Can Dogs Eat Oats?
August 23, 2022 | 3 min read
Updated May 12, 2023
By Sarah Milton
Summary: In this blog, we discover if dogs can eat oats and if so, whether there are any health benefits to allowing your dog to eat oats or drink oat milk…
Can Dogs Have Oats?
Yes, dogs can eat oats in moderation! They’re particularly welcome in wheat-sensitive doggy diets and make a good alternative for those that react to gluten.
Oats are nutrient-dense too; high in antioxidants, packed with essential vitamins like vitamin B6, loaded with minerals like iron, zinc, and magnesium, and are a good source of protein and fiber. So, oats can even benefit your dog’s health!
Can Dogs Eat Oats Raw?
Raw oats aren’t necessarily toxic for dogs, so if your pup has vacuumed up one or two from the kitchen floor there shouldn’t be too much to worry about. But, consuming lots of raw oats at once can cause an upset stomach or gastrointestinal discomfort for a dog. Raw oats are so dense in fiber, they may prove difficult and uncomfortable for your dog to digest.
If your dog has a known zinc or iron deficiency, uncooked oats contain a high level of phytic acid which can limit the amount of iron and zinc they can absorb from food. So, be mindful of this if your dog has gotten hold of raw oats, and contact your vet if you’re concerned.
Steel-cut oats or rolled oats that haven’t been pre-mixed with seasonings, sweetener, or additional ingredients like sultanas or raisins (which, along with sweeteners like xylitol, are incredibly toxic to dogs) and are cooked - and properly cooled before serving - are best for dogs. Essentially, you should avoid instant sachets of oats or oatmeal.
When preparing oats for your pooch, make sure you’ve prepared the oats with plain, cool water, as most dogs are intolerant to the lactose present in milk.
Feeding a dog too many oats at once can bring about diarrhea and/or vomiting, so only feed your dog oats occasionally and in moderation; once or twice a week. You shouldn’t give a dog more than a tablespoon per 20lbs of body weight per day. So, for example, if your dog weighs 40lbs, they can have up to two tablespoons of oats per day, etc.
You should always take it slowly when introducing any new food to a dog to avoid upsetting their stomach - particularly with puppies. Feed a very small amount of cooked and cooled oats a couple of days over a week before considering continuing to feed low quantities of it to your dog. You should monitor them closely after their first introduction to oats as some dogs can have an allergic reaction to them. If your dog develops itchy skin, rashes, or redness after eating plain, cooked, and cooled oats, this can indicate sensitivity and you should check in with your vet.
As with humans, all dogs will react differently to different foods so always be mindful of this when trying them on new foods, snacks, and treats regardless of whether they’re deemed safe.
Can Dogs Have Oat Milk?
Yes, oat milk isn’t toxic to dogs but it’s advisable to only give them a few tablespoons worth, served as a treat on occasion so as not to upset their stomach.
If you’re wondering what foods and beverages you shouldn’t give to your dog, check out our PetLab Co. guide below which lists all items that are known to be toxic to dogs so you know which foods to avoid allowing your dog to eat:
Author Parks, Shoshi “Can Dogs Eat Oats?” The Dog People by Rover https://www.rover.com/blog/can-dog-eat-oats/
Author Dr Miller, Andrew MRCVS “Can Dogs Eat Oats?” Pure Pet Food https://www.purepetfood.com/help/can-dogs-eat-oats
Comes from a family of animal lovers and got to grow up with a menagerie of pets! I believe owning a pet is a privilege and I love researching and creating informative, fun content for fellow pet owners to help their furry friends have the happiest and healthiest lives. When I’m not writing blogs, you can find me sharing a walk with my pet dachshund or at a yoga class!