We often hear that particular ingredients are bad for our pets, but is this always true? Some ingredients, such as onions, dried fruit and chocolate are toxic to our pooches and should not be fed, but where does pork fall on the feed or not to feed list? James Wellbeloved investigates…
Pork is the term for meat that comes from a pig, which includes bacon, ham, gammon and sausage. Pork is a nutritious and highly palatable source of protein and when fed as part of a balanced and complete diet is a good ingredient to feed your dog.
Pork is often considered to be a processed fat-laden meat because of particular cuts such as sausages and bacon. These processed pork products can be rich and fatty and often contain lots of salt, which a dog’s stomach is not equipped to handle. Providing an influx of pork in the form of table scraps may pose a problem and cause your dog to get an upset tummy. Further, pork intended for human consumption often contains other ingredients such as seasoning and spices, which can be highly toxic to dogs.
If you are going to feed your dog pork, there are other cuts which offer less processed or less fatty alternatives. Always thoroughly cook the pork before feeding, and do not add any additives, seasoning or other ingredients.
As uncooked pork can contain the parasite trichinella spiralis larvae, you should only feed your dog cooked pork. Symptoms of a trichinella spiralis infection include vomiting, diarrhoea, fever, lethargy and stiffness; although sometimes dogs may not show symptoms. If your dog has consumed raw pork, take them to the vet as a precautionary measure.
Feeding dogs bones is not always safe. Cooked bones can be fragile and may splinter, which can damage your dog’s mouth, throat, or internal organs if swallowed. While uncooked bones are stronger, there is still a risk that they might break or fracture the thin enamel layer on a dog’s teeth. There are much safer alternatives to bones, including dental chews.
Pork is a commonly fed meat which appears near the top of vets’ lists of foods associated with allergic responses in dogs and cats, so James Wellbeloved excludes pork along with beef, soya, eggs, wheat and dairy products from its recipes and from our production facility due to the hypoallergenic nature of our diets.