Is Jif Peanut Butter Safe For Dogs and Puppies?
Besides homemade peanut butter, most dog trainers and veterinarians agree in saying that Jif Peanut Butter actually is one of the safest options you can choose to feed as treats for your dogs.
In fact, only one professional out of the twelve we questioned told us that he never used Jif as treat for his dogs.
Not that he didn’t recommend it, he just never tried it.
However, 8 out of the twelve did mention that Kraft Peanut Butter and Skippy Peanut Butter are also considered equally safe and that people shouldn’t worry much about feeding any of these 3 options to their dogs.
5 of them also mentioned Peter Pan Peanut Butter as being an equivalent option to the ones mentioned before.
For what it’s worth, both our Labradors and Chihuahua have been getting half a tablespoon or so of the creamy Jif every morning for the past 4 years.
No problems thus far, not a single side effect either.
What is Xylitol and does Jif Peanut Butter contains any?
Wanna know about Xylitol anyway? Here is what Wikipedia has to say about Xylitol and the potential effects on dogs:
In dogs, Xylitol (in amounts greater than 100 mg per kilogram of body weight) generates a rapid, dose-dependent insulin release that can result in hypoglycemia, which can be life-threatening.
Low blood sugar can result in a loss of coordination, depression, collapse, and seizures in dogs as quickly as 30 minutes following ingestion.
Intake of doses of Xylitol greater than 500 to 1000 mg per kilogram body weight has been implicated in potentially fatal liver failure in dogs.
Xylitol is used in comparatively much smaller doses, in the ingredients of two commercial veterinary drinking water additives, marketed to prevent plaque and freshen the breath of pets.
Is now the right time to panic?
Of course not.
I have to agree, after reading everything we could find about Xylitol, I was kind of freaking out myself.
I know it’s a strange statement coming from someone who is giving half a spoon to both our dogs every single morning for the past four years or so.
This sweetener is harmless to humans but can be potentially deadly when ingested by dogs.
I later found out that firstly, it is illegal for a company to use Xylitol without listing it in their ingredients.
And most importantly, I was relieved to learn that Jif Peanut Butter does not contain Xylitol in any of their products.
Peanut butter brands and companies include Xylitol in their products.
What is a safe amount of Jif Peanut Butter to feed my dog?
Again, most veterinarians and other dog professionals agree in saying that 1/2 a spoon up to a spoon a day is perfectly fine according to your dog’s size.
It may seem like a small amount for the big dog owners out there but considering that peanut butter is quite rich in fat and proteins, it is actually a decent intake of nutrients for a single treat.
There are a lot of toys and treat dispensers out there you can buy to make sure your dog works a little bit to get to the treat and at the same time develop its cognitive abilities.
You are probably familiar with the Kong Extreme original toy but if you are interested in other similar toys you can stuff with peanut butter and other treats, my wife and I are obsessed with testing all the toys we can find and over time we came up with a Top 10 toys you can stuff with peanut butter. Here is a link to check it
Other safety issues to consider when feeding Jif Peanut Butter to a dog
Now that you went thru every single ingredient on your Jif Peanut Butter and couldn’t find Xylitol, you are wondering if there is any other safety issue to consider before giving your animal some Jif Peanut Butter.
There is actually one more thing to make sure of before feeding Jif’s peanut butter or any peanut butter for that matter to an animal. We are talking about allergies. Yes, unfortunately, just like humans, dogs can be allergic to Peanut Butter.
Symptoms of allergic reactions to peanut butter in dogs.
Here is a list of the potential symptoms you should look for when giving your dog peanut butter.
Symptoms of peanut allergy in dogs can include:
- Skin irritation (redness and itchy skin)
- Hot spots
- Excessive licking of the skin
- Agitation and nervous excitement
- Bald Spots
- Hair Loss
- Gastric Distress
- Difficulty breathing (On rare occasion)
2 ways to test for allergies in dogs
You guessed it, the first and safest way to determine if your dog is allergic to peanut butter is a thorough exam by your veterinarian.
It may seem like a hassle and a bit of an overkill for something as trivial as giving some peanut butter to a dog but you can never be too careful. Meanwhile, you can ask your veterinarian to test for other food allergies, including different types of proteins.
While being there, you can also have him test for flea allergies, contact allergies including many kinds of grass, plants, dust mites, and molds. There are other tests for allergens that are less common in dogs but are available if recommended by your veterinarian or if you feel like it’s necessary. The two main types of dog allergy testing are blood tests and intradermal skin testing.
How much does it cost?
Is it accurate?
Almost all of them told us it was the only accurate way to make sure your animal isn’t allergic to anything. However, most blogs and websites we found online seems to claim otherwise.
We did speak with a couple of friends who went thru the whole thing and they seemed quite pleased with the results.
The veterinarian was able to diagnose a food allergy and gave them a bunch of tricks and a homemade recipe to prevent future outbreaks.
At your own risk
Of course, he did recommend to have our dogs tested anyway to make sure nothing else would pop-up, which we politely declined.
He also mentioned that this method is at your own risk but as long as you live at less than 10 minutes from a veterinarian, you are probably fine.
Is Jif Creamy Peanut Butter safer than the Crunchy one?
Now you are just speaking nonsense. We already established that none of the Jif peanut butter products contains Xylitol. Both are perfectly fine.
It all comes down to personal preference and the ratio of fat to protein which is extremely comparable.
I’ve read online on other blogs that the crunchy one could cause harm to small dogs but my small Chihuahua begs to differ.
Go with the Creamy one if it’s an issue for you but I really don’t think this is going to be a problem for any size dog. In case you didn’t already know, you can buy it in bulk from Jif on their Amazon store. Click here to check it out.
What are the best toys I can stuff with Jif peanut butter?
We spent way too much time buying and testing all the treat-dispensing toys available out there. As I mentioned before, evidently, The Kong original is always a no-brainer, but there’s a lot of other really nice toys you can put peanut (and other treats) in.
You can check out our Top 10 Toys you can stuff with peanut butter by clicking here.
The important part to remember is:
1. Jif peanut butter is safe for your dog and does not contain Xylitol.
2. Do not feed any food which contains Xylitol to your dog or it might injure or even worse kill it.
3. Make sure your dog isn’t allergic to peanuts before feeding him half a spoon a day.
4. Check out our Top 10 dog toys you can stuff with peanut butter by clicking here.