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19 Shocking Reasons Why Dogs Can’t Eat Hot Chips

Can Dogs Eat Hot Chips

Have you ever opened a bag of chips and looked down to begging puppy dog eyes?

It might be tempting. But this delicious snack isn’t for doggos. 

Restrain yourself from giving in to your pooch and…

Keep reading to discover:

  • 9 dog-safe alternatives to this snack.
  • 19 reasons why dogs can’t eat hot chips.
  • The method for treating dogs who ate a lot of this snack.
  • Precisely why eating a lot of hot chips can cause pancreatitis.
  • And many, many more…

Can dogs eat hot chips?

Dogs can’t eat hot chips. This snack contains many ingredients that are harmful to dogs. Such as oil, maltodextrin, salt, sugar, corn syrup, yeast extract, garlic powder, and citric acid. It also contains substances that trigger allergies: cheese byproducts, artificial colors, and flavorings.

19 reasons why dogs can’t eat hot chips

There are many reasons why you can’t let dogs dig into a bag of hot chips. And most of it has to do with the ingredients. 

Some are okay for dogs to eat. But others are dangerous to their health. Especially in large amounts.

#1: Potatoes

What’s the main ingredient of hot chips?

Yep – it’s potatoes.

So what does a busy person do when they want to eat their favorite snack?

They grab a bag of frozen potato chips & fry it. It’s ready in no time and mega tasty. No doubt about it. 

But what about nutrition?

Potatoes are a source of starch and protein. And PetMD says that some novel ingredient dog foods often contain these. 

This root vegetable is safe for dogs to eat as long as it’s:

  • Peeled.
  • Not seasoned.
  • Cooked thoroughly. 

Dogs can’t eat raw potatoes because they contain solanine. And this is toxic to dogs. 

ACC says that the only way to remove this is by boiling or cooking the potato. 

So far, so good… But dogs shouldn’t have this root crop as part of their regular diet. 

When they eat this daily, it can still cause solanine poisoning in your pooch.

You may also wonder: Can Dogs Eat Tamarind? 7 Health Benefits + 3 Dangers

#2: Vegetable Oil (Sunflower, Corn, and/or Canola Oil)

Dogs Can't Eat Hot Chips Because It Contains Vegetable Oil

AZPetVet says that a healthy diet needs 10-15% fat. 

This is in oils like:

  • Fish.
  • Soybean.
  • Flaxseed.
  • Vegetable.
  • Sunflower.

But there are downsides to too much fat in your dog’s food. 

This can cause food sensitivities. And result in diarrhea. 

Too much fat can also cause obesity. 

This condition happens when your dog has excess fat.

To be precise, overweight doggos are 10-20% above the ideal body weight, says VCA.

What’s more, obese dogs are at risk for many health issues like:

  • Cancer. 
  • Heart disease.
  • Heat sensitivity.
  • Diabetes mellitus.
  • High blood pressure.
  • Urinary bladder stones.

Note: Check your dog’s weight often. This will help you prevent them from getting overweight. 

But if they do get chubby, then you need a special diet for weight management. 

Fiber-rich foods help in weight loss, too.

But always consult with your vet before adding or changing your dog’s diet.

#3: Proprietary seasoning (varies per brand)

This is a blend of spices that most brands will put on their hot chips. 

It may have capsaicin-containing ingredients. This is a substance found in hot spices, such as cayenne pepper. 

It can irritate your dog’s nose and airways. Especially when they breathe it in. 

But a 14-day study does tell us that capsaicin is something that dogs can process.

The researchers delivered pepper extracts through intravenous fluids (IV).

And the study showed that capsaicin has these effects on dogs:

  • Hypertension.
  • Rapid heart rate.
  • Only minimal organ toxicity.

Their system also got rid of it very quickly. 

And although it affected the heart, cardiac action potential (CAP) remained unchanged. CAP is a small change in the way the cell membrane conducts electricity.

But brands don’t disclose the exact ingredients for their seasoning. 

So there may be no way of knowing if it’s okay for your pooch or not. 

To be safe, avoid feeding hot chips to your dog.

Reading recommendation: Does Cayenne Pepper Stop Dogs from Peeing? Is It Dangerous?

#5: Salt

Hot chips contain salt.

But you don’t need to add salt to your dog’s food. 

They already get their sodium from the food they eat. Meat is naturally salty. 

And hot chips contain too much salt for dogs. 

They can have up to 0.00670205 oz (190 mg) of salt per 1 oz. 

While dogs need about 0.00705479 oz (200 mg) of salt every day. 

