If you have some leftover popcorn from movie night, it can be tempting to treat your husky to a few pieces, but can huskies eat popcorn safely, or is it dangerous to their health?
Plain, popped popcorn with nothing added is safe for huskies to eat, assuming it is fed in moderation as a snack. If the popcorn contains additional flavorings like butter or salt, it should not be fed to your husky at all.
Keep reading before you feed your husky popcorn to make sure it is safe for them to consume.
Why Huskies Can Eat Popcorn In Moderation
Huskies can eat popcorn in moderation, assuming it is completely plain, because it contains mostly carbs and beneficial vitamins and nutrients.
The real problem with feeding your husky popcorn is what has been added to it – popcorn on its own is actually a lot healthier than you would expect.
It does have to be limited, though, because popcorn is not nutritionally balanced to make up most of your husky’s diet.
Instead, it should be fed as a treat, making up less than 10% of their total calories per day.
How To Prepare Popcorn Properly
If you want to feed your husky popcorn, it’s all about keeping things simple.
Don’t add anything to the popcorn; make sure it’s air-popped before feeding it to them.
Popcorn with added flavorings should never be fed to your husky:
- Salted popcorn contains too much sodium. Excessive salt is bad for huskies and can lead to salt toxicosis in severe cases.
- Caramel or sweet popcorn contains too much sugar, as well as other flavorings, that are harmful to your husky’s health. Sugar is bad for dogs and can lead to several health issues ranging from an upset stomach to obesity over time.
- Chocolate popcorn is toxic to huskies due to its chocolate content. Chocolate contains theobromine and caffeine, which can lead to significant illnesses and death in severe cases.
To reiterate, plain popcorn is best for your husky – avoid all popcorn with anything added.
If your husky consumes lots of flavored popcorn, take them to the veterinarian if they start to show any symptoms of illness.
What About Popcorn Kernels?
Popcorn kernels can be a choking hazard for smaller dogs, and while they aren’t likely to choke your husky, you’ll find that they will prefer the texture of air-popped popcorn rather than the kernels.
Plus, if you feed your husky kernels, they will eat the daily recommended amount very, very quickly.
Does Popcorn Have Any Nutritional Benefits For Huskies?
Popcorn actually contains quite a lot of nutrients because it is a whole-grain food. Popcorn contains lots of B vitamins, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and several other nutrients that are all beneficial to the overall health of your husky.
Aside from these nutrients, here’s a rundown of the major nutrition found in 100g of popcorn (3.5 ounces):
- 387 Calories
- 13g Protein
- 78g Carbs
- 5g Fat
100g of air-popped popcorn is a very large amount and much more than you would ever feed to your husky, but it gives us a good idea of the composition.
Carbohydrates are great for huskies, but the lack of protein and fatty acids means that popcorn shouldn’t be a large part of their diet.
Instead, you should stick to regular high-quality dog food and keep the amount of popcorn to 10% or less of their daily calories when you feed it to them.
What Happens If Your Husky Eats Too Much Popcorn?
If your husky eats too much flavored popcorn, you may need to take them to the veterinarian.
- If your husky eats too much salt from salted popcorn, contact your veterinarian as soon as possible. It can lead to salt toxicity, which first shows as vomiting or diarrhea, and can lead to seizures and even death.
- If your husky eats too much butter popcorn, it isn’t as serious as other flavors, as butter isn’t toxic to them. It will cause stomach issues as they are lactose intolerant, and if the butter is salted, you need to contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.
- If your husky ate lots of chocolate popcorn, they will require immediate medical attention. Chocolate is toxic to dogs and should be treated as soon as possible.
But what about the cases where your husky eats too much plain popcorn?
In the short term, if your husky overeats plain popcorn, it isn’t going to be the end of the world.
They will likely suffer from an upset stomach for a day or two, and that will be that. Plain popcorn isn’t toxic to them; it just isn’t the healthiest snack and shouldn’t make up a large part of their diet.
If you feed your husky too much popcorn over a long period, it will have a significant effect on their diet.
Popcorn is high in carbohydrates, and if your husky is fed too many carbs, they will struggle to break them down. This can lead to lethargy and low energy levels in a breed that is known for loving exercise and having endless energy.
Are Regular Dog Treats Better?
I prefer to feed my huskies regular dog treats – see our recommendations here – rather than popcorn.
Popcorn is great every once in a while, especially if you have some left over after movie night, but you can’t really feed your husky much of it to start with, and it does lack key macronutrients that your husky needs, such as protein.
Regular treats also pack much more flavor than completely plain popcorn, and I’ve found that my huskies much prefer them.
If your husky likes popcorn, feel free to feed it in moderate amounts (10% or less of daily calories); make sure it’s completely plain, and there shouldn’t be any issues.
The only way you should feed your husky popcorn is in minimal amounts and completely plain, with no added flavorings.
If they eat any flavored popcorn, like salted popcorn, take them to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Regular dog treats are a great alternative with much more flavor (and better macronutrients as well!).
Check out some of our other recent articles on different foods huskies can and cannot eat below:
- Can Huskies Eat Olives? Read This Before You Feed
- Can Huskies Eat Oranges? (Important Things To Know)
- Can Huskies Eat Peanut Butter? (Health Risks & Feeding Tips)
- Can Huskies Eat Ice Cream? 4 Key Problems To Consider
- Can Huskies Eat Potatoes? Read This Before You Feed
- Can Huskies Eat Oatmeal? Read This First Before You Feed