Since you’re reading this article, we suspect that you made some grits and want to share it with your dog. If that is the case, keep reading because we’ll answer to the question whether dogs can eat grits or not in this article.
Let’s start by giving our short answer to the question of whether dogs can eat grits or not. Sadly, the answer is no, dogs can not eat grits. Because there are some ingredients in grits that can be very harmful to your dog.
Let’s see the ingredients and nutritional value of grits and understand the potential benefits and harms of it.
Nutritional Value and Common Ingredients of Grits
High in Carbohydrates
The main ingredient in grits is corn. So, it is very high in carbohydrates. To understand whether it is beneficial for dogs, let’s see the place of carbs in a dog’s diet.
Unlike humans, dogs don’t need to consume carbohydrates to thrive and have a healthy life. That doesn’t mean that dogs can’t benefit from carbohydrates.
But we should make a distinction between healthy and unhealthy carbohydrates. While healthy carbohydrates come from fruits and vegetables, unhealthy carbohydrates come from starches and grains like wheat and corn.
Because these carbohydrates don’t have a lot of nutritional value and they also raise the blood sugar of your pup.
As we already mentioned above, corn is used when making grits. It makes grits very hard to digest. And some dogs are allergic to corn.
Other than that, there is no real benefits of consuming corn for dogs. You can still feed them in moderate amounts. But avoid exceeding moderate amounts because corn has a high glycemic index. That means that it will raise your dog’s blood sugar to high levels.
Corn syrup is used some products to sweeten the commercial grits and drinks. There is only a little difference between corn syrup and regular sugar.
The main difference is corn syrup is made from corn and it is liquid. But both will be processed as sugar in your dog’s system.
In fact, many people claim that corn syrup is more harmful than regular sugar because it is processed more.
BHT is a preservative used by manufacturers to prolong the shelf life of products. They are used in various sectors from cosmetics to food.
The thing that worries us about BHT is that it used to be a pesticide and now it is used in processed foods. Even though it is legal to used them in small amounts in the U.S.A. and Canada, most European countries banned the usage of them.
The F.D.A. declares that BHT in small amounts is not dangerous for human health. But we always take those advises with a grain of salt. That is why we suggest you avoid the products made by including BHT.
Palm oil is another controversial ingredient used in many commercial products. Some people claim that it is a beneficial ingredient. Because it contains a high amount of vitamin E.
Also, some studies show that it has antioxidant properties. But some studies clearly indicate that it can cause heart issues. Palm oil is another reason why we say no to the question of whether dogs can eat grits.
Salt is another ingredient in graham crackers that is not good for dogs. To understand the effects of salt for dogs, let’s get to the details.
Salt is made from sodium, which is an essential mineral for life. Although it has some benefits, it can cause some issues if your pup ends up consuming too much.
Because dogs have a lower tolerance to salt than us. And that is especially true for old pups. Because salt tends to raise the blood pressure and that is why they worsen the symptoms of some diseases.
Other than that, it can create an imbalance in the electrolyte. It can even be toxic in excessive amounts and it can cause hypernatremia.
One of the biggest concerns about the soy products is that they are genetically modified. Because almost all the soybeans harvested in the United States are GMO.
So, it is very likely that the grits that you buy from the store contains GMO soy products. But you should keep in mind that it is only true for the grits that include soy products. So, it is always a good idea to check the ingredient before you buy.
So, Can Dogs Eat Grits?
Dogs can not eat grits because all the ingredients that we mentioned above are harmful to dogs in someway or another.
First, most commercial products contain corn syrup, which is a cheaper and unhealthier version of sugar. So, you should definitely stay away from those products even for yourself.
Other than that, it contains a high amount of salt. Even though salt consumption can be beneficial to regulate the blood pressure, it worsens the symptoms of some diseases.
Palm oil is another common ingredient used in some grits products. Even though it is a controversial ingredient, there are some studies indicate that it can cause heart problems.
As for the soy, we already mentioned that most soybeans harvested in the U.S.A are GMO. So, we never advise using grits made by using soy.
If you insist on sharing some grits with your dog, just make sure that you get a product that doesn’t contain the ingredients we mentioned above so he can eat.
Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Grits?
Even though grits seems benign at first, most ingredients used in commercial products make use believe that dogs can not eat grits.
It can only be fine in miniscule amounts or if you get a product that doesn’t contain any ingredients that we mentioned above.