Can dogs eat Porridge oats?

Updated 18 April 2024
Read time: 6 mins
article author
Written by Corinne Homer
article author
Reviewed by Dr. Linda Simon
Team Vet

Yes, dogs can eat porridge! They can be a great addition to a dog’s healthy, well-balanced diet. But how should you serve porridge to your hungry pooch? We’ve answered all your answers around pooches who are peckish for porridge oats…

Is porridge good for dogs?

Yep, porridge oats can be a great source of fibre, vitamins and minerals for dogs. Oats can be used as a weight loss aid, and they’re also brimming with antioxidants. 

What are the health benefits of oats?

Let’s get into more detail over the numerous health benefits of oats… 

  • Rich in dietary fibre which helps dogs feel full, promotes digestion and results in healthier poops. 
  • Vitamins B1 and B5, important for metabolising energy, proper nerve function, and the synthesising of hormones.
  • Minerals such as iron, phosphorus and zinc; essential for blood flow, bone health, boosted immune function and healthy skin and coat.
  • Packed with antioxidants and beta-glucans to fight inflammation and boost immunity, providing protection against diseases.
  • Low fat - porridge is a low fat food that helps a dog stay lean and feel full. 

  • Can puppies eat porridge?

    Puppies can eat a small amount of oats, so long as they’re served without added sugar or flavourings, and cooked so they’re digestible. Mix up some plain oats with water and cook in a pan until soft. Also be sure it’s not too hot when served. 

    When is porridge unsafe for dogs?

    Porridge is generally safe for dogs when served plain and cooked in water, but avoid raw oats, as they aren’t tasty and can be difficult for your dog to digest. Don’t add lots of sugar or flavourings to the porridge, and serve in moderation, never as a replacement for regular dog food. 

    Can dogs be allergic to oats?

    Yes - dogs can be allergic to oats, but it’s particularly rare. A dog allergy to wheat, for instance, would be much more common. If you haven’t fed your pooch oats before, feed a small amount and watch out for the following symptoms: 

    • Extended or severe diarrhoea or vomiting 
    • Swelling, redness or itchiness of the skin
    • Change in behaviour (lethargic, low mood etc.)
    • Ear infections
    • Breathing issues (wheezing, etc.)
    • Bloating or pain in stomach

    If you spot any of the above symptoms, don’t feed oats to your dog in future and if necessary, get in touch with your vet. 

    Can porridge make dogs sick?

    Dogs can be sick from porridge if they eat too much of it, if it’s fed as a meal replacement rather than just an occasional snack, or if they’re allergic to it. 

    It’s important to feed oats cooked to dogs, as they may have issues digesting raw oats. Sugary flavourings or syrups, especially containing Xylitol, should absolutely be avoided.  

    How to safely give oats to your dog?

    The best way to serve a portion of oats to your pooch is to gently cook a small amount in a pan with water, and serve plain without any added sugar or flavourings.  Avoid flavoured brands of oats, and choose organic oats if possible. 

    How much is safe to give your dog?

    Porridge oats should be a snack or a ‘side’ of sorts to your dog’s regular food. Perhaps try pouring some on top of their usual dog food, or just giving them some plain in a small bowl. 

    How much they eat will be dependent on their breed, size or health condition. In general, the rule is to dedicate 10% of a dog’s diet to snacks and treats, so use that guideline, and never replace regular meals (which should be made of mostly lean proteins) with oats. 

    What types of oats can dogs eat?

    The general rule is that plain cooked oats are the best, but let’s go into a bit more detail over what kinds of oats are safe for dogs…

    Can dogs eat oats raw?

    Raw oats aren’t recommended for a dog, as they’re harder to digest, and not that appetising for a pooch. They also contain phytic acid which can interact with certain minerals already in a dog’s body, making them harder to absorb. Cooked oats are the best way to serve them - either as plain porridge with water, or even baked into dog-friendly treats. They still contain all their nutritious benefits when cooked.

    Can dogs eat porridge made with milk?

    Overall, remember that porridge cooked with water is always the best option when it comes to your dog. Humans tend to love a bit of porridge with milk, but this isn’t recommended for a dog, who is more likely to have a lactose intolerance due to not consuming milk all that regularly. 

    Can dogs eat porridge with honey

    Porridge oats cooked with honey isn’t necessarily unsafe for a dog - both ingredients are natural and nutritious. However, honey adds a lot of calories to porridge, and it’s not really needed to sweeten a dog’s food. If you do opt for honeyed porridge oats, serve it cooked with water as a special treat. 

    Can dogs eat porridge with water?

    Absolutely! Porridge cooked in a pan with water and served plain is the ideal way for a dog to eat porridge. This way it’s more appetising and easier for a pooch to digest, yet still contains all the goodness - such as B vitamins, minerals and dietary fibre - that makes it a healthy and nutritious snack. 

    Can dogs eat porridge with syrup?

    It’s not recommended you add syrup to your dog’s porridge portion. It’s very sweet, calorific and could contain lots of artificial additives and preservatives. Syrup-covered or sugary foods are likely to lead a dog to gain weight. 

    Plain porridge is tasty enough for a dog, there’s no need to add a sweetener - and definitely avoid anything which may contain Xylitol, which is toxic to dogs. 

    Can dogs eat porridge with banana?

    In moderation, yes. Both oats and bananas are a tasty, healthy option for pooches, but adding banana as a topping also piles on those extra calories. Maybe consider this as an extra special treat, and not something that’s regularly fed as a combination.

    Are oats or rice better for dogs?

    Both oats or rice can be included in a dogs’ diet, though which is safer depends on whether the dog has certain intolerances. Both oat and rice allergies are very uncommon, however we recommend rice for pooches with an upset stomach.

    Oats are probably slightly more nutrient dense than rice, though they should be used as a snack or addition to a dog’s regular food. 


    The bottom line regarding oats and porridge for dogs - it’s a-ok! Just be sure to cook it gently in water and serve plain (not too hot!), without added sugar or flavourings. Use a plain brand of oats, not the pre-flavoured kinds. 

    What other foods can dogs safely eat?

    If you like the idea of feeding your pooch oats but are looking for alternative healthy snacks, why not try the following? 

    Browse the full range at Pooch & Mutt for more tasty, healthy treats for dogs as well as nutritious grain-free dog foods to keep your pooch strong, happy and care-free.

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