Can dogs eat grits

In many households, grits are a favorite comfort food due to their creamy texture and versatility. It is common for pet owners to wonder if the foods they enjoy are safe for their pets. One common question is: Can dogs eat grits? This blog explores whether grits are a healthy and secure addition to your dog’s diet. We’ll talk about grits and their nutritional content, advantages, and risks, and how to give them to your dog. In the end, you’ll know whether grits are for your dog.

What Are Grits?

In Southern cuisine, grits are typically made from ground corn kernels that vary in coarseness. There are different types of grits, such as stone-ground and instant. Stone-ground grits keep more of the corn’s natural flavor and texture, while instant grits are pre-cooked and processed.

Grits are primarily composed of carbohydrates, with varying levels of fiber depending on how they are processed. In addition to being fortified with vitamins and minerals, they’re an essential source of nutrients for humans. But can dogs eat grits? Let’s take a look.

Can Dogs Eat Grits?

When considering whether grits are safe for dogs, it’s important to note that plain, cooked grits themselves are not toxic to dogs. Inherently, they do not contain ingredients that are harmful to dogs. However, the safety and suitability of feeding grits to dogs depend on several factors.

Although grits are generally non-toxic, there are potential risks associated with feeding them to dogs. They’re high in carbs, which can cause weight gain and obesity if you don’t eat them moderately. Furthermore, flavored or instant grits may contain additives like salt, butter, or seasonings.

If you plan to introduce grits into your dog’s diet, you should talk with your veterinarian first. They can give you personalized advice based on your dog’s health, diet, and any specific concerns.

When evaluating whether grits are suitable for dogs, it’s essential to understand their nutritional profile and how it aligns with canine dietary needs.

Nutritional Consideration of Grits to Dogs

The nutrition profile of grits needs to be understood in order to determine whether they’re suitable for dogs.


Grits are primarily composed of carbohydrates, which provide energy. Dogs can digest carbohydrates, but their primary dietary requirements are proteins and fats. A diet high in carbohydrates can contribute to weight gain and other health problems in dogs.

Vitamins and Minerals

Depending on the type and preparation method, grits may contain vitamins and minerals such as iron, niacin, and folate. Despite their potential benefits, these nutrients are typically more easily obtained from sources that are better suited for canine consumption.


Grits are a good source of fiber, which helps with digestion and bowel regularity. However, dogs have different digestion systems than humans, so they typically get their fiber from vegetables and fruits as well.

Potential Benefits of Grits for Dogs

However, feeding moderate amounts of grits to dogs can have the following benefits:

  • Digestive Health: Grits contain fiber, which can aid in maintaining digestive regularity for dogs, similar to how it benefits humans.
  • Energy Source: Grits provide a quick source of energy for active dogs, especially when incorporated into balanced meals.
  • Variety in Diet: Plain, cooked grits can add variety to your dog’s diet, which can be suitable for picky eaters or dogs that need dietary variety.

Grits have potential benefits, but they also come with risks, like high carb content and potential additives.

Potential Risks of Feeding Grits to Dogs

There are several risks associated with feeding your dog grits, even though they are not toxic to them:

High Carbohydrate Content

Grits are primarily carbohydrates, which dogs do not require as a primary source of nutrition. Over time, eating excessive carbohydrates can lead to weight gain, obesity, and other health problems.

Additives and Flavorings

Flavored and instant grits often contain additives like salt, butter, and seasonings, which are harmful to dogs. Some of these additives could upset the digestive system or increase sodium levels in the body.

Nutrient Imbalance

Dogs require a balanced diet that includes adequate protein and fat. Grits contain a lot of carbohydrates, which can disrupt this balance and cause nutritional deficiencies.

Digestive Sensitivity

Some dogs may have digestive sensitivities to grains or corn products, which could manifest as gastrointestinal upset, gas, or diarrhea when fed grits.

Dogs should eat grits in moderation and preferably plain, unseasoned, to mitigate these risks. Consult your vet before adding new foods to your dog’s diet, especially if he has a specific health condition.

How to Safely Feed Grits to Dogs

You should follow these guidelines when feeding your dog grits:

Choose Plain, Unseasoned Grits

Avoid adding salt, butter, or seasonings to plain grits. Dogs should avoid flavored or instant varieties that may contain harmful additives.

Cook Thoroughly

Make sure the grits are thoroughly cooked before serving them to your dog. This will ensure that they are easily digestible and safe for consumption.

Serve in Moderation

It is only recommended that dogs be offered grits as an occasional treat or to add to their regular diet in moderation. Make sure you monitor their intake to avoid overfeeding and weight gain.

Consider Your Dog’s Health

Consult your vet if your dog has diabetes or obesity before giving him grits. They can provide tailored advice based on your dog’s individual needs.

Monitor for Reactions

After feeding grits to your dog, look for signs of digestive upset or allergic reactions. If you experience any adverse reactions, consult your veterinarian.


Can dogs eat grits with butter? 

You should not feed dogs grits with butter or other added seasonings. Canines should avoid butter and other flavorings because they can be high in fat and contain ingredients that are not suitable for them. Don’t add any additives to plain, cooked grits.

Can dogs eat grits and eggs?

Yes, dogs can eat plain grits and eggs as part of a balanced diet. In moderation, both are safe and nutritious for dogs. Plain-cooked grits provide carbohydrates, while eggs are a good source of protein and essential vitamins. 

Do not add salt, butter, or seasonings to the eggs, and make sure they’re fully cooked before feeding. Always consult your veterinarian for specific dietary recommendations.

Can dogs eat grits with cheese?

It’s generally not recommended to feed dogs grits with cheese. The fat and lactose in cheese can cause digestive upset in dogs, especially those who are lactose intolerant. Plain, cooked grits without cheese or seasonings are safer for dogs. Prioritize your dog’s health by consulting a vet before introducing new foods.

Read More: Can Dogs Eat Pork Bones?


While grits themselves aren’t toxic to dogs, they should be fed in moderation and plain, without any butter, salt, or cheese. Always monitor your dog’s health and diet before introducing grits and consider their overall diet. Consult your vet for dietary advice tailored to your dog. By following these guidelines, your dog can enjoy a safe and balanced diet that promotes its well-being.

Frank Washington

I'm passionate about canine wellness, particularly skin health. Drawing on years of experience and ongoing research, I hope to provide useful insights and practical tips to help dog owners ensure their pets have a vibrant, healthy coat. As a proponent of natural and holistic care, I founded as a resource center for fellow dog lovers looking to nourish their pet's skin from the inside out.