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Can Dogs Eat Oreos?
Oreos are snacks we enjoy very much. These days it has several flavors thereby widening your choice range. While eating one you’ve probably stopped to think if you can feed it to your furry friend.
Dogs can be mischievous sometimes. You might keep your pack of Oreos somewhere only to find out that your pup has gotten to it. At that point, you’re more worried about your dog than the Oreos he ate.
Accidents do happen as well. You might be eating your Oreo while relaxing, unknown to you that a few pieces fell off. Your dog is likely to gobble up anything that falls from you. So what do you do? Is your dog safe?
Before we talk about how Oreos affect your dog, let’s take a peek into what Oreos are. I’m pretty sure most of you know that already, but a few others don’t.
What Are Oreos?
Oreo or Oreo biscuit is a brand of cookie that is made of typically two chocolate wafers and sweet crème filling. It was first introduced in New York in 1912 butt is now sold in over 100 countries worldwide.
Besides the traditional Oreo which contains two chocolate wafers, several other varieties have been introduced. There are also special and limited editions of oreo biscuits with more exotic flavors.
Can Dogs Eat Oreos?
While this biscuit is a popular snack for us humans, you shouldn’t extend it to your dog. Oreos can be sweet, filling, and seemingly harmless but can cause long-term consequences.
Oreos contain certain ingredients that can be harmful to your pup or lead to disease conditions in the long run. The most notable one here is chocolate.
You should always resist the temptation to feed Oreos to your dog while eating one. Surely he’ll sit beside you with googly eyes but don’t give in. It’s for the best.
While Oreos seem like a good treat for your dog, it isn’t. It is made with ingredients that will cause more harm than good when consumed regularly. Oreo is sure a sweet snack, although less nutritious than many other foods out there.
And for your dog, you want to feed him a meal as balanced as possible. Therefore Oreos can only offer empty calories, meaning your dog will gain calories but no accompanying nutrients.
Is Oreos Safe For Your Dog?
In simple terms, Oreo isn’t safe for your dog. It contains chocolate which is known to be toxic to dogs.
Eating one oreo might not be enough to cause harm to your dog. However, eating a pack of Oreos at once can put your pup in a bad condition.
Even though each Oreo contains a small amount of chocolate, it is not advised to feed your dog anything that contains toxic ingredients at all. Your pup might have a very sensitive gastrointestinal tract, therefore you shouldn’t feed him an Oreo no matter how small.
Many would ask, why is chocolate toxic to dogs?
Well, this is because of a substance present in cacao called theobromine. It is similar to caffeine and its side effects can range from mild to moderate, even death.
The amount of theobromine varies depending on the variety of chocolate. Fortunately, Oreos contain a small amount of theobromine from their chocolate flavoring. Therefore eating just one oreo is unlikely to cause problems for your dog, however, that’s not the case if your pup eats a pack.
If your dog snacks on Oreos without your knowledge, look out for these symptoms;
- Abdominal swelling
- Unsuccessful attempt to vomit or defecate
- Shaking or seizures
- Increased heart rate
Once you notice these, contact your vet for further guidance. Always remember to keep your Oreos where your pup can’t reach.
Nutritional Facts Of Oreos
While Oreos are mainly eaten as snacks, they also contain some nutrients. Although these nutrients are widely unbalanced and wouldn’t do much good to your dog.
Each serving of Oreo contains;
- Fat: 7g
- Sodium: 190mg
- Total carbohydrate: 25g
- Protein: 2g
- Calories: 160kcal
A serving of Oreo is 3 cookies. Therefore each Oreo will give your dog over 50kcals. That’s a significant chunk of your dog’s daily requirement.
The sodium is off the roof while protein is minimal. The nutritional content of Oreos is highly unbalanced and can only offer your dog empty calories. This can only lead to one end result – obesity.
Health Benefits Of Oreos
Oreos contain one or two nutrients that are important to your dog’s health. However, there are healthier sources of these nutrients, therefore you should still avoid Oreos for your dog.
However, let’s talk a bit about them.
Sodium is necessary for water balance and homeostasis in your pup. It also helps in nerve transmission and muscle function. An adequate amount per day would depend on the size of your pup, but as you can see, it’s too much in Oreos.
Carbohydrate is a necessary macronutrient for your dog’s development. It is used basically in all the metabolic processes in the body. Most important of all, it is required to provide energy. However, too much of it is bad.
As you can see, Oreos barely contain protein which is essential for your pup. It also contains little to no vitamins and other micronutrients.
Again, while Oreos contain some nutrients, it is not a reason to feed them to your dog. There are healthier and more balanced sources of these nutrients.
Risks Associated With Dogs Eating Oreo
Oreos will do more harm than good if consumed regularly. Now, let’s look at the dangers posed by Oreos.
Each Oreo cookie contains about 7g of sugar and about 2.1g of fat. That’s a lot of sugar and fat coming from such a small piece of food.
Eating Oreos only once will go unnoticed. Your dog’s system can process the sugar and fat, without accumulating much of it.
However, regular consumption of Oreos is now a different ball game. With such an amount of sugar and fat in each Oreo, it wouldn’t take long before your dog’s body starts accumulating fat.
