Plain popcorn is a healthy, nutritious, and yummy treat for dogs. Feeding your pooch a couple of pieces of plain popcorn when you’re having a movie night at home is safe and will make your dog feel like part of the family.
Less is more is the rule you should follow when giving your dog popcorn. Let’s find out how much plain popcorn dogs can eat, how it will benefit their health, and what the risks of eating too much plain popcorn are.
Can Dogs Eat Plain Popcorn?
Yes, dogs can eat plain popcorn. It’s seasonings and flavorings that make popcorn dangerous for dogs.
Plain popcorn is simply popped corn. Corn is a grain that many veterinarians recommend for dogs because it has some good health benefits. The top benefits of corn are:
- It contains antioxidants
- It’s easily digested
- It’s a good source of protein
- It has essential fatty acids in it
- It’s not considered a ‘filler’ or ‘hot grain’
Is Plain Popcorn Bad For Dogs?
If a dog eats too much plain popcorn, it can be bad for them.
A dog that eats a lot of plain popcorn is likely to need to poop a lot. 1 oz of popcorn contains 3.6 g of fiber. Too much fiber in a dog’s diet will push things through its digestive tract too quickly. Diarrhea and stomach cramps are likely to occur because of this.
Is Plain Popcorn Good For Dogs?
It can be. As long as the amount of plain popcorn given to a dog is limited, it can be good for them.
Plain popcorn is nutritionally beneficial for dogs as it contains:
- Fiber – Dogs need fiber as it keeps the digestive system in good working order. Fiber reduces the likelihood of diarrhea and constipation and can even prevent colon cancer. Fiber is also good for maintaining a dog’s weight, managing diabetes, and keeping blood sugar levels stable.
- Protein – Protein is needed to keep dogs strong. It also contributes to hair, skin, nail, muscle, and cartilage growth. Dogs mainly get protein from meat sources, but a little extra from popcorn is good too.
- Iron – Iron is needed to support the growth of red blood cells in a dog’s body. This then gives the dog energy. Iron also works with enzymes to enable a dog’s body to function as expected.
- B vitamins – B vitamins give dogs fuel for energy. They also protect a pooch’s cognitive functions. Some B vitamins keep a dog’s skin and coat in top condition while others support the immune system.
- Magnesium – Magnesium plays a role in every part of a dog’s body and ensures that it functions as it should.
- Manganese – Dogs don’t need a lot of manganese. But what they do consume is needed for brain health, kidney and liver health, and absorbing carbohydrates and protein.
- Phosphorus -Phosphorus helps keep teeth and bones strong and healthy. It works alongside calcium and forms part of a dog’s DNA and RNA.
- Zinc – Zinc keeps a dog’s immune system in check and ensures the thyroid works correctly. Dogs need more zinc in their diet than humans do, and a little bit of popcorn can help with this.
These other articles on dogs and popcorn might be of interest:
How Much Plain Popcorn Can a Dog Eat?
As a general rule, popcorn shouldn’t make up any more than 10% of a dog’s daily caloric intake.
The number of calories a dog needs will depend on its breed, size, activity levels, and age.
Most dogs need 25 to 30 calories per pound of their total body weight. And, there are around 8 calories in 10 pieces of plain popcorn.
Therefore, a small breed dog, such as a Yorkshire Terrier, weighing 5 pounds needs a maximum of 150 calories per day. Popcorn should contribute 15 calories at the most, so less than 20 pieces of popcorn should be offered.
Next check out if dogs should eat sweet popcorn.
How Do You Make Plain Popcorn For A Dog?
Now that you know plain popcorn can be good for your dog, you’re probably wondering what the best way to make it is. The good news is that it’s really simple as all you need to do is air-pop some popcorn kernels.
To do this, you can use one of the following methods:
- An electric air popper
- A silicone microwavable popper
- A paper bag and a microwave
- The stove and a non-stick pot
When you’ve chosen your method, throw in some kernels, heat them up, and wait for them to pop. When the popcorn has cooled down, it’s ready to give to your dog.
Yep, it really is as easy as that!
As you should only feed your dog a few pieces of plain popcorn at a time, we recommend storing any remaining popcorn in a popcorn tin to keep it fresh. Then, you can dive in and reward your dog with a piece as and when required.
Plain popcorn is a good option for dogs. If you are going to feed plain popcorn to your dog, always air-pop it and limit the amount you give to prevent gastrointestinal issues.