Can Dogs Eat Cherries

icon June 20, 2023

What is Cherries?

Cherries, with their vibrant colors and sweet taste, have become a popular choice among many people. The cherry is the fruit of various plum plants and is classified as a fleshy drupe. Interestingly, the English word "cherry" can be traced back to its origins in Old Northern French or Norman Cherise, which ultimately derives from the Latin word cerasum. This Latin term refers to Kerasous (Κερασοῦς), an ancient Greek region located near Giresun, Turkey. It was believed to be the initial source from which cherries were exported to Europe, giving rise to the fruit's name that we use today.

Sweet Cherries

Types of Cherries

Cherries come in various types, each with its own distinctive characteristics and flavors, including:

  • Bing Cherries
  • Rainier Cherries
  • Sour Cherries
  • Lambert Cherries
  • Japanese cherry
  • Montmorency Cherries
  • Sweetheart Cherries

Nutritional Value of Cherries

Raw sweet cherries have a composition that consists of approximately 82% water, 16% carbohydrates, 1% protein, and negligible amounts of fat. In terms of nutrient content, raw sweet cherries offer a limited value per 100 g serving. They primarily provide dietary fiber and vitamin C in moderate quantities, while other vitamins and dietary minerals contribute less than 10% of the Daily Value (DV) per serving.

On the other hand, when comparing raw sour cherries to sweet cherries, there are notable differences. Raw sour cherries contain approximately 50% more vitamin C per 100 g serving (equivalent to 12% of the DV). Additionally, they possess roughly 20 times more vitamin A (8% DV), particularly in the form of beta-Carotene. These increased levels of vitamin C and vitamin A make sour cherries a potentially advantageous choice in terms of nutritional value.

Information sources: Cherry

Can Dogs Eat Cherries?

The short answer to the question "Can dogs eat cherries?" is a bit complicated. While cherries themselves aren't toxic to dogs, they do pose certain risks and should be given with caution. Here are some key points to consider:

Are Cherries Good for Dogs?

Cherries can be a source of vitamins A and C, which are beneficial for dogs. However, it's important to note that cherries contain bitter amygdalin in their pits, which can release the toxic compound hydrogen cyanide when ingested. The amount of amygdalin in each cherry can vary, and symptoms typically occur after consuming a few crushed pits (around 3-4 pits for Morello varieties or 7-9 pits for red or black varieties). 

Know Why Cherries are Harmful To Dogs

An experiment conducted on cyanide levels in cherries revealed that an average cherry kernel contains 0.004 mg of cyanide. Although this amount is not lethal for humans, it is still advisable to avoid feeding cherries to dogs, as different cherry varieties may have higher levels of cyanide. If you do choose to offer cherries to your dog, it is crucial to remove the pits, stems, and leaves beforehand. However, it's worth noting that the effort involved in preparing cherries for your dog may not outweigh the potential benefits, considering that dogs would need to consume a significant amount of cherries to derive any noticeable nutritional advantages.

What to Do if Your Dog Eats a Whole Cherry? 

If your dog happens to consume a whole cherry, including the pit and stem, it is important to take immediate action and closely monitor your pet for any signs of discomfort. Watch out for symptoms such as

These indicators may suggest a problem related to the ingestion of the cherry pit or stem. Fortunately, one or two cherries - pitted and all - are unlikely to cause them any harm. They may show a slight reaction and develop an upset stomach or diarrhea.

In the event that your dog has ingested a significant amount of cherries, such as a handful or more, it is essential to remain vigilant for signs of cyanide poisoning. Look for symptoms like:

1. Difficulty Breathing

Cyanide can interfere with oxygen utilization in the body, leading to respiratory distress. Dogs may exhibit rapid or labored breathing, gasping for air, or panting excessively.

2. Bright Red Gums

Cyanide affects oxygen transport in the bloodstream, causing a lack of oxygenation in tissues. This can result in bright red or cherry-red gums in dogs. It is important to note that other conditions can also cause red gums, so a veterinarian's evaluation is crucial for an accurate diagnosis.

3. Dilated Pupils

Cyanide poisoning may cause dilation of the pupils in dogs. The pupils may appear larger than usual and may not constrict properly in response to light.

4. Seizures or Muscle Twitching

In severe cases, dogs may experience seizures or muscle twitching as a result of cyanide toxicity. These convulsions can be distressing and require immediate medical attention.

5. Loss of Consciousness

In the advanced stages of cyanide poisoning, dogs may become lethargic, weak, or even lose consciousness. This is a severe symptom and requires immediate veterinary intervention.

6. Excessive Panting

7. Drooling

8. Vomiting

9. Diarrhea

Whether or not your dog exhibits any of these signs, it is crucial to contact your veterinarian for further guidance.

