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Can Dogs Eat Chorizo? Vet Approved Nutrition Facts & Risks

Written by: Patricia Dickson

Last Updated on June 18, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can Dogs Eat_chorizo

Can Dogs Eat Chorizo? Vet Approved Nutrition Facts & Risks


Dr. Lorna Whittemore  Photo


Dr. Lorna Whittemore

BVMS, MRCVS (Veterinarian)

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

Learn more »

Chorizo is a 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. We’ll discuss chorizo and why it’s unsafe for your canine friend below.

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What Is Chorizo?

Chorizo was developed in Spain. It’s typically made of pork 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 that is often smoked, grilled, and 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 pup sick. The heavy spices and the fat content of the sausage aren’t good for canine stomachs or their digestive systems.

The 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 be toxic. Garlic and garlic powder are used heavily and can harm your pet. Any meal with garlic, garlic, powder, or onions is hazardous because it can lead to anemia.

It’s best to avoid seasoning food 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. You can serve unseasoned cooked chicken, beef, or pork as an alternative to chorizo.

Are There Any Health Benefits of Dogs Eating Chorizo?

Many chorizos are made of pork, which can be healthy for your dog. 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 your 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 immediately.

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Can Dogs Eat Raw Sausage?

The raw diet has become wildly popular over the last few years. 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, and diarrhea. It’s best to feed your dog cooked food.

What Healthy Treats Can I Feed My Dog Instead?

Although your pup cannot eat chorizo, there are other healthy treats you can give your dog.

  • 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 serve them 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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Chorizo is a heavily seasoned sausage that tastes great and is perfect for a snack or a meal. However, the seasonings and high-fat content make it unsuitable for canines. If you suspect your dog has gotten into your chorizo, monitor them 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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