Can Dogs Eat Popcorn? Plain, Salted, or Flavored?

It is sometimes hard to resist the urge to share our meals with furry friends. While watching a movie on the weekend or having a big bowl of popcorn, a question may come to mind. Can dogs eat popcorn? Before you give your dog some popcorn, let’s ensure it is safe.

Can Dogs Eat Salted Popcorn

Can Dogs Eat Popcorn?

Yes, you can share your popcorn with your dog, but only if you are eating it plain. The popcorn should be air-popped, unbuttered, and unsalted.

Most microwave popcorn products contain high amounts of butter and salt, which should be avoided if you give some to your dog.

Now, if a piece or two drops on the floor by accident and your dog immediately sucks it up, it won’t be a big deal but don’t deliberately give your dog a huge handful of salted and buttered popcorn. The salt will cause them to drink more water, making them pee more, potentially leading to health issues. Too much butter can cause stomach upset and lead to diarrhea or vomiting.

So, when giving your dog plain popcorn, make sure it is in small amounts.

Is Popcorn Healthy for Dogs?

Maybe the question you want to be answered is; Should dogs eat popcorn instead of can dogs eat popcorn? Popcorn is a healthy treat because popcorn kernels contain many minerals ranging from phosphorous, magnesium, zinc, manganese, and not to mention fiber. Kernels also contain small amounts of vitamins.

Popcorn is high in fiber, cholesterol, and fat-free, which means it is safe if it is eaten plain. It can also be an excellent treat for your pup if it is unsalted and unbuttered. Just make sure to break the pieces up small enough, so your dog doesn’t choke on them. If your pet loves popcorn, add a little peanut butter to give them some extra flavor!

  • Magnesium, calcium, manganese, and phosphorous help develop a puppy’s bone.
  • Zinc and potassium help in your dog’s general body functions.
  • Copper, also found in popcorn, helps your dog to absorb iron properly.
  • Iron helps to prevent anemia in your dog.

Side Effects of Popcorn for Dogs

Unfortunately, not all of us would want to eat plain air-popped popcorn; I know I don’t! So for most of us who eat popcorn as intended, the answer to can dogs eat popcorn is solidly in the yes column.

Butter, oils, and large amounts of salt are not great for us; neither is this combination right for our dogs.

This combination is capable of causing stomach upsets in your dog. The fats and any other oil in popcorn can lead to obesity and diabetes in the long run.

Some other side effects of giving your dog popcorn with toppings include:

  • Stomach Upset
  • Diarrhea
  • Dehydration from the Salt
  • Obesity / overweight dog
  • Kidney Issues
  • Choking Hazard

Therefore, the safest option is to give plain air-popped popcorn to your dog and make sure you have entirely popped the popcorn since the partially popped kernels can get stuck in your dog’s teeth.

Can dogs eat popcorn kernels? The kernels can pose a choking hazard for your dog. You must remove the unpopped kernels from the bag before giving some to your dog.

Also, remove the ones that are only half popped and still somewhat hard. Smaller breed dogs may have a more challenging time trying to eat popcorn than a large dog breed.

Can Dogs Eat Popcorn

Can Dogs Eat Buttered Popcorn?

No, Buttered popcorn is unsuitable for your dog because it can cause stomach upsets. This is because it is hard to digest, and in the long term, it is capable of causing obesity and diabetes. It is also high in calories and fat, which can lead to weight gain. It is best to stick with healthier snacks for your pup, like carrots or apples.

Alternatively, you can make your own healthier popcorn version using air-popped kernels.

However, one or two pieces in a blue moon will not cause severe problems. It is still highly recommended that you not intentionally feed your dog buttered popcorn. Can dogs eat popcorn, the kind we actually eat? Nope!

Is Cheese Popcorn Bad for Dogs?

Yes, cheese popcorn is bad for dogs; they should not eat it. Cheese contains large amounts of sodium, which is unhealthy for your dog, whether your dog is lactose intolerant or not.

In most cases, the cheese in popcorn might not even be cheese; it could be cheese powder. Cheese powder is made by pulverizing cheese and mixing it with sugar, salt, vegetable oil, and whey. These are fattening additives.

Other types of cheese might have garlic and onion, which are not good for your pooch because they are toxic to dogs. So, can dogs eat popcorn (the weird cheese kind)? Again, the answer is no. Popcorn isn’t meant to be cheesy, anyway!

