Do you let your dog eat peanut butter? If so, then you are in the majority of dog owners. And, if your dog is like most dogs, he goes nuts for peanut butter. Whether it’s inside a hollow bone or licked right off your finger, peanut butter seems to bring out the playful side of many canines.
It’s been known for some time that dogs have an innate attraction to peanut butter, and it’s not hard to understand why. It is one of the tastiest treats around, and even just a little can go a long way. However, while peanut butter can be a great training treat and practice to promote good behavior, it isn’t exactly the healthiest treat you could feed your dog.
Like humans and all other mammals, dogs need protein, vitamins, carbohydrates, and fats to lead a healthy life. The fact that dogs will eat just about anything that lands within their reach makes it crucial that you provide them with a balanced and healthy diet with treats that they can tolerate.
Can dogs eat peanut butter? What are the health benefits and risks of feeding your dog peanut butter? Is it a good dog treat? Keep reading to learn all of this and more!
What is Peanut Butter?
Peanut butter can be seen as one of the most popular nut butter and sandwich condiments or spreads across the globe! For many peanut butter lovers, you cannot beat the taste. And, the range of textures is perfect for anyone. There are options available for everyone to enjoy, from creamy peanut butter to chunky peanut butter. So, it’s no surprise that dogs and humans alike love peanut butter, especially the way it sticks to the roof of your mouth before it melts.
Of course, not everyone can enjoy the delicious peanut. Some people have a peanut allergy, and it can even be deadly for a small percentage of the population. But is peanut butter unhealthy for dogs? Let’s find out.
You probably have a jar of peanut butter in your pantry. If you do, now is the time to grab it and hold it up to the light so you can read its contents.
Like most people, you probably started eating peanut butter as a kid. It was good on toast and made sandwiches with jelly more fun. Later you realized that you could use peanut butter in recipes and special meals and that it had healthy fat.
Peanut butter is made from peanuts, obviously, but they are not mixed into the butter in their complete form. Instead, peanuts are roasted then ground until they turn into a paste.
However, this isn’t necessarily true for the commercial peanut butter brand (like Peter Pan). These more commercial, mass-produced peanut butter often include added products for shelf stability. And, they tend to have a handful of ingredients used to modify the taste of the peanut butter or its texture (like emulsifiers). These added ingredients include added sugars, trans fats, and heavily processed vegetable oils.
If sugar or heavily processed oils are added during the creation process, peanut butter will no longer be considered a healthy food for humans or dogs.
So when it comes to purchasing suitable peanut butter for you and your beloved four-legged friend, find an all-natural brand that boasts no added ingredients or emulsifiers. Instead, find a peanut butter that only includes peanuts (and maybe a little salt) on their ingredient list. And while this may take a little more time at the grocery store, it is worth it for your health and the health of your beloved pup.
Can Dogs Eat Peanut Butter? Yes, Dogs Can Eat Peanut Butter.
It’s a well-known fact that dogs eat peanut butter, but we’ve heard from several dog owners that their dogs seem to go crazy over this beloved human food. Don’t panic; you’re not alone. Most guardians give their beloved dogs peanut butter.
Is a PB&J sandwich a staple in your household? Your puppy may also appreciate the nutty flavor of peanut butter, and there are several reasons why you might give your dog peanut butter.
You may have heard rumors that dogs and peanut butter are not a good mix. While some dogs are allergic to peanut butter, the truth is most dogs are ok when they eat peanut butter.
So, when it comes to asking, “can dogs eat peanut butter?” the answer is almost always yes! Most peanut butter is safe for dogs to eat. This is great news for dog owners who like to use peanut butter to hide pills or just as a special treat from time to time. But, it’s essential to monitor the amount of peanut butter your dog ingests.
Remember, moderation is almost always crucial for feeding your pup treats from your plate. Generally speaking, peanut butter is not unhealthy for dogs, but some peanut butter is healthier than others.
