Everything Dog Owners Should Know About Peanut Butter and Jelly

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Dogs love peanut butter, and everyone knows that classic image of a cute dog enjoying the peanut butter from your spoon! Sometimes standard dog treats are no match for your human food, especially if that food is peanut butter. You may be wondering if it is safe to let your dogs eat peanut butter, and can dogs eat peanut butter and jelly?

How Much Peanut Butter Can Dogs Eat?

First, all indulgences should come in moderation, and peanut butter is certainly an indulgence for your dog. DogLab declares that “smaller dogs should get no more than 1/2 a tablespoon of peanut butter per day. Larger dogs should be given no more than 1 tablespoon per day.” While it is ok to give your dogs peanut butter, there are different variations of peanut butter that are healthier than others, particularly brands that contain no sugar.

What Kind Of Peanut Butter Is Safe For Dogs?

The general rule for peanut butter consumption and your dog is the least amount of ingredients, the better. You should look for peanut butter that contains just salt and peanuts when checking ingredient labels, and no added sugar. They will typically look like crunchy peanut butter with healthy oils, and will give your dog the same satisfaction as peanut butter with added sugar!

cute little puggle being excitedto to eat treats while sticking his tongue out

Are Peanuts Good For Dog Health?

We know that dogs can eat peanut butter in moderation, and have specified how products with simple ingredients are the best treat for them. While it is safe to give your dogs peanut butter, it’s important to monitor how often you’re letting them eat their cherished owner’s food. Peanuts are still high in fat, and Pet Health Zone notes that dogs have more trouble digesting fat than their owners do.

What’s The Deal With Xylitol? Is it Toxic to Dogs?

Xylitol can be found in some brands of peanut butter, and it’s vitally important you don’t let your dogs eat peanut butter containing this ingredient. While most do not contain xylitol, some brands of peanut butter advertising as “sugar-free” or “light” may contain xylitol, and it’s extra important to double-check ingredients in any food products you have in your home that your furry friend could potentially access.

Although it’s harmless for humans to consume, if your dog consumes xylitol, it can trigger an insulin release in your pet’s bloodstream from the pancreas. This insulin release dangerously lowers the levels of blood sugar in your dog’s system. Pet owners should also be wary of peanut butters with xylitol as it can negatively affect your dog’s liver function, cause vomiting or weakness, and potentially give them a seizure. We really can’t stress the dangers enough, and you’ll want to make sure you avoid putting your dog through the terrible experience of xylitol poisoning.

What If My Dog Accidentally Had Some Peanut Butter With Xylitol?

First of all, don’t panic. You should contact your veterinarian immediately if you suspect your dog has consumed xylitol. VCA Hospitals instructs pet owners to not induce vomiting unless directly told by a professional, and to contact a pet poison hotline if your veterinarian is not available.

Will Jelly Hurt My Dog?

In a nutshell, dogs can consume jelly if it’s around them as they usually won’t pass up most foods. However, you should keep it out of harm’s way as it can have a damaging impact on dog health. Dog Breeds FAQ notes that “dogs are very sensitive to high sugar intake.”

From grape jelly to strawberry jelly, most traditional jelly brands sold at the grocery store have high sugar content. While it is generally accepted that dogs eat certain types of peanut butter at times, the jelly is where things get tricky and you’ll want to hold off before making daily peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for your dog.

There is a good chance they’ll feel sick if you feed your dog a lot of sugary jellies, and you’ll be on your way to the veterinarian! Furthermore, sugar can affect your dog in the same way it can affect humans, and it can make them overweight, put them at risk for diabetes, and ruin their teeth. A small amount occasionally is not a problem, just be sure it doesn’t become a big part of their diet as excessive sugar can be toxic to dogs.

I Didn’t Know Sugar Was Harmful To My Dog And They Had Some Jelly, What Should I Do?

The answer depends on how much they consumed, and for how long they’ve been consuming it. If they just had a small part of a peanut butter sandwich containing no other harmful ingredients, other than sugar, your dog will be fine. Similar to their owners, they will process the tiny amount of sugar in the same way.

If your dog has been eating peanut butter with sugary jelly for a while and you’ve noticed they feel sluggish, you will need to take them to the veterinarian. Furthermore, you should drastically cut down on your dog’s sugar consumption in the future.

Are Grapes Dangerous for Dogs?

