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Can Dogs Eat Liverwurst? (Vet Reviewed Nutrition Facts)

Written by: Elizabeth Gray

Last Updated on April 17, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can Dogs Eat Liverwurst? (Vet Reviewed Nutrition Facts)


Dr. Lauren Demos  Photo


Dr. Lauren Demos

DVM (Veterinarian)

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

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Liverwurst is a type of sausage made primarily of liver, spices, and other ingredients. If that sounds like something your dog might enjoy, you’re not wrong but can dogs eat liverwurst? Liverwurst often contains toxic ingredients, so you’ll need to check the label to determine if it’s safe for your dog.

Even without toxic ingredients, liverwurst should only be offered in limited quantities, and we’ll talk about why in this article. You’ll also learn which toxic ingredients to watch out for and the signs you may notice if liverwurst doesn’t agree with your dog. We’ll also tell you if liverwurst is healthy for your dog and how to feed it to your pup.

dogster face divider Liverwurst: The Good, The Bad, and The Wurst

Liver, the primary ingredient in liverwurst, is nutritionally dense and high in nutrients like protein, iron, and B vitamins. However, it’s also high in cholesterol, and liverwurst itself is a high-fat food. As a treat for your dog, liverwurst offers some nutrition, but there are some concerns with feeding it.

Liverwurst is very fatty and contains a lot of salt and seasonings that give it a spicy flavor. In general, you should avoid feeding your dog fatty, salty, or spicy foods. They may upset your dog’s stomach or even trigger a dangerous and painful condition called pancreatitis.

Most liverwurst recipes call for onions in some form. Onions are toxic to dogs, including onion powder. Eating too much salt can also be hazardous to your dog. Other liverwurst ingredients that could make your dog sick include milk and mustard powder. Dogs don’t digest dairy products well, and mustard seeds (used to make mustard powder) are toxic to dogs.

Image Credit: JumpStory

What Are the Signs Liverwurst is Making My Dog Sick?

If liverwurst is making your dog sick, the most common signs you’ll see are vomiting and diarrhea. These could occur if your dog gets an upset stomach from the liverwurst or as an early warning sign of more severe issues like pancreatitis.

Vomiting and diarrhea are also early signs of salt poisoning, followed by seizures and other impacts on the nervous system. Along with digestive upset, eating too many onions can destroy your dog’s red blood cells and cause anemia (low red blood volume.) If your dog is anemic, you may notice signs like pale gums, lack of energy, and collapse.

Feeding Liverwurst to Your Dog

If you can find a liverwurst product free of toxic ingredients, you should only offer this treat occasionally. Most of your dog’s daily calories should come from a nutritionally balanced diet. Keep all treats (including liverwurst) to about 10% of their calorie intake each day.

Because it’s so high in fat, liverwurst isn’t your dog’s best human food option. Consider reserving it for situations where you need an extra high-value reward to offer your pup. For example, if you’re desensitizing your dog to something they’re reactive towards and need to distract them.

medical treatment of sick husky dog in vet clinic
Image By: Pressmaster, Shutterstock


As we’ve learned, liverwurst isn’t always safe to feed your dog because it often contains toxic ingredients like onions or onion powder. Even if you find liverwurst that’s free of these ingredients, it should only be offered occasionally due to the high fat and salt content. In addition, dogs with certain health conditions may need to avoid all high-fat foods. Check with your vet before feeding your dog liverwurst (or any new food). With so many other healthy options for your dog, it may not be worth the potential risks of feeding liverwurst to your dog.

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