Before I get into too much detail with this guide, I want to be clear; I do not recommend that you let your dog eat anything from the KFC menu. The nutritional value of KFC is very low and isn’t suitable for a healthy doggy diet.
However, there might be times when your dog accidently eats some KFC chicken. It could be that you have no choice but to let them have some due to extenuating circumstances where no other options are available.
Can dogs eat KFC? Most food on a KFC menu won’t harm your dog in small quantities but is definitely an unhealthy choice due to the batter, frying methods, and risk of choking on bones. There are also some Kentucky Fried Chicken ingredients that can be toxic to dogs such as onion and garlic powder, plus high salt content which can lead to stomach upsets.
In short, dogs can eat Kentucky Fried Chicken, but it’s not something that should be made a habit of, and really should just be done when you nothing else to feed them… providing you remove the harmful ingredients such as fried batter and most definitely any trace of bones.
If you scroll further down, I explain what parts of a KFC not dog-friendly, and which elements you simply must take out before letting your dog eat KFC chicken.
This will explain exactly how you could feed your dog some food from Kentucky Fried Chicken, showing the right and wrong way to do it, in as healthy a way as possible.
What can a dog have to eat from KFC?
Whilst it’s a bit of a stretch to describe anything at Kentucky Fried Chicken as dog-friendly, there are some parts of the menu which will be better for them. Below I will go through each popular KFC food, listing the nutritional values and potential risks to your dog.
I’ve also shown how many calories are in each menu item, which gives you a far better idea of whether dogs can eat KFC chicken as a viable dietary supplement. When you read this breakdown, please consider that:
- Dogs should only eat 25 calories for each pound they weigh each day.
- Dogs should only have treats as 10% of their total daily food intake (the 90/10 rule).
I hope this lets you understand better what your dog can have from KFC, and whether it’s even something you want to let them eat, be it KFC chicken, gravy, potatoes, fries, or coleslaw!
Before I show you that though, here are two of the country’s most popular dog types, how much the average male adult weighs, and what that means for daily calorie intake. You can then work to not exceed those numbers with a KFC chicken treat:
- Average French Bulldog is 25 pounds: Should eat no more than 625 calories daily.
- Average Labrador is 70 pounds: Should eat no more than 1,750 calories daily.
Everything below is for informational purposes only; whilst Kentucky fried chicken is not poisonous to dogs, at the same time, it’s not really good for them, particularly the bones and batter.
Can my dog eat KFC chicken?
Dogs can eat KFC chicken, but providing it’s only the chicken meat, with the breast being the best. You absolutely must remove any bones in the meat and should also strip the fried batter off too.
Bear in mind though, that it’s not going to be the most nutritional of chicken and will have been cooked in a deep fat fryer, then seasoned with salt, pepper, and possibly traces of onion, which is toxic to dogs in large quantities.
Even if you do your best to completely remove the batter, there will still be traces left of possibly salt, and onion powder from the batter.
I admit that these traces at this volume aren’t likely to kill your dog, the onion could cause a stomach upset. But they certainly aren’t very healthy which is why you should only let your dog eat KFC chicken with nothing else on or in it.
Let’s look at a classic KFC chicken dish, and see how many calories that might mean for a French Bulldog and Labrador:
- 3 pieces of KFC Chicken Wings: (210 calories): 34% French Bulldog / 12% Labrador daily intake.
- 1 piece of KFC Original Recipe Chicken Breast: (390 calories): 62% French Bulldog / 22% Labrador daily intake.
- 3 pieces of KFC Chicken tenders: (390 calories): 62% French Bulldog / 22% Labrador daily intake.
- 1 serving of KFC Popcorn chicken: (446 calories): 71% French Bulldog / 25% Labrador daily intake.
If you do decide to let your dog have KFC chicken, please remove the bones and batter. The batter coating of the chicken is very unhealthy. It could block your dog’s arteries, raise cholesterol levels, not to mention being tough to chew, swallow and digest.
Handy Hint: I’ve calculated how many calories in chicken nuggets will be bad for your dog, depending on the breed and size.
Can dogs eat KFC popcorn chicken?
A tiny amount of KFC popcorn chicken won’t harm your dog, but when you look at those calorie count numbers above, particularly for a small to medium breed like a Frenchies, it’s quite scary.
Just one serving of Kentucky Fried Chicken popcorn is a massive 71% of their recommended daily calories.
It is not ok to let your dog eat KFC chicken like this!
Can dogs eat KFC chicken bones?
Bones are one of the most dangerous elements of a KFC chicken meal. Whilst there is a belief that dogs can eat bones ok, once bones are cooked, they become extremely risky.