NAP says that an excess of salt leads to:

  • Hypertension.
  • Restlessness.
  • Fast heart rate.
  • High hemoglobin levels.
  • Dry mucus membranes.
  • Increased water drinking.
  • Increased blood pressure.

It’s very easy to have dogs eat more salt than they need to. 

So be sure to check the sodium levels on the food and treats you give your dog. 

And if you’re feeding them human food, make sure that it’s unseasoned. And cooked thoroughly. 

For example, you can prep boiled chicken for your furry friend. This is both safe and delicious for canines.

#6: Sugar

Contains Sugar

What’s another potentially harmful ingredient of hot chips for dogs?


Your dog’s body needs it to make food for the cells. 

But your dog doesn’t need a lot.

And most dogs often get this from the food they eat.

According to PetMD, too much sugar causes:

  • Toxicity.
  • Cavities.
  • Diabetes.
  • Weight gain.
  • Upset stomach
  • Metabolic changes.

#8: Yeast Extract

Another study says that it’s not such an important supplement for pooches. 

It’s because their dog food can supply the nutrients that the yeast has. 

Feeding a lot of it can result in nutrient excess. And this is dangerous for your dog.

#9: Citric Acid

This acid comes from citrus fruits. It gives that tart taste.

It’s different from ascorbic acid or Vitamin C. Which dogs already produce in their bodies. 

Citric acid can cause stomach pain for dogs. 

This happens when they eat small doses. 

But when they eat a lot of it… Say they get into a lot of lemons, this can result in central nervous system depression. 

VN says that this is a condition that can lead to:

  • Kidney failure.
  • Fast cell death.
  • Muscle damage.
  • Multi-organ failure.
  • Abnormal blood clotting.

So keep your citrus fruits. And your hot chips in a place where your pooch cannot reach.

#10: Dairy and dairy byproducts (Milk, Cheese, Whey, Buttermilk)

It contains lactose. This is a natural sugar found in milk. And it can cause digestive upset in your pooch. 

It’s because dogs don’t produce a lot of the enzyme (lactase) that would break it down. 

Aside from tummy trouble, Hill’s says that dairy often has a lot of fats. 

Which can lead to weight gain or obesity. And further health complications as a result. 

And the AKC states, that eating dairy, especially cheese, is dangerous. 

It can trigger pancreatitis. Also called inflammation of the pancreas. 

This affects the production and release of digestive enzymes. And hormones such as insulin. 

The body activates the hormones and enzymes before it reaches its destination. 

As a result, all of it starts to digest the pancreas. 

“What are the signs of pancreatitis?”

VCA says that dogs will have:

  • Fever.
  • Nausea.
  • Diarrhea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Weakness.
  • Little appetite.
  • Abdominal pain.

They’ll have attacks where they feel much pain.

Your dog might take this “praying” position when it happens:

  1. Rear end up in the air.
  2. Front body and legs lowered on the floor. 
  3. They also put their head down.

Note: With pancreatitis, early diagnosis and treatment mean higher chances of recovery.  

Take your dog to the vet if they display the signs. 

The vet will give your dog:

  • Antibiotics.
  • Hospitalization.
  • Intravenous fluids.
  • Supportive treatment.
  • Anti-inflammatory meds.

#11: Artificial Color (Red 40 Lake, Yellow 6 Lake, Yellow 6)

There’s a huge debate on the safety of putting dyes on food. 

The FDA lists food coloring that’s okay for humans and animals to eat. 

But there are dangers to letting your dog eat dyed food. 

According to this study, the coloring used in hot chips can cause health issues. 

Red 40 and Yellow 6 had carcinogenic contaminations. And they can cause hypersensitivity reactions. 

#12: Corn syrup solids

Manufacturers extract corn syrup from the glucose found in the humble corn.

It’s often used in making sweet dishes. 

Dogs need sugar to make glucose. The food for their cells. 

However, too much corn syrup is bad for them. 

This can cause weight gain. And eventually obesity.

Eating this also results in high blood sugar levels. 

Dogs don’t need additional sugar in their diet. As they can get it from their regular dog food.

#13: Whey Protein Concentrate

This is something that humans use to supplement their protein needs. 

And it may be beneficial for people but dogs will have a very different reaction to it. 

This is also a dairy product. And it can cause diarrhea or stomach upset for dogs. 

In hot chips, they put a concentrate. Which means that there are no other ingredients. 

Warning: Dogs also can’t eat whey protein powders that people add to shakes. That’s because these may have artificial sweeteners like xylitol. And this is toxic for dogs.

#14: Garlic Powder

Garlic Powder Poisoning

Garlic is part of the Allium family of herbs which includes:

  • Leek.
  • Onion.
  • Chives.

