Gravy is an essential part of any Sunday roast or Christmas dinner; you might even put it on your chips with a mountain of cheese.
Can dogs eat gravy? Your dog has probably been very tempted by the aroma of this meat-flavored treat, and you may have even caught him licking some off your plate after you were done eating.
A sauce may seem like a good idea to add flavor to your dog’s meal, but first, let’s figure out if it’s safe for your pet to eat.
Can Dogs Eat Gravy?
The answer to this question is highly dependent on the provenance of the gravy, whether it was made from scratch or purchased, and the ingredients used. Gravy typically contains a lot of fat and salt, making it unhealthy for dogs to consume on a regular basis or in large quantities.
To make matters worse, some gravy recipes call for ingredients like cooked onion, onion powder, onion oil, or garlic granules—all of which can be fatal to dogs. Fresh gravies purchased from the store may contain ingredients such as wine that are harmful to dogs.
If your dog only ever eats a tiny bit of your salty gravy as a special treat, like a spoonful on their dinner once in a while, they should be fine.
Can dogs have gravy granules?
This is debatable. The fat and salt content of many gravy granules is still fairly high. You can adjust the concentration by adjusting the amount of water used.
Making a gravy with just a pinch of granules and a lot of water should be fine for your dog to eat. But you should know that gravy granules still contain onion and allergens like wheat.
Can dogs eat Bisto gravy?
Even though Bisto gravy is healthier for Fido than some other brands, it still contains too much salt, fat, and sugar. Onion, wheat, and soy are all ingredients in Bisto recipes, but your dog shouldn’t eat them.
A large dog probably wouldn’t have any problems if it ate a little Bisto gravy, but small dogs have much more delicate stomachs and can only handle a negligible amount of salt and onion before they get sick.
Can dogs eat KFC gravy?
Gravy from KFC is not something your dog should eat. Their famous saucy side is tasty, but it packs a lot of salt and calories for what it is.
The fast food chain doesn’t reveal what goes into their gravy, but you can probably guess that they throw the leftover batter and chicken parts from their fried chicken into a stockpot. (Similiar to how you can make excellent gravy out of leftover meat scraps and bones.)
While this is fantastic for minimizing waste and maximizing flavor, it is less than ideal for our furry friends because the gravy now contains all of the fat and seasonings from the fried chicken.
As a corollary, it’s likely that the KFC gravy contains onion and garlic powder, both of which are toxic in large doses to dogs.
The sauce contains a shockingly long list of common allergens, including milk, eggs, wheat and gluten, barley, oats, rye, sesame, soya, and celery. Therefore, keep your dog’s paws away from KFC gravy if he or she has an allergy to any of the listed ingredients.
Can dogs eat Marmite gravy?
Despite its high salt content, many canines enjoy the flavor of Marmite. We humans typically add a spoonful of this yeasty paste to gravies to make them more decadent, and sometimes even use it to create a gravy that is suitable for vegetarians.
Providing that it is fed in moderation and does not contain onion or garlic, Marmite gravy should be fine for your dog.
You should still only give it to your dog in very small amounts (if at all) and only as a treat due to its high salt content.
Is gravy bad for dogs?
A dog shouldn’t eat gravy because of how high in salt it is. Although dogs do require some sodium in their diet to keep their im-paw-tent bodily functions running smoothly, they actually have very low calorie requirements. They run the risk of dehydration and sodium poisoning if they consume too much salt.
Especially if your dog has a preexisting health condition like heart failure and needs to eat a low-sodium diet to help control their condition, a gravy-based meal is not a good choice.
In addition to salt, onions (or onion paste, onion powder, onion oil, or garlic powder) are another common ingredient in gravy.
Although this enhances the sauce’s flavor for humans, it is not safe for dogs to consume onions or garlic on a regular basis due to the risk of anemia.
Other than the taste, your dog should avoid feeding it to him because of the other unpleasant ingredients in gravy. Wine is one of the ingredients commonly found in commercially prepared dog treats, but it is also toxic to dogs and can lead to intoxication if consumed in large quantities.
