Admit it, you love spoiling your pup to loads of sugary treats every so often. And if you are into healthy living, you probably believe brown sugar is safer for your doggo than white sugar. But can dogs have brown sugar?
Brown sugar contains no toxins that will harm your dog. Dogs have a sweet tooth as well and can indulge in a few sugary treats in moderation. But dogs need more of the healthy sugars, in the form of carbohydrates, to prevent some of the nasty effects of excess sugar consumption.
Every Friday night you cuddle with your pooch and share a box of Oreos as you binge-watch your favorite show. When you fix his cookies, you sprinkle a little brown sugar on them to spoil your doggo. Because you love them to bits.
But is brown sugar bad for dogs as well? We will answer that for you.
What is brown sugar?
Brown sugar is unprocessed sugar. It still has molasses in it which makes it less sweet than white sugar. This means fewer calories to worry about if you still want sugar in your foods.
Can dogs taste sugar?
Going by how ecstatic Bingo becomes whenever you pull out an Oreo, it is safe to say that dogs can taste sugar. Science has provided proof of the same.
Humans carry approximately 9,000 taste buds. Dogs have about 1700 taste buds
-Katie Finlay, akc.org
This means dogs can taste sugar as you do. But they cannot enjoy the sweetness as much as you do. And we will explain why this can be a problem for your pup.
Can dogs have brown sugar?
Brown sugar is safe for your dog. It contains no toxins so you do not have to worry about your pup ingesting something harmful. What you need to ask yourself is if your dog should continue taking brown sugar in his life.
If you are wondering how brown sugar affects dogs, you only have to look at how sugar affects human beings.
What will taking too much sugar do to your body? Those affects you are thinking about right now, transfer them to your dog. But to jog your memory, here are the effects of brown sugar on your dog.
What you consider sweet to you can be too sugary for your dog. This means excess calories which can affect your dog’s health.
A pinch of brown sugar on your dog’s favorite cookie won’t hurt him. But too much sugary treats can cause stomach upsets in your dog. Pets have gut bacteria that are used for digesting sugars into energy. If the amount of sugar intake overwhelms the balance of these microorganisms, it can cause your dog to diarrhea or vomit.
Yes, dogs are victims of cavities like humans. Dogs have bacteria in their mouths that digest sugar. In the process of digestion, the bacteria produce an acid that corrodes the coating on teeth. With increased consumption of brown sugar, your dog ends up developing cavities.
Cavities can be painful for your dog. When the acid bores deep into the root, it will make the teeth too sensitive for your dog to chew with. Your dog eats less or stops eating at all and loses out on important nutrients.
Maybe the reason why your dog gets hyper every time you share a cookie with him is because of the sugar rush. A problem with the sugar rush is that your dog may end up chewing and destroying items in your house. Some dogs become hot-headed and end up nipping their owners or bullying other pets.
Fortunately, the solution for the sugar rush is letting your dog drink some water. Within a few minutes, your dog will get better.
Canine obesity happens when your dog consumes more sugar than he can digest. The excess sugar gets stored as body fat which only leads to unnecessary weight gain. Obesity exerts pressure on the joints and can cause canine arthritis.
As if that’s not enough, obesity can lead to heart diseases or difficulty in breathing due to excess fat in the chest area. Overweight dogs also produce hormones that can affect their breathing patterns.
Even if your dog does not develop a life-threatening disease, the excess weight will still affect his quality of life. He becomes slower than usual and indulges in fewer activities. Lethargy becomes a norm and you find your dog sleeping all the time.
Do not let your dog get to this point. Stop feeding him too much brown sugar and other sugary stuff in your home.
VIDEO: Prevent Obesity – How to keep your pet dog healthy
Canine diabetes stems from excess weight gain. If your dog has diabetes, he will drink a lot because of excessive thirst. Some dogs lose weight fast and develop chronic infections. Other dogs will eat a lot but still look emaciated.
A little brown sugar is not harmful to your dog. But if Fido continues taking too much sugar every day, it can lead to health complications that affect his quality of life. If possible, stick to natural sources of sugar, like in fruits, which are good for your dog.
Honey is a natural sauce of sugar which is harmless to dogs in small quantities. But excess honey will cause cavities and tooth decay. Also, do not feed dogs, raw honey, as it contains botulism spores that can cause allergic reactions.
If your dog drinks excess flavored drinks, give them some water to neutralize the sugar; and tone down sugar rush. But when your dog passes out after taking too much sugar, rush them to a vet immediately.
Avoid giving your dog stuff like cookies, chocolate, or sweetened drinks. They contain toxins that will harm your dog’s health. Instead, feed your healthy fruits like watermelon, bananas, cantaloupe, and apples. Make sure you remove the seeds and stalk on apples.