Can Dogs Eat Chestnuts? Are Chestnuts Good For Dogs?

correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Yes dogs are allowed to eat chestnuts in moderation. As the nuts are packed full of fiber proteins vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids they are considered healthy for your dogs.

In this research you will know the answer to the query “Can Dogs Eat Chestnuts? Are Chestnuts Good For Dogs?“.

During autumn winter and the holiday season roasted chestnuts make a delicious snack for many people (and dogs). When you roast chestnuts in your fireplace your home fills with a warm comforting smell. I was wondering if water chestnuts were safe for dogs to eat since you were eating them. The short answer is yes.

Can Dogs Eat Chestnuts

Yes dogs are allowed to eat chestnuts in moderation. As the nuts are packed full of fiber proteins vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids they are considered healthy for your dogs. In order to prevent choking hazards or sodium ion poisoning in dogs however proper preparation is essential before consumption. 

Here we’ll discuss which types of chestnuts your dogs can eat and how to prepare them properly so everyone can enjoy them (including your furry family members). You should be careful with how much chestnuts you give your K9 friends because they may enjoy them a lot. Chestnuts that are bought from a store are usually drenched in salt for flavor.

Are Chestnuts good for dogs?

Dogs can benefit from chestnuts in small quantities. The chestnuts should not be precooked because they are precooked for humans and flavored with salt and sugar. 

Due to their high fiber content chestnuts can help keep your dogs digestive system in good working order and prevent diarrhea or constipation.

Chestnuts contain the following nutrients according to the US Department of Agriculture:  

  • 7.29 grams of Fiber.
  • 4.53 grams of Protein.
  • 3.15 grams of Fat.
  • 847 mg of Potassium.
  • 47.2 mg of Magnesium.
  • 41.5 mg of Calcium.
  • 37.2 mg of Vitamin C.
  • 2.86 mg of Sodium.
  • 1.3 mg of Iron.
  • 0.711 mg of Vitamin B-6.

Chestnuts as you can see are rich in potassium which helps improve brain and heart functions control nerve impulses and regulate muscular contractions. Low in fat those delicious Chestnuts can be given as a special treat to your pup without feeling guilty. 

The amount of Vitamin C is 37.2 mg. You read that right. Vitamin C is an antioxidant found only in chestnuts. If your old dog has joint pain vitamin C can reduce inflammation and slow down cognitive aging. 

Additionally it is packed with omega-3 fatty acids that can improve your dogs skin coat joints as well as boost his energy level. DHA or docosahexaenoic acid is one of the three main omega-3 fatty acids in chestnuts that helps maintain a dogs healthy eyes and brain. In dogs over the age of seven it can also slow down cognitive aging and improve chronic kidney disease.

Are Chestnuts bad for dogs?

Dogs are not supposed to eat chestnuts if they contain too much salt. Chestnuts purchased from a store are often flavored with salt or sugar in order to satisfy and please the human palate. 

When dogs eat chestnuts doused with sodium they become dehydrated from sodium ion poisoning. Symptoms include excessive thirst excessive urination diarrhea vomiting lethargy and even coma. 

Additionally eating too many chestnuts can cause gastrointestinal distress since chestnuts like cheese balls or cheese puffs contain starch that can be difficult to digest for dogs. If you feed your dog too much starch he may vomit have an upset stomach or have diarrhea. 

Too much starch can also lead to pancreatitis in the worst-case scenario. Once a week make sure your pup gets a small amount of chestnuts.  

Despite their small size chestnuts are potentially choking hazards for small to medium-sized dogs. Prepare these savory chestnuts properly and peel off the shell before you give them to your four-legged friends. 

If you are going to give them to your canine companions you should first cook them and break them up into small pieces. Raw chestnuts do not only pose a choking hazard but they are also hard to chew. Chestnuts may get stuck in your dogs throat stomach or even intestines if he swallows them whole. 

If your dog has negative reactions after eating chestnuts you should contact a veterinarian right away. A vet should also be contacted if your pets consume too many chestnuts or if they are experiencing digestive issues.

Chestnuts and Dogs

Chestnuts come in three varieties: Chestnuts Water Chestnuts and Horse Chestnuts. They all have their own characteristics.

Chestnuts are good for dogs when consumed in moderation as we discussed above. How about Horse Chestnuts and Water Chestnuts? Now lets talk about them in more detail.

Can dogs eat Water Chestnuts?

As long as they are fresh and not canned dogs can eat water chestnuts in moderation.

What are Water Chestnuts?

