Trail mix is a very popular portable snack that packs plenty of energy, nutrition, and good taste.It’s also handy for people who like to hike or camp because it doesn’t need refrigeration and doesn’t spoil easily.The ingredients in trail mix contain a variety of things, but most trail mix recipes contain raisins, nuts, seeds, dried fruit, and sometimes chocolate.
Lots of dog owners love hiking and camping with their dogs and may be tempted to share some of that trail mix with their best friend.But can dogs eat trail mix?Although dogs are omnivores, some of the ingredients in trail mix are actually not good for dogs.
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Table of Contents
Can Dogs Eat Trail Mix?
The answer to this question depends on what is in the trail mix.Most commercial trail mixes contain raisins, dried currants, almonds, walnuts, pistachios, macadamia nuts, pecans, and even artificial sweeteners.Some of these ingredients are can cause gastrointestinal (GI) upset, while others can be toxic to dogs, causing a variety of complications including pancreatitis, liver and kidney damage, and even seizures and other neurological signs.
If you make your own trail mix, it’s best to avoid adding certain ingredients, and if you purchase a commercial trail mix, it’s important to read all the ingredients before sharing some with your pooch.
What Ingredients in Trail Mix can Hurt my Dog?
There are several foods that you should avoid giving your dog when it comes to trail mix, and these are listed below.
Raisins are a popular ingredient in trail mix, but unfortunately, they can cause kidney failure in dogs.However, kidney failure does not happen in all dogs that have eaten grapes or raisins, and veterinarians have noted that raisins don’t affect all dogs the same way.Some dogs may be more sensitive than others.Also, and there is no definite number as to how many raisins are toxic to a dog.
In any event, raisins should never be given to your dog, because you don’t know how your dog will react.Symptoms of raisin toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, dehydration, increased thirst, and abdominal pain.If you think that your pup has eaten raisins, contact your veterinarian right away.
Some trail mixes may contain currents, which like raisins, should never be given to your dog because they can potentially cause kidney failure as well.Veterinarians suspect that they may contain a mycotoxin (a toxin created by a fungus or mold), and others suspect that an aspirin-like drug may be naturally found in raisins and currants, causing decreased blood flow to the kidneys.
- Macadamia nuts
Macadamia nuts can be toxic to dogs.Dogs who have ingested these nuts can experience weakness in the back legs, vomiting, diarrhea, and a fever.It only takes a dose of about two nuts per pound of body weight to result in poisoning, leading to the temporary inability to walk. Scientists have yet to discover what substance in macadamia nuts causes toxicity in dogs, but the effects can be alarming. If you think your dog has eaten macadamia nuts, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Almonds are also a popular ingredient in trail mix, and although they are not toxic to dogs, they are not easily digestible and can cause gastrointestinal (GI) upset and even pancreatitis.Also, almonds can be a potential choking hazard, and it’s important not to give your pup salted, sugar-coated, seasoned, or chocolate-covered almonds.
- Pine Nuts
Pine nuts are high in fat and phosphorus, and although these popular nuts are not toxic to dogs, they can cause some gastrointestinal (GI) irritation, even if eaten in small amounts.If your furry friend has eaten a lot of pine nuts or eats them frequently, she may eventually develop pancreatitis as a result of GI irritation.Pancreatitis can be a deadly condition for a dog, and treatment often involves hospitalization and supportive care on intravenous (IV) fluids,
Another trail mix ingredient is pistachios.These tasty green nuts are a favorite, but they can be harmful to your dog.Pistachios can carry a mold called “Aspergillus,” and this mold produces aflatoxin (a poisonous carcinogen) that can damage your dog’s liver.Pistachios can also pose a choking hazard to your pup, and their high-fat content can cause potential GI upset and pancreatitis. Dogs who have ingested pistachios can show signs of GI distress such as vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
Cashews are another ingredient in trail mix, and one cashew or two won’t be harmful to your pup. However, if you share a cashew or two with your dog, make sure that it’s unsalted and roasted or baked.Cashews come from the same botanical family as poison ivy and sumac, and some dogs may have an allergic reaction to these nuts.Allergic reactions include itching, swelling, and hives on the skin.These tasty nuts also contain high amounts of fat and calories, so they may not be the best for your pet.
