Cheerios were first introduced as “CheerieOats” by General Mills in 1941. Today, they are still one of the most popular types of cereal worldwide.
If you enjoy a delicious bowl of cheerios for breakfast every morning, you may be asking yourself – can dogs eat cheerios too?
The short answer to this question asked by many dog parents is – yes. Cheerios, in most cases, are safe for dogs and can be enjoyed as treats occasionally by them. Read on for some tips for feeding cheerios to your pup safely and what are some of the health benefits and potential risks of adding Cheerios to your dog’s menu.
Are Cheerios Bad For Dogs?
Plain Cheerios is made of whole grain oats as the main ingredient and doesn’t contain other elements which can harm a canine.
What Is The Nutritional Value of Cheerios?
While this cereal does not contain toxic ingredients for dogs, it has little essential nutritional value for pups. Instead, Cheerios will add more empty calories to your dog’s food intake without any actual benefits for its wellbeing and health.
The Ingredients in Cheerios
Plain Cheerios mainly contain whole grain oats. But there are some other flavored varieties of this popular cereal, some of which can contain harmful and even dangerous ingredients for canines.
Reading the Cheerios’ labels and ingredient lists before adding them to your dog’s diet is essential.
Never give your pup cereal or other food and drinks containing the artificial sweetener Xylitol, which is a highly toxic ingredient that can cause mild to severe poisoning and even lead to death.
Another ingredient to steer away from is chocolate – white, milk, or dark. Chocolate is highly toxic for canines.
What About Dogs With Lactose Intolerance?
The majority of the dogs develop intolerance to lactose after puppyhood. So, the chances are that your four-legged friend may also have lactose intolerance. In many cases, even tiny amounts of dairy or milk can cause serious digestive issues such as diarrhea, vomiting, and discomfort in dogs.
So, if you are unsure whether your dog can handle milk well, it is best to serve the Cheerios dry, as a treat, instead of in a bowl of milk.
Can Cheerios Be Beneficial for My Dog?
Plain Cheerios contain a few essential nutrients which can benefit your dog’s health. But then again, they are a source of some vitamins A and C, calcium, iron, potassium, and other minerals and vitamins.
In any case, when given occasionally, they are a healthier treat option than other treats which contain fat and sugar and are high in calories.
Cheerios are enjoyed by most dogs and will not lead to tooth decay or obesity. Plus, they are a much less expensive option than the high-quality dog treats offered on the market.
How to Safely Feed Cheerios to My Dog?
We recommend giving your pup a single dry Cheerios cereal at a time, especially if using them as training treats.
You can also sprinkle some dry Cheerios into your dog’s primary dog food or make one of the many available homemade dog treats with them too.
Here is the recipe for our personal favorite Cheerio Dog Treats with Peanut Butter:
- Natural peanut butter – ¼ cup
- Cheerios (Plain, Multi-Grain, or Honey Nut) – 2 cups
- Coconut flour or whole wheat flour – 1 cup
- Extra-virgin unrefined coconut oil – ½ cup
- Eggs – 2 large ones
- Unsweetened applesauce – ½ cup (optional)
- Mix all of the ingredients into a dough in a bowl
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Roll out the dough and cut it into 1-inch square shapes
- Place the cut squares on a non-stick or lightly greased baking sheet
- Bake the treats from 8-10 minutes
- Take them out and let them cool down completely before feeding some to your pup
- You can store the other goodies in an airtight container in the refrigerator
Plain Cheerios are safe for dogs and are an affordable treat for training or rewarding your pup.
Remember to give your pup moderate quantities of dry Cheerios without any milk, and carefully check the ingredient list of any flavored Cheerios for ingredients such as Xylitol or chocolate, which are toxic for canines.
You can also refer to our recipe and make some easy and inexpensive homemade dog treats with Cheerios for your beloved furbaby.