Can I Give My Dog Fat?

Can I Give My Dog Fat?Many of us are guilty of feeding our dogs table foods. That’s one thing, but providing fat offcuts or lard is a whole other question! The reasoning may be that fat is part of meat and dogs need this type of protein in their diets, right?

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Using this logic could cause you to make the wrong decision regarding this big fat question. Providing a best buddy with pure fat is controversial to say the least. Let’s take a closer look at fat as a possible food for your dog and then you can decide for yourself.

First off, don’t lose sight of the fact that our pets need an appropriate and quality diet to stay healthy, fit and ward off illness. That’s obvious but what’s less well-known is that too much fat consumption may be detrimental and result in kidney failure, liver damage, pancreatic and/or heart problems.

Can I Give My Dog Cooked Fat? Answer: Not Recommended

Cooked or rendered fat isn’t ideal for canine consumption. It can cause pancreatitis, not to mention it’s difficult for them to digest.

This includes fat offcuts of cooked meat and lard, which are both unhealthy. So, giving cooked fat or lard is a no-no. Strangely enough, raw fat is considered to be safe by some. They claim that it can be fed to dogs, along with other foods, to produce healthy coat and skin. However, there are better ways to achieve this.

Healthy Diet, Not Fats

You may feel that the kibble you feed your dog each day isn’t enough and want to give him a good home cooked meal from time to time. Some dog owners don’t buy dog food at all and feed their dogs leftovers of the family meal, while this is alright you need to ensure that they are getting the right nutrients and proteins they need to keep them healthy and strong.

Feeding a healthy diet can include kibble, wet dog food and even fish once or twice a week. Salmon and tuna are fantastic for dogs and are filled with omega 3 fatty acids which helps promote health.

What Is Bad To Feed Dogs

Some foods are obviously bad for dogs such as raisins and macadamia nuts, but others you may not be aware of such as chocolate. Rendered or cooked fat joins these bad dog food choices and only cause illness later on with pancreatic being the main concern.

Foods such as fish, meat, vegetables and rice are all safe for dogs and you can make up your own dog foods including chicken and rice or meat and rice to put over their kibble to keep them interested. If at any stage you are unsure as to whether the food you wish to give your dog is safe or not, you can check with the vet.

If Fido Eats Fat

You may be having a barbecue at home and a child hands your dog some cooked fat or your dog may have found his way onto the kitchen counter eating a piece of meat filled with fat. Usually this won’t be a cause for concern; one piece shouldn’t cause permanent damage. But if your dog has managed to eat a block of lard, you may want to call the vet and discuss this with him.

Lard and rendered fat can also cause heart problems in dogs, so take extra care. There will be times you can’t stop a dog from eating the cooked fat off meat, but as mentioned a small amount shouldn’t have any negative effects.

Conclusion on Fat

Don’t feed your dog any pure fat, cooked or uncooked. Of course, there’s no need to ensure that a slab of meat is very lean but avoid serving up 100% fat. There are several reasons why feeding these cutoffs are a bad idea, some serious health problems can eventually result. If you don’t believe us, confirm it with your vet. This is even more true if your dog has an existing medical condition. Keep it simple and stick to formulated dog food. Hold the fat!

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Dr. Stephanie Flansburg Cruz, a practicing vet, has reviewed and endorsed this article. She has 3 dogs of her own and cares about the welfare of all animals.


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