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Can Dogs Eat Ranch Dressing? Vet-Approved Nutrition Facts & Risks

Written by: Ed Malaker

Last Updated on April 12, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can Dogs Eat_ranch

Can Dogs Eat Ranch Dressing? 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 »

Dogs like it when we share our food, which can have us continuously wondering if different foods are safe for them. A common item that people wonder about is ranch. Unfortunately, you should try to keep your dog away from ranch dressing for several reasons. Keep reading as we discuss ranch’s ingredients, possible dangers, and more to help you be better informed.

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Is Ranch Bad for My Dog?

Onions and Garlic

Two popular ingredients in many ranch recipes are garlic and onions, and both belong to the allium family.1 Unfortunately, while safe for humans, these plants can lead to the breakdown of red blood cells, resulting in anemia. It only takes a small amount before your pet starts showing signs like lethargy, weakness, pale gums, and reddish urine. The powdered form of the vegetable is concentrated and even more dangerous, so it is best to avoid giving your dog foods containing garlic, onions, leeks, scallions, chives, or any other plant in the allium family.


Ranch contains buttermilk, which can cause problems for dogs that are sensitive to dairy. Your dog will suffer from many of the same effects that a lactose-intolerant human would, including diarrhea and stomach cramps. If your dog has had problems in the past, it’s best to keep them away from ranch dressing.


Another ingredient in ranch that isn’t good for dogs is salt. While a small amount won’t hurt them and can even be good for them, too much can be toxic, leading to vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, and even seizures. A single teaspoon of ranch can have as much as 80 mg of sodium, the daily limit for a 30-pound dog.

Saturated Fats

Ranch also contains mayonnaise, which can add a large amount of saturated fat to your pet’s diet, leading to obesity and other health problems.

Other Additives

Your ranch dressing can contain several other additives that make it dangerous to give to your dog, including artificial colors and preservatives.

ranch dressing with carrots and celery
Image By: Brent Hofacker, Shutterstock


Is Ranch Good for Dogs?

There are no nutritional benefits to adding ranch to your pet’s diet.

Can My Dog Have an Allergic Reaction to Ranch Dressing?

Unfortunately, many dogs are lactose intolerant and can have trouble with the buttermilk in ranch. Onions and garlic can also initiate signs of an allergic reaction.

What If My Dog Ate Ranch?

If your dog eats ranch dressing, the first thing to do is determine how much they ate. They will likely be fine if they ate a small amount, but we recommend watching them carefully, and if they start to vomit, call the vet immediately. If your pet ate more than a few teaspoons of ranch, we recommend calling your vet for advice. Keep the bottle handy so you can share the ingredients with the doctor to take the appropriate action.

Can My Dog Eat a Ranch-Flavored Snack?

No, ranch-flavored snacks have many of the same ingredients found in regular ranch, including onion and garlic powders, which are especially dangerous to your dog.

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



Unfortunately, ranch can be dangerous for dogs, primarily due to the onion and garlic powders that it might contain. It can also have several other potentially toxic ingredients. If your pet ate a small amount by mistake, keep an eye on them and call the vet if they start vomiting or acting strangely. Call the vet immediately if your dog eats more than a few teaspoons to learn what steps you should take.

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