As an independent producer of artisanal meats, a significant portion of our sales happens at farmers’ markets, where we regularly interact with dog owners. We are often asked if it’s okay to feed salami to dogs. The following is the long form answer. It’s also worth stating, that while we are well informed on the subject, our advice cannot replace the advice of a medical professional who specializes in animals.
Dogs and Salami
Rarely will a dog pass up the opportunity to partake in some delicious salami. The strong odor of the cured sausage makes it a meat that tempts even the most disciplined breeds. Can one slip a bit of salami under the table, or use it as a training reward? Giving your dog a savory treat that you are already eating only sounds convenient. Unfortunately, salami does not make a healthy snack for your dog. Although salami from different sources varies in its recipe, with different combinations of herbs, beef, and pork, dogs shouldn’t eat it because of the high sodium, high fat, and low water content. Dogs should not be given salami, even if it is free of nitrate preservatives. Even a small amount of salami, though not fatal, can send your dog on a trip to the veterinarian.
Dogs and Salt
According to Vetinfo.com, the daily allowance of sodium for a medium-sized dog of 35 to 65 pounds is less than 100 milligrams a day. A 10-gram slice of our salami will have over 300 mg of salt. Dogs have a low tolerance to sodium-rich foods so it is best to error on the side of caution. Avoid giving dogs even small portions of Salami. At best, too much sodium will cause increased urination and thirst in your pet. There is a good probability that they will experience salt-poisoning symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, etc. A dog’s digestive system is not the same as a humans’, and too much salt will hurt a dogs’ kidneys especially.
Dogs and Fat
Another notable health risk for dogs is the high-fat content in salami. More than a quarter of our salami is fat. If consumed often, not only is your dog at a higher risk for obesity and heart problems, but high-fat will cause pancreatitis or inflammation of the pancreas. Health risks for dogs from high fat are increased exponentially when said food is also high in salt and low in water (like salami).
Dogs and Water
Our salami weighs around two-thirds of its original weight after being dried. The loss of water accounts for the decrease in salami weight. When dogs eat dehydrated meat over long periods of time, they will become susceptible to many health risks such as liver, kidney, heart, and urinary tract diseases. If dogs were hunting pigs in the wild, the meat would have much more water than dried meat, especially because wild dogs would get additional water from their prey’s blood. Thus, a wild dog would get much of the water they need from food. Instinctual thirst alone will not compensate for the lack of water in dried meat. The physiology of dogs as a species has not required dogs to process dry food until relatively recently. Humans have the foresight to drink water past the point of thirst.
Summing It Up
If your dog has already consumed a few pieces of salami their life should not be at risk. Fortunately, dogs have an incredibly robust ability to digest or regurgitate a variety of things. However, if you see symptoms or issues pointed out above, it may be a good idea to contact a licensed veterinarian. Also, while we don’t recommend feeding salami to your dogs, it’s still okay for humans to indulge in salami from time to time.
Thanks for coming by our site and hanging out with us. We hope you enjoyed this article, we worked hard on it. We would love to hear from you so let us know if you have any questions below. Also, what is the most unusual thing your dog has ever eaten? We look forward to some interesting replies.