Your pup wags and wiggles and begs while you’re standing at the grill. Is there any quicker or easier way to put a smile on his loveable face than to flick him one of those hot dogs? Fido may be delighted with your generosity, but you’d do well to pause and ask yourself: Is this a good idea?
The simple answer is NO. Okay – your dog may consider a hot dog a gustatory delight and feeding one to your dog certainly won’t instigate a form of cannibalism, it still isn’t a good idea. Your dog can become ill, especially if you make a habit of feeding them hot dogs.
What’s wrong with hot dogs?
The problem with hot dogs is that they’re loaded with chemicals that aren’t good for your dog. Most hot dogs contain seasonings like garlic and onion powder that can be downright toxic for your dog.
Sodium nitrate is linked to cancer, and then there are other chemicals that you won’t find in your typical dog food, like monosodium glutamate, sugars, and artificial sweeteners. This stuff doesn’t make for a healthy diet.
The biggest problem is salt. The average hot dog has two-and-a-half times the sugar that your dog should ingest daily. Just as with us humans, too much salt can lead to dehydration, and taking in too much continues over a long time it can lead to ailments like high blood pressure.
Hot dogs can also present a choking hazard. You’ve seen your dog gulp down food. Trying to swallow a hot dog without sufficiently chewing can be dangerous for a dog, especially a larger one.
Will hot dogs make my dog get sick?
Hot dogs aren’t good for your dog, but what if you occasionally can’t say no to that adorable face?
A little piece of a hot dog won’t kill your dog, and probably won’t even make them sick. But what if it does? Or if they surreptitiously snatch a hot dog or two from the table when you aren’t looking?
Assuming there’s no choking, your pup will most likely be fine. The probably worst case will be a tummy ache and maybe a case of diarrhea. Both the tummy ache and diarrhea should pass within a day.
Pay attention, though, because if either condition persists you should make a visit to your vet’s office.
Okay – hot dogs are off the menu. So, what sort of treats can you feed your dog when they beg when you’re grilling?
Ideal treats that your dog will eagerly devour with joy include cut-up, bite-size pieces of lean beef, pork, or chicken.
You want to cut them up to avoid creating a choking hazard to your overly enthusiastic companion. You also want to make sure that you don’t add salt or seasonings to any of these treats.
Are hot dogs good for dogs? Certainly not.
They contain too many potentially harmful chemicals that can cause your dog to become ill, especially if fed to your dog in quantity or over a long time. They can also be a choking hazard because of the way that dogs tend to gulp down food without chewing.
You probably won’t make your dog sick with a hot dog snack now and again, but if they exhibit any digestive issues for more than a day you should call your vet.
Tasty treats are fun for both you and your dog, so give them unsalted, unseasoned beef, pork, or chicken that’s been safely cut up into bite-size pieces that your dog can munch on instead of a hot dog.