Although gravy isn’t the same as typical junk food, it will still add empty calories and fat to your dog’s diet, which could lead to weight gain and health problems associated with obesity.
It’s important to exercise extra caution if your dog has known food or environmental allergies. As flour is often used to thicken and bind sauces in gravy recipes, dogs with wheat or gluten sensitivities may become ill after consuming it. Additionally, soya (found in many gravies) is a common allergen in dogs.
Why Is Gravy Bad For Dogs?
While the specific components of a gravy may vary, all gravies share the same basic components: meat juice or stock, along with a thickening agent like corn starch or flour. Dogs can safely eat all of these, but excessive consumption of any one of them could result in gastrointestinal distress.
Further, the high levels of salt found in gravy are harmful to your dog’s health.
Onions and garlic, which are commonly found in gravy, can be harmful to dogs. While these vegetables aren’t typically used in making gravy, many recipes call for garlic or onion powder to add depth of flavor.
A trip to the veterinarian may be in order if your dog shows symptoms of garlic or onion toxicity.
What Should I Do If My Dog Ate Gravy?
It’s unlikely that your dog would have any kind of reaction if you gave them a taste of the Thanksgiving gravy.
Keep an eye on your dog if they ate any gravy that contained garlic or onion powder to make sure they don’t develop any symptoms of garlic or onion toxicity.
The only time you should call the vet is if your dog ate an entire pot of gravy. Because of the high levels of salt in their diet, they may experience stomach distress. It’s possible they’ll be thirstier than usual, too.
As long as the gravy doesn’t have any garlic or onion in it, it’s fine to give your dog a taste. The problem is if it becomes a daily occurrence.
How to make healthy gravy for your dog
While most dogs can eat the exact same thing every day and be perfectly happy, their human companions still enjoy providing them with new flavors and the occasional treat. Dogs shouldn’t eat store-bought gravy, but you can make a tasty topping for their dinner.
Added sauces or gravy can be purchased from pet stores, but be wary of overfeeding your dog.
When time is of the essence but you still want to spoil your dog, you can buy reduced-salt gravy granules and make instant gravy by adding more water than usual, but this will still be too salty for your dog.
However, you should still read labels carefully to avoid products containing common allergens and irritants like onions and wheat.
If you’d rather make your own gravy, you can give it to your dog as long as you don’t use any added salt, sugar, or onion/garlic.
You can make gravy the regular way by boiling down meat scraps and bones, but set aside a small amount before adding seasonings and give it to your dog as a special treat.
If you want to give your dog more sauce while limiting the calories, water down the gravy.
Boneless meat, such as turkey mince, combined with water and other dog-safe ingredients can be pureed into a delicious gravy that will also provide some nutritional value for your furry friend.
Keep in mind that adding homemade gravy to your dog’s dinner will increase the calorie count without increasing the nutritional value.
Feed them gravy and other treats in moderation to keep them from getting fat. Keep the spicy meals for your dog’s birthday or other special occasions.
But there is a way to make gravy that is so wholesome your dog could eat it every day if it wanted to and still be healthy.
A gravy or soup-style meal for your dog is as easy as thinning out some of your Pure with water to make it runnier and saucier than usual.
Recap: Can dogs have gravy?
The salt in gravy isn’t good for dogs, especially when given in large amounts, and the extra calories it adds to your dog’s meal won’t benefit him in any way.
Still, gravy isn’t typically toxic, so don’t be alarmed if Fido licks the gravy off the plate or vacuums up a dribble off the floor. While a small amount of gravy probably won’t hurt your dog, you shouldn’t make a habit of dousing his or her food in the stuff on a daily basis.
In its place, you should give your dog a dish that is not only highly nutritious but also delicious. Eating well doesn’t have to mean sacrificing flavor.
With all the essential nutrients in each serving, Pure will keep your dog satisfied and healthy for the long haul.