Staci is a writer living in Atlanta, Georgia. When not writing, she spends most of her time trying to keep up with her four rescue cats and Australian shepherd puppy.
Food General Food

Can Dogs Eat Oatmeal?

Jul 8 ·

Can dogs eat oatmeal? If you’re looking for some snacks to feed your dog that change up their boring old kibble, you might have questioned this one. Oatmeal is good for humans, but not every snack that’s good for humans is the same way for dogs, so it’s important to do your research before giving your dog any new food.

So, can dogs eat oatmeal? Or is it one of those foods that’s best left avoided?

Can Dogs Eat Oatmeal?


In small amounts the short answer is yes, dogs can eat oatmeal.

Is It Safe?

Oatmeal is perfectly safe when given in small quantities. It’s only when it’s not plain or given in large quantities that there starts to be dangers.

Is It Healthy?

There are various health benefits that oatmeal can provide for dogs, just as it can for humans!

The Benefits

can dogs eat oatmeal

Oatmeal is high in carbohydrates. While too many of these are bad for dogs, they do need some, and if they’re sensitive to wheat or grains then oatmeal is an ideal alternative. It’s also a good source of vitamin B and fiber.

Fiber is great for your dog’s digestive system. While too much can cause an upset stomach, they do need some to avoid constipation and keep a flow going through their digestive tract.

The other great benefit is that it can help you bond with your dog! Dogs love being given food. It’s just important to make sure that the food they’re being given is in their best interests.

The Risks

There are some risks that can come with feeding your dog oatmeal. Although it can be perfectly safe and healthy, that doesn’t mean there’s nothing to watch out for.

Can Dogs Eat Oatmeal? Obesity

If you feed your dog too much oatmeal, they’re likely to become obese over time. Obesity is a very serious health problem that can cause numerous issues for your dog. Not only is there a lot of strain on their joints and bones, but it makes them more susceptible to certain diseases.

To avoid this, make sure you aren’t feeding them too much. When giving your dog oatmeal, always take it away from their daily meals in calories to make sure they’re still getting the right amount every day.

Additional Ingredients

Do not add additional ingredients to your oatmeal that are unsafe for dogs. Blueberries, for example, might be fine to add, as these are good for dogs. Things like butter, salt, and chocolate, however, can be bad for them or downright toxic, and should never be added to the oatmeal you’re giving them.

Flavored oatmeal has the same risks, and can even have the deadly sweetener xylitol, which is highly toxic.

If your dog eats oatmeal and then you realize it had some toxic ingredients, don’t panic. Contact your veterinarian (or an emergency clinic, if out of hours), who will be able to advise you on what to do. They may tell you to monitor your dog and it’ll likely be fine, they may ask you to induce vomiting, or they may ask you to bring your dog in.

You should also prepare your oatmeal with water, not milk. Many dogs are lactose intolerant.

How Much Can I Feed Them?

can dogs eat oatmeal

Your dog should only have one tablespoon of oatmeal for every 20 lb of weight, according to the AKC. 

Make sure to divide this if your dog is even smaller. If your puppy is under six months, then you shouldn’t feed them oatmeal at all. Dogs at this age have more sensitivities than older dogs and shouldn’t be introduced to too much new human food.

Alternative Snacks

If you want to skip the oatmeal, altogether these healthy but sweet treats are a great option

They don’t put your dog at as much risk of obesity, because they have no carbs in them. However, they do still have sugar and some fruits and vegetables can still be toxic to dogs (like onions and grapes) so you should always check out every individual snack before you give it to your dog for the first time.

So Can Dogs Eat Oatmeal?

So, can dogs eat oatmeal? Yes, they can, but it’s still important to be careful. Too much oatmeal can cause your dog to become obese and if it’s flavored or has other ingredients, it can end up being very dangerous for them. Make sure to measure out the amount you’re giving them and don’t be too generous, tempting as it is.

Staci is a writer living in Atlanta, Georgia. When not writing, she spends most of her time trying to keep up with her four rescue cats and Australian shepherd puppy.
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