Our dogs love to taste everything, and I mean everything that we snack on. Dogs don’t worry if it’s good or bad for them; they just want what we’re having, which is why we have to be the responsible ones in the human-dog relationship.
So if you happen to be partial to a few Twizzlers now and again, you might be asking can dogs eat Twizzlers? I can’t answer the question with a simple yes or no because there’s a lot more to it than that; I will say this, Twizzlers aren’t toxic, and they will not poison your dog.
But they are so far from being a healthy snack for your dog it’s not funny.
This article will detail everything about Twizzlers, what they are(if anyone is unsure), why you should not feed them to your dog, even though they aren’t toxic, exactly why dogs should not eat Twizzlers, and what will happen if they eat some by accident.
Why Are Twizzlers Bad For Dogs?
Simply because a portion of food or snack isn’t toxic to dogs doesn’t mean that it’s a good choice for dogs to eat. Dogs must have a balanced diet for them to stay at the peak of health.
Whatsmore a dog’s dietary requirements change through the different stages of his life. For example, puppies need additional calcium and magnesium to ensure their bones grow strong and healthy. As a dog passes through middle to older age, it’s unsafe to feed your dog the same minerals because they can cause kidney damage.
Should you be aware, your dog is suffering from a disease such as renal or arthritis, a poorly formulated diet will make his illness worse. In the case of these dogs, you should specifically feed them what will not exacerbate the condition.
My point is that dogs don’t need loading down with food and treats that don’t add anything helpful to their diets. Of course, we want to allow them to eat the right kind of treats; they are a helpful training aid, and it’s heartwarming to see how a dog reacts to his favorite treat.
What Is In Twizzlers That’s Bad For Dogs?
Here is a breakdown of the main ingredients found in Twizzlers:
- Wheat flour
- Corn syrup
Lower amounts of:
- Palm oil
- Artificial flavoring
- Citric acid
- Potassium sorbate
- Artificial color Red 40
- Soy lecithin
What Makes Twizzler’s Ingredients Bad For Your Dog?
If we take a closer look at some of these ingredients, you’ll see why Twizzlers are bad for dogs. The first thing that springs to mind is a chance you’re dog might be allergic to some of the ingredients. For example, corn, wheat, and artificial food color/flavors can cause allergies in some dogs. If you know your dog is allergic to these ingredients, then you already know Twizzlers might make your dog ill.
If your dog isn’t allergic, as far as you know, and you still want to give him some Twizzlers, keep your eyes open for any reactions such as ear/skin infections, itching, stomach pains, and bloating, and patchy hair loss. Sugar and corn syrup are the two ingredients that will likely cause the most harm to your dog; there isn’t any nutritional value to a dog in either. Examine the calories for a moment. Should your dog need less than 1000 calories a day, and most dogs do, three Twizzlers contain over the vet-recommended snack amount of 10% of their daily calorie intake.
Do you want to substitute healthy, worthwhile treats for your dog with Twizzlers?
We should also talk further about sugar. Dogs do not need and shouldn’t have extra sugar in their diet, especially refined sugar. The carbohydrates in their regular diet break down into the glucose they need. You will put your dog at risk of gum disease and obesity. Both of these can lead to severe long-term health conditions for your dog.
Too much sugar can de-harmonize the microorganisms and bacteria in your dog’s gut, and this can lead to diarrhea. Bacteria in the dog’s mouth utilize sugar by producing acids; these acids eat away at the dog’s teeth’ outer coating and enamel. It’s shocking how many dogs end up with dental disease and have to have teeth removed. Sugar leads to weight gain and unnecessarily puts stress on a dog’s joints as they age; it will result in arthritis. You can also attribute heart disease and breathing difficulties to excessive weight.
The body needs insulin to store and utilize sugar; too much sugar and the more insulin the body must produce. It’s known that too much insulin harms the body’s immune system, fat storage, and muscles. In the longer term, there is a significant risk of diabetes.
It’s now thought that 1 out of every 300 dogs in the US will develop diabetes. The statistics are getting worse and don’t show any signs of abating; the 2016 State of Pet Health Report shows diabetes rising by 80% in dogs over the next ten years.
We have been discussing the flavored Twizzlers, but what about the black or Licorice Twizzlers?
Are Licorice Twizzlers Good For Your Dog?
The ingredients that go into licorice Twizzlers are the same except for the additions of licorice extract and artificial color blue 1. While they might increase the risk of allergies for your dog, the real problem is glycyrrhizin found in the licorice extract.
The FDA (Food and Drug Administration) gave a warning re glycyrrhizin saying eating 2 ounces of black licorice for two weeks provoked an irregular heart rhythm. Another side-effect is a drop in potassium levels; this causes abnormal heart rhythms and high blood pressure. It seems this issue is more prevalent to people over the age of 40.
Of course, this warning from the FDA relates to humans, not dogs, but still, it’s something to think about seriously.
Can Puppies Eat Twizzlers?
No one will believe that puppies can eat Twizzlers if they are so bad for an adult dog. Still, someone might ask the question, and if they do, the answer is an absolute no.
Puppies cannot tolerate the same food as adult dogs, so their system won’t cope with the ingredients in Twizzlers.
What Are Some Healthy Treats For Dogs?
If you need some suggestions for healthy treats for dogs, here are some suggestion:
1. Lean Meat-Cooked
An excellent treat to think about, especially if you’re training your dog, is some plain boiled chicken: no skin or seasoning, just simple and straightforward boiled chicken, breast, or dark meat.
Dogs love this, and if you want to get a positive response during training, you can’t go wrong with plain chicken meat. You don’t need much for each individual treat. You can boil a couple of fresh chicken breasts and keep them in a plastic tub in the fridge for a few days.
2. Peanut Butter
You should choose only peanut butter with no additives and is unsweetened and choose the smooth, not crunchy variety. This food is another brilliant treat as a reward during training. It’s not advisable to give a lot of peanut butter to dogs, but it really goes down well on occasion. There are some excellent protein and vitamin sources in peanut butter.
Pumpkin is an excellent treat for dogs, and they love the taste. There are bags of fiber and vitamins in pumpkin. Boil a piece of raw pumpkin and cut it into treat-sized cubes. They will also keep in a plastic tub in the fridge for several days. If you can’t access fresh pumpkin, you can use tinned, but ensure it’s the unsweetened type.
4. Apple Slices
Fresh apple cut into small cubes can also be a terrific training treat. Perhaps not as popular as lean boiled chicken, but I’ve never known a dog turn down a piece of fresh and crunchy apple. Apples have a large enough sugar content to stop you from feeding your dog too much.
5. Fresh Veggies
A few chopped vegetables are another healthy treat for your dog. You should ensure you have cut them small enough so your dog can swallow them whole if that’s what he enjoys. It’s better if they crunch on the veggies, especially if you give him a carrot, but not all dogs have the patience to chew, which is why I say it’s better to chop them small.
Bottom Line – Can Dogs Eat Twizzlers?
I’m confident we have made our case why Twizzlers are bad for dogs, and they shouldn’t be allowed to eat them. If they steal the odd-piece or two from the kids, it’s nothing to panic about. But it would be best to try and educate children why something that’s okay for them to eat doesn’t mean it’s safe for the family dog.
While Twizzlers are not a toxic or poisonous product, there’s no reason to give them to your dog. If it’s tempting to find a similar sugar-free product, always be aware that while the manufacturers tout their products as sugar-free, they typically add artificial sweeteners to compensate. If it’s Xylitol they use, this is a toxic ingredient for dogs, and they should never eat food containing this sweetener.