Like pistachios, walnuts should not be fed to your dog, and in addition to GI upset and irritation, they can contain mycotoxin molds that can cause tremors and seizures.Black walnuts in particular are especially toxic to dogs.They contain a compound that can cause weakness, paralysis, and even death.If your dog has eaten black walnuts, contact your veterinarian immediately.
Pecans are also a tasty addition to any trail mix, but like pistachios, they can also contain the Aspergillus mold,which can cause liver damage. Pecans can also pose a choking hazard, produce GI irritation, and cause possible intestinal blockages.
Many trail mixes contain chocolate in the form of chocolate chips, M&Ms, Reeses Pieces, and other chocolaty treats, however, never give your dog chocolate.Chocolate is toxic to dogs because it contains methylxanthine and theobromine.These elements are found in tea, coffee, and chocolate, and both stimulate the nervous and cardiovascular systems. Because of these chemicals, chocolate ingestion in large quantities can cause vomiting, liver failure, and even death in dogs.
Dark chocolate is the most toxic because it has a higher concentration of methylxanthine and theobromine.Toxicity depends on the type of chocolate ingested, the amount ingested, and the size of the dog.For example, in small dogs, just half an ounce of dark baking chocolate can be fatal, while a larger dog may be fine after eating the same amount or a few ounces more. If you suspect that your dog has eaten chocolate, contact your veterinarian or a pet poison hotline immediately.Treatment often involves the induction of emesis (vomiting) and supportive care.
For those individuals who are watching their weight, but wish to reduce their sugar intake, they may opt to put the artificial sweetener Xylitol into their trail mix.Xylitol is an artificial sweetener found in several food items such as gum and other sugar-free foods, however, Xylitol is dangerously toxic to dogs.Even a tiny amount can cause serious hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), seizures, liver damage, and even death. If your dog has eaten Xylitol or has ingested food sweetened with Xylitol, that is a medical emergency, and you should contact your veterinarian immediately.
What About All the Other Good Stuff in Trail Mix?
We discussed the above possible harmful ingredients in trail mix, but what about other ingredients? Trail mix can contain a host of other ingredients, such as pumpkin seeds, popcorn, granola, oats, dried bananas, blueberries, lentils, chickpeas, and dried mangos.These items are perfectly fine for your dog, but just be aware that they may contain a lot of sugar, which is not necessarily good for your pup.Although it’s not harmful to offer your best friend a little nibble of these ingredients, it’s probably best to keep these snacks to yourself.
What Should I Do If My Dog Eats Trail Mix?
If you suspect that your dog has gotten into your trail mix, contact your veterinarian or a pet poison hotline for information.It is important to act quickly, especially if your dog has ingested raisins, walnuts, or Xylitol. Have the bag of trail mix handy, or provide a list of ingredients for your veterinarian so that he/she can treat your dog appropriately.
What Are the Symptoms of Raisin Toxicity?
Since raisins are a favorite ingredient in trail mix, it’s important to note symptoms of raisin toxicity.The most common and early symptoms include vomiting, lethargy, lack of appetite, and diarrhea.Most of these symptoms appear within 12-24 hours, however, more severe signs may not appear for 48 hours.
Severe signs often include the first symptoms of kidney failure, which are nausea, lack of appetite, vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, increase thirst and urination, and a metallic smell to the breath.As the kidneys shut down, a dog may not be able to produce any urine, and in this case, the prognosis is poor, and can most likely be fatal.
How is Trail Mix Poisoning Diagnosed?
The symptoms of raisin, walnut, or aflatoxin poisoning are often non-specific and are similar to the signs of kidney failure and liver failure. A veterinarian can base a diagnosis on what was ingested, or after inducing vomiting and inspecting the vomit.A veterinarian can also conduct diagnostic tests such as a complete blood count (CBC), a serum biochemistry profile, and a urinalysis to assess kidney and liver function.
How is Trail Mix Poisoning Treated?
If your dog has ingested trail mix that contains raisins, Xylitol, cashews, pistachios, or black walnuts, treatment will first involve inducing vomiting (emesis) to rid the stomach of its contents.Then, the veterinarian may administer activated charcoal to block further systemic absorption of the toxins.Following emesis and the administration of activated charcoal, most veterinarians will recommend hospitalization on IV fluids to flush the toxins out of the kidneys, as well as the management of blood pressure and blood flow to the kidneys.
