Owning a dog is a handful and the one thing that all dog owners can relate to is their dog’s big appetite.
Even if they have finished the big meal you had set out for them, as soon as they notice you have food on your lap they are ready for seconds.
But surely it can’t hurt to give them a bite of your pizza, right? Just the crust? Well, whilst this may seem harmless, there is much more to learn about this than you may think.
Can Dogs Eat Pizza?
Whilst a dog eating pizza is not a matter of life and death, it is still best for them not to indulge in it. This is because pizza contains layers of ingredients which could negatively affect your dog’s health.
What’s more is that the pizza crust contains no nutrients whatsoever. Even though a small bite won’t hurt, pizza crust will offer nothing good to your pet.
How Safe Is Eating Pizza Crust?
To answer this question it is necessary to know what ingredients are used to make the pizza crust. To make crust, yeast, flour, salt, water, eggs and olive oil is used.
From this list alone, it is clear that there is nothing significantly beneficial in terms of nutrients.
Because of this, if your dog was to eat pizza crust then it would only be safe as a small quantity. For them to eat pizza as a meal would be very bad for their health and development.
If your dog is to take a bite of pizza then it is likely that they will develop a taste for it as it is filled with everything delicious that they’re not usually allowed.
However, this will increase their chances of obesity and can even cause digestive problems. Whilst it is okay to give your dog a small bite, you should make sure not to make a habit of this.
Pizza Ingredients That Can Cause Harm
Although we all love pizza, there are many ingredients which can cause harm to your dog.
We all love cheese and a lot of us will have it on almost anything when we have the chance. But does this mean dogs can consume cheese too?
Whilst small amounts won’t hurt your dog, too much can be harmful as most dogs are lactose intolerant. This will eventually lead to bowel problems, diarrhea and vomiting.
Another ingredient to be wary of is pizza sauce. Pizza sauce has a sweet and savory taste which both dogs and their owners love, however this can still be harmful for your pet.
Because of the ingredients contained in pizza sauce, it can be difficult for your dog to digest which can cause stomach problems.
What should be made clear is that the meat used on pizza is processed, however this processed meat can be bad for your dog’s stomach. Dogs love meat so when met with pizza the temptation can be too much.
Dogs need pure fresh meat which will benefit them, not the meat from pizza.
The worst thing on a pizza is its spices because whilst this is very enjoyable to us this is toxic to dogs.
To eat pizza with excessive spice will not only be too spicy for them to handle but can cause gas and in some instances pain in their stomachs.
Onions And Garlic
Lastly, we have onions and garlic. These two ingredients are core components to the added flavor of a pizza which gives it its delicious taste, yet this is not something a dog should be indulging. This is highly toxic for them.
What Can I Give My Dog Instead Of Pizza?
If you want to keep your dog healthy, there are many alternatives available to pizza. These include:
One alternative is fruit. Fruit is packed full of vitamins and minerals that your dog needs. They also contain fiber which helps to keep your dog regular.
You can buy fresh or frozen fruits from any supermarket. However, be aware that there are certain fruits which they cannot eat such as grapes.
Another option is meat. Although meat isn’t quite as nutritious as fruit, it does provide protein. Protein keeps your dog strong and healthy and is brilliant for their growth.
Vegetables are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. They are also high in fiber. A bowl of vegetables will fill up your dog’s tummy and keep them happy and healthy.
Eggs are a wonderful source of protein and calcium. They are also high quality fats which are essential for your dog’s skin and coat.
Bread is a fantastic way to feed your dog and an ideal alternative. Whilst, as highlighted before, bread gives no nutritional value, there is no more risk of consuming any toxic like a pizza would.
Rice is a great alternative to bread. It is filling and has a similar texture to bread. It is also easier to digest so it doesn’t cause any stomach upset. It is even something that vets themselves recommend.
Nuts are a great snack for dogs. They are high in energy and contain protein. However, this should only be given in small qualities and only as a treat. This is because nuts are high in fat.
Despite this, nuts are still a better option than pizza as they are less toxic.
Cereal is a great alternative to pizza. It is high in protein and fiber. It is also easy to digest and won’t leave your dog feeling bloated. Make sure to only give your dog plain unsweetened cereal in small quantities.
The Best Way To Feed Your Dog
Dogs need a varied diet to stay healthy. As such, feeding your dog on a daily basis is important. By doing this, you ensure that your dog gets all the nutrition he/she requires.
This means that you don’t have to worry about giving your dog a variety of foods every day. When feeding your dog, it is important to remember that they are carnivores.
This means that they require meat as part of their diet.
When feeding your dog, it’s best to stick to one type of food at a time. By doing this, it ensures that your dog gets enough of each nutrient.
Also, by having a single type of food, you avoid overloading your dog’s system. Overloading your dog’s system could lead to digestion issues and other complications.
When choosing your dog’s food, make sure that you choose something that suits his/her age and size. This way, you can ensure that your dog eats well throughout the year.
How Much Should I Feed My Dog?
It is important to note that how much you feed your dog depends on the amount of calories that they consume. If you want to know exactly how many calories your dog should be consuming per day, then you can use a calorie counter.
