What's the go with avocado?! 🥑 👅
Aug 03, 2021
It appears on almost all lists of dangerous foods for pets. So what’s the go with the avo? Here’s the truth on whether avocado is smashingly tasty or actually toxic toast for the furry (and feathered) family…
This whole fear and smear campaign around dogs being in danger from eating avocado probably comes from something called ‘persin’. It’s a natural anti-fungal compound that’s found in the leaves and bark of the tree and the skin of the fruit. And yes, while that compound is technically toxic, dogs and cats aren’t particularly sensitive to it and never show any interest in eating those parts of the plant. Thankfully, the flesh of the avocado fruit is almost free of persin so if your little mate pinches a piece of smashed avo toast, probably the only risk comes from the high fat content of that avocado leading to a gut upset. And also the fact that for most of the year, that piece of toast probably cost you the deposit on your house.
Genuinely the biggest danger to dogs comes from the avocado pip. That stone is round, slippery and unfortunately slides into more dog stomachs than you might think. Surgery to remove it is the usual result.
My feeling is that avocado has been deemed a toxic food mostly by association. Because avocado poisoning from persin IS a real factor for pet birds and also larger animals like cows, goats and sheep. And you guessed it, it’s the skin, leaves and bark that are to blame when they’re mistakenly included in their feed. For everyone with pet chickens, the flesh is considered safe (but best to avoid it to be safe) but eating the skins will cause signs like difficulty breathing, perching problems as well as liver and kidney problems and sadly even death.
So while it’s not a resounding yes to smashing avocado, it help to know that your dog, cat or chicken pinching a small amount of the flesh shouldn’t result in a late night emergency dash…
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