Can I Give My Dog Pasta?

Can I give my dog pasta?One of the dishes that seems to produce the most leftovers is pasta. It’s easy to make too much and to have a bunch remaining after everyone has had their fill. It’s a fun food to feed Fido, but is it something that is healthy for them, and will they be able to process it properly?

Dogs are rather simple creatures and they don’t need a lot of bells and whistles to be happy and healthy. They get on quite well with their dog food day after day, but you might be tempted to shake things up once in a while.

Supplementing their regular diet with people food from the dinner table seems to be alright in general, especially if the food is very simple in nature and not heavily processed with artificial chemicals.


Today’s pasta is nearly devoid of any nutrients and features industrial grade flours processed in giants factories. So while there’s nothing inherently wrong with giving your dog some pasta, it’s not really benefiting them in any way.

Can I Give My Dog Pasta? Answer: Occasionally

Cooked pasta, while not providing any benefit to your dog, also doesn’t harm them either. If you turn your back and they get into a whole pot of pasta, they may suffer indigestion, but you won’t need to rush them to the animal hospital.

High in Carbs
If your dog has weight management problems, it’s best not to give them any pasta. Because it’s got a lot of carbohydrates in it, your dog will not be able to process them correctly. Just as it can make a human obese, it can lead to an overweight pooch.

Your dog is able to process carbs, but not at such a high level, and not by themselves. If you give them some pasta, make sure you give them a morsel of meat to go with it. For example, if you’re having spaghetti and meatballs, make sure they get a meatball to go with their noodle.

Just like humans, dogs need a balanced diet, but they need it balanced for their system, which includes plenty of protein.

Dogs Need Protein
Dogs are carnivores and you wouldn’t see them making pasta in their natural surroundings. Since there’s no nutritional benefit for your dog, you can safely forego giving them pasta and just stick to their regular diet of a high-quality dog food.

If you’re wondering which dog food is best for your dog, just ask your vet the next time you have a scheduled visit. They’ll be able to give you the proper recommendation for your dogs size, weight, breed, and history. They’ll also be able to tailor a plan if your dog needs to gain or lose some pounds.

As a Treat
If you want to give them pasta as an occasional treat, it won’t disrupt their system too much, and won’t lead to immediate weight gain. Because of it’s mush, al dente nature it will stick to your dog’s teeth so you’ll want to give them a brushing afterward.

Better Options
There are plenty of better things to give your dog than pasta. Even though noodles are really cheap and easy to make in bulk, they are not the best option to give your dog as a regular treat, or every time your family has a pasta dish.

Stick to lean meats that will actually provide some protein to your dog and are closer to what they’d eat in the wild.

Dogs Are Boring Eaters
While it may be fun to watch your dog light up when they eat from the table, they are just opportunistic eaters and don’t need any supplemental foods. Their dog food is designed to give them all that they need. As a human you probably can’t get your mind around eating the same kibble every day for your entire adult life, but eating a delicious variety of foods is one benefit we get that dogs don’t.

So be a boring dog feeder and get it out of your head that your dog needs any extra foods to be happy. It’s only you transferring your own desires to your dog, or being a selfish owner because it gives you more satisfaction in giving the treat than the dog benefits from receiving it.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Terence March 9, 2014

Pasta is a noodle product, made mainly from wheat flour. Wheat of course, is an inexpensive cereal grain nutritionally similar to corn. Wheat can be a GMO ingredient.

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Anna November 13, 2012

A couple noodles or a small plateful is okay, but not a whole pot.

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