Sugar is in almost everything we humans eat today, but that’s not to say that it’s good for us. While it may be tempting to treat your Golden Retriever with something sweet, it’s important to know whether or not it’s safe to give them sugar and, if so, how much.
Can Golden Retrievers Eat Sugar?
Yes, your Golden Retriever can have sugar. Sugar is not a toxic substance for a dog, but it should be kept to a minimum. Dogs don’t need sugar in their diet like they need high amounts of protein. Too much sugar can lead to health issues for your Golden Retriever as they age.
Golden Retrievers can have sugar, but when there is another option, like leaving it out of their diet, that is better. Dogs are just like humans and have taste buds on their tongues that help them decide if they like something they eat or not.
Once a Golden Retriever tastes sugar, it won’t likely forget it, just like us humans. After that, you may wish you didn’t give it to them as they will remember and want more. Think about every time you share a piece of peanut butter candy or a cookie.
These little treats can seem harmless, and for the most part, they are in small quantities. However, just like with human children, once they taste it, they don’t forget. Before going that route, you may want to find alternatives for your Golden Retrievers snacks and treats.
Store-bought treats may or not have sugar in them, and each manufacturer will select what ingredients they put in dogs’ food and treats. Sadly, there are no regulations for ingredients like sugar, which unfortunately leaves the hunting and digging for evidence of sugar in them up to the parent.
Whenever possible, choose dog food and treats that are free of sugars, additives, preservatives, and chemicals. It might be hard to do this based on your budget, but it might be better to feed them homemade dog foods and treats in some cases. This way, you can limit sugar and unnecessary ingredients.
One reason a Golden Retriever or other dog might take a liking to sugar is that they are omnivorous or used to eating various foods like humans. While sugar isn’t toxic for a Golden Retriever, it can lead to unnecessary weight gain and obesity.
Once that happens, your Golden Retriever can suffer problems with its internal organs and the natural metabolic processes in its body. Once that starts to happen, just like with humans, they can suffer health issues.
Sugar is naturally inflammatory to the body, ours, and our dogs, and this inflammation can eventually lead to diabetes and heart disease. Sugars can also lead to tooth decay, and let’s face it, unless you, as the parent, are diligent about brushing your Golden Retrievers’ teeth, they could suffer tooth decay.
Since sugar is inflammatory to the body, it also disrupts the digestive system and can lead to digestive issues that can be mild or severe. Tummy upset, bloating, and vomiting can all be side effects. As there are so many reasons to avoid giving your Golden Retriever sugar, it’s best to just leave it out and be safe.
What are some healthy sugar-free treats for your Golden Retriever?
There are many healthy sugar-free treats that you can give your Golden Retriever. For starters, the most basic treat would be cut-up strips of meats like chicken breast, natural hamburger, and steak. If that isn’t possible, other natural and sugar-free choices include fresh or frozen veggies.
Chunks of green beans, sweet potato, and peas are wonderful treats to share. Sharing these types of treats keeps the dog food and treat costs down as they are inexpensive but can also help you stay healthy.
Another good choice would be cut-up fruit. Cut-up fruits like pumpkin, assorted berries, and bananas are healthy, inexpensive, and fun for your Golden Retriever to snack on. If neither of those suits you and your Golden Retriever, standard store-bought dog treats are good.
When choosing a store-bought dog treat, you want to ensure the ingredients are all-natural. You also want to ensure the dog treat’s main ingredient is protein. Protein is your dog’s main source of nutrition and the best for them. Treats that don’t have it listed as the main ingredient are not as healthy for your dog.
All treats, no matter what kind, should be kept to a minimum. Treats are meant to be something special shared between meals and show appreciation for something, like when we eat a brownie after surviving a rough day at work.
Many people struggle with this and give their fur babies too many treats daily. Golden Retrievers are active large dogs and burning off the extra calories will not be as hard as it would be for some other dogs.
What are some things I shouldn’t give my Golden Retriever because they have too much sugar?
Some things that you shouldn’t give your Golden Retriever because they have too much sugar include anything store-bought and packaged for humans. Cupcakes, muffins, cookies, candies, and other store-bought treats contain too much sugar and additives.
Something as simple as store-bought macaroni and cheese can contain sugar and other unnecessary ingredients. Therefore, sharing these things as treats isn’t healthy at all.
If you must share from the table and want to give something a little sweet, giving them something homemade that you have control over is a better choice. Dog treats, cookies, and frozen pops can easily be made home without minimal ingredients, and you can control what’s in them while providing a healthy treat.
Other things that may have too much sugar in them include canned goods, and these items can contain unhealthy amounts of sugars and salt, for that matter, which can cause health issues for your Golden Retriever. Even unsuspecting items like frozen pancakes and breakfast bowls can include sugars.
When in doubt, don’t give it to your Golden Retriever, or at the very least, read the label first and keep the treat to a small amount.
Golden Retrievers can have sugar; it’s not a toxic substance. On the same token, it’s not a healthy ingredient either and should be kept to a minimum or omitted altogether.
When it comes to your dog’s diet, many other healthier choices can be easily used. Sugar isn’t bad, but it can cause health issues down the road. Therefore, it’s best to avoid sharing it with your dog!