Can Dogs Eat Funyuns?

Examining the Safety and Nutritional Value of Funyuns for Dogs.

If you’re a dog owner, you’re likely familiar with the pleading looks your furry friend gives you when you’re snacking on something they want. But before you give in and share your Funyuns with your pup, it’s important to consider whether or not this popular snack is safe for dogs to eat. 

So, can dogs eat Funyuns? The short answer is no. Funyuns are not a suitable snack for dogs due to their high fat and salt content, as well as the fact that they contain onion powder, which can be harmful to dogs in large quantities. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at why Funyuns are not a good choice for your dog and what alternative snacks you can offer instead.

Table of Contents

What Exactly Are Funyuns, Anyway?

What Exactly Are Funyuns

Funyuns are a snack food made by Frito-Lay that are essentially fried cornmeal rings flavored with onion powder and MSG. Although they resemble onion rings and have a somewhat oniony flavor, there is no actual onion in the dough, just onion powder and “natural toasted onion flavor” in the seasoning blend. Invented in 1969 by a Frito-Lay employee named George Bigner, Funyuns are made by pushing cornmeal dough through an extruder and onto a conveyor belt, where they are then fried in corn oil and tumbled with seasonings before being bagged.

Can Dogs Eat Funyuns?

No, dogs should not eat Funyuns. Funyuns are a type of snack food that contains ingredients like salt, artificial flavors, and onion powder, which can be harmful to dogs. Onions, in particular, are toxic to dogs and can lead to serious health issues, including gastrointestinal upset and damage to red blood cells.

Explanation: Dogs have different dietary needs and sensitivities compared to humans. Funyuns, which are essentially onion-flavored corn snacks, contain several ingredients that are not suitable for canine consumption. The high salt content can lead to sodium ion poisoning, causing symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, and seizures. Additionally, onion powder, a key ingredient in Funyuns, is toxic to dogs. Onions contain compounds that can cause oxidative damage to red blood cells in dogs, leading to a condition known as hemolytic anemia. This can result in symptoms such as lethargy, weakness, reduced appetite, and even more severe health complications if left untreated. Therefore, it’s best to avoid giving Funyuns or any similar human snacks to your dog and stick to pet-safe treats and foods.

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What Do Funyuns Smell Like?

Funyuns are a popular snack that smell and look like onions. However, they are made of different flavors and consist of a base of fried onion rings along with other ingredients like enriched cornmeal, onion and garlic powder, oil, and salt. 

While Funyuns are safe for humans to consume, they can be harmful to dogs due to the presence of powdered onions and garlic which are toxic to dogs. It takes about 3.527 oz of onion for an adult average-sized dog to experience onion toxicity, which is equivalent to one medium-sized onion. 

Therefore, dogs would have to consume a large amount of Funyuns to experience life-threatening symptoms. Symptoms of onion toxicity in dogs include vomiting and reduced appetite. As Funyuns are crunchy and sweet, dogs are attracted to them, but owners should refrain from feeding Funyuns to their dogs and find alternative treats or snacks.

What Are Funyuns Made of?

If you’re wondering whether dogs can eat Funyuns, the answer is no. Although they contain onion flavor, they aren’t actually made from onions. However, they do contain onion powder, which is problematic for dogs.

A serving of 13 Funyuns contains 6 g of fat (1g saturated), 280 mg of sodium, and 140 calories. This is an unhealthy amount of fat and sodium for your dog, with the National Academy of Sciences stating that an average 33-lb dog shouldn’t eat more than 14 g of fat per day. Consuming too much fat can lead to health problems in the future, such as heart disease, obesity, and acute pancreatitis, which can cause lethargy, fever, stomach pain, and vomiting.

Funyuns are essentially fried onions. They are made with wheat flour, cornmeal, salt, and various seasonings, including onion powder. Onion is the primary flavor in Funyuns, but other ingredients add to the taste, like garlic and MSG. One thing to note is that Funyuns do not contain authentic onion pieces. They are simply just onion flavored snacks with an onion ring imitation.

