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Can Dogs Eat Corn? Vet-Reviewed Feeding Facts

Written by: Grant Piper

Last Updated on June 19, 2024 by Dogster Team

Pile of Sweet Corns

Can Dogs Eat Corn? Vet-Reviewed Feeding Facts


Dr. Chyrle Bonk Photo


Dr. Chyrle Bonk

DVM (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Corn is a ubiquitous ingredient that shows up in all sorts of things, including dog food. This makes many people believe that corn is completely safe for dogs. Most of the time, that is true. Corn is safe for dogs as long as it is off the cob and without any additional ingredients. But corn on the cob and additional ingredients like butter and seasonings can lead to serious health conditions. This is a very important distinction that needs to be understood in order to keep your dog safe and healthy.

This brief guide will go over the kinds of corn that dogs can eat, how best to feed corn to your dog, the nutritional benefits of corn, and the dangers of corn cobs for canines. By the end, you will have a more complete understanding of the safety and dangers of feeding corn to dogs.

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Can Dogs Eat Corn?

Yes, dogs can eat corn. Not only are dogs able to safely eat most types of corn, but corn is also a primary ingredient in many dog foods. It is used as a nutrient source and filler in both natural and processed dog foods due to its high volume, affordability, and health benefits.

You may have come across corn allergies in dogs, but the truth is that dogs that are truly allergic to corn are very rare. However, if you are feeding corn to your dog and notice that they are developing itchy or flakey skin or digestive issues, they could be sensitive to corn. In that case, you want to avoid corn and find a different grain to feed your dog. While there’s no doubt there are a few dogs that can’t handle corn, the majority of them can eat it without any issues. If you have any questions about food allergies in dogs, speak with your veterinarian.

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Corn That Is Safe for Dogs

Dogs can eat a variety of different types of corn including whole corn, cooked corn, raw corn, and even frozen corn in moderation. The type of corn that dogs cannot eat is corn on the cob. (That said, dogs can eat corn off the cob as long as you prepare it properly.) You’ll also want to avoid creamed corn or canned corn, as the additional ingredients can be unhealthy for them.

Popcorn is also safe for dogs, as long as you limit their exposure to the kernels and ensure that the popcorn is unflavored. Popcorn can make for a simple and safe snack or treat as long as it is fed in moderation.

Safe Corn for Dogs

How Best to Feed Corn to Your Dog

You do not want to give your dog any corn that has been seasoned or slathered in butter. Many people like to put salt, pepper, and butter on their corn, but you should not let your dog eat corn that has been flavored with these kinds of things. Only feed your dog plain corn, no matter the kind.

You should also feed corn in moderation. As mentioned, many dogs already get a good amount of corn in their diet from their regular dog food. You do not want to give your dog too much corn, as it is high in starch, and eating too much can lead to an unbalanced diet. You can feed corn in moderation or in a supplementary role.

corn, corn on the cob, piston
Image Credit: Couleur, Pixabay

Health Benefits of Corn for Dogs

Not only is corn safe for dogs, but it also has a variety of health benefits. Corn is chock full of beneficial nutrients.

Health Benefits of Corn for Dogs

  • Protein
  • Carbohydrates
  • Linoleic acid
  • Antioxidants
  • Fiber
  • Vitamins

When fed safely and in moderation, dogs can get all of these benefits from corn.

Never Let Your Dog Have a Corn Cob

The biggest caveat when it comes to corn for dogs is corn on the cob. While corn kernels are completely safe for dogs, corn cobs can be extremely dangerous. Since they are covered in corn, many dogs like to chew on the cobs. However, if a dog swallows a whole or a piece of a corn cob, it can be dangerous because it can become an obstruction.

An obstruction in the stomach or intestines is a serious medical condition. It can lead to abdominal pain and vomiting and damage the stomach or intestines. In some cases, a blockage requires surgery to correct, and if surgery is not pursued, the blockage can lead to the death of your dog.

For these reasons, you should never ever let your dog have a corn cob. The results could be dangerous and damaging.

a close up of corn on the cob
Image Credit: Wouter Supardi Salari, Unsplash

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Corn is safe for dogs as long as it is prepared and fed properly. It should only be given to dogs when it is unflavored and in moderation. You should never feed a corn cob to your dog, as it can be highly dangerous, potentially leading to an obstruction in the digestive tract. Instead, stick with plain corn kernels that are raw, cooked, or frozen.

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Featured Image Credit: NEOSiAM 2024+, Pexel

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