Back in the day, ketchup was used not only as a condiment but as an ingredient in many foods, especially in meat and fish. However, you might be amazed to know another interesting fact that ketchup was actually used as a medicine for curing many gastrointestinal issues such as diarrhea and indigestion.
Early ketchup had no tomatoes and was made from lemons, walnuts, oysters, mushrooms, and shallot. But these days, tomato is the first thing that our mind recalls as soon as it hears the word “ketchup.”
Tomato ketchup is widely used these days as a dressing for salads and a component of cocktail sauce and barbeque sauce. In addition to this, it has become a must for flavoring burgers and french fries, giving them a sweet and sour taste. With its extensive use by people, isn’t it obvious that the pets will definitely ask for it? Here is the complete guide for dog owners regarding whether ketchup is bad for dogs or not.
Is it Okay to Give Your Dog Tomatoes?
The main ingredient of ketchup is tomato fruit, so the first thing to consider is: Will it is safe if the dog eats tomatoes?
Yes, eating ripe tomatoes is absolutely safe for dogs, plus it has many nutritional elements like vitamins, fibers, and antioxidants which turn out to be good for their health. In addition, beta-carotene in this fruit is very beneficial for their body’s defense system.
But green parts of the plant, including stems, leaves, and unripe tomatoes, are unsafe for the dogs to eat. Green tomatoes and other green components of the tomato plants contain glycoalkaloids like Tomatine and Solanine, both of which cause toxicity in dogs. Too much Tomatine or Solanine causes disorders of the nervous system and digestive system. Keeping in mind the harms of these toxic compounds, every pet owner is constrained to keep a check on dogs if you have tomato plants in your garden.
Can Dogs Eat Ketchup?
Overall, tomatoes are safe for your dog but adding tomato ketchup to your dog’s diet regularly is not a good idea at all. It’s because of the artificial flavors and preservatives in the ketchup that make it unsafe for the dog.
It’s million-dollar advice for dog owners to keep their dogs away from ketchup because if your dog consumes ketchup regularly, it would be difficult to keep him away from ketchup as many dogs often like the taste become addicted.
Are All Ketchup Ingredients Edible For Dogs?
A large number of ingredients other than the ripe tomatoes are used to make commercial ketchup as well as natural ketchup made at home. So let’s see if these ingredients are edible for your furry friend.
Vinegar is good for the dog’s health due to its antimicrobial properties. But if you feed your dog ketchup without knowing that he has a sensitive stomach, vinegar in the ketchup can cause gastrointestinal upset in the dog. The main symptoms, in this case, are vomiting and diarrhea. If left untreated, it can lead to severe dehydration.
According to ASPCA, small amounts of cinnamon, such as ketchup, are safe for your dog to eat. It is entirely non-toxic and can aid insulin production in diabetic dogs.
Garlic contains N- propyl disulfide, which is toxic to dogs. Visible signs of toxicity due to garlic include vomiting and nausea, breakdown of dog’s red blood cells, increased heartbeat, urine with blood, and panting. Garlic in any form, whether it’s fresh or garlic powder, is really toxic and can pose serious risks to the health of your four-legged friend.
Onion powder is used to enhance the flavor of the ketchup. Your dog may not be able to tolerate this ingredient because onion is not safe for the dogs, whether it is fresh or in the form of onion powder. Large amounts of onion consumption in any form can lead to hemolytic anemia (breakdown of red blood cells). Eventually, onion poisoning can be life-taking for the dogs.
It is best to avoid both garlic and onion powder as they are bad for dogs.
100g of ketchup contains 22g of sugar, making 22% of the ingredients. This much sugar in any food is certainly problematic if your dog suffers from diabetes and has a low insulin level in the blood.
Other than diabetes, teeth and gums diseases, gastrointestinal diseases, excessive weight gain, and other disorders may result from hyperglycemia. Therefore, sugars should be avoided as much as possible in order to keep your dog’s distance from all the possible risks due to high sugar levels.
Not only ketchup, but also avoid tomato juice as it is also high in sugar content.
In one tablespoon of ketchup, 150 mg of sodium is present. The high salt content in ketchup can cause hypertension, ionic imbalance, dehydration, and other serious problems in your dog. Although sodium is necessary for their metabolism, excessive quantities can lead to “salt poisoning” in dogs.
Can Dogs Eat Ketchup on French Fries?
Dogs eat french fries with great relish, but it’s not a healthy diet. Fried in oil and well seasoned with salts and spices, french fries make a tasty treat but have zero nutritional value. On top of that, adding ketchup to the fries make it even worse for his health.
Keep in mind it is not toxic to dogs; if you catch your dog eating some leftovers, there’s nothing to get worried about.
Can Dogs Eat Ketchup on Eggs?
Eggs are beneficial for dogs. They are rich in proteins and have other nutrients, including vitamins, iron, and fatty acids. They are good for his skin and have many health benefits. Adding a few drops of ketchup on them is completely fine.
Don’t let dogs eat eggs in high quantities. Similarly, raw eggs are also not good for your dog.
Can Dogs Eat Ketchup Chips?
Any processed food is a big “NO”; ketchup chips are not exception. They offer zero nutritional value. So if your dog eats ketchup chips and tends to like them, you need to be careful.
It’s not safe for humans, too; it’s best for dog owners to avoid bringing it home.
Which Ketchup Brands are Safe For Dogs?
Store-bought ketchup has many preservatives, chemicals, and some other ingredients that are not safe for dogs. So rather than regretting after drizzling dog foods with this ketchup, it’s best to avoid it.
