Can Dogs Eat Saltines?

Can Dogs Eat Saltines?

Saltine crackers are the kind of snacks that we all love. When combined with cheese, you can literally eat the whole pack. As you eat Saltines, you might notice your dog following your every move, clearly wanting some of it. You might feel sorry for him and think about sharing your salty crackers with him. But can dogs eat Saltines?

A big no! Dogs shouldn’t eat Saltines. Saltines contain too much salt for dogs to eat. Consuming too much salt than needed can cause salt poisoning in dogs, which can lead to serious health issues such as liver failure, brain damage, and even death.

We have prepared a guide to understand everything about salt poisoning in dogs and what you should do if your dog has consumed too much salty food. Let’s have a look.

Why are Saltines Harmful to Your Dog?

Saltines, as you can tell from the name, are the type of crackers filled with salt. As a human, eating some wouldn’t hurt you; however, the amount of salt found in the crackers is too much for dogs.

Sodium intake should not exceed 100 mg a day for a healthy dog weighing about 33 pounds. On the other hand, only five Saltines crackers contain 135 mg of sodium. Dogs already get the sodium they need from the dog foods daily. Especially if the dog food you are using is high quality, the sodium levels should be well balanced. 

By giving your dog a few Saltines, you exceed the sodium your dog needs to take in an entire day. This means Saltines are extremely salty for dogs to consume. Now you may wonder what happens if your dog consumes more sodium than he needs. You will not like what we are about to share with you.

Excessive Salt Intake Can Cause Salt Poisoning

A few crackers shouldn’t make your dog extremely sick. Because as an immediate reaction to consuming too much salt, your dog will get excessive thirst and drink a lot of water, which will make him often urinate and dilute the salt in his bloodstream. If the amount of salt consumed isn’t too much, your dog will get rid of the salt in his system by drinking lots of water. 

However, if salt consumption is too much, drinking water may not be enough, and the side effects may be a lot more dangerous. In such a situation, a dog’s muscles will start to lose moisture and become stiff, which will make him shake and have difficulty walking. 

If the consumption of salt is excessive and happens quickly, the cells in a dog’s body will release water to balance the level of salt in the body. However, this will cause his brain cells do not get enough water. This can surface as dizziness in dogs. They may get a headache or seizures as well.

Consuming an excessive amount of salt dehydrates the body in a short time. Even if your dog tries to drink water to compensate for the water loss, he might not be able to drink enough water. When this happens, your dog might experience breathing difficulties, fast heartbeat, fainting, and confusion.

The Common Symptoms of Salt Poisoning

When a dog consumes too much water, he can likely experience salt poisoning. Even though the first symptom of consuming too much salt is excessive thirst and urination, there are other symptoms that you should look out for. These symptoms are:

  • Excessive thirst and urination
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Weakness
  • Stomachache
  • Loss of appetite
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle spasms
  • Breathing difficulties
  • Fast heartbeat
  • Fluid buildup
  • Lack of energy
  • Tongue swelling
  • High fever
  • Convulsions
  • Confusion
  • Seizures
  • Coma
  • Death
Can Dogs Eat Saltines?

What to Do if Your Dog Has Eaten Saltines?

Maybe you have given Saltines to your dog, or your child shared his or her snack with your pup. Maybe, your dog found an open bag of Saltines and ate the entire bag. You should know that the amount of salt in Saltines is too much for a dog to consume. Five crackers are enough to pass the recommended daily sodium intake for a 33-pound dog.

Since salt poisoning is a severe condition that can result in liver failure, brain damage, or death, it is recommended that you contact a veterinarian immediately once you know that your dog consumed too much salt.

There is not a strict guideline for you to know how much salt your dog consumed. Therefore, if you know that your dog has eaten a lot of salty food, it is best to consult a veterinarian before waiting for the symptoms to show up as salt poisoning needs to be treated as soon as possible.

What are Other Possible Causes of Salt Poisoning?

There are many other causes of salt poisoning. Frozen water sources and broken automatic water systems tend to cause salt poisoning in dogs.

The most common source of salt poisoning is homemade playdough. It is better to always be around your kids and your dog when they are playing with playdough around the house to prevent any possible salt poisoning.

Ocean water is another cause. If you go to the beach with your pup, he might be too eager to drink from the ocean. He might also drink some ocean water while swimming. It is better to keep an eye on the dog to prevent accidents.

Rock salt, table salt, and soy sauce are other sources that can cause salt poisoning and therefore, should be kept out of your dog’s reach. 

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Saltines?

There are many other causes of salt poisoning. Frozen water sources and broken automatic water systems tend to cause salt poisoning in dogs.

The most common source of salt poisoning is homemade playdough. It is better to always be around your kids and your dog when they are playing with playdough around the house to prevent any possible salt poisoning.

Ocean water is another cause. If you go to the beach with your pup, he might be too eager to drink from the ocean. He might also drink some ocean water while swimming. It is better to keep an eye on the dog to prevent accidents.

Rock salt, table salt, and soy sauce are other sources that can cause salt poisoning and therefore, should be kept out of your dog’s reach. 

