hear dog experts say that generally, nuts must not be given to dogs. Nuts contain high levels of fats. Aside from this fact, some nuts can be toxic to dogs. Macadamia and walnuts for instance are considered as dangerous nuts. Other nuts can be given to dogs but toxicity may be developed overtime because of the excessive phosphorous content of nuts. Dog owners aware of peanut allergy would be concerned in adding peanuts to the diet of the pet.

Peanut is not a nut!

Did you know that peanut is not really a nut? Peanut or Arachis hypogaea is actually a legume species that belongs to the Fabaceae, a bean family. Does this mean that peanut can be safely consumed by the dog? Yes!

Nutritional benefits of peanuts

Peanut is an excellent source of plant protein. Protein is necessary for the maintenance of healthy cells. Peanuts have high fat content but the kind of fat derived from peanuts is heart healthy fats. The monounsaturated and the polyunsaturated fats the dog will obtain from peanuts will lower cholesterol levels so that risks of heart diseases are lowered. High concentration of antioxidants inhibits the development of free radicals so that infectious diseases are prevented. Peanuts contain high levels of minerals and vitamins too.

Feeding consideration

Compared to other kinds of nuts, peanuts can be safely included in the diet of the dog. However, this does not mean the dog can have a free go at the bowl of roasted or salted peanuts. Like any other human foods, peanuts must be given to the dog in moderation as well. Large amounts of salted peanuts would not be good for a dog with a heart condition. Sugared peanuts would not be good for diabetic dogs. Needless to say, peanuts should not be given in large amounts to overweight dogs as obesity can result to various medical problems. Although peanut is not a true nut, this human food cannot be digested easily especially by puppies. Eating large amounts of peanuts can result to stomach upsets.

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    • Pamela Kinnaird W profile image

      Pamela Kinnaird W 

      6 years ago from Maui and Arizona

      This is really interesting -- this whole article. I sure never knew a peanut is not of the nut family. I'm glad to know it's okay to feed dogs a bit of peanut butter or some peanuts in small quantities. I'm also glad to know -- per your other hub -- that it's not okay to feed dogs broccoli.

      Voting up and sharing.

      I also noticed on your Profile Page that you've put a link to your favorite website called Sarah's Dogs. I had a look and there's so much good information there on the care of dogs. It took me a minute to find the place to click to also look at the types of breeds of dogs. It's to the left and it's extensive. What a great site. I'll be a visitor there often.

    • Arren123 profile image

      Arren123 

      6 years ago from UK

      Yes dogs can, my old dog loved them :)

    • sgbrown profile image

      Sheila Brown 

      6 years ago from Southern Oklahoma

      I had to check on peanuts some time back as my husband was feeding our dogs peanuts almost every night. Yes, they can eat them. It's a good thing,as I would have to take the peanuts away from my husband! Thank you for sharing this information. :)

    • Linda Bliss profile image

      Linda Liebrand 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      My dog couldn't live without his peanut butter so it is indeed a relief that its all good for him! :o)

    • Barbara Kay profile image

      Barbara Badder 

      6 years ago from USA

      I'm relieved to hear that dogs can eat peanuts. My husband shares his peanuts with our dog when he eats them.

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