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No, beef jerky is not safe for dogs to eat. Of course, dogs love to eat meat, and this dried meat is no exception. However, most beef jerky types are highly processed and contain ingredients that can be toxic for dogs.

Beef Jerky
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Caution: This food is generally considered risky by the veterinary community. Dogs should not eat this food and should be monitored for adverse effects.

Food Safety Exercise caution, avoid feeding
Nutritional Issues Xylitol, sodium, N-propyl disulfide from onions
Potential Risks Convulsions, hypernatremia, coma, death
Poisoning Symptoms diarrhea, muscle spasms, vomiting, urination, excessive thirst
Every dog is different. For specific feeding guidelines, including quantities and beneficial foods that are best for your dog, please consult your vet.

How Much Beef Jerky is Unsafe for Dogs?

Of course, it can be difficult to avoid feeding your dog beef jerky, as it’s just meat. However, while this delectable treat is safe for humans, it can be poisonous to your pet if the jerky isn’t made without salt and other seasonings.

What Makes Beef Jerky Unsafe?

The excessive amounts of salt, seasonings, and xylitol (in some types) in beef jerky can harm your dog’s health. So, it would be wise to hide away all the beef jerky in your house so that your dog doesn’t get its paws on it.

Signs Your Dog Ate Too Much Beef Jerky

Common symptoms that confirm that your dog ate too much beef jerky include excessive thirst, uncontrollable urination, vomiting, muscle spasms, and diarrhea. If your dog shows any of these signs, take it to your vet immediately.

Common Beef Jerky Ingredients

  • Beef- Beef on its own is typically a good source of protein for dogs.
  • Salt-beef jerky is packed with sodium and can lead to high blood pressure in dogs.
  • Garlic-Garlic contains thiosulfate. This chemical is extremely toxic for dogs.
  • Onions-Onions, chives, and other vegetables from the allium contain N-propyl disulfide, which is harmful to dogs.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Meat-based jerky typically contains a ton of salt and other spices. Therefore, it is best to avoid feeding it to your dog.

  • Regardless of who makes it, beef jerky contains a lot of sodium and other ingredients that can harm your dog’s health. Hence, it should be avoided!

  • Beef jerky comes with highly processed and dried ingredients, including onions, oil, xylitol, and spices. So, it would be best to avoid feeding it to your dog!

About the Writer
Dan Greco , Dog Dad

Having been a dog dad for 5 years, I know how hard it is to make sure your dog gets the right nutrients and stays away from hazardous foods. With the help of a veterinarian who specializes in nutrition, I created this blog to help dog owners quickly access food information they need.

photo of vet holding a pup
About the Contributor
Dr. Hillary Wolfe , Veterinarian & Certified Food Therapist

Dr. Wolfe holds a doctorate in veterinary medicine from Kansas State University and holds nutrition certifications from the NAVC and CIVT. Her business, Tula Veterinary Nutrition, hosts online courses that teach owners how to cook for their pet for optimal health and longevity. Follow her on Instagram at @doctorwolfe.dvm for dog nutrition tips, recipes and insights.