Beef Jerky is a snack that’s gotten lots of bad press. Premature dog deaths have been linked to some beef jerky pet products. Is this type of food really considered that unsafe for canines?
The FDA says that this popular snack can be dangerous for the family dog. However, beef jerky that’s made for humans could be another story. People do share this type of treat with their dogs, on occasion, without incident.
Before you offer your beloved dog any questionable beef jerky snacks, let’s set the record straight. Our views are very clear regarding this controversial matter.
Can I Give My Dog Beef Jerky? Answer: No, see recent FDA information
Thousands of dogs have been sickened and many have died!
This devastating news has made us steer clear of most beef jerky brands. If you provide some to your dog, try to make sure it’s naturally prepared without spices. Commercial beef jerky, especially if manufactured in China, could be very unsafe and even fatal. Even most higher quality kinds are often loaded with chemical treatments that may be toxic for canines.
The reasonable alternative is an excellent USA-made grain-free product called Wellness Pure Rewards.
Spicy Beef Jerky Treats
Most dogs like the taste and chewy qualities of beef jerky, so owners have long used it as a treat or reward during training. If you still plan to use jerky, at the very least make sure it’s not spicy. Sometimes you can remove spices by washing the beef jerky under running water. Unfortunately, the manufacturing process may involve a curing and marinating technique. It may be impossible to get rid of the spices.
This is one reason why we don’t recommend regular store-bought beef jerky. Most likely it’s safe, but we err on the side of caution.
Store vs. Homemade Jerky
Beef jerky is delicious because it’s loaded up with, again, lots of spices. The beef is treated with an intensely salty solution. Preservatives prolong shelf life. Garlic and onion powder as well as pepper may be included in the recipe and these are potentially dangerous. Most owners know these are harmful for dogs but they are sight unseen. Homemade beef jerky is best since you’ll know exactly what ingredients are in Fido’s dried meat snacks.
A much easier way is to get quality beef jerky treats made for specifically dogs.
More on the Dangers
A brand called Waggin’ Train Chicken Jerky Tenders, which is made by Nestle Purina in China, should be avoided. There are several other brands which are also dangerous so be careful. If you are already dealing with such a situation, depending on the severity, your dog may need urgent veterinary care. This is especially true if the vomiting and diarrhea are uncontrolled. Dehydration is a real concern.
Feeding your dog an uncontrolled amount of any type of meat products can cause stomachaches or worse. Even if everything goes relatively well, they may still experience increased gas or diarrhea.
Remedies for Upset Stomach
Dogs can be given an antacid for gas or stomach rumbling, but often times symptoms will go away on their own. Pepcid and Zantac are generally safe for mild gastrointestinal issues. Pepto-Bismol is also okay for dogs with mild diarrhea.
Just be sure to use a proper dose, as instructed by a vet, since dosage for humans and dogs can be quite different. Obviously, case of severe food poisoning should be addressed by a professional as soon as possible.
Conclusion on Beef Jerky
Dogs love beef jerky treats but they should be given with an abundance of caution. High levels of salt, preservatives and spices make feeding it questionable. Some brands, especially those made in China, have killed many pet dogs and seriously sickened thousands of others. If possible, make your own jerky at home or buy quality canine-friendly beef jerky treats that are made in the USA. Many owners use this food as a treat, or for training purposes, but understand that not all products are safe.