Toxic to Dogs

Can Dogs Chew on Pine Cones

DOGuide

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Pine cones look like a fun toy for a dog. They crackle inside their mouth. They are weird-shaped sticks to dogs. But can dogs chew on pine cones? You will find the answer below.

Are Pine Cones Toxic to Dogs?

Pine cones are NOT toxic to dogs, it’s the way they are shaped and what could be on them that is toxic to them. Dogs should also not play with pine cones, as the pine sap and pine oil can make their way into the body from licking or transdermally.

Dogs and Pine Cones: Why They Are Unsafe

The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals – ASPCA classifies pine trees or conifer trees in general as toxic to dogs. This includes:

  • Pine Needles
  • Pine Tree Seeds
  • Pine Sap
  • Pine Oil
dog with pine cone in mouth

What Pine Cones Can Do to Dogs

Be aware of the possible consequences if your dog eats a pine cone. It may be cute and it may make your dog happy, but it’s just not worth it.

Stab

Pine cones have sharp points on them that can stab a dog’s mouth, a dog’s throat, or a dog’s stomach.

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Allergic Reactions

Dogs prone to allergies may develop an allergic reaction to the pine oil.

Poison

Pesticides and fertilizers may be on the pine cones, especially ones found in residential areas.

Block or Injure Internal Passageways

Pinecones are hard, which means many dogs will swallow big pieces whole causing internal blockages.

Gastrointestinal Issues

Many dogs suffer gastrointestinal issues after consuming pine cones. Vomiting and loss of appetite are the most common ailments. Disruption to a dog’s bowels leading to either constipation or diarrhea is also possible.

Intestinal Injuries

A puppy’s intestines are not developed enough to digest large pieces of pine cones. Puppies are also more susceptible to intestinal blockages because their intestines aren’t big enough.

Why Dogs Like Pine Cones

It is not uncommon for dogs to be attracted to pine cones and other natural objects, as they are often curious and enjoy exploring their surroundings. Pine cones may be particularly appealing to dogs due to their smell and texture. Many dogs have a keen sense of smell and may be drawn to the scent of the pine tree, which can be present in the pine cone. The texture of pine cones can also be interesting to dogs, as they may enjoy chewing on them or playing with them.

It is important to keep in mind that, while pine cones may not be toxic to dogs, they can still be harmful if ingested. As mentioned earlier, a large pine cone could potentially cause an intestinal blockage, which can be a serious condition that requires immediate medical attention. If you notice your dog chewing on or playing with pine cones, it may be a good idea to intervene and provide them with a safer toy or chew. This will help to keep your dog safe and healthy while still allowing them to enjoy their natural curiosity and playfulness.

What To Do If Your Dog Eats a Pine Cone

If you suspect that your dog has ingested a pine cone or any other foreign object, it is important to seek veterinary care as soon as possible. The following steps can help you to manage the situation until you are able to get your dog to the vet:

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Stay Calm

It can be difficult to see your dog in distress but try to remain calm and take slow, steady breaths to help you stay focused.

Remove the Pine Cone Pieces from the Mouth

If you can see the pine cone or other object in your dog’s mouth, gently try to remove it using a pair of tongs or a cloth. Be careful not to push the object further down the throat.

Observe Your Dog’s Behavior

Keep an eye on your dog for any signs of distress, such as vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, or lethargy. These can be signs of an intestinal blockage.

Contact Your Veterinarian

If you are unable to remove the object or if your dog is showing any signs of distress, call your veterinarian immediately. They will be able to advise you on the best course of action and may ask you to bring your dog in for treatment.

Follow Your Veterinarian’s Instructions

If your veterinarian advises you to bring your dog in for treatment, do so as soon as possible. The sooner you can get your dog to the vet, the better the chances of a successful outcome.

It is important to seek medical attention for your dog if you suspect that they have ingested a foreign object, as an intestinal blockage can be a serious condition that requires immediate treatment. With prompt medical care, your dog has a good chance of making a full recovery.

How to Stop Dog from Eating Pine Cones

It’s a good idea to prevent your dog from eating pine cones. The following tips can help you do that.

