Have you ever wondered, ‘can dogs eat pizza?’ Surely there has been a time or two when you were at least a little bit tempted to let your dog share a slice of pizza, especially when she looks at you with those eyes that make you want to give her the entire world. If you’re a responsible pet owner, you’ve undoubtedly wondered if it is safe for your dog to eat pizza, too. That means you probably want to know more about whether or not you can safely feed a piece of pizza to your dog. If so, how much? What kind is safest? Here, you can find out about all that and more.
Is Pizza Safe for Your Dog?
Before you become too tempted to feed your dog pizza, you need to know whether or not it is safe to do so. Remember, dogs do not metabolize food the same way that people do. As a result, it isn’t always safe to give them the same things that we eat. There is a whole list of foods that are perfectly safe for human beings to eat, yet they can cause severe illness and even death in dogs. Fortunately, most pizza isn’t on that list, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s a good idea to feed it to your dog. Look at it this way. When was the last time that you asked yourself a question ‘what can dogs not eat?‘ and you could honestly answer that question with a single word? It doesn’t happen very often, if ever. That is exactly the case here as well. There are a lot of variables that come into play regarding whether or not the pizza that you’re thinking about feeding your dog is safe. Some of it has to do with the ingredients and pizza toppings on the food itself, but a lot of it has to do with the overall health of your dog. Of course, you have to take into account the amount that you plan to feed as well. Are you feeling a bit overwhelmed at the moment? No worries. Let’s break it down.
Ingredients Make the Difference
Think about your typical pizza. What does your favorite kind usually have on it? This will go a long way toward helping you answer the question regarding whether or not you should be feeding your dog pizza. For starters, pizza is not the healthiest food, even when fed as a reward. It’s certainly not healthy for your dog. Now that the elephant in the room is out of the way, you can get down to the business of answering the really important question. Is it going to hurt your dog if she has just a little taste? This is where things start to get a bit dicier. What specific ingredients are on that little taste that you plan on feeding her? Is it just cheese? Is there pepperoni or some other type of meat product on it? Does the pizza have onions on it? Why does all of this matter? If your pizza has onions on it, your dog cannot safely eat that, even if it is just a little taste. Onions are extremely dangerous for dogs. If you go back to the previous paragraph where it was mentioned that dogs don’t metabolize food the same way that human beings do, you will gain a better understanding of the potential damage that onions can do. Dogs are not capable of processing this particular food the way that we do. As such, it can build up in their body and cause severe kidney damage. Even a small amount of onion is extremely dangerous for your dog. If your pizza has onions on it, you shouldn’t be feeding her any of it, even if you think the particular bite that you’re planning on feeding doesn’t have any onions on it. There is still a reasonable likelihood that the particular bite in question has come into contact with onions. Perhaps there is a piece of onion underneath the cheese that you don’t see. It just isn’t worth risking it. If you really like onions on your pizza, don’t feed any to your dog, no matter how bad she makes you feel like you want to. Give her a dog treat instead and let it go.
Even raw pizza dough is not good for your dog, according ASPCA, as raw yeast can cause harmful reactions to your dog’s stomach . Can your dog eat pizza crust? Your concerns with the pizza crust is that it may contain toxic ingredients for dogs as well, like onions, garlic, etc.
What if There Are No Onions?
Now that you know that you should never feed pizza with onions on it to your dog, you can start navigating around that issue by ensuring that you have a little sliver of pizza that has never come into contact with onion of any kind. All joking aside, you can safely give your dog just a small bite of pizza as long as it doesn’t have any ingredients on it that could potentially hurt her. In other words, a cheese pizza or one with pepperoni or sausage may not be the healthiest option for her, but a very small bite fed as a treat every once in a while probably isn’t going to cause any problems, either. As long as your dog is healthy and doesn’t seem to have any problems digesting it, that part shouldn’t be a problem. That said, there is still something else that you need to consider, so keep reading.
All Dogs Are Not the Same
Dogs may not be able to metabolize food the same way that people do, but they are very similar to human beings in many ways. One of the ways that both dogs and humans are very much alike is that some have very sensitive stomachs, while others seem to have stomachs that are almost made from cast iron. If your dog happens to fall into the latter category, you can probably feed a small amount of pizza to her without any issues, provided you follow the information that you’ve already read. On the other hand, a dog with a sensitive stomach may not be able to keep any type of pizza down, even if it only has cheese on it and nothing else. There are a couple of different reasons for this. Number one, the fat content in all that cheese is rather extreme. There is a reason that pizza is not exactly considered a healthy food. Think about how you feel after you eat a big meal that’s very heavy and has a lot of fat in it. For that matter, think about how you feel after you eat a greasy meal. You know that heavy feeling you get in your stomach, the one where it feels like a bowling ball is just sitting there? You sort of feel like you need to vomit, but you’re not quite there yet. You sort of want to go to the bathroom, but that doesn’t work out, either. The food just sits there and you end up feeling miserable. Guess what? The same thing can happen to your dog. The problem is, it takes a lot less of that food to do the exact same thing. If she already has a sensitive stomach, any amount of pizza, even a slice not quite half the size of the palm of your hand, could be enough to cause things like vomiting, diarrhea, and the obvious discomfort that goes along with these types of things. Do you really want to do that to your best friend? Think about your dog and how well she will be able to handle anything that you feed her, not just pizza. If you have even the slightest doubt that it could potentially cause a problem for her, why feed it to her? After all, she counts on you to keep her safe. Most pet parents go out their way to provide their pooch with the best dog food for sensitive stomachs.