If liver damage is suspected, supportive care on IV fluids will also be recommended, as well as the administration of liver support supplements and medications.Depending on the ingredient and the amount ingested, hospitalization may take up to 2-7 days.During this time the veterinarian will monitor kidney and liver values daily to assess the response to treatment.
What is The Prognosis Following Trail Mix Ingestion?
The prognosis depends on many factors, such as what was ingested, the size of the dog, how fast the dog was treated, and if the pet has a pre-existing liver or kidney condition.For example, if your dog ate just a few raisins, and you rushed her to the veterinarian immediately, the prognosis is very good.IN any event, it’s always best to consult your veterinarian if you have questions about trail mix ingestion and your dog.
What are Pet Poison Numbers?
In the US, there are several numbers pet owners can call in the event of possible toxin ingestion.One is the Pet Poison Helpline, an animal poison control service available 24 hours, seven days a week for pet owners and veterinary professionals. Pet Poison Helpline may charge a consultation fee and is available in North America by calling (800) 213-6680. Additional information can be found online at www.petpoisonhelpline.com.
Another is the Pet Poison Helpline, (855) 764-7661. They are available 24/7, and often charge a consultation fee of $65.More information can be found at www.petpoisonhelpline.com.
Dog owners can also call the ASPCA (The ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center) for any animal poison-related emergency, 24/7.Their number is (888) 426-4435.A consultation fee may apply.You can visit them online at www.aspca.org/pet-care/animal-poison-control.
It is also recommended to call your veterinarian immediately as well in case your dog needs immediate treatment.
Trail mix makes for a great snack, especially when you are out hiking on the trail and enjoying the outdoors while camping.However, given that some ingredients in trail mix are toxic to your dog, it’s best to keep trail mix out of reach of your pooch.Although an occasional cashew or peanut will likely not harm your dog, it’s better to be safe than sorry.Instead of trail mix, bring along dog treats or biscuits instead, and keep the trail mix to yourself.
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Family Dog Expert Author
Hi there! I’m Stuart, a devoted dog lover and family dog expert with over a decade of experience working with our furry companions. My passion for dogs drives me to share my knowledge and expertise, helping families build strong, loving bonds with their four-legged friends. When I’m not writing for SirDoggie, you’ll find me hiking, playing with my beautiful dog, or studying music.
Although people can eat as much trail mix as they please, the same isn't true for our canine friends. There are many ingredients in this popular combo that aren't safe for dogs to eat.What nuts should dogs not eat? ›
- Macadamia nuts – Very toxic to dogs. ...
- Black walnuts – Very toxic to dogs. ...
- Old and moldy walnuts – Very toxic to dogs and cats. ...
- Raw Cashews – Should be avoided for dogs and toxic for cats. ...
- Pistachios – Should be avoided for dogs and cats.
Which Nuts Are Safe for Dogs to Eat? Peanuts, which are technically in the legume family, are safe for dogs in very small quantities, as long as they are unsalted and unseasoned. Cashews are also reportedly safe in small quantities, but both cashews and peanuts are too high in fat to make regular treats.What happens if a dog eats raisins? ›
Most dogs with raisin or grape toxicosis develop vomiting and/or diarrhea within 6–12 hours of ingestion of grapes or raisins. Other signs include lethargy, anorexia, abdominal pain, weakness, dehydration, polydipsia, and tremors (shivering).What can dogs have in trail mix? ›
Sweet Trail Mix
Blueberries, apples, bananas, and sweet potatoes are all great sources of fiber, which will keep your dog going all day.
- Corn Syrup and Artificial Food Coloring. The sweetness from corn syrup and the artificial coloring from food dye are completely unnecessary and unnatural in dog food. ...
- BHA, BHT or Ethoxyquin. Just say “no” to these artificial preservatives. ...
- Rendered Fat. ...
- Propylene Glycol.
