Gummy worms and sour gummy worms are treats enjoyed by humans, kids and adults alike. They may taste so good that you, or your child, might be considering sharing them with your dog.
Sharing is caring, and your dogs shouldn’t be left out of the fun stuff, but the question is, can dogs eat gummy worms and sour gummies?
Are gummy worms healthy for your dog?
If you’ve been wondering if your dogs can have gummy worms and sour gummy worms, this article was developed to answer your question.
This article covers everything you need to know about gummy worms and sour gummies as it relates to dogs.
By the end of this article you’ll know all the ins and outs about why it’s not ideal for your furry friend to share your bag of gummy candy with you.
Can You Feed a Dog Gummy Worms?
The technically correct answer to this question is, yes.
But the real question is, should you be feeding a dog gummy bears or worms?
Dogs are capable of eating gummy bears and worms, but they don’t make for great human food on a regular basis and dogs being more sensitive to foods than us, means it’s not a good idea to feed them gummies on a regular basis, if at all.
Let’s explain in more detail..
Are Gummy Worms Toxic to Dogs?
The answer is yes, gummy worms can be toxic to dogs.
While you may not see any immediate negative effects, too much sugar in the long run will be detrimental to your dog’s health.
And, unfortunately, Gummy worms do have a high sugar content.
If dogs eat gummy bears in large quantities and consume too much sugar it can lead to them having:
- cavities and tooth decay
- develop obesity
Xylitol Poisoning in Dogs
Gummy worms can also contain xylitol, a sugar substitute.
Sugar has been getting a bad rep in recent years and candy companies are trying other, healthier replacements for this ingredient.
Xylitol is part of a family of sugar alcohols, just as sweet as processed sugar but with 40% less calories, and it’s not as harmful to the teeth as traditional sugar.
The problem is, xylitol is poisonous and extremely toxic to dogs even in small quantities and can cause issues like:
- upset stomach
- hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
- liver failure
- or even death in dogs
Yes, if your dog eats a gummy worm made with xylitol, in the worst case scenario you may have to say goodbye to your furry friend.
So, keep “sugar free gummy worms” away from dogs as it’s possible they could eat xylitol unknowingly.
It may be possible that the sugar free gummy candies use a different artificial sweetener to xylitol or artificial flavors, but either way, they’re not ideal food for dogs so they’re best avoided.
The sugar in gummy worms isn’t exactly lethal or poisonous to dogs, although it can create health problems, but the substitute xylitol used instead of sugar in some candies is highly toxic to dogs.
If your dog ingests xylitol through sugar free gummies or any other foods, take your dog immediately to your vet for treatment.
You can also call the pet poison helpline if you can’t get to a veterinarian immediately for advice.
What Happens if My Dog Eats a Gummy Worm?
We briefly discussed the issues that can arise in your dog from a high sugar diet but let’s look at what can happen in your dog’s body in more detail from a poor diet loaded with sugar.
The problem is not your dog eating gummy worms (unless it contains xylitol), the problem is the negative health effects that can arise from the high sugar content in gummy worms.
Some of the health issues and complications that can arise with sugary treats and sugary candies in dogs are listed below:
- Stomach issues: Too much sugar in your dog’s system can cause gastrointestinal problems with symptoms like vomiting and drooling. In the worst cases your dog might develop diarrhea.
- Diabetes: One of the most direct results of too much sugar for your dog is diabetes. You don’t want your dog to develop diabetes, it is a serious health problem that can get complicated and seriously threaten your dog’s wellbeing and even life.
- Obesity: Indulge your dog with too much sugary foods like gummy worms and it will end up being a couch potato. Allowing your dog to have too much gummy worms will definitely increase its blood sugar levels and lead it to gain unhealthy weight.
- Tooth Problem: Gummy worms can get stuck in your dog’s teeth, causing tooth and gum problems. And it’s even worse because unlike humans they don’t get their teeth brushed twice, so the chances of getting all that sugar off their dentition is slim.
Can Dogs Eat Sour Gummy Worms? What Happens if They Do?
The same thing happens with gummy worms and sour gummy worms, though sour gummy worms are arguably worse.
While sour gummy worms don’t have quite as much sugar as gummy worms (it’s an insignificant difference), they still have the same side effects because they both contain sugar and have a similar nutritional value..besides one toxic ingredient!
Sour gummy worms will contain more citric acid in the ingredients to create that sour taste and this highly toxic to both dogs and cats.
Either way, sour gummy worms or sour gummy bears are not good for your dog.
The same negative health effects appear when dogs eat gummy candy – whether they eat sour gummy worms or not.
It’s just safest to avoid sour gummy worms and gummy candies in general (though keep reading for some dog friendly alternatives!).
Help! My Dog Ate Gummy Worms: What to Do
If your dog has eaten any gummy worm or sour gummy candy, there are two things to do quickly:
STEP 1 – check to see the ingredients of the particular gummy worm or sour gummy candy your dog ate.
This will dictate your next step.
If it contains xylitol or citric acid is high up on the ingredients list, then you should get your dog to the vet as soon as possible where they may induce vomiting to remove the toxin.
STEP 2 – If your dog ate sugar free gummy bears or worms containing xylitol or citric acid, you should already be on the phone to the vet for treatment.
If the gummy worms or sour gummy candy is made with regular sugar (and contains a small amount of citric acid), then you don’t have to fret quite as much.
