Can Dogs Eat Goldfish Crackers? Sort of…and Very Carefully

By Coty Perry

Dogs should not eat goldfish crackers but if you drop a couple on the floor and they eat it, they’ll be fine. Goldfish contains ingredients like onion and garlic powder which are toxic to dogs if they have too much. 

Did your dog eat some goldfish crackers and you don’t know if it’s safe or not? Can dogs eat goldfish? We can help answer your questions regarding goldfish and how safe it is for your dog. 

Are goldfish crackers safe for dogs?

While goldfish are a delicious snack for pet owners, they can cause damage to your dog’s health if eaten in excess. Do you like goldfish and want to share some with your dog? The good news is you can, but you should only give them one or two pieces to ensure they stay healthy. 

Are Goldfish crackers Bad for Dogs?

Yes, goldfish crackers are bad for dogs. Goldfish are unsafe for dogs because they contain onion powder and other spices like garlic. Both onion powder and garlic are two very toxic ingredients that your dog should not consume. 

Health Risks of Eating Goldfish crackers for Dogs

If your dog consumed only a few goldfish crackers, there is no need to worry about health risks. Your dog will likely be fine if he only ate a few goldfish. However, you should be concerned if your dog consumes a lot of goldfish crackers. After eating multiple goldfish, your dog might begin feeling

  • Abdominal discomfort
  • Feelings of excessive thirst
  • Dehydration
  • Seizures
  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Death

If your dog consumes a large amount of goldfish crackers, you must contact their vet immediately for advice on what you need to do. While death is the most extreme risk of eating goldfish crackers, it is uncommon. 

Harmful Goldfish Ingredients

Many goldfish ingredients are considered toxic for your dog to consume.


It is harmful to humans to consume large amounts of salt, so your dog will significantly suffer from consuming too much of this harmful ingredient. There are 250 milligrams of salt in a single serving of goldfish, which is about 55 goldfish crackers. 

While it is improbable your dog will consume that many goldfish, it is still essential to be careful how much salt your dog is eating. Many snacks contain lots of sodium besides goldfish, like pretzels or crackers. Your dog might have sodium poisoning if they have these symptoms:

  • Excessive thirst
  • Seizures
  • Fever
  • Tremors
  • Depression
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Swelling
  • Disorientation
  • Dehydration

If you believe your dog has sodium poisoning, contact your dog’s vet as soon as possible for advice on how to help them.

Onion Powder

Onion powder contains harmful chemicals that damage a dog’s red blood cells. If your dog consumes too much onion powder, their red blood cells could burst, and they could develop a deadly condition called hemolytic anemia. In addition, your dog could experience:

  • Red-colored urine
  • Panting 
  • Increased respiratory rate
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Weakness.
  • Decreased appetite
  • Pale gums
  • Fainting
  • Lethargy

Call their vet right away if your dog is experiencing these symptoms from ingesting too much onion powder. The vet will likely want to run blood tests to determine their condition’s severity. 

Garlic Powder

While garlic powder may be a delicious seasoning for humans, it is toxic for your dog because of how they metabolize it differently than us. Garlic contains thiosulfate, which is harmful to dogs. 

Thiosulfate can also cause hemolytic anemia and gastrointestinal issues in your pup. While a pinch of garlic powder will be unlikely to harm your dog, as little as a teaspoon of garlic powder is enough to cause concern. Symptoms of garlic poisoning are:

  • Weakness
  • Jaundice
  • Rapid breathing
  • Dark-colored urine
  • Shallow breathing
  • Anemia
  • Pale mucous
  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Low appetite
  • Dehydration
  • Depression

Enriched Wheat

Enriched wheat is a predominant ingredient found in goldfish crackers. It is not necessarily toxic to your dog’s health, but it is not suitable. If your dog is going to consume carbohydrates, it should be in the form of vegetables or fruits. 

Enriched wheat is found in empty carbs and can contribute to obesity or diabetes in your pup. In addition to not being a healthy ingredient, enriched wheat can also cause digestive issues in your pup because dogs have a hard time digesting grains. 

Vegetable Oils

Dogs typically get all the fatty acids they need in their diet in their food, so it is unnecessary to give them additional oils. Large amounts of foods containing vegetable oil can encourage softer stools, smelly gas, vomiting, and even lead diarrhea. It is not unsafe to give canines foods that contain vegetable oils, but you should know that it can upset your dog’s stomach. 

