Can Dogs Eat Pesto? How To Make Dog-Friendly Pesto?

Can dogs eat pesto? The answer is absolutely not. But as for why not, this article will explain it to you clearly.

When eating pasta, gnocchi, or bread, the sauce is the most significant factor in determining whether a dish is good or bad. Most owners nowadays also want their dogs to enjoy this delectable eating style, especially with pesto, a typical Italian sauce. So we got the question "Can dogs eat pesto?" from many owners. The answer will be given in detail in this article.

Can Dogs Eat Pesto?

Pesto is a traditional Italian sauce made by crushing and mixing basil, salt, garlic, pine nuts, cheese, and olive oil. This is a sauce used to drizzle over pasta, bread, or meat.

Because of its thick texture and rich cheese, this sauce is also loved by many dogs. Therefore, you also wonder, "Can dogs eat pesto?". However, there are many ingredients in a pesto that is harmful to your "4-legged" friend, so the answer is no.  

There are many ingredients in pesto that are harmful to your "4-legged" friend, so dogs cannot eat
Source: Pupvine
There are many ingredients in pesto that are harmful to your "4-legged" friend, so dogs cannot eat

What Ingredients in Pesto are Dangerous for Dogs?

The main ingredient indispensable to bringing out the scent of pesto sauce is a lot of garlic. However, garlic is a highly toxic spice for a dog's health if it consumes a lot and for long periods. As a result, your dog may experience conditions such as anemia, increased heart rate, and poor health.

In addition, sometimes, there are walnuts in the pesto sauce, an ingredient that can make your dog more susceptible to allergies. While just one walnut won't cause problems for your dog, consuming too much can cause seizures and vomiting. Moreover, walnuts are very easy for dogs to develop mycotoxins, causing a lot of harm to dogs' health; the most severe cases can be fatal.

What Ingredients in Pesto are Good for Dogs?

Although the answer to the question "Can dogs eat pesto sauce?" is no, some ingredients in pesto are still good for the dog's health.

Most of the herbs found in pesto, such as cilantro, sage, cumin, basil, oregano, rosemary, mint, provide a lot of essential minerals and vitamins that are beneficial for your dog's digestive system. Additionally, parsley is an ingredient that helps freshen your dog's breath.

Can Dogs Eat Basil Pesto?

Basil is a beneficial herb for dogs since it is high in antioxidants and soothes arthritis pain. So the answer to the question "can dogs eat basil pesto?" is yes.

Basil is a beneficial herb for dogs since it is high in antioxidants and soothes arthritis pain
Source: Pupvine
Basil is a beneficial herb for dogs since it is high in antioxidants and soothes arthritis pain

You can make homemade basil pesto for your dogs with simple ingredients, including basil, pine nuts, olive oil, cheese, and a pinch of salt.

However, keep in mind that while basil is good for dogs, it is not perfect when paired with other substances such as cheese or salt. Therefore, you shouldn't make basil pesto as a regular part of your dog's diet, give him a modest amount of sauce once a week.

What to Do if Dogs Eat Pesto?

As you would already know, the answer to the question "Can dogs eat pesto?" is no, and the most hazardous element in this sauce for dogs is garlic. So, if your dog consumes pesto by accident, the first thing you should do is double-check the ingredients and figure out how much garlic he ate. Then, call your veterinarian for advice on the best way to proceed as soon as possible.

In addition, you also need to keep an eye on your dog. If he consumes a lot of garlic, he will quickly become anemic, exhibiting symptoms such as fainting, loss of appetite, red urine, weak physique, and inability to maintain balance.

How to Prepare Dog-Friendly Pesto?

The best way for your dog to enjoy delicious pesto without endangering his health is to make pesto sauce at home.

That way, you can make pesto just for your dog with the right ingredients for him. Here's a recipe for homemade dog-friendly pesto:

  • First, you need to prepare ingredients such as fresh herbs, garlic (about 1/4 clove), some cheese, nuts that are safe for dogs, a little olive oil;
  • You just need to mix all the ingredients to form a puree in the next step. You can keep this pesto in the freezer for up to 1 week.

Although the dog-friendly pesto won't pose much of a threat to his health, the calories in this sauce are still high. Therefore, it is best to only feed the dogs a small teaspoon of the sauce at a time.

Overall, this pesto is a great flavor and nutritional addition to your dog's diet.

Best Alternatives for Pesto

Even if you know the answer to the question "Can dogs have pesto?" is always no, unless you make this sauce at home for your dog. However, if you still want to serve your dog the dishes with the sauce mentioned above, you can use some of the healthy alternatives listed below:

  • Plain yogurt: This is a food rich in calcium and protein, which can help keep your dog's digestive system healthy.
  • Cottage cheese: Cottage cheese is an excellent addition to your dog's diet, which is intolerant of lactose as it is rich in calcium and protein. But if you're feeding your dog for the first time, keep in mind that lactose can upset his stomach, so only give him a small sample.
  • 100% pure peanut butter: This is a very healthy treat for dogs as it is rich in vitamins, proteins, and fats.
  • Apple sauce: With just basic ingredients like apple, honey, and water, you can make your dog a delicious and nutritious side dish.

You can use some of the healthy alternatives sauce such as plain yogurt, cottage cheese, apple sauce, peanut butter, etc.
Source: k9ofmine
You can use some of the healthy alternatives sauce such as plain yogurt, cottage cheese, apple sauce, peanut butter, etc.

Frequently Asked Question

Can Dogs Eat Tomato Pesto?

Red fruit is very good for dogs' health, and tomatoes are no exception. However, this does not mean dogs can eat tomato pesto, as some of the sauce's elements are still toxic. If you want to offer your dog tomato pesto, make sure you make the sauce yourself and use the right ingredients.

Can Dogs Eat Pasta?

Dogs can eat pasta, but it is not the healthiest option.

Can Dogs Eat Gnocchi?

Yes, he can. However, although gnocchi is not toxic to dogs, you should only feed him in moderation.

Is There A Dog-Specific Pesto on The Market?

Currently, the market does not sell pesto sauce specifically for dogs. So, if you want to feed your dog pesto, the only way is to make it at home for your dog.

Why Are The Calories in Pesto So High?

Two main elements in every pesto sauce are weighty in calories: cheese and oil. This is also why the answer "Can dogs eat pesto?" will always be no.

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