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5 Dog-Friendly Alternatives to Peanut Butter

5 Dog-Friendly Alternatives to Peanut Butter

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When shared in small, moderate doses peanut can be a nice treat for you and your dog, but not everyone can eat peanuts and they’re banned from 90% of anywhere these days.

Luckily, there are a few dog friendly alternatives to peanut butter that you can share.

peanut butter alternatives

Kol’s Note: Nuts can be dangerous for dogs.

The truth is that all nut and seed butter, even peanut butter,  poses a risk to your pet’s health if they are given too much or too often.

Nuts and seeds are high in fats and calories. Nut butters are meant to be a very small part of your dog’s diet – a treat only!

For example, our peanut & pumpkin dog treats have just over 1/2 tsp. (0.66 tsp, to be exact) of peanut butter per cookie. That’s around 24 calories and almost 2 grams of fat before you add a single other ingredient. When a treat packs that kind of nutritional punch your dog should only be having one, no matter how much they beg. All good things – in moderation.

There are things you can do to make peanut butter and other nut butters a safer choice for your dog.

Choose a Sugar-Free Unsweetened Peanut Butter

Many peanut and nut butters on the market have a ton of sugar, corn syrup or other sweeteners in them. You want to avoid adding any extra calories, so choose a nut butter with no added sugar or sweetener.

Dogs don't need added salt in their peanut butter

For humans, a touch of salt can really bring that peanut flavour alive on your tongue; for dogs, they already thing peanut butter is glorious even without the salt. Since it's used primarily as a flavour enhancer, salt is an unnecessary ingredient in peanut butter for dogs.

The perfect product contains a single ingredient.

There's no need for it to be complicated! The best peanut butter only has peanuts in it. The best sunbutter? Sunflower seeds. The less ingredients - the better.

Be cautious – I only use nut butter and never whole nuts, as whole nuts pose a choking and intestinal blockage risk, plus, they’re tough for dogs to digest.

If your dog is prone to upset stomach, give them a small taste of nut butter and then monitor to see how they handle it, there’s no need to risk them getting sick just for a snack.

Dogs with pancreatitis or other conditions requiring a low-fat diet should not eat nut or seed butters.

All that being said, dogs love peanut butter. 

100 calories | 8 g. fat per tbsp.

It’s one of those few things that drives them absolutely wild. No matter what I’m asking of them, be it to sit still while I clip nails or to not act like a jerk in the tub, they will do almost anything for a taste of the good stuff.

The only problem? Not everyone can have peanut butter and there are a whole lot of places that you can’t take peanut butter. For example, I would never take peanut butter to a kid’s park or a school.

So whether you’re trying to avoid peanut or just expand yours and your dogs foodie tastes, here are a few dog friendly alternatives to peanut butter that you can safely share with your pups.

All of these options have similar calories and fat content to peanut butter and should be fed with the same level of caution as peanut butter.

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5 Dog-Friendly Alternatives to Peanut Butter


Has your dog ever had a butter other than peanut butter?

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Mary-Kay Perris

Monday 30th of September 2019

My dog loves almond butter. Today I switched to sunflower seed butter to see how she likes it. I am always concerned about afflatoxins on nuts., Unfortunately you cannot see this mold.


Monday 10th of December 2018

My vet told me that dogs should NEVER have Almonds. I'm not knocking your article at all and do appreciate the advice, however, you may want to research almonds


Monday 10th of December 2018

Your vet is ABSOLUTELY right that dogs should never have whole almonds - for a lot of reasons :) They're a choking hazard, swallowed whole they don't digest well, most whole almonds are heavily salted etc.

They aren't *toxic* however, so we do occasiobally use almond butter, BUT like any nut butter - peanut butter included - they should be fed cautiously and in moderation to avoid stomach upset and weight gain. The fat content between natural, unsweetened, unsalted peanut butter and natural, unsweetened, unsalted almost butter is quite similar.

Thanks so much for your comment! I hope I've clarified when and why I'll use almond butter. I would never share whole nuts - of any kind - with my dogs!

Mimi Takano

Wednesday 1st of April 2015

THANK YOU so much for this! I'm deathly allergic to peanut butter, but love making treats for my dogs and for friends' dogs and I'm always stumped because SO MANY homemade dog treats include peanut butter and I'm not sure what would be a great healthy alternative for the pups. :)


jacqueline kramer

Thursday 10th of October 2019

SAME! thats why looked this up


Tuesday 10th of June 2014

I love peanut butter! Unfortunately, the dogs never get pb as a treat. However, I may have to try some of those alternatives you mention or perhaps try making my own like Pamela. After all we do work at a wholesale nut warehouse!

By the way, I've always been wondering why it seems so many people are allergic to peanuts. I don't remember it being that way when I was younger.


Wednesday 4th of June 2014

I once stole half a stick of butter from the counter, but that would be my only other butter experience, and I must add, it wasn't a pleasant one.

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