Plain, air-popped popcorn is safe for dogs to eat in small quantities. Buttered popcorn or popcorn with other toppings is not safe for your dog on a regular basis, although eating a few dropped pieces here and there probably won't hurt them.Can dogs eat cheese? ›
Yes, dogs can eat cheese. In fact, cheese is often a great training tool, especially for puppies.Can dogs have peanut butter? ›
Whether speaking to new or seasoned pet parents, veterinarians are often asked 'can dogs eat peanut butter? ' The good news is that regular peanut butter is safe to give your dog as a treat. Just make sure to avoid peanut butter with Xylitol, a sugar substitute found in lower or sugar-free products.Can dogs have raisins? ›
While a favorite and healthy snack for people, grapes, raisins and currants can cause kidney failure in dogs. Raisins can commonly be found in combination with other foods, potentially increasing the risk of exposure as compared with grapes and currants. The toxicity concern is the same.
Fortunately, there are only a few peanut butter brands that use xylitol as an ingredient. That peanut butter sitting in your pantry is probably safe for your dog. The most popular brands of peanut butter, such as Jif, Skippy, Smuckers and Peter Pan are all xylitol-free.Can dogs have cashews? ›
Yes, cashews are generally safe for dogs to eat. Unlike macadamia nuts, cashews are not toxic to dogs.What fruit can dogs not have? ›
Fruit. Steer clear of: Cherries are toxic to cats and dogs, and grapes and raisins can cause kidney damage. Citrus fruits like lemons, limes, and grapefruit as well as persimmons can cause an upset stomach.Will my dog be OK if he ate one grape? ›
Can a Single Grape Kill a Dog? Unfortunately, even consuming one grape or raisin can be fatal. Ingesting the fruit could potentially lead to acute (sudden) kidney failure in dogs.What vegetables can dogs not eat? ›
What veggies are bad for dogs? The following veggies are considered unsafe for dogs: Garlic, Onions, Shallots, & Chives: Garlic, onions, shallots, and chives are toxic to dogs, whether raw or cooked. They have substances that may cause anemia and damage red blood cells.What should you avoid in trail mix? ›
Be sure to avoid trail mix varieties with high amounts of added sugar or sodium, and choose products with healthy, high quality ingredients. Finally, be sure to monitor your portion sizes.What animals eat trail mix? ›
Trail Mix is a great snack, treat or reward for hamsters, gerbils, mice and rats. We blended a medley of irresistible natural ingredients that add variety to your pets' diet.Is trail mix OK to snack? ›
It is made of nuts, seeds, low sugar fruit, and sugar free or dark chocolate. It can make for a perfect healthy snack at any time of day!What is the number one most toxic food for dogs? ›
1. Onions, garlic and chives. The onion family, whether dry, raw or cooked, is particularly toxic to dogs and can cause gastrointestinal irritation and red blood cell damage. Signs of illness are not always immediate and can occur up to a few days later.Are milk bones bad for dogs? ›
When fed as directed, Milk-Bone® Brushing Chews® are safe to feed dogs daily. We're a company of pet lovers and there is nothing more important to us than the quality and safety of our products. Milk-Bone® Brushing Chews® underwent comprehensive quality and safety testing.
- Avocados. Avocados contain a toxin called persin, which is perfectly safe for human consumption but can be very poisonous to dogs ( 1 ). ...
- Xylitol. ...
- Coffee, tea, and other caffeine. ...
- Grapes and raisins. ...
- Alcohol and yeast dough. ...
- Chocolate. ...