  • Keep an eye on your dog. When you are outside with your dog, be sure to keep an eye on their activities. This will help you to intervene if you see them trying to chew on or swallow any foreign objects.
  • Provide plenty of toys and chews. One way to prevent your dog from chewing on pine cones or other objects is to make sure they have plenty of safe and appropriate toys and chews to play with. This will give them something to focus on and may help to distract them from chewing on inappropriate objects.
  • Use a leash. If you are concerned about your dog eating pine cones or other objects when you are not around, you may want to consider using a leash to keep them close to you. This will help you to keep a closer eye on your dog and intervene if necessary.
  • Supervise your dog in areas where there are pine cones. If you know that your dog is particularly attracted to pine cones, you may want to avoid taking them to areas where there are a lot of pine cones or be sure to closely supervise them when you are there.
  • Train your dog to leave it. Teaching your dog the “leave it” command can be useful in helping them to learn to ignore potentially harmful objects. To teach this command, hold a treat in your hand and say “leave it” when your dog tries to take it. When they stop trying to take the treat, reward them with a different treat. With practice, your dog should learn to leave objects alone when you give the “leave it” command.
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Are Pine Cones Poisonous to Dogs?

No, pine cones are not poisonous. They do not contain a poisonous substance. There is no such thing as pine cone poisoning. A small bit of pine cone will likely not hurt a dog, but eating a whole one or even more, could cause a lot of problems. Allergic reactions to pine may warrant an emergency vet visit. Be sure to call your veterinarian right away if you notice:

– Walking Difficulty
– Trouble Breathing
– Swelling

While pine cone poisoning may not be a thing, there are many other issues that could arise. Never hesitate to contact your vet if you suspect there may be a problem.

Can Pine Cones Kill Dogs?

The answer to can pine cones kills dogs is yes and no. Pine cones indirectly kill dogs. If a piece of pine cone causes tears or blockages in the intestines and surgery isn’t performed quickly, it is possible that a dog can die. This is true of anything that can cause damage to the intestines, including sticks.

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27 thoughts on “Can Dogs Chew on Pine Cones”

  1. As a dog owner, this was a very informative read! I wasn’t aware of the danger in pinecones at all.Thanks for the article

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    • Of course Hanna! I didn’t know about it until I researched it. No more pinecones for my pups!

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  2. definitely useful to know for those who have dogs or plan to … (i know my kids would love that!).. and given we live in an area where pine trees and hence pine cones abound, something to keep in mind

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    • Yes! Feel free to share the knowledge or the post. It definitely can save pups a lot of discomfort as well as their owners.

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  3. When we owned dogs, it was a constant battle to keep them out of trouble. We never knew what they might get their teeth into. Thanks for the info about pine cones.

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  4. I’d definitely recommend the toy version instead. Pine cones can be dangerous for our doggie friends…

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    • It’s crazy how there are so many dangers! I’m hoping to get the word about as many possible to save our doggies and well hearts and pockets!

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  5. This is interesting! I know someone who had a dog and went into surgery to get it out. Great tips!

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    • Oh wow! I’m so sorry to hear that, but you are a testament to the dangers of it. Thanks so much for sharing.

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    • YAY Beth! That’s so exciting. Please come back and let us know how it’s going. We also have a FREE Dog Ownership Guiide you can download. You can gain access by going here: dogownershipguide.com/free-dog-ownership-guide

      Reply
  6. I can see how it would be unsafe for dogs to play with pinecones. It is good to know so that you don’t run into health issues.

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  7. Thank God I read this post. I will be cautious in having my Chihuahua play with pine cones. Thanks! I appreciate it.

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    • Well, if you ever do have a dog that does, you will now know it’s a no-no. Thanks for being part of our community!

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  8. This is good information to know. For some weird reason, my dog, Henry, wants to eat every pine needle he sees. He tries to be a forest Roomba when he goes for a walk. I’m not sure what this is about? But I’ve always kept him focused on the task of walking and the new sniffs. I’m glad to know that I’m doing the right thing and not punishing him. Maybe it’s a game to him to see if I’ll catch him. Great article! I’ll share it with my dog friends.

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    • Hi Terri! Thank you so much for your comment. Henry sounds like a lot of fun and a handful when walking. Him and our pitbull would have a blast! I had to laugh at “forest Roomba”. 😂 I see our site is tailwagwisdom.com. I’m checking it out now. ALways happy to meet other dog lovers online. Thanks again for commenting!!!

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  9. I have a golden retriever who literally picks up everything during our walks so I have to be extremely careful and alert about what she has in her mouth at all times. I could turn away for a second and find her chewing on some random object. I usually let her chew on the leaves and soft sticks she picks up but after reading this will be more careful, especially about pinecones.

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  10. What a great blog to read. It’s so helpful! Thanks for making this wonderful topic.

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  11. I had no idea. It’s super important to get educated on these types of things when you’re a pet owner!

    Reply

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