Smooth peanut butter can help entertain your dog if you spread a spoonful or two inside hollow bones or toys. It can even be used as a tasty supplement to medications that many dogs find hard to swallow.
But before you share this tasty treat with your pup, there are some essential things you need to know about peanut butter for dogs.
Can Dogs Eat Peanut Butter? Health Benefits.
As a whole, peanut butter can be an excellent source of protein and healthy fats for your dog. Plus, the beloved peanut butter can often provide additional vitamins to you and your pup (B-complex, E, and niacin/B3, to be exact).
Vitamin B3, also called niacin, is an essential vitamin for pets. Dogs, like humans, need niacin to function correctly. Many types of meat and vegetables contain a significant amount of niacin. However, organ meats are the richest sources of niacin for pets, and the liver is the richest organ meat source of niacin.
Niacin helps pets break down fats and sugars into usable energy. Niacin also helps dogs metabolize proteins and carbohydrates. In addition, the body needs niacin to produce antidiuretic hormones which help the kidneys absorb water in the body.
The body also needs niacin to make corticotrophins which help dogs deal with stress. The term “vitamin B complex” refers to all the vitamins under the vitamin B category. These include B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B7, B9, and B12. These vitamins are essential for proper dog health because they aid in everything from growth, development, metabolism, and even skin and coat health.
And finally, vitamin E is an antioxidant that can help defend the body against free radicals. Generally, the primary sources of vitamin E for dogs are fish oil, corn oil, and safflower oil. That’s why you will often find high levels of vitamin E in puppy food-they need it as they grow to support brain and muscle development. A diet rich in vitamin E may also help with dry skin, dermatitis, and eczema.
Peanut butter also contains healthy fats and fiber, which help support skin and coat health and can be helpful in older dogs who may have digestive issues.
Fiber is a type of carbohydrate (though it’s not digestible by dogs, so it doesn’t impact blood sugar the way other carbohydrates do). It comes only from plant-based ingredients, such as grains, legumes, fruits, and vegetables.
When it comes to fiber and most other ingredients, looking for whole sources, such as whole fruits and vegetables, is the best option. But if fiber is so important, why don’t many dog owners know more about it? They certainly should, as it has several benefits.
The two types of fiber-soluble and insoluble-offer unique benefits. While soluble fiber creates gases through fermentation, insoluble fiber absorbs water as it moves through your beloved dog’s digestive tract. In addition, insoluble fiber is inherently metabolically inert. And, it’s important to note that most of the fiber found in peanut butter is insoluble.
Unsalted peanut butter is considered the healthiest choice as it contains no added sodium. However, it’s also important to note that most dogs have a naturally low thirst drive, and because of this, they must consume a lot of water when fed salty foods like salted peanut butter.
Dog-specific peanut butter can be quite expensive but is often worth the cost. This high cost is because it typically contains fewer additives simple ingredients and costs less than many other foods containing similar ingredients.
Can Dogs Eat Peanut Butter? Health Risks.
Dogs are scavengers by nature, and they will eat almost anything they find. Sometimes, these foods can be harmful to a dog’s health. For example, peanut butter can become stuck in the esophagus and is one of the leading causes of dysfunction for dogs.
The plain peanut butter you buy at the grocery store can be safe for dogs to eat, but many popular brands contain ingredients that can cause problems in pets.
Hydrogenated oils and trans fats are two common ingredients in peanut butter that can be harmful to dogs, according to the American Kennel Club (AKC). These unhealthy fats are often added to peanut butter to help extend its shelf life.
The salt content of peanut butter can also be a problem for some dogs. This high salt level can result in excess sodium intake, contributing to the onset of health problems such as congestive heart failure (CHF).
If your dog has a history of pancreatitis or other digestive issues, you should get support before giving her peanut butter. In addition to the fat content, peanut butter also contains a lot of sugar and salt, so it’s not the best choice for dogs with diabetes or heart disease.
