Can Dogs Eat Bread? And Should They?
They droll, put a paw on your leg, and stare at you with puppy eyes. When pooches beg for something, it’s hard to say no. But before you share your bread with your pup, you might want to know, can dogs eat bread? Generally yes. Plain bread is safe for dogs. But some bread has ingredients that dogs shouldn’t eat. And sometimes bread can be dangerous for them. Find out more about feeding bread to your dog.
Is Bread Safe for Dogs?
Dogs have lived close to humans for around 15,000 years. In the meantime, they’ve become scavenger carnivores. They can survive on whatever food they find. As well as meat and bones, they can eat vegetables, fruits, and grains. Dogs have digestive systems that can handle carbohydrates. This means most dogs can eat bread.
But many dogs are allergic to wheat. In fact, beef, dairy products, and wheat make up about two-thirds of all allergies in dogs. Wheat intolerance can cause skin reactions. If you’ve fed your dog bread and noticed excessive scratching, speak to your vet. They may suggest eliminating wheat from your dog’s diet to see if he is allergic to it.
The Kinds of Bread Dogs Can and Can’t Eat
You can give your pooch white or whole wheat bread. But don’t give him bread that has raisins, nuts, or chocolate. Also, the bread shouldn’t have any other ingredients your dog shouldn’t eat. These include:
- Anything your dog is allergic to
So, read the label before you give your dog pre-packaged bread.
If you make bread from scratch, don’t let your dog near the bread dough. Uncooked bread is a hazard for dogs. It can even lead to death. The dough expands in the dog’s stomach. This can cause bloating and difficulty breathing. At the same time, the alcohol from yeast fermentation can make your dog drunk.
Alcohol intoxication in dogs can lead to coma, seizures, and even death. Some of the signs of alcohol poisoning in dogs are:
- Unsteady gait
If you think your dog has eaten raw dough or batter, contact a vet immediately.
As well as having no toxic ingredients, the bread should be neither too fresh nor too stale. If the bread is too fresh, it can cause bloating, gas, and upset stomach.
Stale bread can have mold growing on it. Moldy bread is poisoning to dogs. Signs that your dog has eaten moldy bread include:
- Excessive drooling
- High body temperature
- Lack of coordination
If you notice any of these signs, speak to the vet.
Though no responsible pet parent would feed their dog moldy foods, dogs have their way of finding unsightly treats. To prevent this, make sure your dog can never reach your trash can. Also, when you go to the park, keep him from scavenging. People like to feed bread to pigeons, ducks, and other birds, so your pooch may come across moldy bread while on his walk.
Bread as a Treat or as Filler Food
It’s fine for dogs to eat bread. But it shouldn’t be a staple of their diet. Your dog already gets all the protein and nutrients he needs from his dog formula.
Compared to dog food, bread is a poor source of protein. And it’s high in carbohydrates. The body breaks down carbs into glucose. Raised blood sugar levels can lead to diabetes and obesity.
So, you can feed your dog bread occasionally, as a treat. Try to avoid processed white bread. It’s poor in nutrients and high in sugar. Choose whole-grain varieties instead. These are rich in fibers. Fibers are good for your pup’s gut health. They also regulate blood sugar level.
As well as a treat, you can use bread as a filler food until you find a better formula. Let’s say your big boy is always hungry lately. You watch him wolf down his meal and beg for a refill. Giving him some bread before his meal can fill his belly. In fact, that’s what some pet food manufacturers do. They use wheat as a filler ingredient in dry dog food.
Can Dogs Eat Bread for Upset Stomach?
In some cases, bread is good for a dog’s upset stomach. Many things can cause upset stomach in dogs. They might have swallowed something sharp, like bone shards or skewers. They might have eaten a length of string or something else they shouldn’t have. Or their meal didn’t agree with them.
If your dog has an upset stomach, bread may help. Once in the stomach, the bread traps whatever object the dog has eaten. It then makes it easier for your pup to pass it through their gut. Of course, if you notice your pooch is unwell, call the vet.
Being a Responsible Dog Parent
Knowing what to feed your dog is an essential part of being a responsible pet parent. Now that you know the answer to the question “Can dogs eat bread?” you can make a wise decision. Generally, plain bread is safe for most dogs. If they show a fondness for it, you can give them bread as a treat. But dogs that are allergic to wheat shouldn’t eat bread. And neither should obese dogs, because bread is rich in carbs. Finally, if you think your dog might have a wheat allergy, talk to your vet. And to have peace of mind that you’re prepared for any vet emergency, get a free pet insurance quote today.