Cheddar Cheese

Cheese is usually a great source of protein for your pup, and they almost always love the flavor. Cheese contains some healthy nutritional elements for your dog, like Vitamin B and calcium. 

However, cheddar cheese contains fat, which should not be a regular part of your dog’s diet. If your dog consumes a little cheddar cheese, it will be acceptable for their health. Watching how much cheese your dog consumes regularly is essential to prevent health risks such as obesity and diabetes

Can Dogs Eat 1 Goldfish cracker?

Yes, your dog can have one goldfish cracker. One or two pieces of goldfish will not cause any damage to your dog’s health. If your dog consumes at least a handful of goldfish, it could be harmful. 

What Happens If Dogs Eat Goldfish crackers?

Can goldfish crackers make my pet dog sick?

When your dog eats goldfish, it can become dehydrated and feel sick. Several health risks can occur depending on how many goldfish your dog consumes. Your dog might experience sodium poisoning, garlic poisoning, hemolytic anemia, or gastrointestinal issues.

What Should I Do If My Dog Ate Too Many Goldfish crackers?

If your dog ate a lot of goldfish crackers, you should immediately contact your pup’s vet. The onion and garlic in the goldfish can cause your dog to have bloody urine, vomiting, and anemia. The excess salt can cause dehydration, increased fluid retention, trouble urinating, and dehydration. 

Your vet will give you advice on what you should do next and whether or not you need to bring your dog in to be seen. Your dog’s vet might run a few blood tests to determine if the toxic ingredients found in the goldfish negatively affected your dog’s health. 

How many goldfish crackers can my dog eat?

Because of their ingredients, your dog should only have a maximum of few Goldfish crackers at a time.

What Will My Dog’s Vet Do If My Dog Ate Too Many Goldfish crackers?

If your dog is suffering from onion toxicity, the vet might induce vomiting in your pup, depending on how recently your dog consumed the overabundance of goldfish. Your pup will likely have to stay under the vet’s care until its body produces enough red blood cells to replace the damaged cells. 

If your dog is suffering from garlic toxicity, the vet will most likely use IV fluids to keep your pup hydrated and might prescribe him medicine to help control vomiting. There is no specific form of care when dogs have too much salt. Your vet might try to rehydrate your dog by using IV fluids. 

It is important to note that if your dog consumes too much goldfish, it will likely suffer the most from excess onion and garlic powder. While it is uncommon, your dog might require a blood transfusion to help their blood cells regenerate and go back to normal.

Can My Dog Eat Goldfish crackers if They Are Cheddar flavor?

Your dog can certainly eat one or two pieces of cheddar goldfish. However, they should not eat more cheddar goldfish than that. The cheddar goldfish contains onion powder, salt, garlic powder, vegetable oil, and enriched wheat, which are all not good for your dog’s health. 

Can Dogs Eat Parmesan Goldfish crackers?

If you wonder, “Can dogs eat goldfish that are parmesan flavored?” the answer is yes. However, dogs should only eat one or two pieces of parmesan goldfish for the same reasons they should not eat a large amount of cheddar goldfish. 

The parmesan goldfish contains garlic powder, onion powder, salt, vegetable oil, and enriched wheat, which are all unhealthy for your dog. The garlic powder and onion powder are specifically what is toxic to your dog’s health. 

Are There Healthy Goldfish Alternatives I Can Give My Dog?

Most other foods similar to goldfish, like Cheez Itz or cheese crackers, are still not healthy to feed to your dog. They still contain high amounts of salt, spices, and fat. However, consider giving your dog a piece of low-fat mozzarella cheese or white cheddar cheese so they can still enjoy the cheese, but without all the salt and spices.


So, can dogs eat goldfish crackers? Yes, your dog can eat goldfish in moderation. By moderation, we mean one or two pieces. If your dog consumes more than a couple of goldfish, they are at risk of developing serious health concerns. 

While most of the goldfish ingredients are unhealthy for your pup, some are toxic. You should always try to steer clear of feeding your dog foods that contain high amounts of salt, garlic powder, and onion powder to ensure your pet doesn’t become severely ill.  

Photo of author
Coty Perry
Coty is a self-proclaimed cat whisperer and animal lover. Growing up his mom ran a dog training business out of his childhood home so you can say it was complete chaos 24/7. Today, when he comes home after a long day of writing about animals, he’s greeted by his two loving cats Marley and Cozmo.