We’ve all been there. You’re watching a movie and you get hungry, so you go to grab some popcorn from the pantry. As you seat on your couch, your chihuahua comes snooping around your feet, hoping for a snack. You notice the innocent chihuahua looking at you with those cute puppy dog eyes begging for some of that popcorn, but can chihuahuas eat popcorn?
The simple answer to that question is, yes, it is generally safe for Chihuahuas to eat popcorn. However, there are a few precautions dog owners should take before giving their pup his or her own bowl of popcorn, though.
In this article we will first discuss the composition of popcorn and how it makes them safe for feeding. Consequently, we will discuss how much should they really get and then tackle the recommended serving size. Lastly, we will go over the precautions you should take when feeding this tasty snack to your Chihuahua.
The Composition of Popcorn
First, let’s go over the ingredients of popcorn. A large portion of popcorn kernels is made up of carbohydrates. Carbohydrates is a starch that is made up of a chain of sugar molecules. Flour is another example of a carbohydrate that we use in cooking.
Carbohydrates can be broken down into four “sugars” (glucose, fructose, galactose and ribose) and humans absorb these sugar to make adenosine triphosphate (ATP) or most commonly known as our bodies energy!
The same thing happens to Chihuahuas. They are aslo able to break down these carbohydrates and absorb their constituent sugars to make energy!
Second, the reason why corn kernels pop into fluffy pieces of popcorn is because of water. Popcorn kernels have a lot of water inside them until they’re heated, which causes the starch to turn into a gooey liquid and steam. When this happens, the pressure builds up inside the kernel until it eventually pops to make what we see as these fluffy snack. It is also worth considering that a small amount of oil is also added to help with the popping process.
Finally, salt or other artificial flavoring is is typically added to popcorn for added taste. You should maybe watch out for those artificial flavorings as they are generally not always good for dogs.
So if the main ingredients of popcorn are carbohydrates and water, it is generally safe for Chihuahuas to eat popcorn.
How much popcorn should my chihuahua eat?
Even though Chihuahuas can eat popcorn as a treat, like any other snack it should be enjoyed in moderation.
Popcorn is generally known to be a low calorie snack. Because they are mostly starch and water, the calories in popcorn primarily depend on the amount of oil that is added to it due to oil’s high caloric nature. That being said, you should also watch out for oily popcorns. Just because popcorn in itself is low in calories doesn’t mean you should feed your chihuahua an entire bag of it.
The recommended serving size for dogs is about 3-5 grams. I know that doesn’t seem like much, but even though one piece is low on calories, it’s probably best for them as low sodium and low fat in large quantities could still equate to a large amounts of fat and sodium.
Precautions when serving your chihuahua popcorn
It is also recommended that you keep an eye on your Chihuahua while feeding them popcorn. It may be a safe snack for them, but they could choke on it if they don’t properly chew it because of their tiny throats. If your Chihuahua is eating his or her popcorn too quickly, the best thing to do would be to take the bowl away. It would also be best to give them to your chihuahua one piece at a time as treats.
Moreover, you also want to make sure that you are buying your Chihuahua healthy popcorn. You should avoid giving them movie theater popcorn because it is typically made with a lot of butter and salt, which could be hazardous for their health. This means no flavored popcorns either!
Finally, if you’re making popcorn at home, make sure that you are allowing the popcorn to cool completely before serving it to your pet. If you serve them steaming hot popcorn, they could burn their tongues and mouths.
So to sum everything up, dogs, including your chihuahua can eat popcorn. However, like all things good, it should be in limited amounts. Even though the ingredients in popcorn are safe for dogs to absorb, this doesn’t mean dogs need them in their diet.
Moreover, you should make sure they are only getting healthy versions of the snack and making sure that they aren’t eating too fast or too much. If you follow these rules, your Chihuahua can enjoy popcorn without any problems!