Humans and pickles are a great match! So are humans and dogs! But wait – what about pickles and dogs? Can dogs eat pickles, too? 

The answer is yes and no. Even though pickles are not toxic to dogs, they do not serve any health benefits, too! Let’s learn more about the risks and alternatives to pickles for your dog!

Are Pickles Good For Dogs?

Pickles are generally safe for dogs, meaning they do not have any toxins or poisonous elements. However, the answer to “are pickles good for dogs?” goes beyond pickles being safe for dogs or not.

So, to figure that out, let’s have a look at the overall composition of pickles and what they serve:

1. Vitamins

Pickles are rich in vitamin K, which is an essential nutrient for a dog’s overall well-being. However, for this vitamin to show results in a dog’s health, it needs to be consumed in large amounts. But pickles cannot be fed to dogs in massive quantities. If your dog gobbled one off the floor, it will likely neither cause harm nor provide any nutritional benefit. 

2. Sodium content

Pickles are nothing without salt and brine! Even though dogs can consume small amounts of sodium or salt, too much of it can be a nightmare for you and your dog. Excessive sodium content can cause sodium poisoning in dogs, which needs immediate veterinary attention (article). This is one of the major reasons why pickles are not suitable for dogs. 

3. Seasonings

Another reason why pickles are a terrible snack choice for dogs is the seasonings. Many cultures not only add vinegar and salt but also garlic, onion, and broth to their pickles. As a responsible dog owner, you should know that the latter two ingredients are deadly poisonous to dogs. Even small amounts of garlic or onions can lead to life-threatening situations for dogs. 

4. Better alternatives

Instead of feeding your dog pickles soaked in vinegar, seasoning, and salty broths, why not toss them healthy treats? Of course, one cannot replicate the flavors of pickles, but as we always say- health>>> taste! You should not compromise your dog’s health and serve them better alternatives like the ones we have mentioned below in the article. 

a dog sitting near jars of pickle in the kitchen pantry

What About The Pickle Juice?

Giving your dog pickle juice is as risky as a dog dunking their head in a salt basket. For humans, pickle juice is a staple that they can add to all their salads or meals. This human food is a disaster for dogs. The pickles we eat are basically taking and soaking all the flavors from this juice/ broth. So the pickle juice has all the concentrated ingredients like salts, peppers, lemon, vinegar, and whatnot! Let’s dive more into why pickle juice is SO dangerous for dogs:

  • Brine is salty water with all the ingredients like vinegar, spices, and herbs that make it pickle juice. These can be very harmful to your dog, leading to dehydration, diarrhea, allergic reactions, vomiting, and severe health problems
  • Garlic and onion essence in the pickle juice has the same risks as it would have normally. This makes pickle juice not only unhealthy but also poisonous and life-threatening. 

Alternatives to Pickles For Dogs

Are you looking for some cool alternatives to pickles? We got you! These alternatives might not be as spicy and fiery as pickles, but they are safe and fun for you and your dog for sure:

1. Plain cucumbers

When we say cucumbers, dill pickles are what come to mind! But as dogs cannot eat the dill pickles, why not serve them fresh cucumbers instead? It has the same nutritional value; in fact, it is much healthier than pickles.

The cucumbers are very beneficial for dogs and are comparatively cheaper as well. Not only this, but cucumbers are perfect for lazy dog owners as you don’t have to peel or chop. You can just let your dog take a bite away!

2. Fresh dill

Another alternative to dill pickles is fresh dill leaves for dogs. Now, some may say it’s a herb and may not be as safe for dogs as it is for humans, but nope! This herb has many benefits, and you can sprinkle some on your dog’s meal. Be it a salad or kibbles, fresh dill adds a hint of taste and aroma to any dish. What makes dill harmful for dogs is the pickling process. 

3. Fruits and veggies

Here are some fruits and vegetables that are a staple in human foods and also work amazingly well for dogs:

a dog in the midst of dill pickle jars


Our final thoughts on “can dogs eat pickles?” is a HUGE NO. Your dog should nowhere be around pickles, whether dill pickles or any other. But hey! If your dog picked one off the floor and ate, then it is okay, while deliberately giving your dog pickles is like compromising their health. 

It is essential to note that not all human foods are suitable for dogs, and well- pickles are one of them. Many dog owners insist on feeding their dogs dill pickles, but they are unsafe for dogs. Instead, we recommend giving them cucumbers or crunchy veggies!

Frequently Asked Questions

Can dogs eat sweet pickles?

Nope. Dogs should not eat any pickles, be it sweet or salty. They may not be toxic to dogs, but they have harmful ingredients like garlic, onions, high sodium, etc. This can lead to health hazards in dogs in the long run.

Can dogs eat pickles and onions?

You should not give your dog any human food that contains onions or garlic- let alone the pickles! High salt content and onions are a recipe for a life-threatening situation for dogs. Hence, it would be best if you searched for better alternatives like dog treats or crunchy fruits.

How many pickles can a dog eat?

If your dog accidentally ate 1-2 small pieces of pickles, it probably will not cause any problems. It also depends on the personal tolerance of dogs, as per their size and health. It would be best not to deliberately feed your dog pickles as it can cause abdominal pain. If your dog has more than 2-3 bites of pickle, please consult your veterinarian immediately.

Why can’t dogs eat pickles?

Dogs should not have pickles as there are several risks associated with it. High sodium levels can be hazardous to dogs, and seasonings can even be deadly to dogs. So it would be best to avoid giving your dog pickle juice or pickles and instead give them dog treats!

Can dogs eat dill pickles?

You should not give your dog dill pickles or any other pickle. Dill pickles are said to be safer than other pickles, but they also have high sodium content and other harmful ingredients. Hence, if you still want to give your dog dill pickles, please consult your veterinarian beforehand.

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