Keeping in view the harms of normal ketchup, Canine Ketchup has made a variety of condiments for dogs. These products are made especially for dogs; hence they don’t contain any ingredients unhealthy or risky for dogs. You can add it to their dry foods as well as can make their favorite food more delicious and tasty.
Can Dogs Eat Ketchup Made at Home?
Yes, you can let your dog eat ketchup made at home. Homemade ketchup prepared purely from ripe tomatoes is good for your dog as long as it does not have much sugar content in it.
Can Dogs Eat Sugar-Free Ketchup?
Sugar-free ketchup is not good for dogs. It has no sugar in it, but it has another toxic chemical in it. It has a sugar substitute called xylitol in it, which can cause some serious issues in dogs.
500 mg of xylitol is enough to take the life of a puppy and make an average-sized dog sick.
Can Dogs Have Tomato Sauce?
Just like store-bought ketchup, tomato sauce bought from the store has no nutritional value. Instead, the additives and other chemicals in tomato sauces make them harmful to the dog.
But if you made pure tomato sauce for dinner by yourself, why not give your dog a little bit of its taste.
Giving Your Dog Too Much Ketchup Can be Lethal
Ketchup is not good for your dog’s health. There are many components of ketchup that can cause a number of disorders. Some are listed below:
Your dog may develop an allergy to ripe tomatoes. As a result, he cannot digest tomatoes and may show symptoms of itching and irritation of the skin and paws.
Apart from allergic reactions, tomato poisoning caused by consuming green parts of the tomato plants is likely to develop in most dogs. So as a dog owner, you should keep an eye on him when your dog consumes tomatoes.
If your dog has devoured a large amount of ketchup already high in salts, the first symptom he will show is thirst. Drinking plenty of water after salt consumption will cause fullness and vomiting. His stomach will swell, and his muscles will be dehydrated. Serious cases may include diarrhea, seizures, tremors, and loss of coordination. These all are the signs of what we call “salt poisoning.”
In case you notice any of these symptoms, make sure to hospitalize him at a veterinary facility. The vets there will treat your dog by giving him IV fluids, proper electrolytes, and medication. If you are unable to take your dog to the vet right away, make sure to call the Pet Poison Helpline without a second thought.
Xylitol is used as an artificial sweetener and additive in sugar-free ketchup, but a dog is poisoned by xylitol. A 100 mg dose per 1 kg of the dog’s weight is enough to trigger the rapid secretion of insulin in the bloodstream of the dog. This burst of insulin will cause a decrease in blood glucose levels like a wind. The condition is called hypoglycemia.
The first and foremost sign of xylitol poisoning is vomiting, preceded by fatigue and ataxia. Extremely hypoglycemic dogs can face liver failure, seizures, and other serious complications. Xylitol poisoning can even lead to the death of the dog.
The high sugar content of ketchup can cause diabetes in a dog. Every one dog out of a hundred is at risk of developing diabetes. In a diabetic dog, blood is already having more sugars than the normal level. Feeding him high-sugar foods in such a condition is no less than giving him poison by your hand.
Recent estimates show that obesity in dogs has raised in more than 50% of their population. Regular doses of ketchup can make your dog obese, resulting in your dog lagging behind during walks, becoming tired easily, losing his appetite, and showing immoderate panting.
An obese dog is more vulnerable to many other diseases such as diabetes, inflammation of joints, hypertension, and many heart diseases.
The ketchup ingredients like onion and garlic powder are likely to cause hemolytic anemia in the dog. As a result, the count of red blood cells is tremendously decreased, causing the incomplete oxygenation of blood and body tissues.
Will Ketchup Kill the Dog?
Giving your small dog doses of ketchup daily or too much ketchup at once can kill him. You might not notice, but he can become lethargic and might become weak, slowly progressing towards his departure from life.
This is the reason ketchup proves to be a silent killer for dogs.
Don’t Toss Ketchup Packets On the Kitchen Counter Carelessly
Ate pizza and tossed the ketchup packet on the shelf or a table in the living room incautiously; if it’s one of your habits, it might prove to be risky for your dog. A dog is an innocent animal and doesn’t even know what’s wrong or right for him. He can pick up the ketchup packet without giving it a second thought.
If you love dogs, then it is your responsibility to save your dog from the hazards of eating human foods. As an owner, you are responsible for his health. Not only will the dog eat that ketchup, but it will also bite some pieces of the packet that can be dangerous for him. So, the best solution is to keep them away from the reach of your dog.
Similarly, don’t let dogs eat mustard, mayonnaise, or salsa as they also pose similar threats to dogs’ health.
Does ketchup Provide any Nutritional Value?
Though large quantities make tomato ketchup harmful but adding a few drops in a dog’s food can actually be good for your dog. Some benefits that allow the owner to add a small amount of ketchup to his dog’s food are as follows.
- Ketchup contains vitamin A, and that’s good for vision.
- It protects the dog from prostate cancer.
- It also helps in lowering the cholesterol level of the body.
Don’t forget the risks a dog suffers are more than the benefits he might enjoy after eating ketchup. You can add ketchup to his dry foods now and then but avoiding it is better.
There are many condiments out there that are safe for your dog. They include the ones having cinnamon, mint, cilantro, basil, ginger, turmeric, parsley, and rosemary.
These are all dog-friendly, so it’s better to abandon the one that has more risks than benefits.
To put it in a nutshell, ketchup is not a good treat for your dog as it has no health benefits. Yes, you can feed it to him along with other meals to change the regular taste of his food. But the taste is not the sole purpose of the food. Good food for a dog has benefits for his health. So if your dog still wants to have some ketchup with his meal, make healthy ketchup without any chemicals and low in sugars at home and serve him with this instead.