Who doesn’t love pizza? We surely do, and our dogs do, too. Unfortunately, just because our pets like pizza, it doesn’t mean it is good for them. In fact, pizza may contain a lot of things that our dogs should never eat.
If your dog ate pizza, it may be necessary to call your veterinarian. Some toppings and spices may be dangerous for our dogs and the dough itself is far from healthy. However, if your dog only got a taste of it, he should be fine.
What should you do if your dog eats pizza?
A small bite of pizza shouldn’t be harmful to your dog, but this doesn’t mean you can use this excuse to give them a bite every time you have pizza, because, in the long run, it could cause serious health problems.
Some dogs experience stomach discomfort, vomit, and/or diarrhea after eating pizza in small quantities, so you should keep an eye on your pet. If the symptoms continue for more than a couple of days, it would be wise to call your vet.
When the pizza has several toppings, seasoning, and spices and you’re not sure whether one or more of these could be toxic for your pet, you should call your veterinarian right away.
Usually, dogs are able to pass small quantities of pizza without much trouble. You can help them by making them skip the following meal and feed them a temporary diet of boiled chicken and rice until they don’t feel sick anymore.
What should you do if your dog ate pizza dough?
You should call your veterinarian right away if you catch your dog eating pizza dough. While not poisonous, raw dough poses many risks for our pets.
When you make bakery products at home, you ought to leave the dough to rest for a few hours or even a whole night and if you’re not careful enough, your pet may find their way to it.
A dog’s stomach is warm and moist enough for the raw dough to rise successfully, which means that as the mass grows, the stomach swells and blood circulation is compromised. In some cases, it could cause a GI blockage, which would prevent your dog from drinking and eating normally.
If your dog ate raw pizza dough, they’re also at risk of alcohol intoxication, because yeast fermentation produces ethanol, which goes directly into your dog’s bloodstream.
Both the amount of dough and the size of your pooch will be fundamental in this situation. While an adult dog may not suffer the consequences of ingesting a small bite of dough, a puppy eating pizza dough might be in danger.
Whether you have an adult dog or a puppy, the first thing to do when your dog eats dough would be to call a professional for advice. Usually, dough ingestion requires emergency treatment so be prepared to bring your pooch to the vet.
Can dogs eat pizza?
Dogs should not eat pizza, not even that small bite you’re tempted to give them when they weaponize their puppy eyes.
Pizza doesn’t hold any nutritional value for dogs and doesn’t add anything to their diet, except a worrying amount of calories that could be hard to burn and therefore make them gain weight.
In many ways, pizza is as “bad” for dogs as it is for us humans, except our pets are much smaller than us and therefore, the effects of an unhealthy diet are much more devastating on their small bodies.
While the traditional pizza (cheese and tomato) is already a no-no for your dog’s diet, you also need to consider that today we have an endless choice of pizza flavors and as such, in every pizza, there are at least one or two ingredients that could hurt your dog.
Garlic and onion
We, humans, love to have garlic and onions almost everywhere, they just give that little something to our food that makes it so much tastier. However, these two vegetables are extremely toxic for both dogs and cats.
Garlic and onion come from the allium plant’s family and contain thiosulfate, which causes damage to red blood cells.
The outcome of this kind of ingestion is unpredictable and usually depends on your dog’s health status and the number of vegetables eaten. If consumed in small amounts, they might simply experience a stomachache.
However, they could also cause hemolytic anemia, which is a life-threatening disease whose symptoms may show up only days after the ingestion. If left untreated, this disease can be fatal for your dog.
Identifying these ingredients on our pizza isn’t always easy, because sometimes they can be mixed with other toppings, like the tomato sauce. The best way to dodge any risks is simply to avoid feeding pizza to your pet.
Many people wouldn’t probably think of cheese as something dangerous for their pet and indeed, some types of cheese can be considered dog-friendly, but chances are the cheese on your pizza is not.
The kind of cheese used on pizza is usually high in lactose content, easy to melt, and full of fats. None of these characteristics agree with your dog’s stomach; in fact, most dogs are lactose-intolerant and will probably feel sick after eating the cheese on the pizza.
You should consider if that slice of pizza is worth countless poop trips outside and cleaning up after the mess your dog might make inside the house.
Salt is ever-present in human food, although it is not healthy for us either. Unfortunately, too much salt can kill a dog.
The lethal dose of sodium for dogs is as low as 4g/kg and given that the average pizza can weigh up to 300g and salt is present in more than one of its ingredients, it’s easy to understand how dangerous even a single slice could be for your pet.
Salt is commonly used to enhance the flavor of the tomato sauce which is the most used ingredient in pizzas, so we can’t say there’s such a thing as a ‘safe pizza’ for dogs.
If your dog ingests a large but non-lethal dose of sodium, they’re still at risk of developing high blood pressure, gastrointestinal problems, and heart diseases. As you can tell, that small pizza bite isn’t really worth your dog’s life.
Oils and fats
Pizza is full of oil, which in turn is full of fats. It’s enough to know that a single spoon of olive oil contains the number of fats of a whole meal to understand just how fatty pizza is.
On top of that, many other ingredients used on pizza, like cheese, contain fats, which means a single pizza has fats for days.
While fats are notoriously bad for humans as well, dogs have a particularly hard time digesting fats. Moreover, large amounts of fats in their diet can cause gastroenteritis and pancreatitis, which can degenerate in further health problems like diabetes.
Even if the situation doesn’t degenerate in chronic diseases, too much fat will make your dog overweight in the long run.
An overweight dog will feel lethargic and won’t be able to take part in the activities they usually love as much as before, which could make your dog depressed.
Obesity is a serious problem in dogs and it leads the way for many other diseases that could potentially shorten your pet’s lifespan.
Can dogs eat pizza crust?
The pizza crust looks pretty innocuous because it’s the only part not tainted by other ingredients. It is not uncommon for pet parents to leave pizza crusts to their dogs, thinking they’re making the healthiest choice in an unhealthy situation.
However, if pizza is normally fat and full of calories, the pizza crust is the part where most calories are stored. Ironically, when you eat a normal pizza without too many toppings, if you leave out the crusts you’re probably not ingesting an exaggerated amount of calories.
The crust of the pizza is nothing but carbohydrates and sodium — basically, free calories and high blood pressure for your dog. These calories will surely fill your dog’s stomach, but they won’t do anything for them in terms of nutritional value.
Dogs that eat pizza crusts regularly will only gain weight and compromise their heart and overall health, so you should not feed pizza crusts to your dog.
If your dog ate pizza crust in large amounts, call your veterinarian immediately because the amount of sodium could be very damaging for your pet.
Is pizza bad for dogs?
Pizza is not a healthy dietary choice for your dog, so if you care about your dog’s health (as you should), you won’t feed them pizza and you will make sure they don’t get the chance to steal a bite of pizza by chance.
Almost everything that is used to make a pizza could be troublesome for your dog. Even the simplest of all pizzas are still full of sodium and carbohydrates, which at the very least will make your dog fat and in the worst-case scenario, could compromise their health for good.
While a single bite of pizza may not hurt your dog, you should not give in to their silent begging, because even a small slice of pizza could cause stomach problems like vomiting and diarrhea, which are going to be uncomfortable for both you and your dog.
Besides, if your dog learns that whenever you’re having pizza, they’re bound to get a bite, you’re setting a dangerous precedent and it could be hard to un-train your dog.
As a general rule, giving our dogs human food is never a good idea. Every dog should have its own carefully planned diet, which should supply all the necessary nutrients for a healthy and long doggy life.
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