Updated by Sheryl on Dec 30, 2021
Raising dogs is no plum job! As hard as it can be to get dogs to eat something good, the worst part is the one where you can't figure out what is in their mouths. With their natural curiosity and instinct to swallow anything, dogs end up wolfing down anything. They contribute about 80% of emergency calls that relate to animals with symptoms of phytotoxin poisoning.
Well, plums make a healthy snack, in general. But can dogs eat plums? We'll discuss all you need to know about giving dogs plums.
In moderation? Yes! But there is a lot more to know and weigh before letting your fur monster dig in into an orchard.
With about 87% of water content, surpluses of vitamins, sufficient minerals, and ample amounts of fiber, the fruits are roseate orbs of true goodness.
The different B vitamins alongside the other vitamins (C, E, and K), copper, and potassium found in plums make your dog's skin, coat, bones, teeth, and muscles healthier. Vitamin C, antioxidants, minerals, and many rare phytonutrients found in plums help fight infections and heal faster. Plums are also beneficial to the nervous system and enzymatic function in dogs. The dietary fiber content of plums helps the digestive system and blood sugar levels too. So, there are quite a few benefits of eating plums for dogs.
Although frequent scientific studies evince how beneficial plums can be to dogs, scores of them prove that many phytotoxins (or plant-toxins) in plums can be harmful too.
The quickest of these poisons may be cyanogen. Apart from the chemical itself, plum flesh releases hydrogen cyanide when chewed.
Prunasin, a natural toxin found in most plants of the 'prunus' family, is present in plums too. Although the effects of prunasin are not studied extensively enough, it can produce cyanides. To be precise, the more prunasin more cyanides produced. And, it may be noted that unripe plums (unmatured flesh of the fruit) contain and release more of the toxins we mentioned than the ripe fruit.
Now, we have discussed some of the intricacies - the pros and cons - of feeding dogs the fruit. You need to weigh these benefits against the few disadvantages before feeding them plums. Remember that, it is only allowed to eat plums in moderation. No more than 2.
No! Dogs should not be given whole plums.
Following are some signs that your dog has plum poisoning. They are not telltale signs. But do rush to the vet if your dog: ( i ) has eaten a whole plum, ( ii ) has eaten an unripe plum, ( iii ) had been outdoors or in the kitchen unattended, ( iv ) shows any more than one of the less serious symptoms, or ( v ) shows any of the serious symptoms.
Dogs that can communicate with you better may also express their conditions in their unique ways. This might include acting strangely before you - whine or howl at you or rub their bellies against you desperately to relieve pain, for example. They might tell you that they are scared of what is going on inside.
Introverted dogs can either show signs of pain directly to you (unlike other times) or even act more cocooned than ever.
The veterinarian will start detoxifying your dog's blood if plum poisoning is confirmed. If the animal is choking, the vet will get the alien object out of your dog's throat. Surgery is rare in case your dog has eaten a plum. But if the vet suspects that the pit is in a crooked place, they may go for it. In any case, your dog will recover in a day or two.
Ripe, fresh, and clean plum flesh alone and in moderation is not bad for a dog with good digestion. Ask your vet about feeding your dog plums before putting them on the menu though.
Most dogs can eat plums without the pit but in moderation.
Jams, jellies, and other forms of preserved plums are usually high in sugar. Even if the toxins from the canned plums do not harm the dog, sugars can.
Again, fruit preserves can contain unripe, overripe, moldy, or fermented bits or other plant parts. You cannot be ever sure enough to keep your dog from harm. So, your dog is better off without the serving of plum jam.
Dried plums or prunes are not the best for dogs, although they are not as harmful as jams. But again, the sugar content, the presence of unripe or overripe plums, and the threat of contamination make prunes unsafe for dogs.
The leaves, bark, roots, and other parts of plum trees contain compounds that are toxic to dogs. The concentrations are not as high as those in the pit. But plum trees may be considered dangerous to dogs.
The leaves and stems of plum trees are more toxic while they wilt. So, take care when your dog is playing outdoors if there are any plum or similar trees.
Bitter almonds are found to have similar effects as plums in dogs. Peaches, nectarines, apricots, etc., are closely related to plums and can be harmful to dogs.
Local and alternate plum varieties include Imperial gage, Japanese plums, Blue rock, Lombard, Czar, Maynard, etc. They may be harmful to dogs as well.
The drupes have large stony seeds called pits that can choke your dog or scrape its digestive tract.