Can Dogs Eat Potatoes? Are Potatoes Good for Dogs?

Pet care & safety
This dog is seen with a plate full of raw potatoes. But can dogs even eat potato, and are potatoes good for dogs?

There are few foods more versatile than potatoes. Baked, fried, roasted, or boiled, potatoes can take on many flavors to suit whatever food mood you may be in. They are so popular in our human diets that it may make us wonder, can dogs eat potatoes? The answer is yes! Cooked, plain potatoes are safe for dogs to eat, but there’s more to it than that. Read on to find out. 

Potatoes and Dogs 

Not only are potatoes versatile and easy to cook, they are also healthy. Potatoes are a starch, a form of carbohydrate that gives dogs the energy they need to run and play. Plus, they're loaded with vitamin C, potassium, and antioxidants, with darker colored potatoes offering even more of these good-for-you nutrients. The potato skin itself is a great source of fiber, aiding digestion and keeping your dog feeling their best.  

With all these health benefits, it should be no surprise to find potatoes on the ingredients list of many commercial dog foods.  

Different Types of Potatoes and How They Affect Dogs 

Potatoes may be safe and healthy for dogs, but not necessarily in all forms. It’s not typically the potato that causes the problem in these cases, instead it’s all the extra additives. It may make you wonder: 

Can dogs eat mashed potatoes? Not as they are typically prepared for humans. The potato part is safe, but all the good things that make us crave mashed potatoes can be detrimental to dogs. Added butter, milk, and seasonings can be toxic, cause digestive issues, or lead to weight gain if eaten regularly or in large amounts. 

Can dogs eat baked potatoes? Again, the plain baked potato is fine for your dog. You just don’t want any butter, sour cream, or salt and pepper. 

Can dogs eat raw potatoes? Though they may seem like a crunchy snack, raw potatoes can lead to solanine toxicity if eaten in high enough amounts. 

Can dogs eat sweet potatoes? Sweet potatoes are a safe and nutritious snack for dogs. Just make sure they are cooked and plain, without seasonings, oils, or butter. 

Can dogs eat boiled potatoes? Boiling is a great way to soften potatoes without a lot of flair. Just forego adding any extra seasonings or butter. 

Can dogs eat fries, potato chips, or potato skins? Though they are technically still potatoes, fries, chips, and potato skins are loaded with fat and salt, making them unsuitable to share with your canine companion. 

How to Safely Prepare Potatoes for Dogs 

The key to feeding potatoes to dogs is to keep it simple and plain. The flavorful additions that we love, such as butter, milk, oil, and seasonings, aren’t suitable for dogs. Neither are raw potatoes due to the solanine content. 

Instead, giving your dog the occasional snack of plain baked, roasted, boiled or mashed potatoes is the best way to share this popular vegetable. It’s also important to note that potatoes should be seen as a treat or snack, served as a meal topper, rather than a complete meal. 

Before serving potatoes to your dog, thoroughly wash it. Consider removing the skin, especially if your dog has a sensitive stomach, as it can be hard for some dogs to digest. Serve a few bite-sized chunks with a meal or as a snack in between. 

Recommended Potato Serving Sizes for Dogs 

Your commercial dog food is likely to already contain potatoes, so they aren’t a necessity for all dogs to eat. Instead, you may choose to feed them occasionally to add a little spark to your dog’s meal or snack.  

Dog Weight 

Amount of Potato 

<20 lbs 

1 tsp 

20-30 lbs 

1-2 tsps 

30-50 lbs 

2-3 tsps 

50-90 lbs 

1-2 TBSPs 

>90 lbs 

3-4 TBSPs 

  It’s important to feed potatoes in moderation since eating too many can lead your dog to not eat the recommended amount of their complete and balanced dog food. Since potatoes are mainly a carbohydrate, the extra calories may also contribute to weight gain or even obesity. Stick to these guidelines for the best success when feeding potatoes to dogs. 

Other Safe Human Foods for Dogs 

If a dog is eating a complete and balanced dog food, they really don’t need any supplemental foods. But sometimes we want to treat them with healthy human food snacks! This is fine as long as the food is safe for dogs and only given in moderation. Besides potatoes, other safe human foods include: 

  • Apples 

  • Berries 

  • Bananas 

  • Carrots 

  • Cucumbers 

  • Melons 

  • Green beans 

  • Pumpkin 

  • Zucchini 

  • Lean, cooked meats 

  • Rice 

With warmer months approaching, you may be wondering if you can share some common summertime treats with your dog. Can dogs eat watermelon and can dogs eat blueberries? Yes to both! They can provide valuable nutrients as well as water to stay hydrated.  

What to Do if Your Dog Eats Something Harmful 

Sharing a bite of your meal can be a way to show love to your furry friend. But what happens if your dog accidentally ingests something harmful? Certain human foods, like onions or grapes, can be toxic to dogs and lead to serious health problems. 

If your dog eats something unexpected, a trip to the vet might be necessary. Depending on the severity, treatment could involve inducing vomiting, administering activated charcoal to absorb toxins, or even surgery to remove a blockage. These interventions can be expensive. Pet insurance for dogs helps cover veterinary expenses associated with accidents and illnesses, providing financial peace of mind when unexpected situations arise. Focus on your dog's recovery while insurance takes care of the unexpected bills. 

Feel Free to Share the Occasional Potato with Your Dog 

So, the next time you're whipping up a delicious potato dish, you can include your furry friend in the celebration! A small, plain, cooked potato can be a fun and nutritious treat, adding a little variety to your dog's diet. Remember, moderation is key, and always check with your vet before introducing any new food. But with a little planning, you can share these spudtacular moments with your pup, creating happy memories that will last a lifetime.