Maybe you’re wondering what the difference is between chestnuts and water chestnuts. Chestnuts and Water Chestnuts may share the name “Chestnut” but they are not related. Chestnuts and Water Chestnuts can not be substituted for each other.

The following are the differences between the two.

Chestnuts Water Chestnuts
-Are also known as tree chestnuts which is why they are considered nuts. -Arenot considered nuts; they are corms. 
-Grown in the US Asia and Europe. -Grown in Southeast Asia only. 
Encased in spikey capsules. -Grows underground and thrives in wetlands.
-Each shell contains 2 to 7 nuts. -The brown skin of Water Chestnuts is similar to that of Tree Chestnuts. 
-Inedible when the Chestnuts are raw. -A water chestnuts meat has an apple-like crispy texture. 
-Boiling or roasting in their shells makes them taste sweet.
-The meof chestnut trees has a meatier starchier texture. 

Since fresh chestnuts are hard to find you can usually find canned or jarred Water Chestnuts at your local grocery store. Canning Water Chestnuts however can be dangerous for dogs due to the high sodium levels they contain.

Salt is extremely corrosive for our canine friends. In fact they only need a small amount of salt in their daily diet: 0.25 grams to 1.5 grams of salt for every 100 grams of food. Sodium poisoning can result if they consume more salt than this.

As Water Chestnuts are also very starchy to our canine pups they may not even like the taste and will spit it out. You can offer a small amount or in moderation if your pooch enjoys Water Chestnuts.

You can give your pup an upset stomach if they eat a lot of water chestnuts.

How to prepare and feed your dog Chestnuts

You should not feed your dogs chestnuts as their main source of nutrition. Instead it should only be used as an occasional treat once a week. The amount of chestnuts should be determined by the size of your pooch. You can crumble small pieces of chestnuts over their meal as a topper if your dog loves it so much.

Chestnuts are best when they have been cooked or roasted and cooled down for a few minutes. Do not add any flavor and keep them plain. 

Chestnuts can be fed to your dog in the following ways: 

  1. Remove the hard skin from a roasted or cooked chestnut.
  2. Break the chestnut into small chunks if it crumbles easily.
  3. Alternatively you can use a knife to cut the Chestnut into smaller pieces.
  4. Offer your pup some chestnuts when he is ready to eat. 

You should avoid eating pre-cooked chestnuts as they are prepared for humans with added flavors such as salt and sugar. All chestnuts should be kept out of sight of your dog. Your pet companions cannot reach them if they are on a higher shelf or in the refrigerator. 

When you take your dog on a walk in the woods or near Chestnut trees make sure they do not eat or consume any Chestnut.


As long as Chestnuts are used once a week for occasional treats dogs can eat them. Dogs benefit from many minerals and nutrients found in chestnuts such as fiber protein vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids. These treats are also low in fat so they are ideal for dogs that are overweight.

Keep your canine friend away from raw chestnuts and make sure he does not accidently consume one while out walking. Before feeding your pup chestnuts always cook or roast them first and then break them into smaller pieces. 

When giving Chestnut for the first time to your furry friend make sure to give just a small amount and see how he or she reacts. In case of reactions like constipation or diarrhea you should not give them any more chestnuts. Go ahead and give your dogs a moderate amount of chestnuts if they are fine with them. 

Common Questions

Can dogs eat roasted Chestnuts?

Dogs can eat roasted chestnuts as long as they are plain without added flavors such as salt. Just make sure your dog eats them in moderation and in small quantities. 

Can dogs eat cooked Chestnuts?

The answer is yes they can eat cooked chestnuts. Ensure that you are cooking them yourself and that no additional flavors such as salt are added. When you cook the water chestnuts yourself you know exactly what is in your dogs food. 

Can dogs eat raw Chestnuts?

Dogs should never eat raw chestnuts because they contain a high level of tannic acid which can damage your dogs liver and kidneys. Symptoms of eating raw chestnuts include abdominal pain diarrhea lethargy and vomiting. There is also a hard outer shell on raw chestnuts. When dogs chew on them they can turn sharp and can cut their mouth tongue or throats.

Can dogs eat horse Chestnuts?

Definitely not dogs should not eat horse Chestnuts. Horse chestnuts contain a substance called aesculin which can cause disorientation gastrointestinal distress spasms and even death in dogs. Horse chestnut poisoning in dogs is characterized by excessive drooling diarrhea vomiting and paralysis. 

If you want to read more about dog food tips read here: Dog Food Tips and Tricks.

Can Dogs Eat Chestnuts? Are Chestnuts Good For Dogs? (Watch Video)

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