Can dogs eat potatoes? French fries, hash browns, mashed potatoes, tater tots - these are just some of our quintessential potato favorites. But when you’re eating some and your canine buddy looks at you with those big puppy dog eyes, a question that will surely pop up in your mind would be “can dogs eat potatoes?” There are human foods that can be given to dogs, but almost all should be given in moderation. Potatoes are one of these foods. They can be a healthy treat for your four-legged friend when prepared in a healthy way. Keep reading to learn more! Are you concerned about your pet?Book a video consultation with an experienced veterinarian within minutes.Professional vet advice onlineLow-cost video vet consultationsOpen 24 hours a day, 365 days a year Book Video Consultation Is it safe to give my dog potatoes?Potatoes are packed with a combination of nutrients that are good for dogs, like vitamin C, vitamin B6, magnesium, and iron. They’re also a good energy source and are highly digestible.But when your pooch is on a life stage-appropriate, complete and balanced diet, there’s no need for the additional nutrients and calories from potatoes. They’re better off as occasional treats.Are potatoes harmful to dogs?Don't let your dog eat any raw potatoes or any potato plants from your pantry or garden. Potatoes contain solanine which is present in substantial quantities in raw potato. This is an important reason why you should never offer a raw potato to your dog. Boiling or baking the potato are the best ways to get rid of or significantly reduce solanine.Because of the amount of carbohydrates that potatoes contain, they should not be given to diabetic dogs. Eating potatoes could lead to a sudden spike in blood sugar, which can have harmful consequences in diabetic dogs.What are healthy ways to give potatoes to my dog?There are several ways to prepare potatoes for your dog. However, you should always keep in mind these magic words: “give in moderation”.You can only give potatoes that have been cooked thoroughly.Don’t add any seasoning such as salt, spices, artificial flavors, artificial food colors, etc.Remove the potato peel.Fried potatoes are not healthy treats for dogs.Too much potato, even the cooked, unseasoned ones, can increase a dog’s risk of solanine poisoning, especially when given regularly as part of the dog’s diet.The calories in potatoes can also quickly add up to your pet’s daily calorie allotment. This can significantly increase your dog’s risk for piling on the pounds.Can dogs eat potato skins?The short answer to this is yes. However, the skin of potatoes contains oxalates which can be harmful to dogs if eaten in excess. Eating too many potato skins may increase a dog’s risk of kidney issues. The best way to protect your pet from these oxalates is to offer potato skins to your dog sparingly. But make sure they’re cooked and prepared properly for dogs.Can dogs eat mashed potatoes?Dogs can have mashed potatoes, but these should not be prepared in the same way that you prepare for your meal. The mashed potatoes for dogs should be plain and free of any seasonings. Onion, garlic powders, and a variety of other seasonings can be harmful or even toxic to dogs.Also, salt is an important predisposing factor for dehydration and kidney problems, especially when your dog consumes too many salty foods frequently. Eating too much salt can make your pet very thirsty. If drinking water is limited, your dog could suffer dehydration.Can dogs eat baked potatoes?Baked potatoes are delicious and easy to make! You can share baked potatoes with your dog, but only in small amounts.You need to take off the peel and bake the potato thoroughly without any added seasoning.If you’re making baked potatoes for a family meal, you can prepare a special baked potato for your furry friend, just make sure you know which one it is!Can dogs eat raw potatoes?Raw potatoes should never be offered to dogs. Potatoes belong to the nightshade family. Another prominent member of the nightshade family is tomato. Solanine in these vegetables is toxic to some dogs.Fortunately, cooking reduces solanine levels, making these veggies safe for your dog.Can dogs eat French fries or potato chips?While our favorite comfort foods are not toxic to dogs, being fried in oil or butter, and seasoned with salt make them unhealthy for dogs.Potatoes and Canine Dilated Cardiomyopathy (DCM)There have been reports about the link between certain pet foods and an increase in DCM cases in dogs. The major ingredients of these pet foods include potatoes, peas, lentils, and other types of legume seeds.Starting in July 2018, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been investigating reports of an increase in the incidence of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in dogs that were on grain-free diets.“FDA examined product labels of products reported in DCM cases to determine whether the products were grain-free (did not contain corn, soy, wheat, rice, barley or other grains), and whether the products contained peas, other lentils including chickpeas and beans, or potatoes (including sweet potatoes). More than 90 percent of products were “grain-free,” and 93 percent of reported products contained peas and/or lentils. A far smaller proportion contained potatoes.”The multi-pronged investigation participated in by the FDA, veterinary professionals, and pet owners continue to be an ongoing endeavor. But the exact cause for the apparent increase in diet-related DMC continues to remain a mystery.So, should I really feed my dog potatoes?In summary, potatoes are generally safe for dogs if given in moderation. For potatoes to be safe for canine consumption, they must be fully cooked with no added seasonings and flavor enhancers.Raw potatoes and consuming excessive amounts of potato skin are harmful to dogs and must be avoided. Substances found in potatoes, like solanine and oxalates, can cause a variety of health risks for dogs.Read more:Can dogs eat popcorn?Can dogs eat oatmeal?Can dogs eat eggs?Need to speak with a veterinarian regarding your dog’s diet or another condition?Click here to schedule a video consult to speak to one of our vets. You can also download the FirstVet app from the Apple App Store and Google Play Stores.