Can Dogs Eat Spaghetti Sauce?

By John Martin - May 11, 2021

Spaghetti Sauce

Your 4-legged furry pooch can chow down anything you put in front of him; however, not everything that your pet can eat is good for him. While ripe tomatoes may be safe for your pet to eat, when you speak about spaghetti sauce, whether it is Alfredo, marinara, pizza sauce or vodka sauce, it is unsafe for your dog.

Why Is Spaghetti Sauce Bad for Your Dog?

While the tomato sauce is a common pantry staple and is a perfect addition to pasta, pizza, breadsticks, etc., it may not be safe for your furry pooch. Let’s look at why spaghetti sauce may be harmful to your pet.

Spaghetti sauce often contains ingredients like onion, garlic, pepper, red pepper, herbs, salt, etc., which are used to flavor the sauce and may be harmful, even toxic to your dog’s health. The onion and garlic contained in the spaghetti sauce are especially toxic for dogs.

Both these belong to the allium family and contain thiosulfate, which, which can damage the red blood cells in canines and in turn, can result in hemolytic anemia or even death. Consuming even a small quantity of garlic or onion can cause vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain and other types of gastrointestinal issues.

Tomato sauce contains a lot of salt or sodium and consuming too much salt can cause your pet to become dehydrated and thirsty causing him to drink a lot of water, causing bloat.

This causes your dog’s stomach to get filled with gas very quickly and causes it to twist on itself. This condition is quite serious and can even be fatal. Some of the symptoms include pale gums, lethargy and weight loss. Canines are quite sensitive to sodium, too much of which can cause sodium poisoning.

Tomato sauce contains sugar, too much of which is not good for your dog and can cause obesity and even heart problems. It is worse if the sauce contains artificial sweeteners such as xylitol, which is quite toxic to dogs and consumed even in very small amounts, it can be lethal.

Spaghetti sauce may contain pepper or red pepper powder, which can cause a stomach upset. Further, unripe tomatoes, tomato leaves and tomato stems contain tomatine, a chemical that is quite toxic to dogs. Some tomato sauces can contain tomatine, which can be lethal for your pet.

Also Read: Can Dogs Eat Takis?

What to Do If My Dog Has Eaten Spaghetti Sauce?

If your dog has consumed some spaghetti sauce, at the outset, it may not be toxic and lead to any serious consequences. The toxicity also depends on your dog’s size and the amount of sauce he has consumed.

If your dog is large and has eaten a bit of spaghetti sauce, he will most likely not develop any serious effects; however, if you have a smaller dog breed that is less than 10 lb, then even a small amount of spaghetti sauce can make him sick. Nevertheless, whatever size your pooch is, if he has eaten any spaghetti sauce, it is a good idea to look out for any symptoms and if you notice any, then it is best to take your pet to the vet.

Signs and Symptoms to Look Out For

If your pooch has consumed any spaghetti sauce, watch closely for any negative symptoms including:

  • Rapid breathing
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Lethargy
  • Dehydration
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Pale gums and mucus

If your pet exhibits any of these symptoms, which seem to be worsening, take him to your vet immediately. However, there is no reason to panic, consuming spaghetti sauce is not fatal and will not cause your pet to die, even if he is experiencing toxicity because he has eaten a large amount of sauce.

However, taking him to the vet can ensure that he gets the proper medical treatment and medication required to ease your pet’s discomfort and prevent his condition from worsening.

Also Read: Can Dogs Eat Hash Browns?

Is Plain Spaghetti Fine for My Dog?

If your pet has gobbled up some spaghetti, pasta or noodles without any sauce, then there is no reason to worry. Plain spaghetti contains just flour and water and flour is a common ingredient in many dog foods and dog biscuits and will not hurt your pet’s health. And, if you do want to give your pet spaghetti as a treat, then giving him plain noodles is perfectly fine.

Also Read: Can Dogs Eat Sherbet?

Dogs love human food and at some time, your pet is bound to gobble up something that he lays his paws on. And, this does happen, your pooch is going to be just fine. If he has grabbed some spaghetti and licked all the sauce clean, there is no need to worry.

However, the problem arises if your pet eats spaghetti with sauce very often because this can have a cumulative effect and cause serious health problems in the long run. In short, more than the quantity your pet consumes, it is the frequency that matters. So, don’t make it a habit to allow your pet to lick your plate of spaghetti clean.