Can Dogs Eat Shortbread? Crunch or Caution?

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Author: Jeanette Hampton

Imagine one cosy afternoon when you are curled up in your blanket with your dog and with that freshly baked tray of shortbread while eating your dog is giving you that cute look asking for a bite, but “Can dogs eat shortbread?

Dogs can not digest every human food so we must understand the nutritional needs of our dogs. In this blog we are going to understand the ingredients of shortbread and whether they are healthy for dogs or not. So, grab your plate and let’s begin…

Can Dogs Eat Shortbread

Can Dogs Eat Shortbread?

Shortbread is a delicious treat for us humans, and it is a mix of three main ingredients: butter, sugar, and flour. These ingredients have the crumbly, buttery texture we love. But, when it comes to our dogs, it’s vital to get the information in detail.

Dogs can eat shortbread in moderation and as long as they do not contain chocolate, raisins, or nuts[1].

Dogs, like humans, can have some food sensitivities. One example is Lactose intolerance, sugar, and gluten are possibly harmful. Understanding these concerns is crucial to keeping your dog happy and healthy.

Being aware of the ingredients and their effects on a dog’s health assures a treat that adds delight without compromising their health. So, let’s get into the ingredients of shortbread:

dog trying to eat cookies

Butter: Boon or Bane?

Butter is our star here, giving it a rich and delicious flavour. To some dogs, this may be risky, as some dogs can be lactose intolerant, and butter is difficult for them to digest.

If your dog is in this category then you don’t have to worry as there are many other alternatives available for him. You can use lactose-friendly alternatives of butter, instead of traditional butter.

You can modify the recipe as per your dog’s preference.

Sugar, Spice, and Everything Nice?

Just like us humans too much sugar is bad for dogs also. It can make them fat, give them diabetes, and hurt their teeth. Be careful about the sugar in shortbread cookies you give your dog.

Try using healthy alternatives like honey or applesauce instead of sugar to make the cookies a little sweet for your dog without being unhealthy.

The Gluten Dilemma

Flour, a staple in baking, plays a crucial role in shortbread’s texture. However, gluten sensitivity is a concern for some dogs. If your dog is sensitive to gluten, it’s essential to consider alternatives to traditional flour in your shortbread recipes.

dog trying to eat cookies

Choose gluten-free flour like rice flour or almond flour in your dog-friendly shortbread recipes. This ensures a safe addition for dogs with gluten sensitivities.

Moderation is the Key!

Sharing treats with your dog can be nice, but don’t overdo it, moderation is crucial! Give tiny pieces of shortbread only sometimes so your dog doesn’t get unhealthy.

Ask your vet how much is safe for your specific dog. Find or make dog cookies with ingredients that are good for dogs. Enjoy giving your dog occasional small treats in a careful way, to make happy moments without hurting their health.

What Are the Health Risks of Giving Your Dog a Shortbread?

Butter, a key ingredient in shortbread, can cause problems for dogs. It’s high in fat, which may lead to weight gain and pancreatitis, especially if your dog eats this frequently.

The sugar is a double-edged sword for your dog’s health. Excessive sugar consumption may lead to obesity, diabetes, and dental issues. Gluten and other ingredients can cause trouble in a dog’s stomach. So, moderation is the key here.

Don’t feed them large pieces, stick to small, occasional servings and watch out for their consumption. Dogs have sensitive digestive systems, and the rich, buttery nature of shortbread can lead to diarrhoea, vomiting, or general stomach discomfort.

dog trying to eat dog treat

Every dog is unique, and their health needs differ. It’s crucial to consider your dog’s age, weight, and any existing health conditions. If your dog has diabetes, pancreatitis, or specific allergies, shortbread might be a riskier choice. Before introducing any new treat, including shortbread, consult with your vet.

Alternatives of Shortbread for Dogs

Let’s explore some alternatives for shortbread for dogs:

  • Peanut Butter Biscuits: Rich in healthy fats and protein, and a safe treat for your dog. Use peanut butter, whole wheat flour, and a hint of honey for sweetness.
  • Banana Bites: Use bananas, oats, and flour. Sweet, chewy, good for your dog.
  • Carrot Munchies: Grate carrots, and add wheat flour. Healthy crunch for your dog.
  • Coconut Cookies: Coconut flour, bananas. Tasty, gluten-free.
  • Oatmeal Biscuits: Oats, sweet potato, cinnamon. Give fibre, easy to digest.
  • Cheese & Chive Crackers: Cheese, wheat flour, chives. Savoury protein treats.
  • Blueberry Biscuits: Blueberries, oat flour. Antioxidants, yummy flavour.

Making homemade treats lets you pick good ingredients so your dog stays happy and healthy while enjoying special snacks.


Can Dogs Eat Shortbread?

Dogs can have a little bit of shortbread sometimes. Shortbread is made from flour, sugar, and butter. It won’t poison dogs, but it’s high in calories, fat and sugar. Too much shortbread might make your dog gain weight or have other health issues. Give just a small taste in moderation.

How many shortbread cookies can a dog have?

How much shortbread a dog can eat depends on the dog. There’s no single right amount for all dogs. But as a general guide, give your dog no more than 1 or 2 tiny shortbread cookies per week. Give less or none if your dog is little or has health issues. Too much shortbread can be bad for dogs.

What Are the Benefits of Shortbread Cookies for Dogs?

Shortbread cookies don’t have a lot of health benefits for dogs. They are mostly empty calories, not many vitamins or nutrients. But you can give your dog a tiny bit once in a while as a special treat to make them happy or reward them for being good. Just don’t give them shortbread cookies very often or too much at one time.

What Are the Risks of Shortbread Cookies for Dogs?

Shortbread cookies can pose some risks for dogs, especially if they are consumed in large quantities or frequently. Some of the potential risks include Obesity and diabetes, Digestive upset, and Toxicity.

How Can I Make Shortbread Cookies Safer for Dogs?

If you give your dog shortbread cookies: Pick plain ones, no chocolate or raisins. Break into tiny pieces. Watch how your dog reacts. Keep track of how much you give. Adjust regular dog food to balance out the extra treats. Doing these things makes the cookies safer and healthier. Don’t give too many or too often.


In conclusion “Can dogs eat shortbread?” Dogs can eat shortbread but in moderation and without ingredients that are harmful to them.

Watch out for their reaction every time they eat such things, and feed them to a limit to prevent any harmful effects like diabetes or obesity.

Remember as responsible pet parents it is your duty to feed them nutritious foods and look after their well-being.


  1. Insurance, A. P. (2016, June 13). 16 things NOT to feed your dog. | ASPCA Pet Health Insurance.
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Jeanette Hampton
Jeanette Hampton is a content writer at WWD and an expert on all things pets. She’s been writing pet blogs for over 5 years and knows everything there is to know about dogs. Jeanette enjoys writing about pet-related topics because she enjoys helping people learn more about their furry friends.

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