Can Dogs Eat Granola Bars? Here’s Why it Might Not be Safe
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. However, many of us have to rush our mornings to get to work on time or start running errands that are piling up. We need to walk our dogs, get a cup of coffee, and have time to eat breakfast. Plus, you need to get enough sleep not to be tired the whole day. It can all be a bit too much to handle, and one of these things will suffer.
Dog walks are not something you can easily skip. If you do that, you can be sure you will get home to a huge mess. Many of us skip breakfast for that reason. Luckily, there are different granola bars we can eat and get the nutritious start of the day that will provide us with the energy we need. Many dog owners also wonder, “Can dogs eat granola bars?” If they’re so good for us, it has to be good for our dogs, right? Here’s what dog nutritionists have to say about dogs eating granola bars.
As a dog owner, you are probably aware of how desperate your dog is to grab a bite of your food. They don’t really care what it is you’re eating; they just want a taste. If you’re eating a granola bar for breakfast, you might wonder if you could share some with your beloved pet. The best possible answer to the question, “Can dogs eat granola bars?” is - it depends.
Many granola bars are safe for dogs, but some might contain ingredients that are not safe. In fact, some ingredients often found in granola bars are highly toxic to dogs. Even a tiny bit of them can cause severe health issues and place your dog’s life under serious threat. Before you decide to give some of your granola bars to your dog, you should make sure you have the safe kind.
VET TIP: Before giving your dog anything new to eat, you should start by talking to your vet. Make sure your vet gives you the green light. After that, you can start by giving your dog a small amount of the new food. See the dog’s reaction, and if the reaction is good and there are no signs of allergies for a couple of hours, you can proceed.
The most important thing about giving your dog some granola bar is - you have to know which ingredients you need to avoid. You don’t want to end up poisoning your dog accidentally. Here are some of the ingredients you might find on granola bars that are unsafe or toxic to dogs;
While a little bit of sugar can be a great energy source and a pleasant surprise for your dog’s taste buds, too much of it is not safe for dogs. Sugar can do more harm to our dogs than to us. Plus, it acts a lot faster on them. Too much sugar can lead to teeth decay, obesity, diabetes and can shorten your dog’s life expectancy.
Dogs have a very delicate sodium level. If they eat too much of it too fast, that balance can get disrupted, and your dog can get sodium poisoning. That poisoning can cause seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, and fever.
Most dog owners know that chocolate is not safe for dogs. In fact, it is very toxic, and you should never give your dog anything that contains chocolate in it. The darker the chocolate, the more toxic it is. Some popular granola bars contain chocolate to improve the taste. That is safe for us but unsafe for our dogs.
Different granola bars contain raisins. Vets and scientists don’t fully understand what compound in raisins is toxic to dogs, but the fact is, even a single raisin can kill your dog. It can lead to acute kidney failure, and you should never allow your dog to eat these things.
If you decide to include something new in your dog’s diet, you should make sure your dog will benefit from it. For example, giving your dog a carrot will provide them with beta carotene and fiber. That is great for their immune system and digestion. Giving your dog something simply, so they enjoy the taste makes no sense. Their dietary needs are different than ours. Luckily, granola bars can offer some benefits to our dogs. Here are some of the best things you can find in granola bars;
While carbohydrates might have a bad rep in our diet, they are actually a great energy source. Extra carbs will boost your dog’s energy, so it is a good idea to give them some before a hike.
Granola bars contain a lot of calcium, which is an essential nutrient. It plays a part in different body functions, but most importantly, it helps build and maintain strong bones.
One of the best things granola bars contain is dietary fiber. It is absolutely necessary for healthy digestion. It will make sure your dog is regular and there are no issues like diarrhea or constipation.
Granola bars even contain plant-based proteins. Proteins are essential because they help build and repair all body tissue. They also support the dog’s immune system and help create vital hormones and enzymes.
Like anything else you’re considering including in your dog’s diet, the key is portion control. Ideally, adult dogs should eat twice a day. Their breakfast should be their usual kibble, so they should get all the nutrients they need from their food. Nevertheless, you can give some of your granola bar to your dog. You have to make sure you give them the amount that will fit their size. Small dogs can only get a tiny bit, but large dogs can eat up to ½ or ¼ of a granola bar. You have to make sure it doesn’t contain too much sugar or any other thing that might be toxic to your dog.
There are a lot of granola bar brands you can get. They all have slightly different recipes, which means some contain unsafe ingredients for dogs to eat. Here are the 10 most popular granola bars in the US and whether your dog can eat them;
1. Granola Bar, Oats 'n Honey (Nature Valley) - YES, a tiny bit
2. Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate Protein Chewy Bar (Nature Valley) - NO, contains chocolate
3. Sweet & Salty Nut Granola Bars Peanut (Nature Valley) - YES, a tiny bit
4. Trail Mix Granola Bar, Fruit & Nut (Nature Valley) - NO, contains raisins
5. Sweet & Salty Nut Almond Granola Bars (Nature Valley) - BETTER NOT, contains almonds
6. Granola Bar, Peanut Butter (Nature Valley) - YES, but not too much
7. Chewy Granola Bar, Chocolate Almond Sea Salt with Chia (Kashi) - NO, contains chocolate
8. Granola Bar, Dark Chocolate Chunk (Kind) - NO, contains chocolate
9. Caramel Almond & Sea Salt Bar (Kind) - BETTER NOT, contains almonds
10. Granola Bar, Peanut Butter Dark Chocolate (Kind) - NO, contains chocolate
Granola bars can offer our dogs and us some health benefits. It is a great quick breakfast that will give you plenty of energy to start your day right. However, if you want to give your dog some granola bars, you have to make sure it doesn’t contain unsafe ingredients for dogs to eat. Avoid things like chocolate, raisins, xylitol, and other potentially toxic things. Keep the portions small, and check with your vet first.
World Dog Finder team