And this will be evident in no time as you’ll notice your pup has started adding weight. If he continues eating Oreos, then the endpoint is Obesity. And as we know, obesity is a risk factor in so many debilitating health conditions. It’s even worse for dogs than for humans.
The weight change can be bad for your dog’s joints. This is because their joint isn’t meant to bear that kind of weight.
When most people hear about diabetes, they think it’s a disease only for humans. However, that’s not true. Diabetes can also affect dogs at risk.
An obese dog is at risk of diabetes mellitus. It is the most common complication of obesity.
This disease can lead to a host of other comorbid states like heart diseases, cerebrovascular events, etc.
This is the inflammation or painful swelling of an organ called the pancreas. The pancreas is very sensitive to fat and as we know by now, Oreos contain a high amount of fat.
This condition is very painful and evidenced by symptoms like;
- Abdominal pain
- Praying stance
- Vomiting and diarrhea
Pancreatitis is a very painful condition, therefore you should visit your vet as soon as possible to relieve your dog from the suffering.
The gastrointestinal tract of dogs is not made to handle large amounts of sugar. Therefore consuming lots of Oreos will easily irritate your dog’s gut and lead to vomiting and diarrhea.
Without proper observation, dehydration will ensue and can even lead to coma. Therefore if your pup accidentally ate a lot of Oreos and is vomiting, make sure to provide plenty of water to avoid dehydration.
The palm oil in Oreo is also known to add to this stomach upset. This is because palm oil has laxative effects.
While a single Oreo doesn’t contain enough chocolate to cause toxicity, when your dog eats a packet, it can happen. Look out for these symptoms if your pooch has accidentally eaten a lot of Oreos;
- Increased thirst
- Vomiting and diarrhea
- Excessive urination
- Rapid heart rate
In severe cases, you might observe muscle weakness and tremors, seizures, and even heart failure.
Once you notice signs of toxicity in your pooch after eating Oreos, contact your vet for guidance.
Other Dangers Associated With Oreos
Most of the problems you might encounter when your dog eats too much Oreo are due to its sugar, fat, and chocolate content. However, have you wondered what’ll happen if your dog swallows an Oreo packaging?
This can happen if your dog rips the Oreo by himself while trying to open it. When ingested, Oreo packaging can cause intestinal obstruction in your pooch.
In such a situation, the best course of action is to visit your vet to relieve the obstruction. It can be dangerous if left for a long time.
What To Do If My Dog Ate Oreos
In many cases, your pup might just gobble up that one Oreo that fell from you. In that case, you have nothing to worry about. One Oreo contains a very small amount of chocolate making toxicity, not a concern.
However, if your dog found your stash and ate them all before you noticed, then there’s a problem. Having ingested a large amount, there is a risk of chocolate toxicity.
Therefore you should watch out for those symptoms mentioned above. At the slight presence of any of them, contact your vet to prevent complications.
In cases of consumption of a large amount of Oreos, gastrointestinal upset will be the most likely problem. That amount of sugar can irritate your pup’s stomach and lead to vomiting and diarrhea.
These symptoms usually resolve on their own within days. Make sure to encourage water intake to prevent dehydration. If it keeps getting worse, visit your vet.
Can Dogs Eat Oreo Ice Cream?
No, they shouldn’t. Oreo ice cream will even contain more than the cookie. Additionally, there’s milk in the ice cream which can cause bloating and constipation for your dog.
Therefore you should not feed your dog Oreo ice cream for whatever reason. Keep them away from your pup.
How To Prevent Your Dog From Eating Oreos Accidentally
Even the best-behaved dogs can give in to temptation. The best way to prevent your pup from eating Oreos is by keeping them away from the reach of your dog.
This means you shouldn’t leave an Oreo package lying around on the table, kitchen, or easily accessible cupboards. Make sure you don’t drop any while eating as well.
If you have kids, then keep your pooch out of the dining room to prevent him from eating fallen Oreos. This is for his own good.
Make sure you tell visitors or pet-sitters what your dog can and cannot eat. This will reduce the likelihood of accidental consumption of Oreos.
However, after all these efforts, accidents can still happen. If you feel your dog has eaten a couple of Oreos, contact your vet for advice.
What Are The Alternatives To Oreo?
There are other healthier snacks or food that can be used as treats for your pooch. Some of them include;
- Cooked or air-fried sweet potato
- Apple without the seed
However, if you really want to give your dog cookies as treat, then there are recipes to make dog-friendly cookies. They contain a low amount of sugar and no toxic ingredients.
You can get the recipe and make them yourself, or buy an already made one. Also, note that these dog-friendly cookies should only be given as treat occasionally.
Recap: Can Dogs Eat Oreos?
Oreos are a tasty and filling snack. However, you shouldn’t purposely feed it to your pup.
The benefits are pale in comparison to all the consequences your pup could face from long-term consumption of Oreos. Prevention is better than cure, therefore don’t feed Oreos to your pooch in the first place.
Don’t bank on your dog’s behavior, even the best-behaved dogs can fall for temptation. Therefore to prevent your furry friend from accidentally eating Oreos, keep them out of reach.
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