Can Dogs Eat Bread?

Written by: Jamie
Updated: March 7, 2020

Can dogs eat bread? I’m sure you’ve heard lots of different answers, so today we reveal the truth!


There are lots of reasons why you may want to find out if bread is bad for dogs or not.

Maybe you’re panicking after finding the breadbin has already been raided.

Or maybe you’re just asking can dogs eat toast because you have visions of al-fresco breakfast dining with your pup on the balcony.

Whatever your purpose for wanting to know if dogs can eat bread, we have the answer right here. So, sit back, pop on the toaster and let’s find out.

is bread good for dogs?

Is Bread Bad For Dogs?

For many of us, the thought of going without a round of toast or a club sandwich during the working week is unthinkable.

Bread is just that good. Our four-legged family members seem to know this too – as they sit at our feet watching every mouthful of sandwich get devoured.

The good news for our dogs is that for the most part, they can safely eat bread too. But, it’s not that simple. Dogs can eat most types of bread but there are some to be avoided.

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Dogs are generally safe to eat plain white bread and wheat bread. As you can guess, it doesn’t matter if this bread is sliced, rolls, baguettes or in another form.

In fact, French dogs really love baguette bread. Poor jokes aside, this is good news for your doggie.

Some dog owners may have even heard that feeding your dog bread when he or she has an upset stomach can help. There are occasions when this is true.

But instead of asking can dogs eat toast? You should be boiling some chicken and rice. Chicken and rice cooked in this way can help your dog’s upset stomach – but contacting a veterinarian should be your first call.

Variety of bread on old wooden table

What Should Be Avoided?

First and foremost, the advice given above is applicable to most dogs, but we should be reminded that dogs can have allergies just like humans.

There is always a chance that the ingredients of plain and wheat bread will cause a reaction when consumed by your dog.

Another thing to be avoided is bread dough. When we make homemade bread is smells delicious. Even your dog’s tail might start wagging a little more. However, bread dough should never be given to a dog – and here’s why.

When we make bread at home, we put the dough into the oven and watch it rise. The problem is that the conditions of our oven are similar to the conditions inside a dog’s stomach.

The yeast inside the dough will continue to rise when inside a dog’s stomach. Although you’re probably dreaming up a cartoon dog expanding right now, the consequences are not as funny.

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sick dog

What Happens When Your Dog Eats Bread Dough

As mentioned, the first thing to happen when a dog eats bread is that the dough will continue to rise.

This causes swelling from within the dog’s stomach, which may be seen as bloating. Simultaneously, significant levels of ethanol are released.

The levels of ethanol released make them toxic to the dog. Even though the bloating will be uncomfortable for your pup, it’s this toxicity that is most dangerous.

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What Are The Symptoms?

You may be reading this in sheer panic after feeding your dog bread dough.

Or you may have suspicions that your hungry hound has stolen some bread dough while your back was turned.

If either sound like your situation then there are some symptoms to look out for:

  • Physical weakness
  • Lethargic mood
  • Depression
  • Seizures
  • Hypothermia
  • Coma

It is always recommended to contact a professional veterinarian if you suspect your dog is unwell because of eating bread dough. This should be done as soon as the suspicion arises.

greedy dog and cat

Harmful Ingredients In Bread

Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as cutting out the homemade carbs for your dog. We have so many types of bread in supermarkets and boutique bakeries that other potentially-harmful ingredients can be found in bread.

You should not feed your dog bread that contains raisins. Raisins should never be given to dogs because they’re highly toxic to them. Another ingredient to keep out of reach which may be found in bread is garlic.

This ingredient may be one of the most tempting to dogs because they sniff it out. However, eating garlic (and bread with garlic) can cause your dog to experience an array of painful and dangerous symptoms, including vomiting and diarrhea.

There is another ingredient to look out for, but it will require you to read some packaging. Xylitol is toxic to dogs and should be avoided. This artificial sweetener has had a surge of popularity in baked goods, meaning it could be in some breads.

Side note, check for this substance inside peanut butter too!

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A Nutritional And Balanced Diet For Your Dogs

Treating your dog to a bite of your bacon sandwich every now and then is perfectly okay in the eyes of many veterinarians.

However, to have a happy and healthy dog you should ensure you give him/her a well-balanced diet full of the right nutrients. This is made easy for dog owners because the top brands of dog food have researched what makes a nutritious diet and packed the good stuff inside their food.

Stick to dog food for the most part. If you want to treat your dog, you can always find dog treats in your local supermarket aisles.


So, is bread bad for dogs? On the whole, the answer is no, but here are the key takeaways to consider before giving in to those puppy eyes:

  • Most bread is safe to give to your dog in moderation
  • Never feed bread dough to your dog
  • Bread may help your dog’s upset stomach, but boiled rice and chicken is better
  • Avoid giving bread with raisins, garlic, and Xylitol
  • A well-balanced and nutritious diet is important to keep your dog healthy and happy

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About the Author

Hi, I'm Jamie! I've always been around dogs and now writing about them is an absolute joy.
Read more about my story here.
Reach me at or connect with me on LinkedIn below.

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