It’s because cooked bones become brittle. If your dog eats KFC chicken bones, then what happens could be quite scary. The chicken bones could possibly choke them or become ingested and possibly rip a hole in their insides, leading to a fatality.
Please don’t panic though, it is rare for a dog to come to harm this way, but it’s a risk not worth taking. As with anything like this, consult with your vet if your dog has eaten KFC chicken bones and you’re concerned.
Can dogs eat KFC fries and chips?
A few Kentucky Fried Chicken fries will not poison your dog. In truth, a couple of fries on a rare occasion won’t be a huge problem for your dog. However, potato is high in carbohydrates, and KFC cooked their fries with lots of oil and salt.
This oil in KFC fries isn’t a good choice for our doggy friends. They include a lot of trans and saturated fats; these are the bad kind of fats, not the good ones! You might have a dog with an upset stomach after eating fries, so it’s just not worth it.
Dogs that high fat food like this over a long period are more prone to developing illnesses like diabetes, obesity, or pancreatitis.
As a dog owner, I wouldn’t let my dog eat KFC fries or chips as it sets a bad precedent and habit… plus there’s the calorie count to consider too:
- 1 serving of KFC Regular Fries (343 calories): 55% French Bulldog / 20% Labrador daily intake.
- 1 serving of KFC Medium Fries (365 calories): 58% French Bulldog / 21% Labrador daily intake.
- 1 serving of KFC Large Fries (480 calories): 77% French Bulldog / 27% Labrador daily intake.
Can dogs eat KFC mashed potatoes?
Whilst a little mashed potato is ok for dogs, providing it contains no cream or butter, KFC make theirs a little differently to how you might at home. Their mashed potato will be richer and highly processed.
KFC mashed potatoes won’t poison your dog, but it’s higher in calories, trans fats, salt, and lots of artificial elements that won’t aid long-term canine health.
Bottom line is, you could feed a little bit of KFC mashed potato to your dog, but don’t make it a habit.
Can dogs eat KFC gravy?
KFC are very secretive with the ingredients of their gravy, which is great reason to not let your dog eat it. From what I can gather though, KFC gravy is made by using the crunchy leftovers and greasy chicken scraps from the oil fryers, then adding this to stock and boiling water.
It doesn’t sound very healthy does it!
I can’t imagine a little KFC gravy poured over your dog’s regular food will kill them, but perhaps you should only do it as a very occasional treat and in moderation.
Can dogs eat KFC biscuits?
KFC buttermilk biscuits are highly processed and made from a lot of salt, sugar, baking powder, artificial flavors. They total 180 calories per serving, so aren’t ideal for a dog to eat.
I might let my dog have 1 KFC biscuit as a very occasional treat, but nothing more than that as they aren’t great for their diet.
Can dogs eat KFC coleslaw?
And finally, is it ok for dogs to eat KFC coleslaw?
In my opinion no. Coleslaw contains ingredients that can really upset your dog’s stomach such as cabbage, vinegars, dressings or mayo that is all very greasy and high in fats and sugars.
What happens if my dog eats KFC?
If your dog does eat a lot Kentucky Fried Chicken, then how they react will depend on what element from the menu was eaten, plus your dog as an individual.
KFC food has minimal nutritional value, cannot be used as a substitute for every meal and can have catastrophic health consequences when eaten in large quantities.
There’s a reason why dogs and humans need different food – dog food contains all the necessary nutrients that are essential for dogs to grow, develop and live a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle.
If your dog suffers from diabetes, foods rich in sugar or carbs could end up worsening their condition. This means it is especially important to remove any bones and batter before giving them the food and/or avoiding sweeter items on the menu altogether.
You should also be very wary if your dog has an existing a heart condition. Much of the food on the KFC menu is high in salt.
All of these ingredients will not only damage your dog’s health in the long term if consumed regularly but can also lead to temporary digestive issues such as diarrhoea, which is uncomfortable for both your pup and for whoever has to clean it up!
The bottom line is that I don’t recommend you let your dog eat anything from Kentucky Fried Chicken. An occasional treat will probably be ok, providing bones are removed, but why let your dog eat junk food over a nutritional and safe option?
Vets will often recommend that you feed your dog boiled or steamed chicken when they have a bad tummy. But that does not extend to fried KFC chicken, so always stay on the side of cautious with what your dog is fed.
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I frequently blog about the different foods dogs can eat, including what’s safe and what’s not. Here’s are some related pieces of content you might want to read so you don’t end up poisoning your dog.