Can Dogs Eat Icing? (TOXIC Birthday Cake Risk) 

If you are throwing a furry birthday party, you may be wondering if your dog can have a taste of the cake icing. There are a lot of human foods that are safe for dogs to eat. However, just as many foods can seriously harm your furry friend.

Knowing which cake ingredients are safe for your dog to enjoy will help you make the occasion yummy and fun.

can dogs eat icing
Can dogs eat icing? (Toxic birthday cake risk)

So, can dogs eat icing? And if not, what should you do if your dog eats some? Here’s what you need to know. 

Why Is Icing Unsafe for Dogs? 

There are several ingredients in icing that are toxic to dogs. Fortunately, these ingredients tend to be in small amounts, so a tiny bit of frosting likely won’t negatively harm your dog’s health. But if they eat a large amount of frosting, your dog could get very ill. 

Icing is very high in sugar and fat, and while these components are not inherently dangerous for dogs, too much can lead to health issues such as diabetes and tooth decay

So even if there are no toxic ingredients in your icing, regularly giving icing to your dog isn’t a good idea. 

tooth pain or dental problems
Tooth Pain or Dental Problems

Ingredients in Icing That Can Hurt Your Dog  

Other ingredients in icing can be toxic to dogs, especially if they ingest it in large amounts. If your dog eats cake icing that has any of these ingredients in large amounts, please contact a veterinarian for immediate assistance. 

Shar Pei dog and cake
Shar Pei dog with a birthday cake.


The cacao bean (the primary ingredient in chocolate) is very toxic to dogs. So, if your dog eats icing with chocolate, it can make them very ill. Dogs who eat chocolate can experience vomiting, diarrhea, excessive urination, increased heart rate, and more.

In severe cases, chocolate can cause seizures, muscle tremors, and even death. 


Xylitol is an artificial sugar often found in candy, chewing gum, baked goods, or frosting. Dogs who eat xylitol may experience hypoglycemia and liver failure, which can be fatal. 


While not common, you may sometimes find this nut as an ingredient in cake icing. Dogs who eat macadamia nuts can experience vomiting, diarrhea, fever, and tremors

Is Cake Unsafe for Dogs? 

We’ve covered whether dogs can eat icing, but some people may still be wondering—what about cake

Unfortunately, due to the ingredients, the cake is often no better for dogs than icing. Cakes often contain many of the same toxic ingredients that you can find in icing. Other ingredients, like raisins and nuts, are common additions to cakes that pose harm to dogs. 

Cake is also very high in sugar and fat, which can lead to health issues in your dog if you let them eat it regularly. 

Overall, it’s safe to say that giving sweets to your dog typically isn’t a good idea. For the sake of their health, keep your furry friend far away from the dessert table! 

What To Do if Your Dog Eats Icing? 

Some dogs can be pretty sneaky and get into things they are not supposed to have, like sweets. So if your dog eats frosting or cake, here are some steps you can take to ensure they’re safe. 

  • Remove the icing from your dog and store it away where they can’t reach it. 
  • Check the ingredients in the frosting. 
  • If there are any toxic ingredients in the frosting or you’re at all unsure, contact your veterinarian for advice. 
  • Be sure to supervise your dog for the next day or so. Look out for abnormal symptoms such as vomiting, seizures, or excessive urination. 
  • Make sure your dog has plenty of water
Goldendoodle carried by her owner
Behaved Goldendoodle carried by her owner.

How To Prevent Your Dog From Eating Unsafe Foods?

The best way to protect your dog is to prevent them from eating dangerous foods in the first place. Thankfully, there are plenty of precautions to ensure your dog is safe. 

Here are a few different tips for keeping unsafe food away from your dog: 

  • Supervise dogs when food is sitting out in the open, especially if the tables are low enough for them to reach. 
  • Alternatively, you can keep your dog in a separate room while eating or preparing food, so you won’t need to worry about supervising them. 
  • Don’t allow children to feed dogs without adult supervision. 
  • Avoid giving your dog “people food” too often. If you make it a habit, it may be harder to keep them away from toxic foods in the future. 
  • Get trash cans with lockable lids. 
  • Make sure you stick to a consistent feeding schedule. If your dog is constantly begging for food, it may not be eating enough. 
white dog alone
A white dog alone in a small room.

Other Party Foods That Are Toxic to Dogs 

Birthday cake isn’t the only party food that can hurt your furry friends. Here are a few other foods to keep far away from your dog: 


Pizza typically includes dairy, which can cause digestive issues. It can often have onion or garlic as well, both of which are toxic to dogs. 

Poodle wants a pizza too
A Poodle wants to eat a pizza too.


Avocado, the main ingredient of this dip, can be harmful if your dog ingests it. 

Shih Tzu and avocado
Is avocado good for dogs?

Sugary Treats

Sugary snacks can make your dog sick and lead to long-term health issues. So not only is icing bad for dogs to eat, but cookies, candies, and ice cream are, too. 

pug looks up at camera surrounded by treats
Some dogs seem to have a sweet tooth. There are much better healthy alternatives to sugar for your puppy though!


Any alcoholic drinks can be seriously harmful to your furry friend. If you don’t want your dog feeling left out at the party, consider buying some dog-friendly beer! You can find it at most pet stores these days. 

(Though you should check our list of alcohol-inspired dog names!)

dog with beer
Dog biting a beer bottle on the grass.

How To Make Dog-Safe Icing? 

Can dogs eat icing… made for dogs? Yes—there are plenty of alternatives! If your dog is always begging for a taste of icing, they can safely enjoy one of these easy, dog-friendly icing recipes

You can let them lick the homemade icing from the spoon, put it on dog treats, or even make a whole dog-friendly cake! 

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Icing? 

No matter how much your dog begs for a taste of cake icing, it’s best not to share it with them. Always keep icing out of your dog’s reach unless you’ve specifically made it with dog-safe ingredients. 

Fortunately, a lick or two of frosting most likely won’t hurt your dog. So if your dog ever gets into the frosting, they will probably be fine. Just keep a close watch to monitor for signs that they may need to see a vet.

If you find that your dog ate a large amount of frosting, contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.