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Can Dogs Eat Bologna? Vet-Approved Nutrition Facts & Info

Kristin Hitchcock

By Kristin Hitchcock

Can Dog Eat bologna

Vet approved

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Luqman Javed

DVM (Veterinarian)

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

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Dogs like meat. While they are not obligate carnivores, they have evolved to live off of mostly meat. Their diet needs to consist of mostly protein and fats, which is precisely what meat contains.

Bologna is a type of sausage that is usually made of meat. This may make it seem like a suitable option for canines. However, it is a very processed form of meat. It usually contains many additives and is high in sodium. For this reason, it isn’t a fantastic food for either people or canines. But it isn’t dangerous for dogs, either. Bologna in moderation can be a yummy snack, but you should not feed bologna to your canine as a large part of their diet. Instead, you should provide bologna only sparingly.

We’ll take a look at everything you might need to know about feeding your dog bologna below.

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Is Bologna Bad for Dogs?

sliced bologna on wooden board
Image Credit: MicrostockStudio, Shutterstock

Your dog getting their paws on a piece of bologna is not going to cause significant problems. One piece is not going to harm your dog; however, problems can arise when your canine eats a lot of bologna over a long period.

Bologna sausages are typically prepared with various ingredients and additives that give them a distinctive flavor. Many of these ingredients (such as the spices) also prolong the shelf life of the product. These additives are generally not recommended for dogs.

Bologna is okay as the occasional treat but not as a regular part of a dog’s diet. However, the bologna you offer your dog should be free of potentially dangerous ingredients, such as onion or garlic powder. In addition, vegetarian or vegan bologna isn’t recommended for dogs. These are usually either soy- or wheat-based and aren’t nutritionally appropriate for dogs when compared to other meat-based snacks.

Another potential issue with bologna is that it is often part of a sandwich. Certain condiments that are popularly used on sandwiches aren’t good for dogs. Examples of such condiments include mayonnaise and mustard.

Finally, bologna can be made out of just about everything. If your dog has allergies, this can be a problem. For example, bologna can contain chicken. If your dog is allergic to chicken, you may unknowingly be giving them chicken without even realizing it since many people assume bologna is made of just pork.

Safer Alternatives For Dogs

A much healthier alternative for dogs who love sausage is a homemade sausage or meat patty made from a meat your dog enjoys and isn’t allergic to. This process is fairly simple. Purchase a meat of your choice and use a meat grinder to produce ground meat. Avoid a food processor, as this can result in a mushy paste that is hard to work with.

Once the meat is finely ground, you can make anything your pup loves – meatballs, burgers, or a mincemeat cake! Such recipes allow for creative control with regards to additional ingredients, as long as they are safe for your dog. Examples of additives include bananas or eggs. The one rule to be mindful of is to prepare the meat without any additional seasonings.

If your dog is on a raw meat diet, you would obviously skip cooking the minced meat, but if your meat grinder is strong enough to handle bones, you can mix finely ground up bones with the meat mix. This is a safe way to feed your dog bones for their nutritional benefits.

a black dog eating nom nom at the counter

Bologna and Dogs With Allergies

Bologna is often referred to as “mystery meat” because you don’t know what is in it. Bologna can be made out of just about everything. If your dog has allergies, this can be a problem. For example, bologna can contain chicken. If your dog is allergic to chicken, you may unknowingly be giving them chicken without even realizing it.

For this reason, bologna is best avoided by dogs with allergies. These canines may accidentally eat the meat they are allergic to by eating bologna.

vet examines the ears of the corgi dog
Image By: Roman Zaiets, Shutterstock

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Final Thoughts

In most cases, a little bit of bologna isn’t going to hurt your canine. However, bologna isn’t particularly healthy, and many varieties contain ingredients that are toxic to dogs. Overall, it’s best to look for other treats for your dog.

With that said, if your dog does snatch a piece of bologna off the counter, you usually don’t have a reason to be worried, provided the ingredients used to make the sausage are dog-safe and the product itself isn’t expired.

Featured Image Credit: CC0 Public Domain, Pixy

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