Can Dogs Eat Corn?
Here's what you need to know.
You may love tossing your dog a piece of carrot or pineapple as a treat when preparing fruits and vegetables, but what about corn? Can your pup enjoy this yummy summertime favorite?
"While dogs can eat fresh corn kernels, we don't include them in our food and we don't recommend it," says Dr. Darcia Kostiuk, senior veterinarian for ORIJEN and ACANA pet foods. While corn isn't toxic to dogs, their teeth aren't shaped to effectively crush up corn kernels, which leads to them mostly being swallowed whole. "This then creates an indigestible source of fiber leading to flatulence, soft stools, and even diarrhea," says Dr. Kostiuk.
Please Don't Eat the Corn
Even though dogs can technically eat fresh corn kernels, it's best if avoided. Since corn acts as a laxative, it's not something you should give to your pup. "There are alternative grains that dogs can consume and are included in many of our recipes, including oats, sorghum, and millet," says Dr. Kostiuk. What's more, there are also loads of other vegetables, like zucchini and carrots, that are perfectly safe to give to dogs as a delicious treat.
Keep Out of the Corn
If your dog lives in the country, on a farm, or has access to growing corn, you'll need to pay particular attention to keep him separated from cornrows. Dr. Kostiuk says seed corn—the ones you plant in the garden to grow corn—absolutely should not be fed to dogs because most are pre-treated with pesticides that can be poisonous to them. Dogs who eat seed corn will require veterinary emergency care.
And obviously, the cob is off-limits because there is a significant risk your dog could chew it and swallow large indigestible chunks. "Eating the cob can block the intestinal tract, which will require emergency veterinary surgery to remove," says Dr. Kostiuk.
So, keep the summertime side of corn just for the humans, and opt to treat your pup with a healthy baby carrot or bite of zucchini instead. He'll not only stay healthier but trust us, he'll enjoy it just as much.
Always consult your veterinarian if you have questions about your dog's diet or nutrition.