Xylitol is a sweetener commonly found in candy, gum, and toothpaste products. It’s perfectly safe for humans to consume xylitol (in fact, it may even have health benefits), but it’s highly toxic to dogs. Small amounts can causehypoglycemia (low blood sugar), seizures, liver failure, or even death in dogs. So if your dog eats anything with xylitol in it, it’s essential to get support right away.
If you are going to give your dog peanut butter as a treat, check the ingredients to make sure it doesn’t contain xylitol. Dogs who ingest xylitol may have symptoms that include vomiting, decreased activity, weakness, staggering, and difficulty walking or standing.
While peanuts are high in protein and healthy fats, they are also high in calories. Therefore, feeding your dog too much peanut butter can cause them to gain weight and become obese. Like people, dogs who carry extra pounds have a higher risk of developing health problems such as diabetes and arthritis.
One of the most significant issues with peanut butter is the risk of choking. For example, if you give your dog a large spoonful of peanut butter and it’s too large to swallow easily, your dog can choke. The way to prevent this from happening is to give your dog small amounts at a time or only use peanut butter in treats that are the appropriate size for your dog’s age and breed.
Feeding your dog too much peanut butter can lead to obesity and pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas). Pancreatitis can cause abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea in dogs. Additionally, if you feed your dog large amounts of peanut butter every day, you may end up with a picky eater who refuses to eat anything else. Instead of providing your dog large amounts of peanut butter daily, consider using small amounts as a way to introduce other dog-appropriate foods.
Dogs and humans have very different digestive systems, and while peanut butter is generally safe for dogs to eat, it can cause some stomach upset. Dogs generally do not need to eat peanut butter, as it is high in calories, and most dogs are already eating a well-balanced diet. However, if your dog does eat peanut butter, be sure to monitor him carefully for any signs that he may be having difficulty digesting the food.
How to Add Peanut Butter to a Dog’s Diet
A small amount of peanut butter can be a healthy treat for your pup. But before you give this tasty treat to your dog, make sure it is safe and that you follow these tips.
Use low or no salt peanut butter to guarantee the treat remains healthy for your dog. And remember, you must make sure to check the peanut butter label. If the peanut butter includes xylitol, do not feed it to your dog.
If you have the time, you can make your peanut butter. By doing this, you will know precisely what is in the product, and you won’t have to worry about sodium content or xylitol.
The best way to give your dog peanut butter is inside a hollow toy explicitly made for this purpose. If you choose to use something like a Kong to serve the peanut butter, freeze the toy before giving it to your dog so that the peanut butter hardens inside. You can also spread peanut butter on top of your dog’s food or mix it into the food itself as a tasty meal enhancement.
It’s generally easiest to feed your dog creamy peanut butter. However, if you choose to share chunky peanut butter with your pup, continually monitor while your dog is eating. You want to watch your dog to make sure they don’t choke on any small bits of peanuts.
How Much Peanut Butter for Dogs is Too Much?
If you have a peanut butter-loving puppy, you might be wondering how much of the stuff you can safely give them. After all, there are some foods dogs should never eat and those that are safe to feed in moderation only. And let’s face it: your dog would probably eat peanut butter every day if you let them!
Dogs tend to love the taste of peanut butter, and peanut butter is rich in natural fats and protein. But, dogs should not eat peanut butter every day. However, in moderation, it can be an excellent treat for your pup!
Too much of a good thing can lead to obesity and other health complications like pancreatitis. However, there are two things you can do to figure out how much peanut butter to feed your dog regularly.
The first and most reliable option is getting support and asking for help from an expert. For example, if your dog has food sensitivities or a history of diabetes, getting support is essential before feeding your pup peanut butter.
Another way to gauge how much peanut butter to give your dog you can use the 10% rule that most pet guardians use. With the 10% rule, generally, 10% of your dog’s diet should be treat based, with the rest being healthy foods for your dog.
To be clear, plain peanut butter with no xylitol or added salt is excellent for your dog as an occasional treat. But if you feed your pet too much of this delicious snack, he may end up with an upset stomach or other gastrointestinal issues.