Can Dogs Eat Pickles?

Can dogs eat pickles?

Dog treats are expensive.  With our four legged friends always so keen on what they see us eat it can be hard to always tell them no.  It’s a no brainer to slip your pooch a piece of turkey, or some cheerios.  But, can dogs eat pickles?
Yes….. but

Is it healthy for a dog to eat pickles?

This question should really be tackled from two different points of view.

  1. Has the dog already eaten the pickle?
  2. Are you thinking about giving the dog a pickle?
can dogs eat pickles
The answer to scenario one is, if the dog has eaten the pickle already, don’t worry about it.  They may get an upsets stomach if they’ve eaten a lot.  You may wish to skip down in the article to view what sodium can do to a dog.  It’s really all about the sodium.  Nutritionally speaking, pickles are almost a non food.
If you are holding a pickle in your hand at this moment thinking about giving it to your dog, it’d probably be in your dogs best interest to give them some other type of food because….

The sodium in pickles is terrible for a dog

One thing to consider when selecting a food for your dog is the sodium content.  As a source of nutrition pickles are lacking.  In fact, they have almost no calories?  It’s really there sodium that you need to look out for.   The average pickle spear has:
  • 7 calories
  • 785 mg of sodium

That sodium content is 1/3 of the daily value suggested for a human.   Here is a detailed writeup on the nutritional information in a pickle (pun intended):

is it ok for my dog to eat pickles

What happens when a dog consumes to much sodium

Sodium has some really negative effects on a dog.  A 33 pound dog only needs 100mg a day.  Here are some things that can happen when a dog eats to much sodium.

  • Your dog may become extremely thirsty when they’ve had too much sodium.
  • As dogs process all of the sodium, they will need to urinate more frequently.
  • They may also swell or look puffy.  This is an extreme example.  If you observe this it may be time to call the veterinarian.
It’s definitely OK to give a dog a pickle every now and then. Say you are eating a burger and she won’t stop staring at you with that “what about me look”.  That’s the perfect opportunity to flip your dog that pickle.  But, when it comes to using a pickle as a training treat, it should be avoided.
Here’s a good guide that is full of good dog nutrition advice, including sodium by weight:


You may be here because your dog really likes pickles.  What are some lower sodium alternatives?  Green peppers when cooked properly are a fine choice. They have the same mouth feel as a pickle, but none of the sodium.
You could also try carrots.  I’ve known many dogs that love them so much you’d swear that they were getting meat.

Wrapping up

A pickle isn’t going to kill your dog. But, they aren’t the healthiest food.  If you found your way here because your dog has already consumed a pickle, don’t panick.  Be prepared to let your best friend out overnight. It may be a shock to their system.