Is Peanut Butter Good for Dogs?

Peanut butter can be a great treat for dogs as long as it follows these safe nutritional guidelines.

Feeding the Dog a Treat
Peanut butter is a good snack for dogs as long as it’s given in moderation and contains no sugar, extra salt or xylitol, which is toxic to dogs. © Holly Hildreth / Getty Images

Yes, dogs can have peanut butter. In fact, it can be a great incentive for dogs who are learning commands. You can give it as a bath time distraction or a “just-because-I-love-you” treat.

Peanut butter is an unprocessed food; it’s essentially roasted peanuts ground into a thick paste. It’s a great source of protein, vitamins B6, B3 and E, and minerals such as manganese and copper. It also contains antioxidants and resveratrol.

But, it’s nutrient dense. It’s high in calories with unbalanced omegas. It should only be given occasionally and not as a meal replacement.

Why do dogs like peanut butter?

There’s no real answer to why dogs like peanut butter. Dogs thrive on protein-rich foods and peanut butter is one that’s easy – and fun – to eat. Dogs are just like us and like salty, sweet and fatty food, such as nuts. Minimally processed peanut butter has natural sodium, sugars and fats.

Dogs also eat with their noses. So, perhaps it just smells too yummy to pass up. Maybe, it’s just fun to eat and not at all like kibble. In any case, you need to be careful when treating your dog to peanut butter. It’s safe for dogs to consume but you must read the label.

Safe ingredients for peanut butter for dogs

The absolute most important thing to remember is that the peanut butter you give your dog cannot contain the sugar substitute xylitol. It’s extremely toxic to dogs. And when you’re checking that ingredient label, you also don’t want any added sugars or salt. Ideally, the best peanut butter you can give your dog is one made from organic peanuts with no added ingredients, or a peanut butter that’s specifically made for dogs.

Try these peanut butters made for dogs:

Of course, there is always a chance your dog could be sensitive or allergic to peanuts or peanut butter so you should never give more than a pea-sized taste for the first time. Dr. TJ Bowe from North Colony Animal Clinic in Texas recommends making sure your dog can tolerate peanut butter well, meaning they don’t have any loose stools or upset stomachs because of it.

Peanut butter is a great treat for dogs but it’s just that — a treat. Keep in mind every dog is unique and be aware of how peanut butter may affect him.

3 thoughts on “Is Peanut Butter Good for Dogs?”

  1. Peanuts themselves are Very bad for dogs and us as well Dogs love it because of the nice smell. But watch their faces.!

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