Unless specifically instructed by your veterinarian, refrain from attempting to induce vomiting in your dog. Some substances, such as pits, can be hazardous if regurgitated and may lead to additional complications. It is best to seek professional advice to ensure the safety and well-being of your beloved pet.

How Many Cherries Can a Dog Eat?

The quantity of cherries a dog can safely eat depends on several factors, including the dog's size, overall health, and individual tolerance to the fruit. While cherries themselves are not toxic to dogs, certain precautions should be taken to ensure their well-being.

Body weight

Number of cherries

Extra-small dog (2–20 pounds) 1
Small dog (21–30 pounds) 2
Medium dog (31–50 pounds) 4
Large dog (51–90 pounds) 5
Extra-large dog (91+ pounds) 10

It's important to note that these serving suggestions are approximate and should be adjusted based on your dog's specific needs and sensitivities. Some dogs may be more sensitive to the sugars in cherries, while others may have allergies or digestive issues.

Additionally, it is crucial to remove the pits and stems before offering cherries to your dog. 

Can Dogs Eat Dried Cherries?

Feeding dried cherries to dogs is not recommended. While fresh cherries can be given to dogs in moderation, dried cherries have a concentrated amount of sugar compared to fresh cherries. Excessive sugar intake can lead to weight gain, dental issues, and even diabetes in dogs. The high sugar content can also upset their stomach and potentially cause diarrhea or gastrointestinal discomfort.
Commercially available dried cherries often contain additives, such as sugars or preservatives like sulfites, which can be harmful to dogs. These additives may cause allergic reactions or digestive disturbances in some dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Bing Cherries?

Yes, dogs can eat Bing cherries, but there are some important considerations to keep in mind. And follow the weight and corresponding number of cherries as described above. 
It is important to make sure to thoroughly remove the pits and stems before giving Bing cherries to your dog. Even small amounts of cyanide can cause serious health issues.

Can Dogs Eat Black Cherry Yogurt?

While yogurt itself can be a healthy addition to a dog's diet, it's important to consider the ingredients and potential additives in black cherry yogurt before offering it to your dog. 
Some yogurt products, including flavored ones like black cherry yogurt, may contain artificial sweeteners like xylitol. Xylitol is highly toxic to dogs and can cause a severe drop in blood sugar levels, leading to symptoms such as weakness, seizures, and even liver failure.

In general, it's recommended to opt for plain, unsweetened yogurt without any additives or flavorings when sharing yogurt with your dog. Plain yogurt can provide probiotics and be a healthy addition to their diet in small amounts. 

Can Dogs Have Cherry Tomatoes?

Yes, dogs can have cherry tomatoes, but the leaves, stems, and green unripe tomatoes of the tomato plant contain a substance called solanine, which is toxic to dogs. However, ripe tomatoes, including cherry tomatoes, have lower levels of solanine and are generally considered safe for dogs to consume in moderation.

Healthy Alternatives and Treats

When it comes to providing healthy alternatives and treats for your dog, there are various options you can consider. Here are some suggestions:

Apple slices: Remove the seeds and core, and offer your dog apple slices as a sweet and fiber-rich treat. Apples are a good source of vitamins and can help freshen your dog's breath.

Apples Recipe

Pumpkin: Plain, unsweetened canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling) can be a healthy addition to your dog's diet. It is high in fiber and can aid in digestion.


Sweet potatoes: Cooked sweet potatoes are a nutritious alternative to traditional dog treats. They are rich in vitamins and minerals and make for a delicious, chewy snack.

Sweet Potatoes

Plain yogurt: Plain, unsweetened yogurt can provide probiotics and be a healthy treat for dogs. It can help support their digestive system, but ensure your dog is not lactose intolerant before offering yogurt.


Lean meats: Cooked, lean meats such as chicken or turkey (without seasoning or bones) can be given as occasional treats. Make sure to remove any skin or fat before offering them to your dog.

Lean Meats


While cherries themselves aren't toxic to dogs, precautions must be taken before offering them to your furry friend. Make sure to remove pits and stems, offer cherries in moderation, and monitor your dog for any signs of allergies or adverse reactions. If you have any concerns or doubts, it's best to consult with your veterinarian for personalized advice based on your dog's specific needs and health conditions.

Remember, a well-balanced diet formulated for dogs is the most important aspect of their nutrition. Treats and snacks, including fruits, should only make up a small portion of their overall diet. Prioritize their health and well-being by providing them with a balanced diet and consulting a professional for dietary recommendations.



Leave A Comment
All comments are moderated before being published.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Join The Puainta

Become one of pet parents and get professional tips, immediate product info, updated promotions and discounts, and more surprises from us!