Are Dogs or Cats Poisoned by Acorns?

Are Dogs or Cats Poisoned by Acorns? Oak trees can be either acorns or oak trees. If you give dogs a lot of high-quality food, they can die. Your pet can have kidney failure or a hard stomach. More severe results in death.Let’s find out more with
The maturation of an acorn crop is a cyclical process that takes place every three to five years on average. The development of an acorn from a white oak takes around a year, whereas the development of an acorn from a red oak takes two seasons. You may have noticed that there are a greater number of dropping acorns from oak trees than normal this year.
This is the situation since 2021 is a “mast year,” which is a time when the trees have produced a substantial amount of nuts. The term “mast” is an archaic term that may be used to refer to a wide variety of tree nuts, including but not limited to acorns, beechnuts, butternuts, and walnuts.
As a result of this, a lot of people who own dogs and cats are worrying about whether or not their pets should be near all of these acorns. For instance, you could be wondering whether or not acorns contain any toxicity. Do you think a dog or a cat would eat it? What should you do if you discover that your pet has eaten a nut? Let’s get started by answering each and every one of these questions below!

Are Acorns Poisonous to Dogs or Cats?


A large amount of acorns, which come from oak trees, should not be ingested by your dog or cat since they pose a health risk. It is possible for domesticated animals to have severe abdominal pain, renal failure, and even death if they ingest an excessive number of acorns. However, due to the fact that dogs and cats do not consume nearly as many acorns as grazing animals do, this condition is far less frequent in canine and feline species. It has been shown that grazing animals, such as cows and horses, suffer from kidney injury.

Aside from acorns, there are a few other kinds of nuts that are completely hazardous for canines and felines to consume. Nuts such as peanuts, pistachios, macadamia nuts, pecans, Brazil nuts, and hazelnuts are included in this category.

Why Do Acorns Hurt Cats And Dogs?


Tannins, a kind of chemical compound that is created when phenolic acids are broken down, are the primary toxin that may be ingested by eating acorns. When oak leaves and acorns are just about ready to mature, they have a high concentration of tannins, which are plant-based micronutrients that repel herbivores. These tannins also protect the oak from being consumed by other animals. However, when the acorns mature, the quantities of tannin decrease, which results in a lesser danger of poisoning from eating acorns.

Tannins are known to irritate the digestive system of animals, which may result in symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach discomfort after simply a single encounter. Tannins interact with minerals, proteins, and carbohydrates by binding to them in the same way as they bind to cellulose. After going through the binding process, the molecules that are produced are both insoluble and resistant to being broken down. Tannins are resistant to drying out and freezing due to the binding process, which is why oak leaves and acorns remain hazardous long after the autumn season has ended.

Gallotannin ingested by your dog or cat can cause them to become lethargic, uncomfortable, throw up, and have diarrhea. is the ingredient that may be found in acorns. In addition, if your pet consumes an excessive amount of acorns, it may cause damage to both its liver and kidneys. Because the buds and young green acorns have the highest levels of tannin, consuming any of them will put your pet in the most risky position.

Choking Hazard

Additionally, acorns have the potential to obstruct the digestive system of your cat. Because of this, there is a chance that your pet may deteriorate rapidly. On very rare circumstances, this may be lethal. To get ill from eating acorns, a dog that is medium to big in size would have to consume pounds worth of the nuts. If they swallow the nut in its whole, they put themselves in the most dangerous situation. A substantial risk of choking exists with acorns due to the fact that their dimensions are perfect for entering and being trapped in the airway. Even a single nut has the potential to cause obstruction in your pet’s intestines or esophagus if it becomes lodged there.


Molds that grow on acorns after they have been left to sit for a significant amount of time are another potential cause of poisoning. A good number of these molds produce mycotoxins that cause tremors , which might result in convulsions, some of which can be very dangerous or even deadly. As a consequence of this, you need to exercise extreme care and keep your pet away from any water sources that contain oak leaves or acorns.

Signs Your Pet Is Sick From Acorns

There is a possibility that pets may exhibit symptoms of illness within hours of consuming the substance. After eating acorns, the stomach, kidneys, and liver are the organs that are most likely to get poisoned, with research indicating that over 75 percent of cats and dogs develop signs of poisoning as a result of this action.

Ingestion of oak leaves or acorns may cause a variety of symptoms in your cat or dog, including drooling, vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and discomfort in the digestive tract. The intensity of the symptoms is proportional to both the amount of acorns that are ingested and the number of times that this happens.

Among the most common symptoms of acorn poisoning are:

  • Anorexia
  • An excessive need for water and a state of dehydration
  • Abdominal discomfort
  • Urinary urges that are very frequent
  • Followed by bloody diarrhea Constipation followed by bloody diarrhea
  • Vomiting

Will Dogs Or Cats Eat Acorns?

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During the fall and winter months, the ground covered with acorns may be a very breathtaking sight. Leaves, twigs, and nuts are consumed by dogs, cats, and other domesticated animals for a variety of reasons, including to relieve boredom, anxiety, nutritional deficits, and medical issues. Dogs are naturally curious animals that like using their noses and mouths to sniff out and learn more about their surroundings. They are willing to consume practically anything, even acorns, if given the chance to do so.

What To Do If Your Dog Or Cat Has Ingested Acorns

It’s possible that bigger breeds can tolerate a little bit of stomach discomfort, but smaller breeds probably can’t. If you respond early enough, your pet will not suffer any long-term health effects from being poisoned by acorns. If your dog is exhibiting symptoms of acorn poisoning, you should take it to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Tannins come in a wide variety of forms, and each one may have a unique effect on the health of your dog or cat. The severity of the effects of acorn poisoning on your pet is directly related to its size.

Your best bet in preventing your dogs from being poisoned by acorns is to train them not to give in to the urge to chew on certain things, such as furniture or shoes. The most effective method to prevent your dog from eating acorns is to teach it to “let go” or “drop it” when presented with an opportunity to do so. It is extremely important to learn dogs to follow this instruction, and it is not difficult to do so. However, it may be challenging to train a young dog or a cat that enjoys eating acorns.

Avoidance is, and will always be, the most effective form of prevention. It’s possible that the option that’ll save you the most time and effort is the one in which you clear common areas of acorns and other potentially hazardous debris.

Acorns can affect the health of your pet or cat. Therefore, you need to keep your pet away from this fruit.

Michael Hogan

San Gabriel Valley California Bird Seed Delivery. Huge selection of Pet and Wild Seed & Food. Free delivery. Pick up option also avaulable.

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