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Can Dogs Eat Mashed Potatoes? Everything You Need to Know

Yes, dogs can have mashed potatoes which are the best way to serve your pet.  Dogs can consume mashed potatoes without the risk of choking, and it’s better to avoid adding seasonings to them.  In addition, potatoes are rich in vitamin B6, vitamin C, iron, and magnesium. These vitamins and minerals aid your dog’s nervous system, immune system, nutrient absorption, and more. Still, if your dog has diabetes, potatoes may create a spike in blood sugar levels and are not advisable. 

What Is Mashed Potato?

Mashed potato or mashed taters is a dish made by mashing boiled potatoes, usually with added milk, salt, butter, and pepper. Extra seasonings may also be used, including herbs (parsley and chives), cheese, sour cream, spices, garlic, mustard, spring onion, crisp onion or caramelized onion, and bacon. It is usually served as a side dish to vegetables or meat. When the potatoes are roughly mashed, they are known as smashed potatoes. Frozen mashed potatoes and dehydrated instant mashed potatoes are available. In addition, mashed potatoes are an ingredient in other dishes, such as gnocchi and dumplings.

Is Mashed Potato Safe For Dogs? 

Yes. Mashed potatoes are safe for dogs. However, varieties of mashed potatoes contain ingredients such as dairy products (butter, cream, milk), onion or garlic powder, chives, salt, and gravy, which are harmful to your dog’s health. Serve your dogs plain, boiled, mashed potatoes, and avoid adding any spices, flavors, or preservatives to them.

Why Is Mashed Potato Good For Dogs? 

Potatoes are rich in vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B6, iron, potassium, and magnesium. They also contain fiber, which supports your dog’s digestive system.

Vitamins and Minerals 

  • Vitamin A is an antioxidant that helps slow down aging and fights inflammation. 
  • Vitamin B6 supports dogs to metabolize amino acids. 
  • Vitamin C stimulates the dog’s immune system to fight off illness. 
  • Potassium aids in keeping the dog’s heart healthy. 
  • Iron is essential in the formation of red blood cells. 
  • Magnesium helps to maintain your dog’s muscles working and growing.

Why Is Mashed Potato Bad For Dogs? 

Dairy Products

While feeding mashed potatoes is not significantly bad for your dogs, you still have to watch for the added ingredients. You should avoid your dog having mashed potatoes if they contain milk, sour cream, or other dairy products. 

Many dogs have lactose intolerance that can drive them to experience various issues, including diarrhea, bloating, digestive distress, constipation. In addition, they suffer from allergic reactions such as troubles with breathing and rushes. The situation could be difficult depending on the seriousness of your dog’s lactose intolerance.

Suppose your dog eats butter and sour cream. In that case, it may trigger a whole range of health problems, including obesity, diabetes, and even heart diseases. Another difficulty with excess fat consumption is pancreatitis, which could be life-threatening for your dog.

Carbohydrates

Mashed potatoes are a starchy carbohydrate. The added sugar to your dog’s diet will not be healthy, especially if given repeatedly or in larger quantities. If dogs are highly active, they will have difficulty burning off these extra carbs as energy. Eventually, it will just convert into fat, causing other health difficulties, including weight gain. If your dog is diabetic, it is recommended to avoid potatoes as they could spike their blood sugar, causing death.

Excess carbohydrates can also cause pancreatitis. Symptoms of pancreatitis include 

  • vomiting 
  • diarrhea 
  • loss of appetite, and 
  • belly pain. 

A vet can treat pancreatitis, but it can lead to death if not treated.

Onions and Garlic

Adding onions, garlic, or chives to the recipe can cause onion and garlic poisoning in your pet. Onions and garlic are toxic, damaging the red blood cells and causing hemolytic anemia. Symptoms include:

  • Digestive issues
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal pain

In 2018 the Food and Drug Administration published an update reviewing concern for a potential bond between foods like potato and dilated cardiomyopathy (heart problem) in dogs. They suggested a possible link connecting the diets and disease-containing foods like a potato as the chief ingredient. 

