A staple at childrens’ birthday parties but can dogs eat jello? Should they? Find out in this guide.
A bowl full of delicious, jiggly Jello is a tasty dessert for humans. But many pet parents wonder if they can share this delightful dish with their furry friends. After all, isn’t it just gelatin and some flavouring?
Not so fast!
In this article, you’ll learn why Jello isn’t recommended for dogs, what health risks it poses and how to offer safe alternatives to your pup.
Table of Contents
- What Exactly is Jello?
- Is Jello Safe for Dogs?
- Health Risks & Signs of Poisoning
- Dog-Safe Alternatives to Jello
- Foods Like Jello That Aren’t Dog-Safe
- Related Posts
What Exactly Is Jello?
Basically, Jello is a dessert made up of gelatin and additional ingredients. Collagen gelatin is a byproduct of boiling animal parts, including animal bones.
Homemade “jello” made from gelatin powder and natural flavours is very different from products like “Jell-O”.
Brand name Jello mixes are extremely high in sugar, and some have artificial sweeteners. Although they contain some protein, it’s far too insignificant an amount to make it an appropriate snack for your pooch.
Storebought Jello also contains adipic acid, disodium phosphate, fumaric acid and sodium citrate.
Can Dogs Eat Jello? Is It Safe?
Gelatin is fine for dogs to consume. It comes from animal protein that makes up connective tissues.
The problem with Jello branded products is all the other ingredients, specifically sugar. There is simply too much sugar in Jello for it to be dog-safe.
Furthermore, even if you have sugar-free Jello, this too can be a big no-no for dogs due to artificial sweeteners. Some sweeteners like xylitol, fare highly toxic to your furry friend.
And although artificial colourings in Jello are not necessarily toxic, they’re not really suitable for your pup’s diet and may cause stomach upsets.
Health Risks and Signs of Poisoning
Let’s say your dog regularly eats too much sugar thanks to a diet of sugary foods like Jello. Sugar alone poses a threat to your dog’s health, since overconsumption over long periods may cause diabetes, digestive issues or obesity.
Artificial sweeteners (like xylitol) cause more immediate problems. If your dog eats a Jello with a relatively small amount of xylitol, it can cause hypoglycemia within 30 minutes. This condition means your dog’s insulin levels drop drastically, causing low blood sugar.
So if your dog eats something sweet made for human consumption and you see that it contains xylitol, you should contact your veterinary surgery as soon as possible.
Signs of xylitol poisoning include:
- Loss of coordination
Hence, if your dog exhibits such symptoms after eating something it shouldn’t have, the safest thing to do would be to speak to a veterinary professional urgently. In extreme cases, dogs who ingest toxic artificial sweeteners can experience liver failure or even death.
The combination of artificial colouring and sugar may cause an upset tummy, vomiting, and diarrhoea. Furthermore, all that sugar is also not good for your pup’s dental hygiene.
Aside from these health risks, jello provides no health benefits, so there’s no reason to offer this to your dog.
Keep your pup out of harm’s way by keeping Jello out of reach.
Safe Alternatives to Jello for Dogs to Eat
Say no to Jello and say yes to dog-friendly treats! Below are a few examples of tasty snacks your dog can enjoy without putting his health at risk.
You can make homemade jelly treats using plain, unflavoured gelatin powder. Pure gelatin may even contribute to your dog’s joint health, connective tissue strength, and digestion. Add natural, dog-safe flavours like chicken or beef broth to the gelatin mixture to create a canine-friendly snack.
If you want to offer a little dessert to your pup, consider pumpkin puree! It’s a dog-safe substance that adds fiber and nutrients to your dog’s diet. You can plop a little bit on top of his dinner or serve it in between meals.
Sweet Potato Puree
Speaking of puree, why not make some out of sweet potatoes? After all, sweet potatoes are full of nutrients, vitamins, and fiber. Simply boil a sweet potato and mash it into a paste. Mix it with your dog’s kibble or serve it on the side.
Plain (Unsweetened) Applesauce
Apple slices are safe for dogs, and so is plain applesauce. It’s a yummy treat that will load your pup up with fibre and vitamins. To be safe, you can make your own applesauce by cooking apples and mashing them. Just be sure not to give your dog the seeds or stem, as they could be a choking hazard.
Foods Like Jello That Aren’t Dog-Safe
Responsible pet parents must be aware of toxic ingredients that could harm their dogs. One such ingredient to watch for is xylitol, the artificial sweetener. It’s hidden in foods like yogurt, ice cream, baked goods, and some types of peanut butter.
Don’t let your pup get its jowls around
- Macadamia nuts
- or anything containing caffeine.
All of these food items are highly toxic to dogs and would require emergency intervention. Generally, sugary or salty foods should be strictly for your own consumption, not your dog’s.
Find out more about foods dogs should never eat.
Summary – Can Dogs Eat Jello?
Can dogs eat jello? Well… in summary, you should keep your jello dish all to yourself and opt to give your pup a dog-safe alternative.
Jello simply has too much sugar to be safe for dogs, and if it has artificial sweeteners, it could be life-threatening.
Play it safe by keeping your jello out of reach, and enjoy feeding other healthy treats to your furry friend!
Has your dog ever eaten jello when it shouldn’t have? Or perhaps you’ve had a problem when your dog ate jello? Please tell me about your experiences or ask me a question in the comments section at the bottom of this page.
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