Due to their carnivorous nature, dogs love to eat meat. Additionally, they absolutely love the taste of it, meat is packed with proteins. And you bet that proteins are as good for dogs as they are for humans! They keep them lean, with healthy joints and muscles, and of course — at a lower risk of suffering from diabetes or pancreatitis. But what type of meat should we give to our canines? We already know that chicken and turkey are great choices. But what about pork? Can dogs eat cooked pork? Let’s find out together.
Is it safe to feed pork to dogs?
Pork is typically regarded as safe for dogs as a protein source. Pork, on the other hand, comes in a variety of forms, including bacon, ham, gammon, and sausage. This makes it impossible to establish if pork is bad for dogs or whether dogs should consume pork with certainty.
Processed pork products, such as bacon, can contain high levels of salt and fat, making them unhealthy for dogs and should be avoided totally. Pork loin, for example, is a leaner cut of pork that is both beneficial for dogs and incredibly nutritious. In fact, providing your dog with the proper cut of pork is an excellent method to ensure that they get the recommended amount of protein in their diet.
Dogs, unlike their wolf forebears, are omnivores who have evolved the ability to digest both meat and grains. Despite these evolutionary modifications, protein remains a crucial component of their diet, as it aids in the creation and maintenance of healthy bones. Dogs’ bones might become weak and fragile if they don’t get enough protein.
Can dogs eat pork?
The answer to this question is a bit more complicated than a simple yes or no. While in most cases it will be safe to feed your dog pork, there are certain instances where you should most definitely avoid it. There aren’t really many health benefits associated with eating pork, and uncooked pork could even be dangerous for dogs. If dogs with a sensitive stomach eat pork, chances are that it could irritate their digestive system. Even in small amounts. There are different forms of pork, but this is especially when a dog eat ham or bacon, as it has a high salt content.
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Can dogs eat cooked pork?
Plain and cooked pork is perfectly fine for canines, as long as you don’t add any seasoning, herbs or additional fat to it.
Some seasonings that you may love to add to your pork could even be highly toxic for your dog. These include:
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
BBQ sauce and other sauces that contain a lot of salt or sugar should also be avoided.
Can I feed my dog raw pork?
No! No one should eat raw pork, whether it’s your dog, cat, or you. Raw meat can be contaminated with a parasite named Trichinella Spiralis, if you ever watched Dr. House you most likely already know what this parasite does. The parasite Trichinella Spiralis larvae can sometimes be found in raw pork meat. That’s why the World Health Organization recommends never eating a raw piece of pork, as it could lead to a parasite infection.
These parasites get inside your body after you ingest the meat, and after that, they can find their way into your muscles, internal organs, or even brain. The same can happen to your dog, which in worst-case scenarios can lead to serious organ damage or even death.
As serious as this condition is, it will produce only mild symptoms (like vomiting, diarrhea, fever, muscle pain, or lethargy) until the damage is already done. And remember that undercooked pork is as dangerous as uncooked pork.
How much pork can I feed to my dog?
If you are feeding your dog pork for the first time, start slow. Give them a modest amount until you are sure that their stomach can take it. After that, start to increase the sizes one by one. Pork is one of those meats that are pretty likely to cause allergic reactions in canines. That’s why it’s so important not to give them large amounts all at once.
Additionally, pork is also fairly rich in fat. Diets that contain high levels of fat can lead to the development of pancreatitis in dogs. That’s why it’s so crucial to take it slow, and not feed much pork at once.
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Can dogs eat pork bones?
As tempted as you may be feeling to give your dog pork bones that are left after dinner, please don’t do it. As much as dogs love to chew on those gigantic bones, they aren’t completely safe. While they are safer than, for example, chicken bones, there is still some risk left. Especially cooked pork bones can be fragile and a splinter could easily come off possibly injuring your dog’s intestines. If your dog does enjoy a good bone, consider a high-quality, edible dental bone as an alternative.
What about processed pork?
Cooking bacon, ham, and sausages may entice your dog, but these processed pork products should be avoided at all costs. Do not attempt to offer these types of processed food to your dog if he or she has health issues, a fatty food sensitivity, or a delicate digestive tract.
For starters, these processed pork products are likely to contain substances that can cause major digestive problems, especially if the person has a sensitive stomach. Furthermore, some of these pork products may be hazardous to your dog or cause long-term allergies or intolerances.
Bacon and ham made from pork are highly processed, and even humans are advised to eat them in moderation. When you’re cooking bacon, your canine companion is likely to look at you with begging eyes but resist the urge to give in. Even if bacon or ham is delicious, flavorful, and aromatic, it still includes unhealthy fats and salt, which will harm your dog’s stomach as it tries to digest it.
Excess lipids may cause health problems in dogs, such as heart disease or pancreatitis. Pancreatitis is a disorder in which the pancreas digestive enzymes are triggered too early, causing the pancreas to self-digest. If you don’t want to completely avoid processed pork but still want to treat your pet to a sliver of sausage every now and again, do it in moderation.
I think my dog is allergic to pork. What are the alternatives?
If you do find that pork upsets your dog’s stomach, don’t worry at all — there are plenty of alternatives. And most of them are even a better choice. The two we will talk about are chicken and wild boar.
Pork is called a “novel protein” because most pet parents feed their dogs beef or chicken. A novel protein, as the name implies, is a protein that your dog does not normally consume, making it less likely to produce bad effects.
Pork may be an acceptable alternative for dogs with some protein allergies; nevertheless, if your dog has allergies, it’s best to see your veterinarian before making any dietary adjustments.
You don’t want to give your dog pork? Wild boar is the closest substitute for pork. Wild boar is a unique protein source, similar to pork, making it one of the finest choices for dogs with allergies or intolerances. The advantage of wild boar over pork is that it is much leaner meat. It’s also incredibly easy for dogs to digest when offered as a single source of protein.
Wild boar, unlike other pigs, is free to roam and hunt for grass, roots, and seeds. As a result, there are no processed farm foods used in boar production, obviating the necessity for antibiotics and treatments.
Chicken is one of the most affordable meats out there. In addition to that, the nutritional value is amazing too. It’s packed with proteins, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and those good and healthy fats. However, always make sure that you cook it plain and unseasoned, to avoid those unnecessary and possibly toxic ingredients.
Pork products, while delicious, are not the same as healthier cuts of meat. Unlike processed pork, lean cuts of pork have nutritional benefits to both humans and dogs, and can be included in a well-balanced diet for both.
If you’re cooking pork for your dog at home, keep it simple and plain, and leave out any possibly harmful ingredients. Plain pork is the safest pork option to feed to dogs, but remember that it still won’t really deliver many health benefits to them. Pork is just a source of protein, however, it also contains much fat.
But there are many different types of pork besides plain, cooked pork. For example, processed pork should be avoided for the most part. Even if the smell of bacon and sausages makes your dog’s mouth water, and they would love to give them a good chew, resist the temptation.
You should also avoid feeding your dog fried pig bones as a chew toy because they shatter quickly and might cause choking.
If you’re looking for a meat alternative to pork, wild boar is a terrific option. It has the same flavor as pork but is made from a different protein (which means it’s less likely to cause allergies), has less fat and cholesterol, and is healthier for the environment.