Cheerios are a delicious breakfast cereal, and you might have wondered (when your dog is looking hopefully at you with those big, snack-obsessed eyes) – can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios? One or two won’t hurt him, right? In this blog, we take a look at whether your dog can eat these tasty cereal bites safely.
Cheerios are a much-loved cereal around the world. Kids love ’em, adults love ’em, and your dog probably sees how much you enjoy your bowl of Cheerios and desperately wants to love them too. We all know how much our dogs desperately want to get in on human food action wherever possible!
The good news is that these cute little o-shaped cereal bites are totally safe for your dog – depending on the flavor. While chocolate cheerios are definitely out, other flavors are fine if you want to give your dog a quick, crunchy treat.
Honey Nut is the original flavor – but can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios safely?
Can dogs eat honey nut cheerios?
The good news is YES, your dog can eat Honey Nut Cheerios.
While giving them their own bowl of cereal for breakfast isn’t recommended, letting them have small amounts of Cheerios as a treat while you’re having breakfast is totally fine. Many dogs will enjoy the crunch and mild taste, and most of all – they’ll enjoy the fact they’re getting special human treats from you!
Just be aware that this flavor obviously contains nuts – so if your pup has existing nut allergies or nuts upset their stomach, this flavor should probably be avoided.
Can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios as training treats?
Yes, it’s totally fine to give your pup a few Cheerios as a training reward or a small snack for being a good dog!
Nutritional benefits of Cheerios
The health benefits of Cheerios for dogs are minimal. They do contain trace vitamins and minerals that are good for your dog, plus the benefits of containing honey as well.
The downside of honey is that it’s a sugar – which can contribute to weight gain or dental problems in your dog. As with any human food, always give Honey Nut Cheerios to your dog as a special treat, not a daily food.
Cheerios has always promoted itself as a heart healthy cereal that lowers cholesterol, and helps prevent a bunch of other health problems. However, the FDA has quite different views on the healthiness of Cheerios as a cereal! Human cereals just don’t have enough rich nutrients to be of much major benefit for your pet.
You can check the nutritional values of every Cheerios flavor on their website. But let’s take a look at an overview of the nutritional benefits of Cheerios.
Fiber is necessary to keep everything moving along in your dog. A human serving of Cheerios has around 4 grams of fiber, and 1 gram of soluble fiber. So if your dog is feeling a bit clogged up, a small handful of Cheerios could be just what he needs!
Most Cheerios contain vitamins A, B1, B12, B6, E, zinc, thiamin, magnesium, folic acid, and vitamin D3. These can assist with healthy blood cells. and healthy skin and eyes.
Adult dogs need 6% of calcium in their daily diet. Cheerios can help give their calcium a boost, and it contains trace phosphorus to help with absorption too.
Cheerios are also a source of iron. While dogs don’t require as much iron as we do, it’s still essential for their immunity and body health.
Cheerio flavors that are safe for your dog
These are the flavors of Cheerios that are okay for your dog to eat as an occasional treat:
- Honey Nut Cheerios
- Plain Cheerios
- Banana Nut Cheerios
- Apple Cinnamon Cheerios
- Blueberry Cheerios
Remember that Cheerios are a “sometimes” treat for your dog, and should only be given to them on limited occasions. Always check the label of your Cheerios to see if they contain additives, sweeteners, or high levels of sugar or salt that can harm your dog.
Cheerio flavors that aren’t safe for your dog
These flavors of Cheerios aren’t suitable to feed your dog:
- Whole grain and multigrain Cheerios
- Frosted cheerios
- Chocolate Cheerios
Chocolate is the biggest no-go flavor for your dog, as these Cheerios contain real chocolate which is toxic to dogs.
Even though these Cheerios are low in actual chocolate, feeding them to your dog could lead to:
- Excessive thirst
- Excessive urination
- Possible death
Also be aware that there are lots of cheaper “lookalike” Cheerio brands on the market that may be bad for your dog. These knock-off brands can be incredibly high in sugar and salt and low in nutriotional value, so make sure you read the label carefully before giving any of these cereals to your pet.
Pros and cons of feeding your dog Cheerios
If you’re weighing up whether you should give Cheerios to your dog, here’s a quick list of the pros and cons:
- Low in sugar (depending on the flavor)
- Honey is good for your dog
- Your dog will love you for giving him these human treats!
- Little nutritional value
- Relatively empty calories
- Some flavors are too high in sugar
- Bad for dogs with nut allergies
- Bad for dogs with corn, wheat, or gluten allergies
- Chocolate flavor is toxic for dogs
Are Honey Nut Cheerios bad for dogs in any way?
If your dog has any allergies, such as a wheat allergy, you should not give them Honey Nut Cheerios (or any other cereal with wheat).
If your dog eats any type of Cheerios, including Honey Nut, and experiences side effects or unusual symptoms, this could indicate they have an allergy to the cereal.
Symptoms of wheat allergy include:
- Redness or rashes on their skin
- Ear inflammation
- Licking their paws
- Difficulty breathing
If your dog has eaten Cheerios and you notice any of these symptoms, contact your vet as soon as possible for advice.
Can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios every day?
It’s not good for your dog to eat too many Honey Nut Cheerios (or any other flavor).
Due to the low nutritional benefits and high sugar levels, feeding your dog too many Cheerios can result in weight gain.
You shouldn’t feed Cheerios to your dog as a substitute for your dog’s meals, or give them Cheerios frequently as a snack. There are plenty of other dog treats on the market that are much better for your dog’s wellbeing.
In addition, feeding too many Cheerios to your dog can give them upset stomachs. Never feed them human portions of the cereal. Stick to giving them only one or two dry Cheerios as a treat or training reward.
Other cereals that are dog friendly
Aside from Honey Nut Cheerios, there are other human cereals that are okay to share with your dog now and then. These include:
- Bran Flakes
- Cream of Wheat
- Rice Chex
- Special K
- Cinnamon Toast Crunch
Cereals to avoid feeding your dog
As with any human foods and treats, some things are toxic to your pup, and should not be fed to them (no matter how much they beg you!).
Don’t ever give your dog treats that contain raisins or chocolate. And stay away from any cereals that have high sugar content. These include cereals like:
- Reese’s Puffs
- Raisin Bran
- Coco Puffs
- Lucky Charms
- Cap’n Crunch
- Froot Loops
In summary – can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios?
Hopefully this has answered all your “can dogs eat Honey Nut Cheerios” questions!
Compared to other human cereals, Honey Nut Cheerios are safe, non-toxic, and tolerated by most dogs with no adverse effects.
While the nutritional benefits are low, Cheerios contain dietary fiber, plus trace vitamins and minerals that are good for your dog. Honey Nut is also one of the flavors that has the lowest sugar content – which is one of the biggest concerns when you feed your dog human cereal.
If you’re unsure whether your dog has existing health problems that may prevent them from eating Honey Nut Cheerios safely – make sure you consult your vet first, before feeding them to your pet.