Oreos are tasty cream-filled cookies that we love having as a quick sweet snack. They may not be healthy, but they sure are yummy. If your pet dog is eyeing your cookies, you might be tempted to give your dog a bite. The question is: Can dogs eat Oreos? Are Oreos bad for dogs?
If you’re among the many people who love dogs, then you probably know by now that chocolate is toxic to dogs. But, since Oreo chocolate cookies only contain a bit of baking chocolate, you might think that giving your dog a small amount won’t hurt.
Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. If you want to know the real deal behind Oreos and their effects on your dog’s body, read on. You can also expect to get all the delicious details about Oreos and more.
Must-Know Oreo Facts
Oreo is a cookie product that everyone (including dogs) loves, and it’s easy to see why. Its dark brown or black wafer biscuit and creamy filling just taste so good; one bite or even one pack is never enough.
Interestingly, this famous cookie brand has been around for over a hundred years (since 1912, to be exact). While the meaning behind its name has never been confirmed, some say that the “O” in Oreo represents the two cookie wafers while the “RE” has to do with the creamy center filling.
Now given its colorful history, it’s not surprising to know that this delectable cookie has made its mark in the Guinness Book of Records – not just once but several times.
Oreos were once used in the world’s largest blind food tasting test in 2009. And since it’s also known for being twist-able, lick-able, and dunk-able, this “milk’s favorite cookie” has also set the record when it comes to the most number of people dunking cookies in multiple venues simultaneously.
Are Oreos Healthy?
We all know that Oreo cookies offer low nutritional value. Although they are “technically’ vegan, and gluten-free options also exist, not one can be considered healthy.
Oreos’ carbohydrate content might help boost your energy and fight off hunger. A few vitamins and minerals like folic acid and iron are also added to the mix, but the fact remains that it’s high in sugar, calories, and fat.
Yes, a single Oreo cookie might look harmless since it only contains 2 g of fat, 3.3 g of sugar, and 40 calories, but who can eat just one cookie? Given its addictive qualities, most can finish the whole pack in one sitting.
Oreo Ingredient List
Nowadays, Oreos come in various types and flavors. Aside from the well-known classic vanilla cream flavor, which includes the Double and Mega Stuf variations, Oreos are also available in other flavors. This includes lemon, toffee, mint, dark chocolate, carrot cake, and peanut butter flavors, as well as Thins, fudge-covered, and gluten-free variants.
Besides being known for their cookie products, Oreo is also added in cereals, frozen dairy dessert cups, cones, sandwiches, bars, and soft snack cakes.
Obviously, the ingredients will vary for each type. But if we were to discuss the ingredients commonly found in classic Oreos, most will include the following:
- Unbleached enriched flour (wheat flour + vitamins)
- Canola or palm oil
- High fructose corn syrup
- Baking soda or calcium phosphate
- Soy Lecithin
- Artificial flavors
Can Dogs Eat Oreos? Will Oreo Cookies Kill Your Dog?
Can dogs eat Oreo cookies? Not really. If your dog has eaten a lone Oreo, your pet dog would most likely feel A-okay after. Despite this, letting your dog eat even a small amount of Oreos is not recommended.
Oreo cookies – the wafer and the Oreo cream included – are bad for dogs given their chocolate, sugar, and palm oil or fat content. As such, dog owners are advised to keep these treats far away from their dogs’ paws.
True, a small amount may not trigger toxicity and definitely not kill your pet dog. But since the risks outweigh the benefits, temporary highs such as letting your dog eat Oreos can only lead to health problems in the future.
Why Are Oreos Bad For Dogs?
Despite being enriched with vitamins and minerals such as riboflavin and niacin, we can’t say that Oreos are great dog treats. The same applies to non-chocolate Oreo cookie flavors like the Golden Oreos. Why? Check out the reasons below.
They’re Loaded With Fat
Letting your pets (dogs and cats alike) eat food with a lot of fat is never a good idea. For one thing, fatty diets can lead to obesity. Besides that, it can also lead to various health issues, including:
Upset Stomach & Other Stomach Issues
Dogs with sensitive tummies can have an upset stomach, diarrhea, and even experience vomiting after they have eaten a couple of Oreos. Apart from its high-fat content, some Oreos contain palm oil.
