Can Dogs Eat Corn? Is Corn Safe for Your Dog?

can dogs eat corn

It’s a fine afternoon, and you’re having a small barbeque party in your backyard. There is a grilling basket full of sausages, cheese, salad, chicken wings, corn, you name it. While you are busy enjoying your savory dishes, your dog happens to steal a bite from your plate. You immediately notice them munching on some grilled corn and wonder if corn is safe for dogs.

If you’re asking yourselves, “Can Dogs Eat Corn?” then you’ve landed on the right page.  Yes! Dogs can eat corn. Here is what you need to know about feeding corn to your dog.

Is It Safe for My Dog to Have Corn?

Yes. It is safe for your dog to have corn provided you feed it to them in moderation.

Corn/maize is one of the most important cereal crops in the world. It is a potential source of nutrition that is good for you as well as your pooch—the phytochemical compounds such as carotenoids and phenolic compounds found in a corn kernel help prevent chronic diseases. These compounds also help to boost the immune system. Therefore, feeding corn to your dog is not a problem; the crop can be a part of a healthy and well-balanced diet.

can dogs eat corn
Photo Credit: K9ofmine

Interesting facts about corn 

  • Corn always has an even number of rows.
  • It is considered a vegetable, fruit, and also whole grain.
  • A cob of corn is a part of the flower, and each kernel is a seed.
  • The scientific name of corn is Zea Mays. In ancient Greek, ‘zea’ means ‘sustaining life’ and ‘mays’ is a word derived from the Taino language, which refers to ‘life-giver.’
  • It is produced in every continent except Antarctica.
  • You can find this grain in a variety of colors: blackish, bluish grey, red, white, green, purple, and, the most common, yellow.

How Is Corn Good for Dogs?

The corn kernel is the edible part of the plant, which is composed of various nutrients. According to a research study,  100 grams of the edible portion of corn contains 71.88 g of carbohydrates, 8.84 g of protein, 4.57 g of fat, 2.15 g of fiber, 15.19 mg of sodium, 286 mg of potassium, 1.5 g of minerals, 10 mg of calcium, and 2.3 mg of iron. It is also rich in antioxidants like vitamin C and vitamin E, selenium, and folic and linoleic acids, which help to build your pup’s immune system.

can dogs eat corn

Similarly, proteins help maintain healthy muscles for your dog. A high range of carbohydrates in corn is a great energy source. Its fiber content promotes your pooch’s gut health. Moreover, omega-6 fatty acids like linoleic assist in your pup’s healthy skin and coat.

Can Dogs Eat Corn on the Cob? 

can dogs eat corn on the cob
Photo Credit: Doghealthnews

Unfortunately, dogs cannot eat corn on the cob or corn cobs. Why? Because it is a choking hazard. If your four-legged best friend ingests the cob, there is a high risk of intestinal blockage. Alarming signs that your dog has gulped down the cob are vomiting, lethargy, reduced activity, dehydration, whimpering, and loss of appetite, among others.

Warning: Never attempt to induce vomiting (in case of cob ingestion) without first consulting your vet. 

No matter how lovingly your pooch wags their tail with that pitiful grin, do not hesitate to hide your corn cobs far off their reach.

My Dog Ate a Corn Cob! What Do I Do?

Immediately contact your vet,  once you’re sure your pup has gulped down a cob. Your vet will likely conduct a physical examination and also perform x-rays. Further treatment relies on the cob’s location and size.

At first, the examiner might instruct you to let the cob pass naturally. However, if there are any obstructions, they might recommend surgery. Sometimes, it is also possible to pull the corn cob out using special equipment through the dog’s mouth or rectum.

How Can I Feed Corn to My Dog?

You can feed well-cooked corn to your dog. Corn kernels (removed from the cob) served in a bowl/plate is the safest way to feed your dog. Also, make sure that the platter is free from any additives like butter or salt.

can dogs eat popcorn
Photo Credit: Thehappypuppysite

Unsalted or plain popcorn can also be an occasional treat for your pooch.

When Is Corn Unsafe for My Dog?  

Feeding corn can be unsafe when they are a food allergen to your dog. However, many nutritionists claim that corns are the least allergic grains in dog food.

Cailin R Heinze, an assistant professor of nutrition at Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University, says that true food allergies are relatively uncommon in dogs, and corn can be a well-balanced and nutritious diet.

The main problem is not an allergy to the corn itself, but rather unrevealed and hidden contaminants within the corn kernel. Sometimes insects like flat grain beetles, red flour beetles, and mealworms remain hidden inside corn. Providing your dog with such infested grains can cause them allergies and infections.  

Similarly, another essential thing to consider for the health safety of your dog is in what ways you feed the corn. For instance, if you want to give your little friend a plate of popcorn, make sure it is simple. Since popcorn contains high sodium and fat level, it is better to provide it to your pup unsalted and unbuttered. Also, make sure that you pop your popcorns correctly to avoid indigestion resulting in gastrointestinal upset.

And as we mentioned earlier, corn cobs are highly unsafe for dogs.

Here are other frequently asked questions about dogs and corn that you might want to look into: 

Can Dogs Eat Sweet Corn?

Yes, dogs can eat sweet corn. It is a healthy option for your pup if provided occasionally. Sweet corn is high in sugar, so treat them as snacks for some sweet tooth!

Can Dogs Eat Canned Corn?

Canned corn consists of corn kernels that are safe for dogs. However, it is high in sodium, and eating canned corn daily can be a risk factor for salt poisoning and dehydration.

Can Eating Corn Kill a Dog?

Corn isn’t deadly to dogs. However, giving your dog an ear/cob can be dangerous. It is a choking hazard, and if your pup ingests the cob, they may suffer from an intestinal blockage.

Can Dogs Eat Corn Chips/Tortillas?

No. Dogs cannot eat corn chips or tortillas. While a small amount might not show any harm, both corn chips and tortillas can be detrimental to your pup’s health in the long term, since they contain high sodium, calories, and fat.

The answer to “Can dogs eat corn?” is yes. Corns are safe for dogs as long as you feed them in the right way. Avoid feeding corn cobs or corn with any other additives like butter and salt to your dog. In case of any forms of allergy, report to your vet as soon as possible.

Visit our website for more information on what food your dog can and cannot eat.

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