If your dog gazes longingly at the freshly fried turkey bacon, you may be tempted to give them a taste of this human food. While dogs can safely consume turkey bacon, you should follow a few common-sense safety precautions before feeding it to them.
Can Dogs Eat Turkey Bacon?
Yes, dogs can eat turkey bacon as long as it is served in moderation. Your dog's nutritional needs should be met primarily by their prescribed dog food, with treats and human food accounting for no more than 10% of their diet. On special occasions, you can give your dog turkey bacon treats.
Is Turkey Bacon Healthy for Dogs?
Turkey bacon is a better choice for dogs than regular pork bacon. While pork bacon has a high fat content and a lot of salt, both of which are bad for a dog's health, turkey bacon is slightly healthier. A typical slice of turkey bacon contains less fat, more overall protein, and less salt than a comparable slice of pork bacon. Turkey bacon contains fatty acids, which may help your dog's coat.
Dog owners might not put microwaved bacon on their own plate, but their dogs would devour it. If you don't want to fry a bunch of bacon, microwave a single strip and feed it to your dog. If you fry the bacon, place it on a couple of paper towels to absorb the grease. Bacon grease is too fatty for pets to consume and can lead to health problems.
When Is Turkey Bacon Bad for Dogs?
Portion size makes the difference between a harmless snack and an emergency trip to the vet when it comes to dogs and human food. This rule does not apply to turkey bacon. While turkey bacon is generally a healthier alternative to other processed meats such as pork bacon, it can be harmful to dogs if consumed in excess.
Fat: Unlike pork bacon, which is made from fatty cuts of raw meat, turkey bacon is made from leaner cuts of raw meat. However, it still contains fat, which means that excessive amounts can be harmful to your dog's health. Excessive fat consumption can cause abdominal pain, stomach upset, obesity, and even pancreatitis.
Salt: Dogs cannot consume the same amount of sodium as humans. Most turkey bacon is high in salt; consuming too much turkey bacon can cause indigestion, bloating, and dehydration in your dog. Low-sodium dog turkey bacon and turkey sausage can be found at organic pet food stores.
Additives: Many types of store-bought turkey bacon contain flavorings and additives that your dog should never consume. Smoke flavor, added sugar, added salt, artificial flavors, and preservatives such as nitrites and nitrates are examples of these additives. Some artificial sweeteners, such as xylitol, can have fatal side effects in dogs. While sweeteners are not typically added to turkey bacon, pet owners must be diligent in reading the nutritional facts on the packaging to keep these items out of their dog's diet.
3 Ways to Serve Your Dog Turkey Bacon
As an occasional snack or reward for good behavior, give your dog a small piece of turkey bacon. Raw bacon may make your dog salivate, but cooked bacon is safer for them to eat. Here are some ideas for incorporating turkey bacon into your dog's diet.
1. As a salad garnish: Despite their reputation as carnivores, some dogs enjoy salad. If you use turkey bacon in your salad, share a few pieces with your pet.
2. Pre-cooked, straight from the package: While your dog may enjoy raw turkey bacon, uncooked meats can harbor foodborne pathogens such as salmonella. Fortunately, most turkey bacon comes pre-cooked; give your dog a small piece right out of the package.
3. Sprinkled on dog food: Break up crispy turkey bacon strips into smaller pieces, like crumbles, and mix them into your dog's food. Remember that this is a special treat, not a regular part of your dog's diet.