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Home > Dogs > Can Dogs Eat Mike and Ikes? Vet-Verified Dangers & Safety Tips

Can Dogs Eat Mike and Ikes? Vet-Verified Dangers & Safety Tips

a box of Mike and Ike Candy

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Dr. Alice Athow-Frost Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Alice Athow-Frost

Veterinarian, BVM BVS MRCVS

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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Dogs are the curious sort and will sample just about anything—even if it’s bad for them. Mike and Ikes, the popular candy, may be safe for you but can be dangerous for your dog because they are unhealthy.

Learn more about why Mike and Ikes aren’t a safe choice as a treat for your dog and what you should do if your dog manages to get one.


What’s in Mike and Ikes?

Mike and Ikes are a type of chewy, fruit-flavored candy. Based on the list from the manufacturer, Mike and Ikes contain corn syrup, sugar, modified food starch, and unspecified natural and artificial flavors. They also have a food-grade wax coating to make them shiny.

Candy beans
Image Credit: Daniel Wiedemann, Shutterstock

Why Shouldn’t Dogs Eat Mike and Ikes?

Some of the ingredients in Mike and Ikes aren’t toxic to dogs, but they’re not healthy for them.The high sugar content and the myriad of artificial colourings and preservatives in Mike and Ikes are not ideal for your dog’s health or digestive system.

Some artificial ingredients, such as xylitol, are toxic to dogs. Though Mike and Ikes don’t specifically list xylitol as an ingredient, plenty of candy varieties—as well as some other foods—do contain xylitol. It is best to steer clear of candy for your pup to avoid the risk of giving your dog toxic substances such as xylitol.  If your dog ingests xylitol, you must contact your vet straight away.  It can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar, leading to lethargy, weakness, lack of coordination, collapse, and seizures.

divider-dog paw

Risks of Feeding Mike and Ikes to Dogs

Mike and Ikes may not have xylitol, a feared ingredient found in an array of sweet foods and other products, but they’re not safe or healthy for your dog.


There are 13 grams of sugar in just one package of the original flavor.  Foods with a high sugar content pose the risk of weight gain and gut dysbiosis (when unhealthy bacteria within the gut over-populate, causing gasto-intestinal problems like diarrhea) in dogs. Dogs have evolved to eat a mixture of animal and plant material. The carbohydrates that dogs would’ve eaten in the wild would have been very minimal, possibly consisting of some fruits and the stomach contents of herbivorous prey. They don’t have the digestive system to cope with large amounts of highly processed sugar.

Eating granulated sugar can cause stomach upset and an imbalance of gut bacteria in dogs, leading to vomiting, gas, diarrhea, and digestive discomfort. Over long periods, a lot of sugar can cause other issues for your dogs, like obesity and diseases associated with weight gain.

a yorkshhire terrier dog being examined by a vet
Image Credit: Tatyana Vyc, Shutterstock

No Nutritional Value

Mike and Ikes have no nutritional value for humans or dogs, so there really is no benefit to giving them to your pup. Give your dog a healthy, more nutritious treat like a carrot or a green bean.  That way they get some nutritional benefit while they join in with snack time.


What Should I Do If My Dog Eats Mike and Ikes?

If your dog eats one Mike and Ike, it’s probably not going to cause a problem. But your dog’s reaction will depend on their size, current health, and how much they ingested. If you have any concerns or see any adverse reactions it’s best to contact your vet. Have the packaging on hand so that you can explain the ingredients to the vet.



Mike and Ikes may be a sweet treat for us, but they’re not an appropriate choice for your dog. You may not need to panic if your dog gets a hold of one or two but avoid feeding Mike and Ikes as a treat and always keep them—and all other candies—out of reach of your pets. If you have any concerns, contact your vet.

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