Dogs do love hot dogs. But is it safe and good for your dog?
IT IS NOT. It contains ingredients that are considered toxic to dogs, says Katherine Ripley in “Can Dogs Eat Hot Dogs?” in the American Kennel Club online site.
A lot of the hotdogs in the market contain ingredients that are harmful to dogs such as:
1. sodium nitrate, which has been linked to cancer;
2. monosodium glutamate (MSG);
3. sugars or artificial sweeteners; and
4. seasonings, such as garlic and onion powder, which can be toxic to dogs.
The salt content is the biggest problem with hot dogs, says Ripley.
“According to the National Academy of Sciences, a dog weighing 33 pounds only needs 200 milligrams (mg) of sodium per day. The average hot dog contains more than 500 mg of sodium, so feeding your dog only one-half of a hot dog would probably put him way over his daily sodium limit,” Ripley says.
When you give food with a lot of salt to a dog, the dog will get dehydrated. The excess sodium or salt consumption will lead to high blood pressure, just like in humans, adds Ripley.
Too much salt in the diet can also lead to kidney problems.
Another problem with hotdogs is the fact that they are choking hazard as some dogs, specially the big ones, might try to swallow a hotdog without chewing it.
Hotdogs and diarrhea
If your dog got to snag a hotdog while you’re not looking, do not panic. One hotdog will not cause much harm, specially for a big dog. But please do not let it happen again.
“He might get a bellyache or have some other digestive problems, like diarrhea, but this should pass within one day. You only need to call the vet if the diarrhea persists, or if he is vomiting with diarrhea, as this could lead to extreme dehydration,” Ripley says.
The salt in the hotdog will make your dog very thirsty, so please make sure that your dog has plenty of water available, Ripley adds.
A healthy alternative
Plain beef, pork or chicken with no salt or seasoning are the best alternative to hotdogs.
You can boil them before putting them on the barbecue grill to make the meat more chewy, and then cut into bite-sized pieces. This also helps prevent choking.
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