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Can Dogs Eat Chorizo? Vet Approved Nutrition Facts & Risks

Written by: Patricia Dickson

Last Updated on April 11, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can Dogs Eat Chorizo? Vet Approved Nutrition Facts & Risks

VET APPROVED

Dr. Lorna Whittemore  Photo

REVIEWED & FACT-CHECKED BY

Dr. Lorna Whittemore

MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

Chorizo is a trendy type of spicy sausage that most of us love, and when we love something as pet owners, we sometimes want to share it with our pets. However, there are some foods you shouldn’t share with your pet, and chorizo is one of them. Dogs should not eat chorizo, it’s not safe for them to do so.

While chorizo is made of sausage and beef, the spices make it unsafe for your canine to eat. We’ll discuss what chorizo is and why it’s not safe for your canine friend below.

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What Is Chorizo?

Chorizo is a sausage that was created in Spain. It’s normally made of sausage but can also be made of beef or chicken. Once the chorizo is made, it’s seasoned with various spices, including garlic, paprika, and cumin. This highly seasoned treat also includes spices such as cinnamon, salt, pepper, onion powder, and more.

It’s a bright red sausage and is often smoked, grilled, and sometimes baked. It’s used in many Spanish and Mexican dishes. It’s delicious, and you can find it in almost any grocery store, but that doesn’t make it safe to give to your pup.

chorizo on wooden board
Image Credit: Jumpstory

Is Chorizo Safe for Your Dog?

No, chorizo is not safe to give to your canine friend. While the meat of the chorizo isn’t that bad for your dog and may contain a few health benefits, the heavy seasonings can make your pet extremely sick. The heavy spices and the fat content of the sausage aren’t good for canine stomachs or their digestive systems.

These spices and the fat can lead to diarrhea, poor digestion, and gastrointestinal irritation. The salt and other heavy seasonings can also lead to sodium poisoning and other health issues.1

Toxic Ingredients in Chorizo for Your Dog

While some of the ingredients in chorizo are unhealthy for your furry friend, a few can actually be toxic. Garlic and garlic powder are used heavily in this dish and can harm your pet. In fact, it’s recommended that dogs not be fed anything with garlic, garlic, powder, or onions in it because it can lead to anemia.

It’s best to avoid seasoning any food that you cook for your dog and never cook it in oil or butter. The American Kennel Club recommends cooking your dog’s food without oil, butter, or any seasonings to be on the safe side and keep your dog healthy and happy for many years to come. As an alternative to chorizo, you can serve unseasoned cooked chicken, beef, or pork.

Are There Any Health Benefits of Dogs Eating Chorizo?

Many chorizos are made out of pork meat, which can be healthy for your dog. It’s a big protein source, which dogs need a lot of to be healthy. A healthy protein source in your dog’s food can help with muscle development, tissue repair, and healthy skin and hair growth.

However, this is the only health benefit of eating chorizo that has been found. Giving your dog this tasty treat has been proven to do more harm than good, so it’s not worth taking the chance.

chorizo on the grill
Image By: IoanT, Pixabay

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats Chorizo?

If your dog gets into cooked chorizo, and it’s a small amount, you can just watch them to see if they have any adverse effects, such as an upset stomach. It’s unlikely that a few small pieces will lead to side effects or a trip to the hospital.

If you’ve been feeding your dog chorizo regularly, you need to discuss with your vet if blood tests are necessary to determine if the spicy food has had any adverse effects on your canine, especially anemia. Either way, if your dog gets sick from the chorizo, it’s best to contact your vet for diagnosis and treatment.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Sausage?

The raw diet for dogs has become wildly popular over the last few years. Some think that because pork is full of protein, it’s good for their dog. However, raw food can do more harm than good for your canine.

While some raw meat (produced for canine consumption) can be good for your dog, raw pork sausage can cause Trichinosis. This parasitic infection, also known as pork worm, can cause signs such as vomiting, muscle pain, diarrhea, and a host of other symptoms. It’s best to feed your dog cooked food unless you have your vet’s approval.

What Healthy Treats Can I Feed My Dog Instead?

While you want to stay away from the chorizo for your canine pal, there are other healthy treats you can give your dog while eating your chorizo so your pet doesn’t feel left out.

  • Unseasoned chicken, pork, or beef
  • Apple slice (no pips)
  • Cut up carrot
  • Cantaloupe

These are just a few healthy treats you can give your dog occasionally. However, as with any treat, it’s best to give these to your pet in moderation. A complete and balanced commercial diet and a few treats will supply the proper nutrition for your pet.

sliced chorizo on plate
Image By: ajcespedes, Pixabay

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Conclusion

Chorizo is a highly seasoned dish that tastes great and is perfect for a snack or a meal. However, the heavy seasonings and high-fat content make it unsuitable for canines. If you suspect that your dog has gotten into your chorizo dish, keep an eye on it for any troubling signs. A small portion is unlikely to harm your dog. If you’re unsure how much your dog ate, it’s best to make an appointment with your vet.

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