Palm oil may not be toxic to dogs, but it is known for its laxative effect. Ingestion can lead to diarrhea and dehydration, which often lasts for just a few days and improves on its own.
Apart from diarrhea and other stomach problems, palm and canola oil are linked to fatty liver disease. Also known as hepatic lipidosis, this disorder is characterized by fat accumulation in the liver cells, causing the liver to grow in size.
Giving your dog food high in fat regularly can also lead to a painful condition called pancreatitis. An organ sensitive to fat, high levels of fat can cause the pancreas of your dog to get inflamed. This results in various symptoms, which includes:
- Abdominal pain
- Lack of appetite
Oreos Contain Lots Of Sugar
Dogs may look cute during their sugar rush high, but too much sugar is never good for your pet dogs.
When consumed in excess, the empty calories your pet dog gets from the refined sugar and corn syrup (an artificial sweetener) in Oreos can result in sugar-related medical conditions. This includes diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and tooth decay.
Some Contain Toxic Ingredients
As mentioned, chocolate is toxic to dogs. While it is true that a single Oreo does not contain enough chocolate to trigger chocolate toxicity, it’s still possible for a dog to suffer from it.
Most Oreos do not contain real chocolate or baking chocolate, but the chocolate-covered or ultimate chocolate- or dar chocolate-flavored ones have more of this toxic ingredient.
If, by any chance, your pet dog gets a hold of your stash of cookies, keep an eye on your dogs’ condition and be prepared to call the vet immediately.
More About Chocolate Toxicity
Chocolate is toxic because of two compounds, namely, caffeine and Theobromine. Both are compounds that dogs cannot metabolize, making dogs more sensitive to their chemical effects.
Chocolates contain different theobromine content. The darker ones have more, while white chocolate carries lower amounts.
When it comes to chocolate’s toxic effects, this will vary depending on the amount consumed and your pets’ size. Smaller-sized dogs would most likely show signs of poisoning after eating a couple, while larger dogs will need a higher dose before symptoms show up.
If your dog eats chocolate-filled Oreos, watch out for the following symptoms and contact your veterinarian immediately. Alternatively, you can also call the Pet Poison Helpline.
- Excessive urination
- Increased heart rate
- Muscle tremors
May Cause Intestinal Blockage
A dog eating Oreos with the packaging still intact would most likely try to rip off the plastic to get a taste of the cookies inside.
If this happens, your dogs might ingest the plastic container, which might get stuck in your dogs’ gastrointestinal tract.
If this happens and your dog exhibits signs of abdominal pain, lack of appetite, and the like, immediate vet care is necessary.
My Dog Ate Oreo Cookies! What To Do?
If your dog has eaten one cookie, there’s no reason to panic. One Oreo won’t hurt. If they get an upset stomach, most likely, it will just go away on its own.
When To Call A Vet?
It’s a different story if your dog ate Oreos or has eaten chocolate treats and showed an upset stomach that doesn’t go away and other negative reactions. If this happens, don’t induce vomiting on your own. This will require your vet’s assistance, so make sure to get in touch with your vet ASAP.
Chocolate poisoning is an emergency situation that requires immediate intervention to increase your dog’s chances of survival. Its treatment includes inducing vomiting, administering activated charcoal, and supportive treatments like intravenous fluids.
Alternative Dog Treats For Your Pup
If your dogs need dog treats and regular pet foods won’t do, there are healthier yet delicious food options that you can give as dog treats for your pet dogs. The following will definitely provide your dog the same amount of satisfaction minus the risks.
- Cooked sweet potatoes
- Apples minus the seeds or core
Can dogs eat Oreos? The short answer is NO.
If your pup ate or has eaten one accidentally, your dog would probably feel fine but let this serve as a lesson. You might want to keep your stash somewhere out of your dogs’ sight and reach.
Willingly giving your dog Oreos (even a small amount), though, is another thing. Given all the dangers, it’s always better to err on the side of caution. Also, letting your dog eat a little often leads to giving them a few more bites in the future.
Since your dog’s taste buds have been awakened, they’d most likely ask for more. If this happens, saying “No” will get harder and harder. Like any bad habit, it’s easy to get into one and more challenging to get out of it.
So, the next time you have an Oreo on hand, make sure to have a couple of healthy treats for your dog. This way, you can eat your Oreo in peace, and your dog can also eat happily without worrying about any possible adverse effects.
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