Can Dogs Eat Olives? A Comprehensive Guide

Dogs are known for their love of food, but can they eat olives? Find out the answer and get tips for feeding your furry friend this tasty treat.
Can Dogs Eat olives?

The short answer is yes, dogs can eat olives in moderation. However, it's important to keep in mind that olives are high in salt and fat, which can be harmful to dogs in large quantities. As with any new food, it's always best to consult with your veterinarian before giving olives to your dog.

Brief overview of olives

Olives are the small, oval-shaped fruits of the olive tree, and they are a popular staple in Mediterranean cuisine. They are typically high in healthy fats, antioxidants, and other nutrients. However, their nutritional content may not be ideal for all animals, including dogs.

Importance of a balanced diet for dogs

Just like humans, dogs require a well-balanced diet to maintain their overall health and well-being. It is crucial to give dogs food that is specifically tailored for them, with the right balance of proteins, fats, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals.

Nutritional content of olives

Olives are known for their healthy monounsaturated fats and antioxidant content. They also contain vitamins A, E, and K, and several minerals like potassium and calcium. While these nutrients can have health benefits for humans, they may not translate the same way for our canine companions.

Potential benefits of olives for dogs

In small amounts, the antioxidants and healthy fats in olives could potentially provide some minor health benefits for dogs, such as supporting their immune system and promoting a healthy coat.

Risks associated with olives for dogs

High salt content

Most olives, especially those sold as snacks or in jars, are preserved in a salty brine solution. Consuming large amounts of salt can cause dehydration, high blood pressure, and even kidney damage in dogs.

High fat content

Though the fats in olives are considered healthy for humans, they can be harmful to dogs in large quantities. High-fat foods can contribute to obesity and pancreatitis in dogs.

Stomach upset and diarrhea

As with any new food, some dogs may experience stomach upset or diarrhea after consuming olives.

Olive Pits: A Hazard for Dogs

Choking hazard

Olives with pits should never be given to dogs. The pits are a choking hazard and can easily become lodged in a dog's throat, causing breathing difficulties or even death.

Intestinal blockage

If swallowed, olive pits can also cause dangerous intestinal blockages, necessitating potentially life-saving surgery.

Safe ways to serve olives to dogs

Before giving your dog olives, remove the pits and ensure that they are plain and unsalted.

Serving Size and Frequency

Moderation as the key

When it comes to feeding your dog olives, moderation is crucial. A good rule of thumb is to limit treats, including olives, and use plain, unsalted options.

Recommendations for treating dogs with olives

If you decide to give your dog olives, make sure to limit the amount and frequency. A couple of olives as an occasional treat should be sufficient.

Healthier Alternatives to Olives for Dogs

Fruits and vegetables safe for dogs


Apples are a nutritious and low-calorie treat option for dogs, providing fiber, vitamins, and antioxidants.

Sweet potatoes

Cooked sweet potatoes are another healthy treat for dogs, packed with fiber, vitamins, and minerals.


Carrots are a low-calorie and nutrient-rich option that can also help clean your dog's teeth when given raw.

Homemade dog treats

Oats, pumpkin, and peanut butter treats

Making your own dog treats using wholesome ingredients like oats, pumpkin, and peanut butter can ensure that your dog is getting a nutritious and tasty snack.

Healthy dog biscuits

Creating homemade dog biscuits using dog-safe ingredients allows you to control the quality of the treats you give your dog.

Consult Your Veterinarian

Importance of checking with your vet

Before introducing any new treats or foods to your dog's diet, it's essential to consult with your veterinarian to ensure they are safe and appropriate for your dog's specific needs.

Tailoring treats to your dog's specific needs

Each dog is unique, and your veterinarian can help determine the best treats and dietary options based on your dog's age, size, breed, and health.


Plain and unsalted olives can be a safe occasional treat for dogs, but they do not add nutritional value for them. There are healthier options available, such as apples, sweet potatoes, and homemade treats. Always check with your veterinarian before giving your dog any new treats and remember: moderation is key.

Medically Reviewed by Ivana Crnec, DVM

Ivana is a DVM with a specialty in domestic carnivores – dogs & cats. She is passionate about educating pet owners and raising awareness about pet health.

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