Can Dogs Have Salted Popcorn?

No, dogs cannot have salted popcorn. Dogs get enough salt in whatever meal they take. Feeding them extra salt in popcorn will produce too much salt in their body. Too much salt can cause electrolyte imbalance in dogs, leading to health issues.

Therefore, it is better to avoid feeding them salted popcorn. Stick to dog-friendly snacks like low-salt carrots or apples that are safe for your furry friend.

We all know too much salt leads to dehydration and, later, too much water consumption, which is not good for your pooch.

If your dog does not take enough water after consuming salted popcorn, it might start vomiting, muscle tremors, and seizures caused by salt toxicity or hypernatremia. We all love salted, buttery popcorn, so can dogs eat popcorn? If you are a normal human than again, the answer is no!

Can Dogs Eat Kettle Corn?

Even though kettle corn isn’t covered in butter, it is still not a good option for your dog. Kettle corn popcorn is covered in sugar also has negative effects.

Your dog could develop some concerning side effects if it eats kettle corn. So, keeping the kettle corn away from your furry friend is best. Be aware of how much sugar is in the snack, as well.

Too much sugar can lead to obesity and other health complications. Additionally, some dogs may be allergic to corn syrup or hydrogenated oils commonly found in kettle corn. Check with your veterinarian if you have concerns about your pup eating this treat.

Can Dogs Eat Kettle Corn

Can Dogs Eat Caramel Popcorn?

Can dogs eat popcorn, the caramel variety? Carmel popcorn has become increasingly popular in the past few years, and this is simply making the popcorn very sweet instead of a savory snack.

You probably can already infer that caramel popcorn will not be something you can give your dog. The high amount of sugar and butter used to make caramels can make your dog sick.

This can also lead to your dog becoming overweight over time if you continue feeding your dog caramel popcorn due to increased sugar.

Even sugar-free varieties of caramel popcorn are not suitable for dogs. Sugar-free products usually contain fake sugar or sugar replacements to keep the product sweet. These sugar replacements are usually made from toxic chemicals for dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Popcorn Kernels?

No, popcorn kernels are hard and not a treat you want to give your dog. This can choke your dog from the kernel and cause tooth issues. The hardness of the kernel can damage your dog’s teeth.

When giving your dog plain popcorn, make sure the kernels are fully popped and take out the ones that aren’t. Make sure to leave out any seasonings or flavorings, as these can sometimes be harmful to your pup. Additionally, don’t give them too much popcorn at one time, as this can cause an upset stomach.

Alternatives to Popcorn

Most owners and people do not want to eat plain popcorn, so you may want to find an alternative snack to feed your dog instead. That way, you can still enjoy the buttery popcorn without feeling guilty about your dog not getting any.

Here are some foods that are great snacks for dogs:

Cooked Chicken

If you have some plain chicken in your house, this will make an excellent snack for your dog. Many people make their own dog food, including a combination of chicken, rice, and vegetables.

Various Fruits – Fruits are another great snack you can give your dog in small amounts. Dogs can only have certain fruits, and sometimes you will have to either peel or core the fruit before giving it to your dog.

Sunflower Seeds – Shelled sunflower seeds that are just plain without salt are another fantastic treat for your dog. Sunflower seeds can give your dog great health benefits, and you can give your dog a small handful or even add it to your dog’s food.

Cheerios – Another snack that most people have in their homes is cheerios. While cheerios don’t give your dog any nutritional benefits, it does serve the purpose as a snack or even a training treat. Cheerios are very low in calories, so if you’re looking for a treat to give your dog that won’t make them gain weight, this is a good option.

Just be sure to avoid the flavored varieties, as they generally contain sugar or other ingredients that aren’t good for dogs.


So, can dogs eat popcorn? Feed your dog popcorn only if it is air and plain popped; that is, minus salt and any other additives. Make sure the popcorn is fully popped because the unpopped kernels can cause problems for your dog. Remove all hulls, as these can be hazardous for your pup.

If you’re unsure if the popcorn meets these criteria, it’s best to avoid giving it to your pooch! If you choose to feed your dog popcorn, give only a few kernels at a time and monitor them closely.

Please do not feed your dog cheese or buttered popcorn because they are unhealthy. Also, let popcorn be treated as a treat, not a regular diet. Does your dog enjoy the taste of popcorn? Let us know in our comment section below.

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