And out of all of them, garlic is the most toxic for dogs. These herbs actually contain oxidants. 

When your dog eats a lot, this can result in weak red blood cell membranes.

According to VCA, garlic powder is even more dangerous. Because your dog will get higher concentration if they eat it. 

This means that your dog is at higher risk for poisoning.

Here are the signs:

  • Drooling.
  • Vomiting. 
  • Diarrhea.
  • Depression.
  • No energy to eat.
  • Pain in the abdomen.

Eating large amounts can result in:

  • Panting.
  • Lethargy.
  • Pale gums.
  • Fast breathing.
  • Fast heart rate.
  • Kidney damage.
  • Red-colored pee. 

Warning: This is a life-threatening situation. Take your dog to the vet even before they’ve displayed the signs. Early treatment is key to recovery.

#15: Natural Flavors

You often see the “natural” label a lot in food packaging today. 

But natural doesn’t mean that it’s safe for your pooch. 

Especially as most hot chip brands don’t specify the exact natural flavors they use. 

So it’s not safe to feed your dog when you don’t know what their food contains.

Keep your cool and stop yourself from giving in. Even though your dog goes crazy for food.

#16: Sodium Caseinate

This is a food additive derived from the milk protein, casein.

Healthline says that it’s used on food products to:

  • Thicken. 
  • Stabilize.
  • Texturize.

It contains low levels of lactose. So dogs shouldn’t feel the effects of their lactose intolerance. 

However, it comes from a milk protein. 

And PetMD explains that protein from milk is one of the most common causes of allergies in dogs. 

It doesn’t happen all at once. But your dog will show reactions within weeks to months. 

They will have:

#17: Sodium Diacetate

This is a preservative used not only in many food products for humans, but also in  dog food. 

It helps preserve the quality of food and isn’t dangerous for animals.

This study states that 0.0881849 oz (2500 mg) per 2.2 lbs. (1 kg) is safe for pet animals. 

#18: Annatto extracts

Manufacturers use annatto extracts as natural food dyes. 

It’s okay for dogs in small doses.

But in large doses, it might cause hypoglycemia. This is a condition where the body’s blood sugar levels drop below normal.

This study says that it affects insulin binding properties. As a result, there’s not enough glucose for your dog’s body.

But it also means that annatto extract can help to treat diabetes mellitus. 

This is the type of diabetes where the body has too much glucose.

#19: Paprika extracts

Paprika gives hot chips that signature red color. 

It’s not toxic for your dogs in small amounts. But it’s still extracted from a pepper. Which means it may contain capsaicin. 

It can irritate your dog’s nose and airways if they inhale it. 

”My dog ate a lot of hot chips, what should I do?”

Hot chips mostly contain ingredients that aren’t good for dogs. 

So if they eat a lot of it, there’s cause for concern. 

The first thing to do is call your emergency vet. 

Tell them the following information about your pooch:

  • Age. 
  • Breed.
  • Weight.
  • Health issues. 
  • Signs they’re displaying.
  • Amount of hot chips eaten. 
  • Ingredients of the hot chips.
  • Time when your dog ate the snack.

If they have any other questions, answer as best as you can. 

Their recommendation depends on the information you give them. 

In some cases, vets will instruct you how to induce vomiting. 

And in severe situations, the vet will have you bring your dog to the emergency vet hospital. 

This is when your dog is showing signs of toxicity or poisoning.

But remember that hot chips are okay in small amounts. 

So don’t worry too much. Even when they manage to nab one chip that fell off while you ate.

Healthy hot chips alternatives for dogs (100% safe)

I know. It’s tempting to give your begging dog some hot chips. 

Especially when they blast you with the puppy dog eyes stun gun.

Always remember that hot chips aren’t good for them. And it doesn’t even offer your pooch much nutrient value. 

But I’ve got some alternative hot chips for you! They’re healthy and made especially for dogs. 

  1. Vital Essentials Dog Treats.
  2. Wholesome Pride Apple Slices.
  3. Wholesome Pride Apple Slices.
  4. Stewart Freeze Dried Dog Treats.
  5. Davie’s Sweet Potato Dog Treats.
  6. All Natural Freeze Dried Salmon Dog Treats.
  7. Pet ‘N Shape Chik ‘N Chips Natural Dog Treats.
  8. Smokehouse 100-Percent Natural Chicken Chips Dog Treats.
  9. Wag Freeze-Dried Raw Single Ingredient Dog Treats (Chicken, Beef, Lamb).

Please remember that treats should only take 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake. 

Read next: 4 Real Reasons Why Dogs Can’t Eat Nacho Cheese