If you are worried about the connection between DCM (dilated cardiomyopathy) and potatoes, consult your vet about these concerns before serving your dog potato. 

Kindly avoid giving your dog raw potatoes. Uncooked potatoes, especially with skins, contain a toxic element that is solanine. Even being fed in moderation can cause stomach issues. However, raw potatoes are difficult for canines to chew and digest. In addition, chunks of raw potato can get stuck easily in your dog’s throat and cause choking.

How Much Mashed Potatoes To Feed Your Dog?

Mashed potatoes are safe for dogs to have but should be adhered to some serving ideas. Plain mashed potatoes are the most advisable for your dog.

It should be served as a part of the meal, complemented with an excellent protein source, and occasionally as a treat or a topping on dog food.

How To Serve Mashed Potatoes To Your Dog? 

Dogs can have mashed potatoes in the following ways:

  • Unseasoned- Avoid salt, garlic, or onion powder. 
  • Pair with a healthy source of protein- to balance all the carbohydrates, add mashed potatoes with turkey, grilled chicken, or any lean meat your dog likes.
  • As a topping on the dog food, occasionally. 
  • Feed in moderation- Keep potatoes as a special treat. Too much can upset your dog’s tummy and lead to diarrhea or vomiting. Excess mashed potatoes can also cause weight gain in your dog.

Put the mashed potatoes on the plain side to ensure your dog enjoys a healthy treat!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are Instant Mashed Potatoes Safe for Dogs?

Instant mashed potatoes are toxic for dogs because of their high sodium content. They also have extra seasonings, spices, and herbs such as garlic and onions, which is not a healthy addition to your dog’s diet. Also, according to flavors, instant mashed potatoes might have a high cheese content. In addition, they require milk in their preparation, resulting in severe digestive issues in lactose-intolerant dogs.

So, instant mashed potatoes are not safe to serve your dog.

Can dogs eat KFC mashed potatoes and gravy?

No. KFC mash potatoes and gravy don’t have anything known to be poisonous to dogs. Still, they contain a significant amount of unsuitable and unhealthy ingredients. It is high in both fat and salt, neither of which are advised for dogs.

Can dogs eat sweet potato mash?

Plain sweet potato mash with no added ingredients is an excellent additive to a dog’s diet. In addition, it is healthier than white potatoes.

Can dogs eat cooked potatoes?

Yes, as long as they are served plain, boiled, or baked potatoes are the healthiest choice for your dog.

Can dogs eat mashed potatoes with butter?

No, additives like butter will cause discomfort and diarrhea in your dog. It is always safer to stick with lactose-free products.

Can dogs eat mashed potatoes with peas?

Yes, green peas are a healthy treat for your pet. They are rich in vitamin K, vitamin A, and vitamin B. Peas are also high in potassium, iron, fiber, magnesium, and zinc. But, excess consumption of peas may cause gastric and other digestive difficulties in dogs. 

Can dogs eat mashed potatoes with corn?

You have to ensure that your dog is not allergic to corn. If they are okay with having corn, you can add a small amount of corn into a bite-size serving with plain mashed potatoes.

Can dogs eat mashed potatoes with gravy?

No, gravy is high in sodium, and one tablespoon of this sauce often contains more sodium than your dog can have in a day. Apart from the high amount of salt and fat, most gravy ingredients include garlic or onion, highly poisonous to dogs.

Conclusion

Yes, you can feed your dog a small portion of mashed potatoes. However, it would be best to provide it as a treat only. The cooking process rids the potatoes of the poisons found in their raw form. In general, potatoes are nutritious to dogs, but not in large amounts because of carbs. Just be cautious of the extra ingredients that you add to your mashed potatoes. Avoid excessive amounts of salt and black pepper, onion, garlic, and dairy products like butter, milk, and sour cream.

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