a can of spam on the table

Is Spam Good or Bad For Dogs?

We wouldn’t be wrong if we were to say that Spam is one of the most controversial foods in the world.

 Some people believe that it is an affordable and tasty protein source. But there is also a bunch of people who raise their concerns regarding the quality of its ingredients. But what is the real answer?

Is Spam Good or Bad For Dogs?

Spam is not good for your tail-wagger because it is a processed food with a lot of ingredients that might be harmful to your dog. This answer might surprise you because you might think that there is no way a meat product can be anything other than a good source of protein for dogs.

We’ll explain the reasons why Spam is bad for dogs by looking at the ingredients one by one. Before that, let’s look at what Spam is.

What is Spam?

Spam is a canned food made from ground pork and ham. It first became popular during World War 2 because it was a cheap way to feed the soldiers that are overseas.

Other than pork and ham, Spam contains a bunch of other ingredients such as sugar, salt, potato starch, and sodium nitrite.

Other than that, a lot of preservatives and additives used during its making to prolong its shelf life.

Let’s take a look at those ingredients.

Why is Spam Bad For Dogs?



Spam is loaded with salt. We should mention that salt is necessary for both humans and dogs to maintain their lives. Salt is beneficial for regulating the blood pressure and balancing the fluids in the body.

But it is hard to say consuming a lot of salt is healthy and necessary without caveats. Because a diet with too much salt can cause several issues for dogs such as cardiovascular disease and it can even damage the brain health.

The owners of the senior dogs should especially be careful because they are not successful at tolerating too much salt consumption as the young ones. Also, there is a chance that too much salt can worsen the symptoms of certain diseases in senior dogs.

The amount of salt in Spam is excessive for any dog, and that is why there is a chance it can cause the issues that we mentioned above.


Sugar is also used in Spam to make it more flavorful. You already probably know that sugar should be minimized or even eliminated in a dog’s diet.

Because sugar consumption causes spikes in the blood sugar, and that can cause several issues.

The first one is the weight gain. Sugar is nothing but empty calories. So, if your pooch consumes too much sugar, there is a good chance that he will get overweight or get diabetes.

Obesity is common in dogs, and we wouldn’t be wrong if we say that one of the culprits is too much sugar consumption.

Other than that, too much sugar could lower a dog’s immune system, and it may harm the hormone balance.

Also, we should mention that dogs have very similar taste buds to us. That means they get the same pleasure that we get when they eat sugar because sugar will make your pup’s brain to release dopamine.

That is the reason why sugar is addictive. That will cause him to want more in the future.


Potato Starch

It might be a little unexpected to see potato starch among the ingredients of a meat product. But actually, potato starch is not potato.

It is a by-product of potato processing. It is a cheap filler used in processed foods by manufacturers.

Potato starch has little nutritional value because the skin must be removed to process the potato. That takes out most of the healthy nutrients and vitamins in it.

It will be just unnecessary carbs for your pooch. That is not ideal for dogs since they should get most of their nutrition from protein.

Sodium Nitrite

Spam contains an ingredient called sodium nitrite. It is a common additive used to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria in foods. The manufacturers also use it to improve the flavor and the appearance of a product.

Sodium nitrite is associated with cancer and type 1 diabetes. So, it is very harmful to your pooch.

Spam is a Processed Food

The ingredients that we mentioned above are among the ingredients because Spam is processed food. So, the manufacturer wanted to make it as tasty as possible while keeping it on the shelves as long as possible.

That is the reason it contains too much salt, sugar, and other preservatives.

The ingredients that we mentioned above are among the ingredients because Spam is processed food. So, the manufacturer wanted to make it as tasty as possible while keeping it on the shelves as long as possible.

That is the reason it contains too much salt, sugar, and other preservatives.

Is Spam Good For Dogs?

Spam contains protein and dogs need protein to sustain their lives. Protein is an essential part of a dog’s diet.

Other than that, it is very high in some fats that are healthy for dogs. Fat is essential for the absorption of vitamins like A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are critical for a healthy brain and organs.

Also, Spam contains some micronutrients in it, such as zinc, potassium, iron, and copper. They are all necessary for dogs and have several health benefits.

Conclusion: Is Spam Good or Bad For Dogs?

There are some good reasons why people believe that Spam is not healthy food. Because it is a highly processed meat product with a lot of additives and preservatives.

It contains sugar, which should never be in a dog’s diet and can cause issues such as diabetes and weight gain.

It contains an excessive amount of salt, which can be harmful to especially senior dogs.

Another ingredient used in it is potato starch, and it has little nutritional value.

The fact that it is a meat product and filled with protein doesn’t change our mind because of all the harmful ingredients. So, unfortunately, Spam is not good for dogs, and you should not feed it to your tail-wagger.

Alaaddin Sarac

I've been an avid dog enthusiast since childhood. I started this blog in hopes of helping owners find answers to questions I had after owning my first dog. This website was created as a way to share our love for all things canine with the world. From choosing the best food for your older dog to get the best beds for your tail-wagger, I aim to give you the information you need to give your dog the best care throughout his entire life.