Question: Can dogs eat corn? Or is corn bad for dogs?
Answer: Whether dogs can or can’t eat corn safely is a topic of much controversy, especially when you go online and search for the topic.
The Debate About Feeding Dogs Corn
And, given the fact that corn is a grain that’s very commonly used in dog food products of many (and I mean MANY) companies, the controversy is nothing surprising.
How could it not be the subject of such huge controversy when corn is such an everyday ingredient for so many people around the world?
On one side of the debate, you have folks that consider corn to be just like any other human food out there that’s suitable for dogs to eat, while on the other side of the debate you have folks that consider corn to be a “devil” that should never be given to dogs for consumption.
People who claim that corn is bad for dogs will tell you that these high profile companies are only trying to sell you on their dog food by saying that corn is good for dogs, while people who claim that corn is good for dogs will tell you that the bashing of corn is way out of proportion and will claim that corn is actually very beneficial to your dog in certain circumstances, such as when they’re constipated.
Which side of the story should you believe?
As always, there’s a bit of truth to the two tales, so this article is all you need to set the record straight and let you in on all the details you have to know before feeding your dog any corn, or any dog food or treat that contains corn as part of its ingredients list.
Can Dogs Have Corn? Is Corn Good For Dogs?
In general, YES dogs can eat corn safely. Even though there’s no real need or benefit to feed your dog any corn, you still technically can feed your dog corn without them becoming sick from it or poisoned because of it (i.e corn is not toxic to dogs).
Assuming your dog isn’t allergic to corn and you ideally have your veterinarian’s approval about your dog system’s ability to properly process and digest corn, you’re good to go.
Corn is present in a wide variety of dog food and many different brands use it, so chances are you are already feeding your dog some corn without you necessarily knowing about it.
So, corn in and of itself is in no way toxic or poisonous to dogs.
However, you have to know about and watch out for some important stuff when it comes to feeding your dog corn, especially the cob which we will be talking about in just a few moments.
As you’ll be seeing in this article as you read on, feeding your dog corn isn’t going to do them any good (but also won’t do them any specific harm as long as you feed it to them in controlled amounts), which means that there are many other food choices out there for you to choose from that will actually do your dog good if what you’re looking for is feeding them corn as a treat or a reward.
How Can Dogs Eat Corn?
The best way to feed your dog corn is to boil some fresh kernels and feed them to your dog, always un-buttered and un-salted.
It’s very important that you keep the quantity to a bare minimum (a few pieces at most), because if your dog eats too much corn all at once, they’re bound to get painful stomach aches.
You never want to feed your dog corn that is contained within other foods, like tortillas for example, because these will often contain dressings and toppings like garlic and onion, both of which can be deadly to dogs.
With all of that being said, our recommendation is that you don’t try to feed your dog corn by yourself, because they’re already getting enough of this grain from the commercial dog food you’re feeding them.
Unless you’re spending top dollar on some of the best dog food brands that go out of their way to include only the best of the best ingredients for your dog (and charge you every extra penny for what they’re giving you, while at it), then chances are the dog food brand you’re feeding your dog already has enough corn in it that’s being consumed by your dog.
Why Is Corn Bad For Dogs?
The crowd that says that corn is bad for dogs mainly does so for many reasons, most important of which are:
Corn can most of the times be very hard for dogs to digest.
Cheap Filler Calories
Corn is just that, cheap filler calories used in dog food products by dog food manufacturers that want to save up on costs during the manufacturing process and increase their bottom line, and doesn’t provide any worthy nutrients or minerals of value to dogs that should be mentioned.
Many dog food manufacturing companies are able to sacrifice a little bit of protein content in their food (99% of the times in some form of expensive meat) and substitute it for corn, all for saving up on costs and without having sales being effected.
A dream come true for many business owners, wouldn’t you think so?
This is why we always advocate against dog food brands that make significant use of corn in their products on this website.
If you were to run a quick check on some very popular dog food products and read up on some customer reviews online, you’ll notice that any dog food that contains significant amounts of corn in it always gets slammed in reviews because of this specific point.
According to the anti-corn for dogs crowd, corn (and other similar “filler grains” found in commercial dog food nowadays) is widely responsible for a whole lot of food allergies that dogs are increasingly suffering from.
Not So Fibrous And Good For Constipation After All
People who are all for feeding their dogs corn tend to argue that one of the benefits of doing this is that their dogs get high amounts of dietary fiber from the corn they eat, which ultimately helps out any dog that’s suffering from constipation, big time.
That’s not really the case, because if you were to compare a portion that’s worth 100 calories from corn to a portion that’s worth 100 calories from the majority of other fruits or vegetables out there, practically all of the other fruits and vegetables will beat corn in a landslide as far as fiber is concerned.
Try comparing yourself with a simple search online, you’ll see this first hand.
And, as far as helping out constipated dogs is concerned, remember that corn isn’t the easiest of foods for your dog to digest.
Your dog’s body takes a significant amount of time to properly digest the corn they eat, something which is completely the opposite of what you want happening when your dog is constipated, which is them eating something that’s easy to digest and that can “get the ball rolling”.
Can Dogs Eat Corn Cobs?
When it comes to what dogs love to do, chewing on corn cobs could very possibly be one of the top items on their list.
But is it any good if they do so, especially with all the salt and butter that are present on the cobs? “Can dogs eat corn on the cob?”, you ask.
The plain and simple answer to this question is NO, dogs can’t eat corn cobs.
If you give your dog a corn cob to chew, there’s no guarantee that they won’t chew and swallow the cob in its entirety, and this could result in intestinal obstruction, which is a reason for many dog fatalities around the world.
So, you should dispose of all corn cobs and make sure they’re somewhere your dog can’t possible reach, because if you make it easy for your dog to find them while unsupervised, they will sniff around, find and eat them.
If you think or know that your dog has eaten a corn cob, you have to immediately tell your veterinarian about it so they tell you what immediate action you have to take on the spot. The more time you take to react to this situation, the worse your dog’s chances of survival are.
Here are some common signs that dogs show when they suffer from intestinal obstruction:
- Refusal to eat
- Weakness and lethargy