Marshmallow consists of sugar, gelatin, dextrose, tetra-sodium pyrophosphate, artificial color, and water whipped to a squishy consistency commonly used in baking. Of course, sometimes they are molded into distinct shapes and coated with corn starch.
One of the most consumed confectioneries in the world, marshmallows are rich in carbohydrates. 100g grams offers 318 calories and total carbohydrate content is about 81g in 100g.
As dogs like to eat everything especially sweets, consuming marshmallows is a debatable topic of the era. Some dog owners believe that feeding dogs with this confectionery is just like a delicious treat but others support they are harmful to dogs and hence they are strictly against the idea. So, can dogs eat marshmallows?
Let’s see what’s right and what should be favored.
Can Dogs Eat Marshmallows?
Marshmallows are in the list of those treats that no one can resist, especially for your best friend.
If your dog has just snatched one up that was dropped on the floor, don’t be alarmed. There’s nothing dangerous for your dog in regular marshmallows except for the sugar.
Primarily sugar water and gelatin are present as basic components of marshmallows. Of course, water and sugar are of no cause for concern as these are the basic needs of the body.
Whereas, gelatin is made primarily from collagen and is a spongy food obtained from animal’s various body parts. So in form of animal parts, he will be eating gelatin.
Sugars are not dangerous if the ingested chunk of marshmallow is small-sized. But overall, marshmallows are not good for your dogs. Thus, they simply can’t eat marshmallows as a routine diet.
What To Do If Your Dog Has Just Ate A Marshmallow?
If your pet has just consumed a pack full of marshmallows, and these have sugar as a constituent rather than xylitol, then just relax and don’t worry about your pet. Sugar is not dangerous for your pet but may just lead to a gastrointestinal upset. This will lead to nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite.
As pets can’t learn by their experience, you as the owner should at least be careful and keep these sorts of delicious foods out of the range of your best friend to avoid problems.
Can Marshmallows Be Helpful?
Marshmallows don’t always give off a red flag as there is at least one valuable use for this treat. Marshmallows are the perfect vehicle in masking when giving out oral medicines to your pet.
Just take a small-sized chunk of marshmallow, put the pills into the soft center of it and the pill will get disappeared into the marshmallow and a readily acceptable form of drug intake.
But this time, you need to be aware of the marshmallow content, as it must be xylitol-free and should be of small size. Just read the package and always verify that no xylitol is present.
3 Health Benefits For Your Dog
Selenium is an antioxidant and it is useful for the prevention of arthritis, cancer, and gastrointestinal illnesses, and skin problems in canine.
However, the quantity of selenium must be kept higher to achieve better results.
Iron is best for improving cell functions and also blood pressure improvement.
Iron is a key component of hemoglobin that carries oxygen through red blood cells therefore it is beneficial for the canine body.
It also helps the proper functions of various enzymes as it acts as a co-enzyme for various enzymes and helps to correct the function of the dog’s body.
Just like selenium, iron is also present in a trace amount in marshmallows.
Copper is a mineral that provides essential multiple benefits of health. It is an important vehicle for the absorption of iron, helps in the development of blood cells, and is an important component in the formation of connective tissue and bones.
Also, it is an antioxidant and poses positive effects on the body.
Just like Selenium and iron, copper is also present in a trace amount in marshmallows but makes marshmallows beneficial for the body of a canine.
Can Dogs Eat Sugar-Free Marshmallows?
If your dog loves to eat marshmallows, then you can buy sugar-free marshmallows that are safe for your dog.
Sugar-free marshmallows are usually natural, and are not only free from flavoring agents, artificial sweeteners, and colors but also free from sugar. Some marshmallows don’t contain any added sugar if you shop carefully.
But be cautious of the sugar-free products on the market that contain xylitol, which is very dangerous for canines.
What About Homemade Marshmallows?
Whenever we talk about homemade marshmallows you get to pick and choose the ingredients.
Homemade marshmallows generally consist of natural gelatin, a natural sweetener such as honey or any other natural flavoring or coloring agents, and water, all are the safest to treat your dog.
