Feed Your Dog Potatoes But Be Smart About It!

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Sharing a potato with a precious pet pooch is fine. Doing so can be a healthy addition to your dog’s diet, but there are a few key factors to consider.

First and foremost:

Can I Give My Dog Potatoes?White potatoes are in the Nightshade family and this may trigger inflammation in some animals.

So when it comes to dogs, sweet potatoes and yams are preferred (they are also nutritionally superior).

Dogs Can Eat Potatoes (cooked and in moderation)

Vitamins A, B & C as well as iron are excellent attributes.

But just as excessive amounts of this high starch veggie can be unhealthy for humans, you should also go easy on the potatoes when filling up your dog’s food bowl.

Note: Diabetic dogs should not be allowed to partake in potatoes for reasons we’ll be going into.

Avoiding Solanaceae

It should (once again) be emphasized:

Sweet potatoes are better than the regular white variety and the reason is pretty straightforward…

They fall outside the Solanaceae (AKA Nightshade family). And again, sweet potatoes also have more nutrients.

FYI: Obviously, potato chips or french fries are always out of the question!

Prep Potatoes For Pets

You must cook potatoes!

It’s important to avoid feeding potatoes raw due to a glycoalkaloid poison called solanine. Unfortunately, this naturally-occurring chemical can be toxic. In particular, it may affect your dog’s nervous system.

Preparation is an absolute must before chow time, and you also shouldn’t get carried away!

Here is what Dr. Seabolt recommends:

Remember that potatoes are a carbohydrate, and dogs don’t need many carbs. So don’t add potatoes into your dog’s food very often because they are mainly adding unnecessary calories. For this reason, avoid potatoes for diabetic dogs

When cooking potatoes for your dog, wash and peel them then boil or bake them with no added fat, spices, or salt. Cooked and cooled plain potatoes can make a healthy treat for dogs, just don’t over do it.

Are Mashed Potatoes OK for Dogs?

It’s best to avoid ingredients like butter, cheese, bacon bits, milk and salt. That’s why mashed potatoes are questionable for dogs (unless they are without any of these additions).


A furry friend will likely wolf down a plain potato portion (in very short order) without critiquing the taste!

Carbohydrates And Canines

Careful with starchy vegetables!

White potatoes are nearly off the charts on the Glycemic Index which means only very active dogs have a chance to burn enough of those calories.

While regular potatoes contain some nutrients, the carbohydrate factor is still a real concern.

So do this:

Strictly limit portions! As you may know, canine obesity is out of control these days.

Besides, adding a bunch of potatoes to your dog’s regular food can throw off the right balance of nutrients.

Regarding Vegetarian Diets

Some experts encourage owners not to tip the scales towards a vegetarian diet.

They argue that dogs do not need lots of starchy potatoes.

Even if that’s true, it doesn’t mean vegetables cannot be shared. Just limit them to secondary status because animal protein and calcium are the priority.

Nevertheless, check out this excellent sweet potato recipe for dogs!

Don’t feel bad if your dog doesn’t get to regularly eat healthy vegetables.

Quite honestly, potatoes (though they contain vitamin C and iron) aren’t going to help out a hound much.

The Bottom Line

You can feed your dog modest potatoes portions.

Our advice is to cook this veggie and keep it plain and be sure to ration portions (due to Nightshade and carb concerns).

For dogs, sweet potatoes are generally a better choice than white potatoes.

Go ahead and feed this staple food on occasion, but always ensure a balanced diet by providing quality dog food.

What Do You Think? Have Your Say Below…

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14 thoughts on “Feed Your Dog Potatoes But Be Smart About It!”

  1. We feed our dog red potatoes, carrots and ground turkey or cut up turkey. But I am concerned about vitamins and nutrients she might not be getting with this diet. Any suggestions to add something to her food to give her more vitamins and nutrients?

  2. How long do you cook potatoes for dogs to eat?

    1. Microwave it for 6-7 minutes.

  3. My dogs are on a vegetarian diet and are healthy and energetic. You just have to do your research and feed the right foods.

  4. Vegetarian diets are just fine for your canine family members. They don’t require meat protein to live a healthy life. I’ve had many completely healthy dogs who have lived well past their average life expectancy on a vegan/vegetarian diet. They passed away because they were just too old!

    My 16 year old Boston Terrier has been a vegetarian since he was 6 months old. He’s just as active as my 6-8 year old dogs (also vegetarians) and is in very good health for his age.

    Our 60 year old, recently retired, Holistic DVM has raised all her dogs as vegetarians. She’s been our vet for over 20 years and has repeatedly stated that a vegetarian diet for a canine is just fine.

    1. Actually same goes for humans too.

  5. I have 2 mini Dachshunds. I cook for them in the slow cooker. Chicken, or ground beef and turkey mixed and some meaty bones, thinly sliced fresh carrots. And I use rice, then potatoes as a filler. I have also used cooked farina or oatmeal as a filler.

    One dog was abused and does not have good teeth, so I take care that she doesn’t swallow whole chunks of meat. I have also cooked oatmeal with extra water with a beaten an egg and that is very well received.

  6. Potatoes are better, as part of a main side dish, rather than brown rice or oat meal. Brown rice contains rather large amounts of phytates which can hamper the absorption of minerals. Potatoes include less phytates and sweet potatoes contain none at all. They are also rich in vitamins and minerals, especially in relation to their energy content.

  7. Can it harm my medium dog? He got on the table and ate a little bit of fried potatoes. I’m really worried. Should I call the vet or take him in?

  8. I have a 15 year old Westie. He is fussy and I have to change his food regularly. But when I cook my roast on a Sunday, he has a little dinner and cleans his dish. He likes to lick his lips as if he enjoyed it. I don’t want him to lose weight so I thought about giving him some dog food with a little cooked potato, so it fills him out. He has just had his 6th monthly check-up with the vet and all good.

    1. Yes, by all means do. Leave off the gravy and onions. My babies love mashed potatoes. Anything you make is bound too be more wholesome than prepackaged dried kibble. Imagine eating the same dried food everyday. Nothing like what they eat in the wild.

  9. My dogs have been eating raw potatoes for years with no bad effects. In fact, most things said to be bad or dangerous don’t seem to bother my dogs. There is common sense like no fruits with pits. We lost one to lung cancer at 11 years old. Her partner is now 12 and still going strong.

  10. Saponins can dissolve red blood cells to cause anemia. Ingredients commonly used in dog food which contain saponins are soybeans, beet pulp, tomato pomace, alfalfa, sorghum (milo), oats, peas, beans, potatoes, yucca and garlic.

  11. Surely there is an exception for dogs on a duck and potato diet!

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