If you’re like me, your dog is a family member. So, when it’s time to sit down for a nice family dinner, it’s only natural that you want to share your meal with your furry friend. But before you start spooning spaghetti sauce onto your pup’s plate, there’s something important you need to know: although tomatoes are typically safe for dogs to eat, spaghetti sauce is not. Here’s why.
Why Is Spaghetti Sauce Bad For Dogs?
Like most people, you probably think of spaghetti as a harmless, even healthy, food. After all, it’s just noodles and sauce. But, as it turns out, spaghetti can be pretty dangerous for dogs.
Most commercially-prepared spaghetti sauces contain additives and other ingredients—like onions, garlic, sugar, and salt—that can cause stomach upset and other health problems for your pup.
Also, many brands of spaghetti sauce contain xylitol, a poisonous sweetener for dogs. So even if a particular brand of spaghetti sauce doesn’t contain xylitol, it’s still best to be cautious and avoid giving it to your dog.
There are some homemade recipes for dog-safe spaghetti sauce out there, but unless you’re sure that the ingredients are safe for dogs, it’s best not to take any chances. It’s just not worth the risk of making your furry friend sick.
Signs And Symptoms
As mentioned above, the primary concern with feeding your pup spaghetti sauce is the potential for garlic or onion toxicity. Both garlic and onions belong to the Allium family of vegetables, including leeks, chives, and shallots.
These vegetables can cause anemia by damaging a dog’s red blood cells when consumed in large quantities. The good news is that most commercially-prepared spaghetti sauces do not contain high enough levels of garlic or onion to cause toxicity. However, it’s always best to check the ingredient list to be sure.
Another thing to keep in mind is that spaghetti sauce is often very high in salt. While a bit of salt probably won’t hurt your dog, too much could lead to gastrointestinal issues like vomiting and diarrhea. So, if you decide to share your spaghetti sauce with your pup, give them a small portion size and monitor them closely for any adverse reactions.
Do I Need To Take My Dog To A Vet Or Emergency Animal Clinic?
If your furry family member has gobbled up a whole bowl of spaghetti, you may wonder if he will be okay. After all, garlic and other spices can be toxic to dogs in large quantities. However, it’s unlikely that your dog will experience any serious health problems due to his pasta binge.
While garlic and other spices can cause gastrointestinal distress in dogs, the amount of sauce on a typical serving of spaghetti is not likely to be harmful. However, if your pup does seem to be experiencing any ill effects, such as vomiting or diarrhea, call your veterinarian or take him to an emergency animal clinic to be safe. In most cases, your furry friend will be fine after his Italian adventure.
Dogs That Are Most Susceptible To Toxicity
It’s essential to be aware that garlic can be toxic to dogs, particularly if they’re on medication or Japanese breeds like Akitas and Shiba Inus. This is because garlic contains a substance called thiosulfate, which can react with the medicines that dogs take and cause serious side effects. In Japanese breeds, thiosulfate can build up in the system and lead to garlic toxicity.
Size Does Matter
When it comes to dogs and garlic, size definitely matters. Garlic is a member of the onion family, and onions are known to be toxic to dogs. However, a dog would have to eat a large amount of garlic to experience any severe side effects.
For example, a medium size dog would likely have to consume several cloves of garlic before it started to experience any problems. On the other hand, a small dog could get seriously ill after eating just a few cloves.
So don’t be concerned if your dog tries your plate of spaghetti while you’re away from the table. Unless the dog is a tiny breed, they should be fine.
Frequency Also Matters
If your dog gets their snout into a pot of spaghetti sauce once and cleans it off, I wouldn’t be too concerned. However, if your pup frequently consumes meals that include garlic and onions, this could lead to long-term health concerns such as anemia.
In that sense, the frequency of consumption rather than the quantity is more dangerous for most dogs. To put it another way, don’t let your dog develop a habit of licking your pasta plate clean regularly.
Plain Spaghetti Is Fine
We’ve all been there- our dog begs for food from our plate, and before we know it, they’ve snatched up a forkful of spaghetti. But, while we may panic at the thought of our pup eating pasta, there’s no need to worry. Wheat flour, found in pasta, is also used frequently in dog food and biscuits.
In other words, if your dog ate some plain pasta noodles, your furry friend will probably not experience any adverse effects. But if you want to give your pup a spaghetti noodle as a treat every once in a while, it won’t hurt them!
In conclusion, commercially-produced spaghetti sauces are unsafe for dogs to consume because they usually contain various harmful ingredients and additives. If you want to feed your dog a tomato-based sauce, opt for one of the many brands that make sauces specifically for dogs—these usually only contain a few simple ingredients and do not include any harmful additives.