We all love our four-legged friends. They’re our fur babies. We speak to them like they can answer us and love them unconditionally. We also sneak them titbits of human food whether we’re supposed to or not! They sit with us on a Saturday night whilst we snack on popcorn watching a movie. But can dogs eat sweet popcorn? Let’s find out.
Can Dogs Eat Sweet Popcorn?
It’s delicious. It’s sweet. It’s crunchy. What’s not to love? Human palette or canine popcorn sure tastes good. But is all that sugary goodness good for your pooch?
Whilst we humans love it, it’s generally not recommended to give dogs sweet popcorn or any type of flavored popcorn. Sweet popcorn can contain ingredients that are harmful to dogs. Whilst popcorn itself isn’t toxic, the flavorings and additives that are commonly found in sweet popcorn can be unsafe for our much-beloved pets.
Is Sweet Popcorn Bad for Dogs?
Not all popcorn is bad for dogs. So, just why is sweet popcorn bad for dogs? In sweet popcorn, ingredients such as sugar can cause weight gain and dental problems in dogs.
Other sweet flavors and toppings can have more serious effects. Some ingredients in sweet popcorn are actually highly toxic to dogs. These include:
- Artificial sweeteners – Artificial sweeteners such as xylitol, that’s found in candies and sugar-free gum, can cause a rapid insulin release which leads to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and liver failure in dogs.
- Chocolate – Chocolate contains theobromine, which can cause vomiting, diarrhea, seizures, and even death in dogs.
- Raisins – Raisins (and grapes) can cause kidney failure in dogs, even in small amounts.
- Macadamia nuts – Macadamia nuts can cause tremors, vomiting and hyperthermia (over-heating) in dogs.
- Other nuts – other nuts, whilst not always harmful, can be difficult for dogs to digest and can cause blockages in the intestines.
As with any new food, specifically foods that aren’t designed with dogs in mind, it’s always a good idea to ask your veterinarian to make sure it’s safe for them to eat.
READ NEXT: Can dogs eat Skinny Popcorn?
Is Butter Popcorn Good for Dogs?
If you’re thinking that you should steer clear of sweet popcorn for your pooch, you may have considered butter popcorn instead. However, butter popcorn is not considered healthy either and is not recommended as a treat for dogs. While plain, air-popped popcorn can be a safe and low-calorie treat for dogs, buttered popcorn is often high in fat, salt, and other additives that can be harmful to your dog.
Foods that are high in fat can cause pancreatitis in dogs. Pancreatitis is a potentially life-threatening condition that can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and abdominal pain. What’s more, too much salt can lead to dehydration and other health problems in your dog. In answer to the question, no, butter popcorn is not good for dogs.
What is the Best Popcorn to Give Dogs?
We know what it’s like. You’re watching your movie, and the dog is eyeing you lovingly and drooling over your bucket of popcorn. Can you throw him a bit? As discussed, some popcorns are a definite no-no when it comes to our dogs. But if you’re going to go there and feed your dog some popcorn, the best option is plain, air-popped popcorn without any additives such as flavorings, salt, butter, or sugar.
Popcorn shouldn’t be an everyday thing and should only be given in moderation. Remember, although plain popcorn is not toxic itself, eating too much of it can cause digestive problems in dogs, and it is a potential choking hazard too.
Unpopped kernels are also problematic for your dog’s teeth. They can become stuck and cause dental decay and gum disease. So, if you’re going to go for it, be sure to remove the unpopped kernels before allowing your dog to munch away.
My Dog has Eaten Sweet Popcorn – Should I worry?
If your dog has eaten a small amount of sweet popcorn, there is likely no cause for immediate concern. If your dog eats sweet popcorn, you may find that they experience some digestive upset. However, if your pet has eaten a large amount of sweet popcorn or if they begin to show symptoms of illness such as vomiting, diarrhea or lethargy, it’s important to contact your vet for advice.
As mentioned, whilst popcorn itself is not toxic to dogs, the additives and flavorings in sweet popcorn could be harmful, especially if it contains toxic ingredients like chocolate or raisins.
If you become concerned about your dog’s health or they start to become ill after they have eaten some sweet popcorn, it is always best to err on the side of caution and seek advice from a veterinarian. They can assess your dog’s condition and provide guidance on any necessary treatment.
Chances are, you’ve searched “can dogs have sweet popcorn?” for one of two reasons:
- You’ve got some that you want to share with your dog.
- Your dog has already eaten some.
Whichever reason it is, I hope Best Corn Popper has answered your question! Finally, what we must bear in mind when we ask this question is not “Can my dog have sweet popcorn?” but rather “should my dog have sweet popcorn?”
At the end of the day, it’s our responsibility as pet parents to provide the best possible nutrition for our four-legged friend. And sometimes as doggy parents, we just have to say no. Sharing, in this case, is absolutely not caring.
Next, check out these other articles about dogs and popcorn: