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No, dogs should not eat french fries. Fries have high fat, grease, and salt content. While one or two french fries are unlikely to cause any harm, consuming large quantities on a regular basis can be dangerous for dogs. Recent FDA data suggests regular potato and legume consumption may contribute to canine heart disease.1

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Caution: This food is generally considered risky by the veterinary community. Dogs should not eat this food and should be monitored for adverse effects.

Food Safety: Not safe, but not harmful in small quantities
Nutritional Issues: Salt content and greasy fats
Safe Amount: 2-3 fries for a medium-sized dog
Poisoning Symptoms: Vomiting, diarrhea, salt poisoning, kidney problems
Every dog is different. For specific feeding guidelines, including quantities and beneficial foods that are best for your dog, please consult your vet.

Common French Fries Ingredients

  • Potatoes – Potatoes alone may not be harmful to dogs but contain high carbohydrate content, which can be difficult for dogs to digest. Some dogs also have a sensitivity to potatoes.
  • Salt is a dangerous ingredient for dogs because high consumption can lead to salt poisoning, which is fatal. Minor side effects of salt consumption include dehydration, excessive thirst, and kidney problems.
  • Canola or vegetable oil is commonly used to deep fry the french fries – both are filled with harmful fats. Overconsumption can cause digestive problems like diarrhea and vomiting, and contribute to obesity, pancreatitis, and diabetes in dogs in the long term.

How Many Fries Are Bad for Dogs?

As with many human foods, it can be tempting to give your dog fries when they’re begging at your feet. One fry will generally not negatively impact your dog’s health. French fries are not toxic. However, it is best to avoid giving dogs french fries with seasonings such as garlic, salt, and onion powder. These ingredients can be toxic to dogs. Read our page on garlic powder’s danger for dogs for more details about the spice’s potential impact on canine health.

Tip: Have a few dog-friendly vegetable treats or a few pieces of kibble on hand at mealtime to avoid the temptation to give dogs a french fry or two.

Signs Your Dog Ate Too Many French Fries

Recognizing the symptoms of overconsumption can help you determine when it’s time to call your vet. There are a few general symptoms that indicate your dog has over consumed french fries:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Excessive thirst

Besides these indicators, dogs may experience severe health issues when they eat too many french fries, including:

  • Allergic reaction in the form of swelling, hives, and difficulty breathing
  • Salt poisoning in the form of severe diarrhea, confusion, seizures, and coma

Call your vet immediately if your dog exhibits any one of the above symptoms of an allergic reaction or poisoning.



Frequently Asked Questions

  • No, dogs should not eat french fries without salt. While this may be healthier than french fries with salt, they will still be deep-fried. Hence, these would have high contents of grease, fat, and carbohydrates that are not safe for dogs.

  • No, dogs should not eat french fries with ketchup. Condiments, including ketchup, have significantly high levels of salt. Their consumption can lead to an upset stomach and weight gain in the long run.

  • Depending on their ingredients, potatoes in small quantities will be fine for dogs. This is true for potatoes that have not been deep-fried and don’t contain any salt, seasoning, milk, butter, onions, or garlic. Hence, mashed, boiled, baked, and air-fried potatoes are okay for dogs as long as they don’t contain the aforementioned ingredients.

    However, we recommend contacting your veterinarian and asking them what kind of potatoes are healthy for your dogs.

  • Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins and low in fat, making them a healthier alternative to french fries. However, dogs should not be fed deep fried sweet potato fries. Baked sweet potato fries with the skins removed are ideal for treats in moderation.

About the Writer
Dan Greco , Dog Dad

Having been a dog dad for 5 years, I know how hard it is to make sure your dog gets the right nutrients and stays away from hazardous foods. With the help of a veterinarian who specializes in nutrition, I created this blog to help dog owners quickly access food information they need.

photo of vet holding a pup
About the Contributor
Dr. Hillary Wolfe , Veterinarian & Certified Food Therapist

Dr. Wolfe holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine from Kansas State University and holds nutrition certifications from the NAVC and CIVT. Her business, Tula Veterinary Nutrition, hosts online courses that teach owners how to cook for their pet for optimal health and longevity. Follow her on Instagram at @doctorwolfe.dvm for dog nutrition tips, recipes and insights.