Dogs are some of our most favored pets. Chances are, if a person likes animals and has or had a pet, they will likely either have a dog, want a dog, or have had a dog in the past.
… Okay, maybe they had a cat instead, but the point still stands! Dogs are one of, if not THE, most popularly owned pet animals in the country.
However, like with all pet’s needs, knowing what they can and can’t eat is crucial to their well-being. After all, you don’t want to accidentally poison and harm your loyal companion, do you?
Now, while dogs’ digestive systems have changed plenty since they were first domesticated, some foods are still reliable items to feed them.
Virtually any kind of unseasoned meat or fish is safe (see also ‘Can Your Dog Eat Tilapia?‘), and even some varieties of grain foods are okay, such as some types of rice.
For other foods, however, the issue becomes a little more complicated, especially in more processed or elaborate foods.
Can Dogs Eat Rice Cakes?
So, we should probably get to the step and answer that you clicked on this guide for in the first place: Can dogs safely eat rice cakes Well, the simple answer is: Yes! At least in some circumstances.
Rice cakes are, by their nature the kind of food they are, a very simple type of food that has very few extra ingredients and calories added to them.
Whilst this might make them a little boring for some people to enjoy, this also means that they make for a pretty effective snack or treat to give your dogs from time to time.
(see also ‘Can Your Dog Eat Corn Chips?‘)?
Notes On Giving Dogs Rice Cakes
When giving your dog a rice cake as a treat, there are a few things that you should probably keep in mind before breaking off a chunk of your rice cake and feeding it to fido across the room.
Perhaps most importantly, make sure that the rice cake that you are feeding them has no artificial additives included, such as extra salt or other seasonings and spices for added flavor.
While this makes them more appealing snacks for people, they can be harmful to a dog’s digestive system (see also ‘How Much Pumpkin Should A Dog Have For Constipation?‘).
Secondly, it is also important to remember that, if you’re using rice cakes as a relatively common treat to feed or train your dog with, make sure that you aren’t simply giving them pieces of the rice cake that you were eating.
This sends the message to your dog that they are entitled to the food that you are eating, which is not only a poor behavior for your dog to develop but can also inadvertently harm them, as they may try to eat a food item you are holding that isn’t safe for them.
How Many Rice Cakes Can A Dog Safely Eat?
So, with those extra amendments noted, rice cakes are generally a pretty safe food to give your dog, at least from time to time.
However, like with many foods that we eat as humans, eating too much of one item can bring negative effects.
So, how many rice cakes is it safe for your dog to eat (see also ‘Can Your Dog Eat Veggie Straws?‘)?
Well, as we have stated in the last section, one of the reasons that these human-made snacks are generally okay for dogs is their simple makeup.
Being made primarily from puffed rice that has been shaped, their lack of complex ingredients makes them safe for both humans and dogs to eat.
However, that simplicity also comes with its drawbacks. Being a very simple carb-based food, rice cakes lack many of the nutrients that dogs need to live healthy and long lives, such as more complex proteins that are usually found in most meat items and tailor-made dog foods.
For this reason, feeding your dog too many rice cakes can leave them with nutrient deficiencies that can lead to an overall low quality of life in the long run.
Because of this, if you do plan on using rice cakes as a regular dog treat, make sure that they make up less than 10% of your overall daily calorie count.
Health Effects Of Dogs Eating Rice Cakes
So, what exactly are some of the effects that dogs will have when eating rice cakes regularly?
- Generally speaking, the main benefit of rice cakes for your dog is their simplicity. Being made from rice, there is little danger of them eating them if a piece falls onto the floor.
- Rice cakes are primarily known for having a small number of carbs, and a tiny amount of protein, both of which are nutrients that your dogs should get from their food.
- If a piece of rice cake that you are feeding your dog is too big, you may find that your dog runs the risk of choking on the item.
- Some rice cakes are made with gluten or dairy products, which can give your dog several digestive issues, including severe indigestion. The same goes for types of rice cakes that have extra salt or sugar in them for flavoring.
- Overfeeding your dog rice cakes runs the risk of making them lethargic and noticeably more tired over time, as they contain relatively few carbs when compared to how much energy they take to consume and digest.
Can Puppies Eat Rice Cakes?
In this list, when we have been discussing the dogs that can safely consume rice cakes, we have been focusing primarily on adult dogs, that are at least a year old or older. Does the same apply to puppies as well?
Well, no. Not really?
Remember how we established that rice cakes being a primarily carb-based food don’t have the necessary nutrients for grown-up dogs to live fully off of?
Well, the same applies to puppies, even more so. Their growing bodies need plenty of nutrients that rice cakes simply don’t have inside of them.
However, if they occasionally eat a loose crumb of a rice cake that they find on the floor, you shouldn’t worry too much about it, outside of maybe a little indigestion at most.
Still, don’t make a habit of it!
Final Thoughts – How Safe Are Rice Cakes For Dogs?
So, with all the information that we have covered in this piece, are rice cakes safe for your pet pooch to nibble on from time to time?
The answer we came to was yes, at least in small or infrequent quantities. However, they simply do not have enough nutrients to live healthily for long periods.
In short, keep these rice cakes as the occasional treat for being the good boys and girls that they are, and your dog will be totally fine!