I was excited to find your page about making dog treats, then dismayed. One of the ingredients listed as "safe" for dogs was potatoes. As I understand, potatoes are ***HIGHLY*** toxic to dogs. They contain a chemical that will kill them. Is there a difference between potato flakes and real potatoes? Would this, then, be a safe ingredient? My dogs get treats on a daily basis, and, although I don't always give them the healthiest foods (sugar, salt, etc), I don't want to poison them either.

I'd really love to be able to use some of your recipes, but I just need to know if they're safe. Thanks.

Chef's Answer ~ Thank you for contacting me regarding your concerns. The plant that potatoes grow on (leafs, stem, etc.) is poisonous, but a reasonable amount of the potato is safe. If you would like to err on the side of caution, by all means omit potatoes from your homemade dog treats. If you find a recipe on my site that you'd love to make, and it contains potatoes, let me know and I'll help you with a substitution.

Your other question was about potato flakes. The difference between plain potato flakes and potatoes is that the flakes have been dried/preserved. So, for your concerns, they are the same. But again, the wonderful thing about making your own homemade dog treats is that you can customize the recipe just for your dog. :)

Comments for ***Potatoes?!?***

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cooked non green potatoes are fine for dogs
by: Anonymous

Eating potatoes that are green or have a distinctive green rim between the peel and inside can be toxic because of solanum alkaloids that can cause solanine poisoning.

Symptoms of solanine ingestion can include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramps, cardiac dysrhythmia, headache and dizziness.

Therefore green potatoes should not be eaten by human or dog as they may get sick. Raw potatoes also contain oxalates (like tomatoes) which dogs can react to. Oxalates can trigger abnormalities with the nervous system, kidneys and digestive tract.

Note: Cooked potatoes appear to be fine for dogs and can be found in many commercial dog foods.

Potatoes are safe - but don't give dogs the green bits
by: Super K

Straight from the ASPCA:
"While the ripe tubers are not considered to be toxic, the green parts are."

So don't give your dog the leafy parts of the potato, and don't give them potatoes that are still green and unripe.

Ripe potatoes aren't toxic. Potato is commonly used in high-quality grain-free dog foods.

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