What About Allergies?
There is another thing that you need to consider before you decide to give her that slice of pizza. Does she have any allergies that could potentially be affected by your decision? Not all dogs have allergies, but many do. For some, the allergies are specific to only a few ingredients. As long as you avoid those things and give your pet the best dog food for allergies, you’re not likely to have a problem. The issue is that it’s not always easy to know exactly what your dog is allergic to. Even if you do know that she’s allergic to certain ingredients, that doesn’t necessarily mean that she can’t be allergic to something else that you’re not aware of. Some dogs with severe allergies can have a reaction to certain foods almost immediately. If you’ve ever had a dog that’s allergic to a particular ingredient, you know it’s no fun when she gets exposed to it. In fact, it’s absolutely terrifying to watch your best friend panic as her face swells up and she struggles to breathe. If your dog has allergies, there’s a better than average chance that she’s allergic to more things than you probably think she is. Do you really want to risk it? This is especially true if your veterinarian has placed her on a very specific diet because of issues like allergies or the aforementioned sensitive stomach. If your veterinarian has placed your dog on a restrictive diet, there’s a reason for it. It’s probably best that you follow that advice.
Nothing But Dog Food
By now, you’ve probably made up your mind that you’re never going to feed your dog another slice of pizza as long as you live. In fact, you’ve probably sworn off virtually all human food in lieu of the dog food that your veterinarian recommended. In reality, that’s actually a good thing. Most food that is consumed by humans really isn’t that good for dogs. That doesn’t necessarily mean that a small bite of pizza is going to immediately send your dog into some type of fit that requires you to rush her to the nearest veterinarian, but it certainly could happen if she’s allergic to something that you feed her. At the end of the day, it comes down to one thing. You know your dog and you know what she can handle and what she can’t. However, you should be reminded that even if she can safely have that bite of pizza, she shouldn’t have a lot of it, nor should it be something she gets all the time.
If you still feel like you’re not quite sure what the right solution is, it might help to read through the frequently asked questions that are listed below. The information has already been covered in some cases, but it’s also important enough that it’s worth covering again in order to make sure that your pet stays safe and you both stay happy.
Frequently Asked Questions
What happens if your dog eats pizza?
The truth of the matter is that it all comes down to how much pizza she eats and exactly what the particular pizza in question has on it. As previously mentioned, she should never have pizza with onions on it. If the pizza doesn’t have anything on it that could potentially hurt her, she may be able to eat a small amount without anything happening whatsoever. That said, even the healthiest dog is probably going to have some stomach upset if she somehow manages to get a hold of a lot of pizza. The fat content is just too high for most dogs to handle. If she gets a significant amount, expect stomach discomfort, nausea, and vomiting. In other words, you’re probably going to have a sleepless night while you watch over her. If it seems like anything more serious than that happens, don’t hesitate to take her to the veterinarian. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
Can pizza hurt dogs?
In some cases, yes it can. If the pizza has ingredients on it that are unhealthy for dogs, such as onions, it could be very dangerous to feed it to your dog. The same is true for any ingredient that your dog could be allergic to. A dog with a sensitive stomach is far more likely to suffer adverse impacts from eating pizza because its stomach simply can’t handle all the fat and grease that pizza contains. If your dog has more than just a little bit or if she has a medical condition that makes her sensitive to it, you could be dealing with anything from vomiting and diarrhea to a severe allergic reaction or in some cases, a severe digestive reaction. The latter is true in some dogs that have certain digestive diseases such as Crohn’s disease.
Can a dog eat a slice of pepperoni pizza?
You really don’t want to feed an entire slice of pizza to your dog, no matter what is on it. However, if your dog is healthy and doesn’t have allergies to any of the ingredients, you can probably feed a very small bite of pepperoni pizza to her without any issues. An entire slice could be another question entirely. You don’t want to make her sick to her stomach, so it’s best to refrain from letting her have an entire slice at a time.
Can pizza give dogs diarrhea?
It can and frequently does. If your dog has a sensitive stomach or eats too much of it, you can almost bet that she will end up with diarrhea. It’s also possible for your dog to experience a lot of stomach discomfort and even vomiting.