Depending on how much gummy worms your dog ate you can observe your dog closely and see what happens.
If your dog ate just a few gummy worms made with regular sugar, you don’t have to worry, if on the other hand it ate a whole bag of gummy worms, then you should expect it to feel very ill, but it will likely be fine.
Still, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Listed below are the signs and symptoms you should look out for.
If your dog exhibits any of these symptoms after eating gummy worms, you should call your vet:
- Diarrhea or vomiting
- Accelerated heart rate
- Abnormal stool
- Loss of Balance
We’d rather recommend you to be cautious than have your dogs die because you thought they’ll be fine. If in any doubt, go to your vet.
Gummy Worms For Dogs – Recipe
You can actually make gummy worms, bears and other gummy candies, especially for dogs so that your furry friend doesn’t need to miss out on these yummy treats!
Most of the gummy sweets we eat contain gelatin, which is actually made from animal tendons, skins, bones and cartilage of animals.
While it may sound gross to us, it’s beneficial to dogs and you can purchase some unflavored and unsweetened gelatin to easily make some healthy treats for them yourself which your dog will love chewing.
Gelatin is beneficial to dogs for the following things:
- and liver function
Here’s a quick recipe you can try:
- Decide how much you want to make in terms of cups of liquid.
- Sprinkle 3 tablespoons of gelatin per cup of cold water (or bone broth if you want to really treat them!)
- Once the gelatin has totally soaked up the liquid, slowly heat the mixture until the gelatin is fully disolved
- Pour the mixture into your gummy moulds or hand cut them into the shapes you want and wait for them to set
- You can sweeten the gummies by adding pureed real fruit into the mixture that aren’t high in sugar such as; strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, peach and others. Sweet potato or pumpkin puree even works.
- AVOID: Black or white grapes, or black or white grape juice as this is toxic to dogs.
- You can make harder or softer gummy treats by adjusting the amount of gelatin you add to your liquid. More for harder gummies or less for softer ones.
FAQs Relating to Dogs Eating Gummy Worms
Below are some frequently asked questions we found online while researching whether dogs can eat gummy worms:
Can My Dog Eat Haribo Gummy Worms?
The same rules we’ve discussed generally apply to all brands of gummy bears and worms. Yes, that includes Haribo gummy bears, worms and their other gummy fruit snacks.
Keep Haribo gummy worms away from your dogs. In fact, keep all gummy worms away from your dog.
Can Dogs Eat Trolli Gummy Worms?
The main ingredients in Trolli gummy worms are sugar and corn starch, as well as corn syrup, and all of these ingredients significantly increase the chances of your dog developing obesity and diabetes.
Dogs shouldn’t eat Trolli gummy worms.
Can My Dog Eat Sour Gummy Worms without Xylitol?
Dogs can technically eat sour gummy worms without xylitol, but it’s not advised.
They shouldn’t be eating gummy worms, but if they do it should be in the strictest moderation, if at all.
Gummy worms without xylitol are safest, but the sugar in gummy worms and sour gummy worms isn’t good for your dog’s health.
Can Sour Gummy Worms Kill My Dog?
If the sour gummy worm consumed by your dog is made from xylitol, then it can kill your dog.
Although it’s not healthy for them, dogs can eat gummy worms made with regular sugar on the rare occasion and in the smallest of quantities without any harm.
But if your dog is fed large amounts regularly, or even small amounts regularly, to the point where it affects its blood sugar level, then it can develop health conditions like diabetes that can shorten its life.
Can Dogs Taste Sour?
The taste buds of dogs are not as developed as humans, but they can differentiate the four major taste groups;
- and, yes, sour
Can Dogs Eat Gummy Bears?
The same rules apply to gummy bears.
Similarly to worms, dogs can eat gummy bears and love chewing on things of that texture, but they’re generally made with the same ingredients as worms, so shouldn’t form a regular part of a dog’s diet, if at all.
Can Dogs Eat Thc Gummy Bears?
Keep anything containing THC far away from your dog, including THC gummies.
THC can cause your dog to experience:
- loss of balance
- muscle tremors
- uncontrolled urination
- death in extreme cases
This is because dogs have more cannabinoid receptors in their brains than humans do, so they’re much more sensitive to the toxic effects of THC.
Summary: Can Dogs Eat Gummy Worms? Technically, Yes…But Shouldn’t
Can dogs eat gummy worms is a tricky question because technically, yes, they can and if a dog eats gummy bears or worms, they’re not in any immediate danger.
But with everything discussed in this article, it is probably clear that dogs should not be allowed to eat or be fed gummy worms or candies even though they can eat it.
If they’ve eaten gummies, then it’s not the end of the world (unless the artificial sweeteners used were Xylitol, in which case you should contact your vet as soon as possible.)
But if you love dogs, giving them gummy bears or worms regularly is like putting them on a junk food diet that can lead to weight gain and other health problems.
The amount of sugar in gummy worms and candies is not healthy for your dog, and xylitol, the sugar alternative used in the sugar-free version of candies and gummy worms, can kill your dog.
Overall, if accidentally your dog ate gummy bears, worms or whatever shaped gummy candies, there’s no need to fret if it didn’t contain Xylitol.
Enjoy the odd gummy bear or worm yourself, but keep them away from your furry best friend to keep them by your side longer.