Waffles are a favorite breakfast treat among adults and kids alike. They're sweet, they're light, they're fluffy, and they taste oh so delicious. Top them with syrup, peanut butter, whipped cream, or strawberries, and you're in for the best morning ever. Today, thanks to various health crazes, there are nutritious versions of waffles out there that are vegan, gluten-free, or made from quinoa.
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There's nothing wrong with humans eating waffles, but what about dogs? Can they also partake in this delightful breakfast food, or is it going to mess with their insides?
Learning about what's inside waffles is recommended before feeding them to your pup – just like any other human food.
Where do waffles come from?
Waffles come from ancient Greece, where chefs would take two metal plates that were attached to a wooden handle and cook flat cakes. Back then, waffles were known as obelios. They were made from water and grain flour and used at Catholic meals to signify a final blessing—kind of like a communion wafer.
Eventually, Dutch bakers began making waffles in a grid pattern, and waffles spread throughout Europe. For instance, in France, they made what were called gaufres with Spanish wine, lemon zest, and cloves.
The Dutch took waffles to America and, lo and behold, the country fell in love with them, inspiring the creation of the beloved Waffle House as well as a breakfast staple, Eggos.
Can dogs eat waffles?
Dogs should not eat waffles. While they are not inherently poisonous to your pup, they are empty calories, providing no nutritional value to dogs. Because waffles contain a lot of sugar, your dog could get a stomachache from eating them.
What are the concerns with feeding waffles to dogs?
Usually, waffles are made of flour, sugar, butter, milk, and eggs, ingredients that won't satisfy your pup or contribute to his wellbeing. Additionally, frozen waffles will contain additives that aren't great for your dog. The calorie count in waffles can be high—especially if they're Belgian waffles and topped with more sugar.
If your dog eats too much sugar, this could lead to a host of health problems including obesity, diabetes, hyperactivity, and dental issues. Additionally, consuming white flour can cause digestive problems and bloating in dogs. Also, your dog may have an allergic reaction to the wheat, soy or other ingredients in the waffles, which would show up in the form of itchy skin, hair loss, and chronic ear infections. You'd have to take your dog in for an allergy test at your veterinarian's office to see exactly what he's reacting to and how to help him.
Let's say you feed your dog a waffle with syrup on it—is there any harm in that? Again, syrup is very sugary and might cause your dog's tummy to hurt. He can have a little bit of pure maple syrup, but certainly not imitation maple syrup, which may contain xylitol. This ingredient is toxic and could cause hypoglycemia and liver failure.
Plus, it could be made with high fructose corn syrup. If your dog consumes too much of it, he could become obese or get diabetes. Some signs of diabetes include dehydration, weight loss, excessive thirst, and lethargy.
A tiny amount of waffle isn't going to hurt your dog, as waffles don't contain anything inherently toxic to your dog (unless the waffle or the syrup contains xylitol). However, waffles are not a good snack to feed to your dog regularly.
If you've fed your dog waffles in the past and nothing happened, that doesn't mean you should continue feeding them to him now. They contain ingredients that won't be healthy for him in the long term. and could lead to some issues. Remember that if you see any signs of sickness, you should call your vet right away. It's always best to stick to dog food and treats and safe human foods.
When deciding whether or not to feed your dog other types of human food, make sure you do your research first by checking out our comprehensive list of things your dogs can and cannot eat. And, of course, keep the waffles to yourself, and tell your pup, "leggo my Eggo."
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.