Unfortunately, although it may be tempting to share your cone with your four-legged friend, it's best to avoid giving ice cream to dogs.Can dogs eat potato chips? ›
It's not a good idea to share salty foods like chips or pretzels with your dog. Eating too much salt can make your dog seriously thirsty. That means a lot of trips to the fire hydrant and it could lead to sodium ion poisoning.Can dogs eat scrambled eggs? ›
Eggs should be cooked before given to a dog. Cook or boil eggs plain without oil, butter, salt, seasoning, spices, or other additives. It doesn't matter how your dog likes their eggs — sunny side up, scrambled, or hard boiled — as long as they are cooked.Can dogs eat pizza? ›
The bottom line is that you should never give pizza to your dog, whether as a meal or a treat. They might experience a slight stomach upset if they're sensitive to dairy, due to the excess fat, but overall in many cases dogs are fine.Can dogs eat hot dogs? ›
Because they contain so many added ingredients that are not healthy for dogs, hotdogs are not a good choice for your pooch. If you want to give your dog a treat at the barbecue, it's best to give him some plain beef, pork, or chicken that has no salt or other seasoning on it.Are eggs good for dogs? ›
Believe it or not, dogs can eat eggs! Eggs are high in protein and contain many essential fatty acids and essential amino acids. This makes them a yummy — and healthy — snack when cooked or boiled.Can dogs have banana? ›
Yes, dogs can eat bananas. In moderation, bananas are a great low-calorie treat for dogs. They're high in potassium, vitamins, biotin, fiber, and copper. They are low in cholesterol and sodium, but because of their high sugar content, bananas should be given as a treat, not part of your dog's main diet.Can dogs eat yogurt? ›
Can most dogs eat yogurt? Yes, but that doesn't necessarily mean that they should. While yogurt is not toxic to dogs, many canines might have trouble digesting it because it contains lactose. And plenty of pups have trouble with foods that contain lactose, such as milk.Why can't dogs have ham? ›
The fatty richness of ham is what makes it taste so delicious, but it's difficult for your dog to digest. Too much fat can lead to pancreatitis and other digestive upsets.
What's important to remember is that too much of any human food can be upsetting to a dog's stomach. Just because you're eating oatmeal daily for breakfast doesn't mean your dog should, too. Generally, you can feed your dog one tablespoon of cooked oatmeal for every 20 pounds of their weight.Can dogs have pineapple? ›
Yes. Raw pineapple, in small amounts, is an excellent snack for dogs. Canned pineapple, on the other hand, should be avoided. The syrup in canned fruits contains too much sugar for most dogs' digestive tracts to handle.Should I feed my dog canned pumpkin? ›
What Kind of Pumpkin Should I Feed My Dog? Plain, canned pumpkin is the healthiest choice for your dog. Both fresh and canned pumpkin are good sources of nutrients and fiber, but canned pumpkin contains a higher concentration of fiber and nutrients compared to fresh pumpkin.Can dogs have cinnamon? ›
The good news is that cinnamon is not toxic to dogs, though cinnamon essential oil can be toxic for pups. Your dog will not suffer fatal toxic effects from consuming too much cinnamon, but that does not necessarily mean you should be sprinkling it on kibble.Can I give my dog Jif peanut butter? ›
Yes, dogs can eat peanut butter as long as it is fed in moderation and does not contain xylitol, so get out that pet-safe peanut butter jar and share the good news.Can dogs eat an almond? ›
Almonds are a great snack for humans. But, can dogs eat almonds? The answer is no. While almonds might not be as as toxic as some nuts, they are one of those foods canine companions can't digest as easily as people.Can dogs eat oranges? ›
Oranges, tangerines, and other citrus fruits are not toxic to dogs — but never feed them grapes or raisins. Oranges, tangerines, and clementines are not toxic to dogs (although not so great for cats, who may have an issue with citric acid).Can dogs eat cabbage? ›
Is Cabbage Good for Dogs? Dr. Jerry Klein, Chief Veterinary Officer for the AKC, advises that “cabbage is in the same family as cauliflower and broccoli, so it is safe to feed a dog cabbage, but only in moderation.” If you choose to incorporate cabbage into your dog's diet, there may even be some health benefits.What meat can dogs not eat? ›
Bacon, Ham and Fat Trimmings
Bacon, bacon grease, ham, and fat trimmed off meat or bones contains a lot of salt and/or fat and at the least can cause indigestion, vomiting, and diarrhea in both dogs and cats. These foods can also cause pancreatitis, a serious, potentially deadly inflammation of the pancreas.
Cucumbers are perfectly safe for dogs to eat, and offer a low-calorie, crunchy snack that many dogs love. Cucumbers only contain about 8 calories per one-half cup of slices, compared to the 40 calories in a single medium biscuit, and are very low in sodium and fat.
