Can Dogs Eat Cooked Breakfast Sausage?

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It's got to be the appetizing odor as the breakfast sausage sizzles in the pan. Or maybe it's how much you obviously enjoy eating sausage for breakfast. It could be both reasons that make your pooch sit up and literally beg for a bite whenever you're having cooked breakfast sausage. But just because he wants some doesn't mean that you should give in and feed it to him.

Not The Healthiest Choice

Breakfast sausage isn't the healthiest thing you could feed your dog. One tiny bite now and then might be OK, but it doesn't have any nutritional value to contribute to his health. Definitely don't serve him a link or a patty of his own; just a nibble is more than enough breakfast sausage to last him for a while. And if you absolutely can't resist your dog's pleading eyes, always be sure the sausage you feed him is thoroughly cooked. Raw sausage can contain E. coli and salmonella that will make your dog sick.

Fat Factor

If the lack of nutritional value isn't enough reason to keep you from slipping some sausage to your pup, consider the fat factor. Breakfast sausage can contain up to 50 percent fat. That's not exactly a beneficial feature when it comes to your dog's weight and heart health, and it's one more argument for withholding sausage as a treat.

Salt And Seasonings

The ingredients that give breakfast sausage it's pleasing flavor are extras your dog would be better off without. The Association of American Feed Control Officials requires dog food manufacturers to include 0.3 percent sodium because dogs do need sodium in their diets to remain healthy. Too much sodium -- like the 349 milligrams in just one cooked sausage patty -- can be bad for your dog's kidney and heart health, though. In addition to the salt content, sausage usually includes spices and seasonings like onion and garlic, both of which can cause your dog an upset tummy at the least or damage his red blood cells at the worst.

Opt For Healthier Treats

Sometimes it's hard to do the right thing, and when there's a plate of hot breakfast sausage on the table it's difficult to explain to your pup why you're not going to share. Rather than depriving him while you're indulging in tasty breakfast sausage, give him an appropriate treat that is healthier for him. Buy the dog food and treats that are made to the standards set down by the Association of American Feed Control Officials and are recommended by your vet. That's the best way to ensure what you're feeding your pooch has the nutrients he needs and none of the ingredients he doesn't.