A veterinary nutritionist has given her judgment on whether it is safe to give bread or toast to your dog – and the answer may surprise you.
While Great British Bake Off is celebrating Bread Week, many fans will likely be interested in making milk bread, focaccia and ciabatta themselves.
But dog owners considering sharing the results should be aware of the risks.
That’s because batter that contains uncooked yeast can actually be “dangerous” for puppies, says Dr. Charley Gray, a veterinarian and nutritionist at the dog home cooking platform VetChef.com.
she said Team dogs : “Uncooked yeast can be dangerous for dogs because it causes them to puff up.”
This is because the animal’s stomach offers ideal conditions for the dough to rise, so that it can expand while eating and inflate the stomach.
Toxic amounts of ethanol can also be released into their bloodstream, potentially leading to alcohol toxicosis.
Symptoms to look out for include an unsteady or “drunk” gait, bloated stomach, increased heart rate, weakness, seizures, low blood pressure, and choking, with dogs even falling into a coma in severe cases.
Fortunately, yeast in bread shouldn’t cause harm or stomach upset in puppies after baking.
Charley added, “Yeast cooked in bread is perfectly fine.”
Likewise, “occasionally bread and toast” is also “good for dogs,” says Charley.
However, owners should be aware that dog bread is devoid of nutritional value and, being full of carbohydrates, can lead to weight gain.
It is also worth considering that certain breads and toppings or spreads can actually be toxic to dogs.
Charley also agreed Team dogs : “Remember that each meal still adds calories in addition to daily meals. It is therefore important that you do not feed too much or too often.
“It is also important to ensure that the bread does not contain anything that could be harmful to dogs, for example sugar-free spreads can sometimes contain toxic xylitol or fruit breads can contain raisins, which are dangerous to dogs.”
So while plain white or brown bread is generally fine, provided your dog doesn’t have any specific allergies, ingredients to avoid are nuts, chocolate chips, raisins, onions, garlic, all of which can be toxic.
Sweet bread can also contain xylitol and is best avoided.