White Rice is O.K. When Your Dog's Stomach is Upset

Posted by Christy Caplan
Dog Eating Rice

Rice can be eaten by our four-legged friends.

Many vets recommend dogs eat a bland diet when they're sick or have an upset stomach. White rice is O.K. but brown rice isn't. Always ask your vet what to feed your dog and most of the time they'll want you to boil chicken and rice. I've done this for years for our dogs and it works very well. Brown rice is harder for your dog to digest.

Why can dogs eat rice?

Your vet may tell you to feed your dog boiled chicken and rice if they have diarrhea or an upset stomach. This bland diet can be served to your dog for a few days, then it's recommended you transition your dog back to their normal diet.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) tells us that rice helps to bind the stool in cases of diarrhea. One of the reasons white rice is the chosen grain for a dog with an upset stomach is that it's easy to digest, quick to prepare, and low in fiber.

What's wrong with brown rice?

You may be tempted to serve brown rice as an alternative to white rice when your dog's bowel movements are a little off, but you must make sure you're giving them white rice.

The AKC confirms that grains aren't harmful. Brown and white rice is processed, but brown rice can be harder for a dog to digest because it is not as processed as well. Brown rice has a seed coat where the nutrients are stored. White rice has fewer health benefits.

Dog owners should work through the questions and recipes with their vet. Dogs can digest rice and get some nutritional value from rice.

According to The Spruce Pets, white rice is a better choice.

"White rice, on the other hand, is more easily chewable and digestible, it cooks faster, is more cost-effective, and it is better for dogs suffering from an upset stomach or diarrhea than brown rice."

What if my dog is diabetic?

The AKC explains that white rice has a higher glycemic index than brown rice and can cause blood sugar levels to rise. If your dog is diabetic, you can still feed him a little white rice, but it shouldn't be given to him on a consistent basis. 

Your vet will advise you on what you should be feeding your dog if their stomach is upset, and they'll provide instructions if your dog has a medical condition like diabetes.

A dog's diet should consist of a well-balanced diet, so some rice is fine as a topper. This 'people food' should be used like green beans or sweet potato.

Rice for dogs is appropriate when your dog is under the weather and has a stomach issue. Your dog's health will improve with this bland diet, and your dog can eat these meals for a few days until you notice normal stools.

Always talk to your vet about commercial dog food and the various vitamins needed like vitamin D, B vitamins, niacin, and thiamine.

Have you ever fed rice to your dog when they're sick? Please leave a comment below!

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White Rice is O.K. When Your Dog's Stomach is Upset