Can My Puppy Eat Pasta

One of the most important things to learn when you first adopt a puppy is how, when, where, and what to feed them. It’s a big responsibility, to be sure, as a puppy’s health, welfare, and wellness rely on being fed the correct food with the necessary nutritional components.

The good news is that anyone with a modicum of common sense can quickly learn the ins and outs of feeding their precious puppy. Indeed, most puppy food packaging tells you exactly what to do, how much to give, when to give it, etc.

Even if you feed your puppy perfectly following package instructions, many pet parents like to give their puppy extra food, different kinds of food, and, most often, human food. As with our children, we tend to overindulge our puppies and give in to their whining and persistence. (I can say that because I’m a sucker with my dogs.)

One food that humans love, and love giving to their puppies, is pasta. An extremely popular, easy-to-prepare food, pasta is cheap, filling, and relatively healthy. Not surprisingly, a question I hear all the time is, can my puppy eat pasta?

The answer Is yes, your puppy can eat pasta, but it’s not something you want to give them regularly. Also, you’ll want to give pasta to your pup in moderation, following the 90/10 rule. (Click here to learn more about the 90/10 rule.)

The best pasta to give your puppy is plain pasta without any type of sauce or extra ingredients. That’s especially true for pasta sauce with garlic, onions, chives, and leeks. These vegetables, all part of the allium species, can cause anemia by damaging your puppy’s red blood cells.

Now that you know that your puppy can eat pasta, you may be wondering what other pasta they can have, including pasta with cheese or pasta with sauce. Keep reading for those answers and the answers to several other questions, plus some helpful, real-world advice about puppies and pasta.

How Do I Serve my Puppy Pasta? 

The best, safest way to serve your puppy pasts is to feed them plain, cooked pasta with nothing added. It should, of course, be cooled so that they don’t burn their mouth, tongue, or palate.

Also, keep in mind the 90/10 rule of feeding a puppy (or dog) should be used when giving them pasta. That means any pasta you give your pup should equal approximately 10% of their regular, daily amount of food. (That goes for all snacks and treats.)

You can give your puppy pasta as a treat by itself, about 3 or 4 noodles, or put it on top of their regular food. If you have a picky puppy eater, putting a pasta noodle or two on top of their food can be very helpful.

Can Puppies Eat Pasta with Sauce?

Unfortunately, one of the worst types of foods that you can feed to a puppy is tomato-based pasta sauce. That’s because most canned and homemade spaghetti sauces contain onions and garlic, two ingredients that are very toxic for puppies and dogs. Also, most spaghetti sauce is extremely high In sodium, which can lead to dangerous dehydration in your puppy.

More than that, however, most tomato sauces purchased at the grocery store contain tomato stems, leaves, and unripe tomatoes. These aren’t a problem for humans, but for puppies, they can be. That’s because all three contain a substance called tomatine, which is toxic for puppies in high amounts.

Can Puppies Eat Pasta with Butter?

The good thing about butter is that it’s not toxic for puppies and won’t cause them life-threatening or lethal problems. That being said, puppies shouldn’t be given pasta with butter for several reasons.

The first reason is that butter is a dairy product and, as such, contains lactose. Dogs don’t have the digestive system to break down lactose, and, without that ability, butter can cause them to vomit, have diarrhea, and otherwise have a bad day.

Another reason is that butter is almost all saturated fat, which has no health benefits for your puppy whatsoever. If they eat a lot of butter, they can become obese and suffer from all of the health problems obesity can cause.

Can Puppies Eat Pasta with Cheese? 

Eating pasta with cheese can cause the same problems for a puppy that eating pasta with butter can cause, namely, obesity, gastrointestinal problems, and, down the road, other obesity-related health problems. 

Like butter, giving your puppy pasta with cheese can cause heart problems, weight gain, arteriosclerosis, etc. Even worse is macaroni and cheese, which typically has onion and garlic powder, high amounts of salt, and of course, lactose as cheese is a dairy product. 

It’s much better to feed your puppy small bits of soft cheese like Swiss cheese so that you can control the exact amount they receive. Also, plain cheese won’t have any ingredients that are toxic for your puppy (like onions and garlic) or contain ridiculously high amounts of salt.

Can Dogs Eat Pasta for an Upset Stomach?

Frankly, there isn’t a lot of research as to whether pasta can help a puppy with an upset stomach. However, veterinarians recommend giving a puppy something plain to make their tummy feel better, and pasta does fit that bill rather nicely.

The Dangers of Feeding a Puppy too much Pasta

As I mentioned earlier, giving your puppy a little bit of pasta every so often won’t typically cause any health problems. It needs to be well cooked, cooled, and plain, with no sauce or other ingredients.

However, one thing to keep in mind is that some puppies and dogs have an allergy to wheat and other grains. If they do, feeding them pasta all the time could cause problems, including gastrointestinal distress, vomiting, allergic reactions, and so forth.

Another thing to remember is that pasta doesn’t have much nutritional value, especially for a puppy. In other words, even though they may like it, there’s no good reason to give your puppy pasta regularly. There are definitely other treats you can give them that are better than pasta. 

Final Thoughts

As we’ve seen today, yes, your puppy can eat pasta. However, pups should be given pasta in moderation, following the 90/10 rule. Furthermore, any pasta you give your puppy should be plain with no sauce, cheese, or other ingredients added. 

Be sure to cool the pasta before giving it to your puppy as hot pasta, just like with humans, can burn their mouth and tongue. I feel it’s also important to note again that pasta, in general, has no real nutritional value for a puppy, and there are many other human foods you can give them that are much better for their health and wellness.

I hope you found today’s blog article to be educational and informative. If you have more questions about how to care for your precocious pupper, please see my other blogs on the subject. I do my best to fill them with excellent advice, tips, and information to help you, the new puppy parent, raise a healthy, happy, and well-adjusted dog.