The items listed above are harmless and have some health benefits for your dog. Again, make sure not to add any harmful content.
Can Marshmallow Fluff Benefit Dogs?
Marshmallow fluff i.e. gelatin is the main ingredient that provides solid consistency to the marshmallows. Gelatin is safe and has some benefits for your dog’s health.
You should not be worried about gelatin present in marshmallows. But the main thing that should be strictly kept under consideration is that the store-bought products must be judged properly.
The artificial additives present in these must not be harmful to dogs.
Main Hazards Of Feeding Dogs With Marshmallows?
There are varieties of marshmallows and not all will be considered toxic, but it is a fact that this treat is not good food for your canine. Although they consist of cornstarch or confectioners’ sugar, they have very little nutritional value.
It is suggested by many of the studies that apart from other sugars, marshmallows contain artificial sugar xylitol, which is extremely harmful and toxic for dogs.
Even ingested in a very small amount, as xylitol can cause blood sugar to drop to such a dangerous level that may lead to seizures and even death if not treated promptly and properly.
As, it accumulates and is metabolized by the liver, and its metabolism is very slow, so it is toxic for the liver even after many days of ingestion.
If your dog is fed with xylitol free marshmallows, then it may cause gastrointestinal upset, nausea, vomiting, lack of appetite, or diarrhea. If the symptoms persist, it may lead to an increase in the chances of pancreatitis.
Apart from artificial sugars, the total carbohydrate content in marshmallows is very high compared to the total daily sugar requirement of a dog.
This can lead to dangerously high blood sugar levels for your diabetic dog, or if you have a healthy dog then it may cause obesity due to insulin resistance and incredibly high levels of blood sugar.
When To Worry If Your Dog Consumes A Marshmallow?
If a marshmallow’s larger chunk lodges in the dog’s throat, it may produce a choking effect that may be lethal for your dog’s immediate health. This scenario is serious and needs to be attended to by your vet promptly.
If marshmallows have xylitol as an artificial sweetener it may lead to coagulopathy, hypoglycemia, and life-threatening liver disease.
The manifestation of hypoglycemia is confusion, altered gait, and even lead to convulsion and irreversible degenerative effect on the cerebral cortex. So, once your dog is having symptoms of hypoglycemia attend it seriously and promptly.
If your dog has been diagnosed as diabetic and has consumed marshmallows, then high sugar content may lead to enormously high blood sugar levels. Again, this situation must be attended to immediately by your vet professional.
There may be many complications associated with high blood sugar levels that include high blood pressure, vomiting, diarrhea, and even can lead to a heart attack.
What You Do If Your Dog Has Eaten A Bag Full Of Marshmallows?
If your dog has consumed a bag full of marshmallows, you need to first keep observing your dog for any unusual symptoms.
Symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, confusion, convulsions, etc. just rush them immediately to the nearest vet.
It’s a good idea to take the plastic wrapper along with you. This can aid your veterinarian to examine the exact ingredients in the marshmallows eaten and help administer proper treatment.
What Is The Normal Treatment If Your Dog Has Consumed Marshmallows?
In the event of an emergency, medical treatment will be based on key symptoms. Vital signs like Blood pressure, temperature, oxygen saturation, pulse rate, and respiratory rate are monitored.
If your dog is having symptoms of vomiting and diarrhea, fluid and electrolyte therapy is performed. Diuretics are used to reduce blood sugar levels.
For convulsions, firstly underlying cause (hypoglycemia) is treated by administrating glucose oral or par-enteral as suitable at that time depending on condition.
Your pet is kept under observation until everything is normal.
Marshmallows are a special and delicious treat when our sweet tooth is craving something sweet.
But just remember it can be harmful to your dog if it contains artificial sugar (xylitol), preservatives, and flavoring agents. These artificial ingredients can cause adverse effects from mild to severe that even may lead to the death of your pet.
If you do decide to offer your pet a marshmallow, do it with caution and minimize the frequency. Keep a close eye out for adverse reactions as mentioned above. Any signs of trouble, seek your vet professional immediately.
Remember the information above does not replace your vet’s advice in which you should always ask for when introducing new foods to your best friend.