These calculators allow you to input information about your dog’s weight and activity levels. Once you enter these details into the calculator, you’ll get an accurate estimate of how many calories your dog needs.
It is recommended that you feed your dog twice a day. However, if your dog is younger or underweight, then you may find that he/she benefits from eating three times a day.
You should always consult with your vet before making changes to your dog’s diet.
What Type Of Food Should I Give My Dog?
There are two types of food: dry and wet. Dry food is made up of grains like wheat, corn, rice, oats and barley. Wet food is made up of meats, fish, poultry, eggs and vegetables.
While both types of food provide different nutrients, there isn’t necessarily anything wrong with using either kind.
The main thing to consider when deciding what type of food to give your dog is whether you prefer one type of food over another. Some people prefer to eat dry food while others enjoy wet food.
If you’re unsure about which type of food you’d prefer, then you should try them out first. Try mixing the two types of food together and see which one you prefer.
Another option is to start off with a mixture of the two types of food and gradually move towards only one type of food.
Is It Okay To Feed My Dog Snacks?
Whilst it is best to avoid pizza, does this mean that your dog cannot have any snacks from their owners? Not really! In fact, some dogs actually benefit from snacking.
Your dog will not suffer from overeating if you give him/her small amounts of treats from time to time. This is because treats are high in energy content. They also contain protein, vitamins and minerals.
As long as you keep your dog’s treats to a minimum, then he/she won’t suffer from overeating.
Just make sure that you limit the number of treats that you give your dog so that he/she doesn’t become dependent on them.
Your dog’s treats should not make up more than 10% of their daily intake.
Why Does My Dog Eat My Food?
Your dog might be eating your food for several reasons. For example, he/she might be hungry, bored or stressed. It is possible that your dog has started eating your food because he/she likes the taste.
There are certain foods that are more likely to cause problems than others. Chocolate, onions, garlic and caffeine are all known to upset dogs’ stomachs.
If you suspect that your dog is eating your food because he likes its taste, then you should take steps to change the way that he eats.
You could try giving your dog a treat instead of his usual meal. Alternatively, you could offer him a bowl of water instead of his normal food. Also, you could try feeding your dog at a different time of day.
By changing the time that you feed him, you can reduce the chances of him becoming accustomed to eating his meals at a particular time, or stealing from your plate.
Foods Which Are Dangerous For Dogs
It is important to note that some foods are dangerous for dogs. If you suspect that these items have been eaten by your dog, then you should contact your vet immediately.
The following list contains foods which are considered harmful to dogs:
- Caffeine-containing drinks
- Sugary drinks
How Can I Prevent My Dog From Eating My Food?
There are many ways that you can prevent your dog from eating your food. You can use some common sense and follow these tips:
1) Keep your dog away from the kitchen.
2) Don’t leave food lying around.
3) Do not allow your dog to lick the outside of containers containing food.
4) Never let your dog drink/eat from bowls containing food.
5) Always supervise your dog whilst he/she is eating.
6) When preparing food for your dog, always ensure that you don’t accidentally put any salt into your dog’s food. Salt is toxic to dogs.
7) Make sure that you wash your hands after handling food.
8) Use a timer whenever you prepare food for your dog. This will help you to remember what time you fed him last.
9) Try giving your dog a treat alongside his regular meal.
10) Feed your dog at different times of day.
11) Change the location where you feed your dog or the bowl.
12) Consider using a different brand of food.
What Happens If My Dog Eats Pizza?
If your dog eats pizza crust, then there is no need to worry. However, if he/she consumes any other part of the pizza, then this may pose a problem.
The most serious consequence of your dog eating pizza crust is that they may become sick. In fact, it is possible that your dog could develop an intestinal blockage.
Your dog must be treated as soon as possible if he/she becomes ill after eating pizza. Contact your vet immediately if you are concerned.
How To Train Your Dog To Not Eat Human Food?
Now we know that dogs should not be eating pizza, the best option is to train them to stay away from your food altogether.
It is inevitable that an untrained dog will sit by your feet waiting to be fed some of your food or will sometimes even jump and eat to take a bite. This needs to stop, and the only way to do this is through training.
You can teach your dog not to eat your food in a number of ways. Here are just a few ideas:
Method 1: The Waiting Game
This first method requires plenty of patience from your dog and yourself as an owner. What you should do is place a bowl of your dog’s favorite food out in front of him.
Leave this bowl on the floor for up to an hour, giving your dog plenty of time to choose to eat. If he doesn’t eat, simply take the bowl away and try again later.
The objective is to get your dog to eat from this bowl twice a day. The more you do this, the more your dog will realize that this is their food and your food is yours. No matter how much they beg, simply ignore.
Method 2: Lie Down
Another method is to teach your dog how to lie down. This is a basic trick but will help to keep your dog away from your food. Find an area where you prepare and eat your meals and use this space to teach him to lie down.
Your dog will then associate your meal times with him lying down and staying away. During training, be sure to reward your dog with a treat every time he lies down on your command.
Eventually, he will have learnt that when you cook and eat, he is to stay away.
Overall, although pizza is tolerable for dogs in small doses, it is best to avoid this delicious treat at all costs.
The ingredients used in pizza can be bad for your dog’s health so make sure to only stick to healthy alternatives which will benefit their health and growth.