Let’s delve a little deeper and look at grape jelly specifically, as understanding the harmful effect of grapes is crucial for dog owners. Data shows that grapes can actually have a detrimental effect on your dog’s kidneys and can lead to renal failure for your furry friend. From raisins to crushed grapes for jelly, they are not safe for dogs, and dogs owners should not only avoid giving your dog peanut butter and grape jelly sandwiches, but you should also make sure they never drop any grapes on the floor!

Can My Dog Eat Jelly Made With Artificial Sweetener?

The good news is that some artificial sweeteners, excluding xylitol, are relatively safe for dogs to eat, however, it can be tricky to keep up with triple checking the ingredients in jelly products. If you insist on sharing PB&J sandwiches with your dog, you’ll have to enact some vigilant responsibility and only purchase jellies that use certain sweeteners as a sugar substitute, all of which are considered a safe treat for dogs. Dog owners may find this to be a tedious task and decide to just give their dog peanut butter or a peanut butter sandwich, hold the jelly!

a hungry dog that wants to eat a peanut butter

Here Are Some Artificial Sweeteners Deemed Safe For Dogs:

Erythritol:

Erythritol is a sugar alcohol found in numerous “low carb” products and is considered safe for dogs.

Stevia:

Eating too much can cause diarrhoea, but it is safe for dogs otherwise.

Saccharin:

Again, this sweetener is not toxic to dogs, but if consumed excessively, gastrointestinal discomfort can occur.

Aspartame:

Similar to Saccharin, it is not toxic to dogs but too much will lead to gastrointestinal discomfort.

What About Peanut Butter Cookies?

Sandwiches aside, peanut butter comes in many forms! From cookies to peanut butter cups, there are so many foods out there containing peanut butter. Cookies are tiny, and while one bite should be fine for your dog, you don’t want to get into the habit of giving them too many peanut butter cookies.

Cookies are one of those snacks that traditionally contains a lot of sugar. While giving your dog peanut butter is okay in moderation, you should steer clear of replacing dog treats with peanut butter cookies, or you may have to head to the veterinarian.

What About Peanut Butter Cookies With No Sugar?

If you’re nervous about the sugar content, you can try to give your dog a break from dog food with a sugar-free treat. If you opt for sugar-free cookies, make sure the sweetener used is not xylitol. Double-check the ingredients for peace of mind and then give your dog a small piece of a sugar-free peanut butter cookie.

My Dogs Eat Peanut Butter, But Not Their Dog Treats, What Should I Do?

This is a tough one, but we think we have an answer. If you notice your dogs eat peanut butter as a snack, and peanut butter only, you’ll want to make sure they keep enjoying those dog treats you bought for them. You’ll want to scale back on the peanut butter a bit.

Keep in mind, you can still treat them to peanut butter, but you’ll want to balance this habit and give them more dog treats in addition to the peanut butter. One way you can do this is by sticking to a schedule and giving them a spoonful of peanut butter on certain days of the week, alternating between dog treat days and peanut butter days!

I Want To Share Peanut Butter Sandwiches With My Dog, What Bread Should I Use?

When it comes to bread, the same rules that apply to humans apply to dogs. It is safe for your dog to have some bread with their peanut butter, as long it is in moderation. Although it is unlikely, you should make sure your dog doesn’t get its paws on some raw bread dough. The American Kennel Club notes the yeast in dough can release toxic levels of ethanol into your dog’s bloodstream.

So, Can Dogs Eat Peanut Butter And Jelly?

We’ve laid it all out for you and have determined that natural peanut butter with minimal ingredients is the way to go. Peanut butter brands containing xylitol are an absolute no-go. Jellies with high sugar content should be avoided, however, it is not the end of the world if your dog has a very tiny amount.

If you need more information on foods that are safe for your dog, you should speak to a veterinarian. They will have an answer for all of your questions and you can rest easy knowing you’ve spoken to a professional.

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Hi, everyone! My name is Mathew Barham and I’m the editor in charge here at M-Dog. I’m currently based in Northampton, Pennsylvania, where I live with my beautiful wife, two amazing kids, and four rowdy rescue dogs. Growing up, my parents had a huge backyard and lots of animals. So my entire life, I was surrounded by pets that I cared for deeply. When my wife and I moved into a bigger place, I knew that I wanted to do the same for my family. That’s when we went to an animal shelter and fell in love with the most adorable little rescue pup. Since then, our family just kept growing, and we couldn’t be happier about it.