Can dogs or cats eat marshmallows?

May 23, 2023
This article is not intended to be a substitute for professional veterinary advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian with any questions you may have regarding your pet’s care, treatment, or medical conditions.

Can dogs eat marshmallows?

When your dog is begging for a taste of that gooey marshmallow you're roasting, don't give in! Marshmallows contain high amounts of sugar and processed ingredients that can wreak havoc on the canine digestive system.

Consuming too much sugary food can lead to obesity in dogs, which in turn increases the risk of developing other health issues such as diabetes, arthritis, and heart disease. Some brands may also contain traces of artificial sweeteners like xylitol or other toxic substances that could harm your dog’s organs, like the kidneys or liver.

If your dog does manage to eat a marshmallow, you should reach out to your vet — especially if they begin showing signs of illness such as lethargy, diarrhea, or vomiting. And if your pup requires veterinary care because they ate something unsafe, pet insurance can help cover the cost of treatment.

Can cats eat marshmallows?

Here's the unfortunate truth about fluffy marshmallows for fluffy felines: Consuming large amounts of sugar or carbs can lead to obesity, diabetes, dental problems, and other health issues in cats.

Plus, marshmallows often contain chemical preservatives and artificial colors, which can be harmful to your pet's digestive system. So no s'mores for cats!

If your cat just stole a marshmallow, reach out to your vet — especially if they're showing signs of illness like lethargy, diarrhea, or vomiting. If your cat does wind up requiring veterinary because they ate an unsafe food, pet insurance can help cover the cost of treatment.

Information Purposes Only

The suggestions offered here are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for pet-specific advice from your veterinarian. Never disregard your vet’s recommendations, or delay in acting on them, based on something you have read on this site. Regardless of how a food is rated here, any food that you give your pet can pose potential health risks, including allergic reactions, choking, or other health conditions such as bloat. Always monitor your pet while they’re eating, and never introduce a new food into your pet’s diet without first consulting your veterinarian. 

Pet Poison Emergency Protocol

If your pet is acting sick, call your regular veterinarian immediately. If your regular veterinarian is closed, call a nearby on-call veterinarian, animal urgent care, or veterinary emergency hospital. If your pet is not acting sick but you think they may have been exposed to a poison, call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (888-426-4435) or Pet Poison Helpline (855-764-7661).

Food Safety Statuses


Could be given almost daily without harm

Safe in moderation

Not toxic, but should not be given regularly


Toxic or simply too risky to give to your pet