Are Tomatoes Good for Dogs? Ripe tomatoes are non-toxic, so they aren't poisonous to dogs. In fact, the many health benefits that tomatoes offer is why they are often included as an ingredient in pet food. Tomatoes have a lot of fiber, which helps support your dog's digestion.Is Apple allowed for dogs? ›
Apples are a fantastic addition to your dog's diet; they provide vitamin A, vitamin C and dietary fibre. They also provide a way to keep your dog's teeth clean and helps to freshen their breath! However, you should be sure to remove the core and the seeds of the apple before giving it to your dog.Are carrots good for dogs? ›
While some of the vegetables we love are unsafe to feed our dogs, carrots are a perfectly safe and nutritious treat for your dog.Can dogs eat spinach? ›
Yes, dogs can eat spinach in small quantities. Spinach is a rich source of dietary fiber, and the vitamins and minerals in fresh spinach can help boost your pet's immense system and energy levels.What foods are good for dogs joints? ›
Some of our favorites include blueberries, turmeric (fresh root, powdered, or in supplement form), fatty fish, sweet potatoes, fresh ginger root, spinach, and pumpkin. Don't be afraid to add these “people foods” into your dog's meal rotation for a healthy kick. You can read more about what foods to stay away from here.What is the healthiest vegetable for dogs? ›
Carrots, peas, green beans, sweet potatoes, and bananas are packed with important vitamins, along with potassium, which is good for a dog's muscles, nerves, and kidneys. Their fiber can also help dogs stay regular.Can dogs eat pickles? ›
In general, pickles are not toxic to dogs. They contain some nutritional health benefits, which in theory would make giving them to your pup perfectly fine. However, they are extremely high in sodium and contain ingredients that could be potentially harmful to a dog.Are any nuts toxic to dogs? ›
Moldy walnuts could be fertile breeding ground for tremorgenic mycotoxins, which can be fatal to dogs. Black walnuts are especially dangerous to dogs. English walnuts pose less of a risk, but these hard nuts are difficult for dogs to digest and may cause internal blockages.Can dogs eat walnuts trail mix? ›
Although it may be technically safe for dogs to eat a few walnuts (especially if they are store-bought and unsalted), walnuts are not the best choice for your dog. Walnuts can be a choking hazard for dogs and, when eaten in large quantities, can lead to a potentially life-threatening condition called pancreatitis.Is trail mix healthier than chips? ›
Your trail mix sounds like it could be a good trade-off for chip-type snacks. Depending on ingredient proportions, one-third cup (2 ounces) trail mix has approximately 270 calories, 16 grams of fat, 25 grams of carbohydrate and 4 grams of fiber. chips has 300 calories, 29 grams of carbohydrate and 3 grams of fiber.
All nuts are high in fat which can upset your pup's tummy so if you want to share roasted nuts or nut butter, limit your dog's intake. Which Nuts Are on the “Don't” List? Macadamias, pistachios, and walnuts in any form are on the “no” list when it comes to your pup.Can dogs eat bananas? ›
Yes, dogs can eat bananas. In moderation, bananas are a great low-calorie treat for dogs. They're high in potassium, vitamins, biotin, fiber, and copper. They are low in cholesterol and sodium, but because of their high sugar content, bananas should be given as a treat, not part of your dog's main diet.Can dogs eat honey? ›
Honey is safe for dogs to eat in small quantities. It contains natural sugars and small amounts of vitamins and minerals. It is also used as a sweetener in many foods and beverages.How much trail mix is too much? ›
One piece of advice to monitor your portion size is to avoid eating straight from the package and sticking to around 1/4 cup (35 grams) at a time for an easy snack on the go. Be sure to avoid trail mix varieties with high amounts of added sugar or sodium, and choose products with healthy, high quality ingredients.Is 1 cup of trail mix too much? ›
The calories in trail mix can add up quickly, so remember that a little will go a long way! Both nuts and dried fruit and concentrated sources of calories and it can be easy to overdo it with trail mix. A ¼ cup is the standard recommended portion.Why do they put raisins in trail mix? ›
Dried Fruit: Dried fruit is the perfect option to help with low blood sugar and give you a natural boost of energy. Look for dried fruit that doesn't have added sugars. Dried raisins, cherries, apricots, bananas, coconut, and even mango all taste great in a trail mix.Can dogs have applesauce? ›
Can Dogs Eat Applesauce? Yes, dogs can safely eat plain applesauce! But applesauce generally includes added sugars, so always choose unsweetened applesauce and give it to them in moderation. You can freeze applesauce in ice cube trays and share with your dog after a long walk or on a hot summer day.