Therefore, no matter how much you may like Funyuns, it’s best to keep them away from your furry friend and stick to dog-safe treats.

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Here are the ingredients found in Funyuns, as listed on the package:

  • Enriched corn meal (corn meal, ferrous sulfate, niacin, thiamin mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid)
  • Vegetable oil (corn, canola, and/or sunflower oil)
  • Salt
  • Corn starch
  • Sugar
  • Corn flour
  • Buttermilk
  • Maltodextrin (made from corn)
  • Onion powder
  • Monosodium glutamate
  • Hydrolyzed corn protein
  • Dextrose
  • Garlic powder
  • Natural flavors
  • Gum arabic

Why Funyuns Are Unhealthy for Dogs

Funyuns may be a popular snack among humans, but they are not a healthy treat for our furry friends. In fact, Funyuns can be dangerous for dogs due to the presence of potentially toxic ingredients in their recipe. These ingredients include salt, onion powder, and garlic powder.

Dogs only require a small amount of salt for their diet, and too much salt intake can lead to salt poisoning or toxicosis. This can cause vomiting, diarrhea, extreme thirst, lethargy, poor appetite, lack of coordination, muscle tremors, and kidney failure. Funyuns contain a large amount of salt, which is unnecessary for your dog’s nutritional needs and should be avoided.

Moreover, onion powder and Funyuns can be harmful to dogs, potentially damaging their red blood cells and causing severe side effects. Dogs need only a small amount of sodium for cellular and muscle health, and the excess sodium in Funyuns can lead to sodium poisoning, resulting in cardiovascular and gastrointestinal problems, extreme thirst, urination, high blood pressure, elevated heart rate, disorientation, watery loose diarrhea, and swollen tongue.

It is crucial to monitor your dog’s diet and avoid feeding them Funyuns or other salty and onion-containing treats. Instead, choose healthier and safe alternatives to keep your furry friend happy and healthy.

Are There Any Health Benefits of Funyuns for Dogs?

It’s common to think of Funyuns as a healthier snack option due to being gluten-free and free from trans-fat and cholesterol. However, it’s important to note that these benefits are more applicable to humans than dogs. In fact, the ingredients in Funyuns can lead to serious health problems for dogs.

The inclusion of corn oils in the recipe may provide some health benefits for humans, but it may cause allergic reactions in dogs. It’s vital to understand that dogs have different biological needs and responses to certain ingredients. Hence, it’s essential to consult with your vet and find suitable treats or snacks for your furry friend.

Overall, the potential health risks of Funyuns, including salt and onion powder toxicity, outweigh any potential benefits. So, it’s best to avoid feeding Funyuns to your dog and opt for healthy alternatives that cater to their unique biological needs.

Related Post: Can Your Dog Eat Onions? Here’s Why You Should Avoid It

Are Funyuns Toxic To Dogs?

Funyuns are a type of snack food that is not considered to be toxic to dogs. However, they are not a healthy choice for dogs either. Funyuns are high in sodium and artificial flavors and preservatives, which can be harmful to a dog’s health if consumed in large quantities.

If a dog eats a small amount of Funyuns, they may experience digestive upset, such as vomiting or diarrhea. If your dog has eaten a large amount of Funyuns or if you are unsure of how much they ate, you should contact your veterinarian for advice. In general, it’s best to avoid feeding your dog any human snacks, including Funyuns, and stick to a balanced and healthy diet designed specifically for dogs.

Can Funyuns Kill Dogs?

