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The quick answer: Yes, dogs can eat cooked rice in moderation.
In fact, rice is a common ingredient in commercial dog foods. It’s always best to start with small amounts when giving your dog a new type of food to try because some dogs are allergic to rice or may not tolerate it very well.
Benefits of rice
Rice is a grain that contains beneficial nutrients like magnesium, phosphorus, manganese, selenium, iron, folic acid, thiamine and niacin. All types of rice are a good source of carbohydrates. Brown and wild rice are whole grains, and because of this, they have more nutrients and fiber than white rice, which has had the germ and bran of the grain removed. White rice is low in fiber, whereas brown rice is heartier and contains more fiber, magnesium, and antioxidants. Wild rice contains even more protein and less starch than the other varieties and is considered a superfood by many.
Cooked rice can be helpful during times when your dog has an upset tummy. If a dog has diarrhea or has been vomiting, some veterinarians recommend feeding a bland diet after letting the digestive system rest for a few hours. Foods that are easy to digest include boiled lean meat, such as plain hamburger, chicken or turkey, and a starch like cooked rice or sweet potato. Just keep in mind that this is not a nutritionally complete meal to feed for the long term.
Hazards of sharing rice with dogs
Because rice is a carb-heavy food, eating too much can cause a tummy ache or lead to weight gain over time. In moderation, rice is safe to share with your dog as long as it does not contain garlic or onion.
Dog-friendly recipe with rice
Serve up some brown rice to your dog by making these tasty homemade dog treats from For the Love of Cooking.
Chicken, cheddar, and brown rice dog treats
- 1 small chicken breast
- ½ cup cooked brown rice, cooled
- 1/3 cup shredded cheddar cheese
- 2 ½ cups flour
- ½ cup chicken broth
- 1 egg beaten
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Cook the chicken breast in boiling water for 4-5 minutes, or until cooked through. Cut into small pieces and set aside to cool.
- Combine the cooked brown rice, cheddar cheese, and cooled chicken in a food processor; pulse until finely minced.
- In a large bowl, whisk egg, flour and chicken broth until nearly combined.
- Add the chicken mixture and stir until well combined, adding a bit more broth if needed.
- Dust the counter with flour and roll out the dough to approximately 1/4″ thickness, and use cookie cutters to cut out treats.
- Place on the prepared baking sheet an inch apart. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.
- Allow to cool completely before storing in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.