Can Dogs Eat Hash Browns?

Can Dogs Eat Hash Browns?

When you are eating your unhealthy but tasty hash browns, your dog may be looking at you with sad eyes, wanting to get a taste of it. You have two options: you can either continue eating your food or give some to your dog. But, can dogs eat hash browns?

Let’s give you a hint. No. Don’t give your hash browns to your dog. Dog’s should not eat hash browns because they contain lots of spices and salt. Spices can be toxic to your pup. Hash browns are fried, and fried foods are harmful to dogs. Hash browns are also high in carbohydrates. While it is not necessarily harmful, dogs should have diets high in protein. Too much carbohydrate consumption can lead to obesity.

These are only the tip of the iceberg. There are more to hash browns than you might think. We will try to explain in depth why shouldn’t share your tasty has browns with your dog.

Why You Shouldn’t Give Hash Browns to Your Dog?

We have answered if dogs can eat hash browns. Still, you need to know why hash browns can be harmful to your dog and why you should avoid it at all costs.

Hash Browns Are Seasoned with Spices

Hash browns are seasoned with all sorts of spices. Spicy food is not recommended for dogs to consume. Generally, spicy foods are known to cause stomach upset which is followed by vomiting and diarrhea. It is also quite harmful to dogs’ digestive tracks.

There is no reason why you would want your dog to get a taste of spicy food because they don’t have as many taste buds as humans. Another problem with spices is that some of them are toxic to dogs. Some spices can even have deadly consequences for dogs when consumed, such as nutmeg. 

Especially onion is known to be quite toxic to dogs, causing stomach upset and diarrhea. If consumed continuously, onion can cause anemia in dogs. You should know that hash browns are generally fried with onions and therefore, need to be avoided.

Salt Poisoning

Salt poisoning is a condition that needs to be taken seriously as it can lead to death. Consuming too much salt than needed can have irreversible effects on your dog’s health. Salt deprives muscles of water when consumed excessively, and dogs cannot walk properly since their muscles become stiff and start to shake.

When salt poisoning occurs, the most common symptom is extreme thirst and urination. By drinking a lot of water and urinating often, your dog is actually diluting the salt in his bloodstream, which can end up saving his life.

Salt poisoning occurs when salt is consumed excessively. Hash browns are quite salty treats for your pup. Even though salt consumption needs to be quite a lot for big breed dogs to be poisoned, small amounts can be enough to poison small breed dogs.

The symptoms of salt poisoning include excessive thirst and urination, stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea, muscle spasms, weakness, swelled tongue, difficulty in walking, loss of appetite, high fever, headache, raised heart rate, lack of energy, confusion, convulsions, coma and death.

If you suspect that your dog has consumed a lot of salt, contact a veterinarian immediately. You don’t need to wait for the symptoms as salt poisoning is a serious issue that can result in death.

The Cooking Method

The way that hash browns are cooked is another problem. Because the potatoes are fried. Fried foods are not something that dogs should have. Fried foods are not even healthy for humans to consume. It is much worse for dogs.

Although in small amounts, it may not cause any serious issues, the short-term results can be diarrhea. Fried foods are especially harmful to dogs when consumed on a fairly regular basis or excessively. Fried foods are known to cause pancreatitis in dogs.

Pancreatitis is the inflammation of the pancreas. The symptoms of this condition are vomiting, loss of appetite, stomachache, diarrhea, irregular heartbeat, difficulty in breathing and fever.

Can Dogs Eat Hash Browns?

High in Carbohydrates

Hash browns are high in carbohydrates. Of course, dogs need carbohydrates to a certain extent in their diet. However, they need to have a diet that is high in quality protein. If you give hash browns to your pup as a treat, he may end up consuming more carbohydrates than needed.

Even though carbohydrates are not bad for dogs, consuming it in large amounts can cause obesity and eventually lead to diabetes.

What if Your Dog Has Eaten Hash Browns?

We are humans, after all. We make mistakes. You might have shared your food with your dog because he was begging for it. Your child may have shared his or her food with your pup. Or your naughty dog could have reached the table and ate all of it before you realized.

A few hash browns shouldn’t cause any serious health issues. If your dog has eaten a lot more than a few, you might want to watch out for general symptoms of food poisoning as well as salt poisoning. The symptoms generally are:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Excessive thirst and urination
  • Lethargy

If you notice any of the symptoms, contact a veterinarian immediately as your dog might be going through a severe condition such as salt poisoning as well.

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Hash Browns?

Can dogs eat hash browns? No. Do not share hash browns with your dog, whether it is homemade or store-bought, no matter how much your pup begs for it. Hash browns contain spices and lots of salt that can be toxic for dogs. Hash browns are fried and therefore, unhealthy for dogs.

Fried foods can cause diarrhea as well as pancreatitis. Hash browns are also high in carbohydrates. Consuming more carbohydrates can cause obesity and diabetes in the long run.

If your dog has consumed hash browns and experiencing stomach upset, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, weakness, excessive thirst and urination, lethargy, headache, high fever, difficulty in walking, irregular heartbeat or confusion, consult a veterinarian immediately.