While your dog probably works up a pool of drool every time you start frying some bacon, do not add the grease from the pan to your dog’s food. Bacon grease is rich, fatty, and salty—all things that should be avoided in canine diets.1
Can Dogs Eat Human Food?
In general, you shouldn’t feed your dog from the table. While human food might be enticing for your dog, it’s not nutritionally sound for them and doesn’t provide what they need to thrive in the long term.
Additionally, human food tends to be laden with spices, colors, preservatives, and synthetic chemicals that aren’t healthy for dogs. In addition to the potential adverse health effects from feeding your dog human food, he may come to learn that if he begs enough, he will be fed from the table – you don’t want to reinforce this bad behavior by rewarding your dog.
Dogs and humans have different nutritional needs. So, while a meal may be balanced for a human, your dog’s body needs various nutritional components to thrive. Thus, what you eat just isn’t suitable for them.
Why Is Bacon Grease Bad for Dogs?
There are several reasons to exclude bacon grease from your dog’s diet. For starters, bacon is not the most nutritious food for humans. The concept of “if it’s bad for me, it’s probably bad for my dog”, while not universally true, is a helpful tool to keep in mind.
Bacon is pretty bad for humans. Bacon isn’t the only meat product thought to be unhealthy either. Hotdogs, hamburgers, and all synthetically processed meat products—those mixed with various preservatives and flavors (some of which are listed as carcinogens by the World Health Organization)— are best avoided.
Even if the looming threat of cancer leaves you unfazed for some reason, you’ll also want to consider the effect this fatty grease can have on your dog’s pancreas. The pancreas is responsible for synthesizing hormones that we use for digestion—such as insulin. These hormones allow us to break food down into nutrients and power our bodies.
Fatty foods put extreme pressure on the pancreas, causing it to need to generate more hormones to break down these compounds. In severe cases, the long-term health of the pancreas can be affected by a high intake of fatty foods; it can even shut down entirely and cease to function. We typically warn against feeding your pets fatty foods like bacon grease. Doing so increases the chances that their pancreas fails.
Does My Dog Have Pancreatitis?
The following are typical signs of pancreatitis:
While giving your dog some table scraps might be tempting, you’re better off feeding them food that is nutritionally balanced for dogs’ needs. Adding some bacon grease to your dog’s food might seem like a fun treat, but the consequences could be severe; it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Featured Image Credit: Artit Wongpradu, Shutterstock