Yes, technically Funyuns can be lethal to dogs if they consume a significant amount. The high-fat and high-sodium content of Funyuns, along with the preservatives, can lead to health problems in dogs such as pancreatitis, salt poisoning, or food bloat, which can potentially be fatal. Overeating Funyuns or other unhealthy human snacks can cause serious health issues for dogs, and it’s best to avoid feeding them such food altogether. While it’s rare for a dog to consume enough Funyuns to die, it’s important to be aware of the potential risks and seek veterinary attention if you notice any concerning symptoms after your dog has eaten Funyuns or other human snacks.

What to Do If Your Dog Eats Funyuns

While a small bite of Funyuns may not be harmful to your dog, it’s always best to reach out to your vet and let them know about the incident. They can offer professional advice on how to monitor your pup for any concerning symptoms. If you notice any symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, or extreme thirst, take your dog to the vet immediately.

However, if your dog has consumed a whole bag or multiple bags of Funyuns, you need to seek veterinary advice right away. The risk of salt poisoning and other harmful effects increases with the amount of Funyuns eaten in a short period. Several factors such as your dog’s weight, size, age, and overall health can also affect the severity of the symptoms. So, it’s better to take quick action and consult a vet to ensure your furry friend’s safety.

Identifying the Signs of Funyun Overconsumption in Dogs

If your dog managed to sneakily consume a bag of Funyuns, it can be difficult to determine how many pieces they’ve eaten and how much you should worry. However, there are a few common indicators that your dog may exhibit if they’ve eaten too many Funyuns:

Lethargy: If your dog is less energetic than usual, this may be a sign of discomfort and unease.

Vomiting: Excessive Funyun consumption can irritate your dog’s stomach, leading to vomiting.

Diarrhea: If your dog is experiencing loose stools, it may be an indication that their digestive system is upset.

Poor appetite: A lack of interest in food is another sign of discomfort, and it may be due to Funyun overconsumption.

Pale gums: If your dog’s gums appear paler than usual, it could be a symptom of anemia caused by an ingredient in Funyuns.

These are some typical symptoms that your dog may display after overeating Funyuns. However, it’s essential to remember that each dog is unique, and they may exhibit different symptoms. If you are worried about your dog’s health, it’s best to contact your veterinarian immediately for advice.

Dealing with Dogs and Funyuns: What to Do in Case of Ingestion

If your dog has consumed Funyuns, don’t worry, there are various ways you can aid them. To counteract the high sodium content of Funyuns, you can administer 10 mg of Pepcid or 2 tsp of TC Pepto Bismol to your dog to counteract the dehydrating effects. Additionally, it is crucial to offer your dog water to avoid dehydration. Furthermore, feeding your dog bland food for some time is advisable.

However, if your dog’s condition does not improve, or they start to exhibit some of the more severe symptoms mentioned above, you must rush your dog to the vet as soon as possible. Your dog must receive medical attention immediately and be rehydrated quickly. The worst-case scenario is your dog experiencing diarrhea and vomiting, leading to deadly complications.

Conclusion

While sharing your food with your furry friend may seem like a kind gesture, it’s important to be mindful of the potential consequences that certain foods can have on your dog’s health. Salty snacks like Funyuns can lead to various health issues such as pancreatitis, salt poisoning, or food bloat, which can be fatal for dogs. Therefore, it’s best to avoid feeding your dog Funyuns and other human snacks, and instead, stick to a balanced and healthy diet specifically designed for dogs. Remember, sharing is caring, but only if it doesn’t harm your beloved pet. So, keep these snacks locked up and out of reach of your dog’s paws to ensure their well-being.

Brenda Thompson

Brenda Thompson is an expert in dog behavior with over a decade of experience, and she is also passionate about working with cats and birds. In addition to contributing pet content to petdogplanet.com, she is a Certified Dog Behavior Consultant. Brenda received her Bachelor of Science in Biological and Biomedical Sciences & Philosophy from Colorado College in 2014. She has taken classes in writing and remote animal behavior consulting, as well as courses on how to manage aggressive dogs and litter box issues. In 2016, she obtained her dog behavior consulting certification and joined the International Association of Animal Behavior Consultants.

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