A dog with a wary expression looking at cookies, showing they are harmful to dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Cookies?

No, dogs should not eat cookies. Cookies often contain ingredients like chocolate, raisins, and excessive sugar that can be harmful to your canine companion. Even if a cookie seems harmless, the added sugar and fat can lead to obesity and other health problems.

A photo of Stefan Stumpfl, the co-author of this article.

By Stefan Stumpfl, in collaboration with Dr. Ali Raza.

Updated on Jul 3, 2024

Did You Know?

Many cookies contain xylitol, a sweetener that is extremely toxic to dogs and can cause a rapid insulin release and liver failure.




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Why Are Cookies Bad for Dogs?

Cookies are packed with ingredients that aren’t dog-friendly. Chocolate and raisins are toxic to dogs, while sugar can disrupt their insulin and blood sugar levels. Even seemingly innocent cookies can have harmful effects because of the butter, sugar, and other additives your dog should avoid.

How Many Cookies Can Dogs Eat?

Ideally, your dog should not eat cookies at all. However, if your pup manages to sneak one, monitor them closely for signs of distress. A single, small, plain cookie might not cause serious harm, but it's best to consult your vet. Make sure this doesn't become a habit—dogs don’t need cookies as treats.

Common Misconceptions

Some folks think a small bite of a cookie can't harm their dog. This isn't always true! What’s harmless for humans can be a ticking time bomb for dogs, especially if the cookie contains chocolate, raisins, or artificial sweeteners like xylitol.

Similar Harmful Products

Many common snacks and baked goods are dangerous for dogs:

  • Chocolate chip cookies: Contains chocolate, which is toxic.
  • Raisin cookies: Contains raisins, which can cause kidney failure.
  • Sugar cookies: High sugar content can lead to obesity and diabetes in dogs.

It's crucial to keep these and similar treats out of your dog's reach.

What to Do If Your Dog Eats Cookies?

If your dog eats cookies, particularly those containing harmful ingredients, call your vet immediately. Do not induce vomiting unless directed by a professional. Monitor your dog for signs such as vomiting, diarrhea, or lethargy, as these indicate a need for urgent veterinary attention.

Chronic consumption of harmful ingredients can lead to long-term health issues, including obesity, diabetes, or even organ failure. Treatment for these conditions can be expensive, so having pet insurance can be a lifesaver, covering the high costs of emergency care.

What Are Healthy Alternatives?

Here are some tasty and safe alternatives to cookies for your dog:

  • Carrot sticks: Crunchy and low in calories.
  • Apple slices: High in fiber and vitamins.
  • Plain, unsweetened yogurt: Great for digestion.
  • Peanut butter: Just make sure it’s xylitol-free.

Each of these options offers a healthy, dog-friendly treat that won’t compromise their health.


Cookies are not a safe treat for dogs, given their harmful ingredients and potential health risks. Always opt for dog-safe alternatives and consult with your vet for any specialized dietary needs. Keeping your dog healthy means keeping cookies out of their reach!