Cactus is not among the plants that dogs eat. However, there is a chance that your pooch will find a way to get to the cactus you have in your home. In that case you need to know the answer to the question of whether dogs can eat cactus.
The short answer is even though cactus is not poisonous to dogs. However, the spikes can cause a choking hazard other health issues and that is why you should make it impossible for you to reach cactus. So, we can briefly say that dogs should never get close to cactus.
In this article, we will talk about the effects of cactus in dogs. To do that, let’s talk a little bit about the origin of cactus and give further information.
Origin of Cactus
Even though there is a common misunderstanding that cactus is only found in dessert. Cacti are native to the Americas, ranging from Patagonia in the south to parts of western Canada in the north—except for Rhipsalis baccifera, which also grows in Africa and Sri Lanka.
As you already probably know, its spike makes it not edible, at least without some preparation. The plant has its spikes for that purpose, to make it defendable against animals. If you wan to eat a cactus, you need to make some preparations including cooking.
As for the taste, we should mention that even though most cacti are not poisonous to dogs, they can taste very bad. So, you need to chose the cactus you want to eat very carefully.
Now that we gave some information about cacti, let’s talk a little bit about their effects on dogs.
So, Can Dogs Eat Cactus?
As we already mentioned in our short answer, cactus is not poisonous to dogs. However, it can cause some health concerns for your loyal companion. The main reason for that is that, as you already know, cacti have spikes.
So, it is not a good idea to keep them near our dogs. Because most dogs are very curious and they poke their nose into everything. So, when our dogs do that the spikes of the cactus can get into their skin.
Other than that, even though dogs don’t often eat cacti, you’ll never know what our loyal companions will binge into since they have a horrendous appetite. And the self-defence method of a cactus is not poison but spikes instead.
As a responsible parent of your pet, you need to protect your pup at all times and keep him away from any potential danger that can lead to serious health issues. That is the reason why you should never keep cactus near to your pooch.
And the fact that the cactus that in your house doesn’t have spikes doesn’t make it less dangerous. Because cactus plants are made of a fibrous material that can cause all sorts of issues such as skin irritation, nausea and stomach pain.
Now that we made it clear you should never let your pooch get near the cactus, let’s talk about the case when your pooch accidentally eats cactus.
What to Do When Your Dog Eat Cactus?
As we mentioned above, the first thing you need to do to keep your dog away from the cacti in your home. However, if your dog manages to eat cacti by any chance, there are somethings you need to do immediately to prevent further damage.
First of all, let’s separate the cacti in two different categories, the ones that have spikes and the ones that don’t have spikes.
If your pooch has eaten a cactus that doesn’t have spikes, you should know that there is nothing to worry about unless the system of your pooch has a reaction to cactus. These reactions can include skin irritation, vomiting etc. If you see those reactions, you should call your vet immediately.
Then, there is the cacti that has spikes which are much more harmful to dogs. Because when your pooch eat a cactus with spikes on it, there are some significant health issues that can happen such as choking etc. So, regardless of the fact that your pooch has some immediate reactions, you definitely have to call the vet without wasting any time.
In case your pooch had a physical contact with the cactus instead of eating it, it is a good idea to call your vet since it can have some damage on your dog’s skin. If it is possible, it might better to remove those spikes by yourself if you’re confident that you can do it.
Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Cactus?
In this article, we talked about the cactus and its difference effects on dogs. First of all, you should be relieved because dogs don’t eat cacti normally. So, there is a very little chance that your pooch will get near cactus by himself.
However, in case he does, cacti can be dangerous for dogs because they have spikes that can be harmful to dogs. Other than that, even if the cactus that your pooch eats doesn’t have spikes, it can be harmful to dogs since they are made of a fibrous material that can be harmful to them.
Another way a cactus can be harmful to dogs is that there is a chance that your pooch might step on it. So, the spikes can get into the skin and can be dangerous. In both cases it is a good idea to call your vet immediately to prevent further damages.