Ham hocks are used for making meatballs and hamburger, but many people don’t know they’re also great dog treats.
“Can dogs eat ham hocks?”
Body: It’s hard to believe that dogs could ever eat anything like ham hocks, but many of us grew up hearing stories about how our pets would happily munch on these. The truth is, it’s totally possible for dogs to eat ham hocks—as long as they’re fed a good diet. The question is: How much should they be fed?
One of the most common questions in my inbox is, “Can dogs eat ham?” This question is so common, I’ve even heard it asked by TV infomercials, where I’ve seen it’s answer listed as “yes.” But is this really true?
Can You Give Dogs Ham Safely?
Is ham healthy for dogs or bad for dogs? It contains protein, which is an essential component of a dog’s healthy diet.
According to Renee Schmid, DVM, DABVT, DABT, a veterinary toxicologist who works with Pet Poison Helpline, ham is probably not part of your dog’s usual balanced diet, therefore it shouldn’t qualify as a healthy meal, but rather as a treat that makes up no more than 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake.
“In a healthy dog, a tiny slice or two of ham is unlikely to cause problems,” Schmid explains. “Ham is a good source of protein, but the danger surpasses the benefit for some dogs.”
Depending on the dish, ham can be heavy in sugar, salt, fat, and calories. This is terrible news for dogs that are prone to gastrointestinal discomfort, are fat, or have a chronic ailment like heart disease that is influenced by salt consumption. (If you have numerous pets in your home, ham isn’t healthy for them, either.)
“It’s advisable to avoid feeding ham on a regular basis, especially in elderly animals,” Schmid advises. Pancreatitis is a painful health disease caused by too much fat in ham or other human foods.
If you do offer a little ham, make sure it’s not raw or seasoned, as raw meat can spread illness, and certain spices (such as onion and garlic) can upset a dog’s stomach or cause poisoning.
Is ham hock OK for dogs?
Is it OK for dogs to eat ham bones or ham hocks? The joint that links a pig’s foot to its leg is used to make ham hocks. They’re big enough for a dog to choke on if it eats one. Avoid ham hocks for dogs since they might cause digestive issues.
Can Dogs Safely Eat Ham Bones or Ham Hocks?
The joint that links a pig’s foot to its leg is used to make ham hocks. They’re big enough for a dog to choke on if it eats one. Ham hocks can also cause digestive difficulties, so avoid them for dogs.
According to Schmid, ham bones should also be avoided.
She says that any real bone can splinter and cause damage to a dog’s esophagus, stomach, or intestinal tract. “Ham bones are often more brittle than other bones, such as chicken bones, and are more prone to splintering.”
Cooked ham bones are considerably more dangerous since they are more prone to splintering and can induce choking.
How Much Ham Is Too Much for a Dog?
“It’s a difficult question,” Schmid admits. “It depends a lot on the size and health of the dog.”
She thinks a small amount of cooked ham as a treat for a healthy dog is good. A pet with a sensitive stomach or other health issues, on the other hand, may have a negative reaction to even a small bit.
If your dog steals ham off the table at Thanksgiving or Christmas, or whether you’re testing to see if it agrees with your dog, look for these warning signs:
Sluggishness or lethargy
Lack of desire to eat or a lack of appetite
Pain in the abdomen
If the symptoms do not improve within a few days, contact your veterinarian.
If Not Ham, Then What Human Foods Are Healthy for Dogs to Eat?
What other healthy human meals might make better substitutes for ham as a daily treat for your dog? (Don’t worry—you’ll have plenty of selections to share with your dog.)
Healthy dogs can be fed the following human foods (in moderation):
Cooked eggs, but never with shell fragments
Only the pulpy fruit of oranges, not the stem, skin, or seeds
Only simple, unsalted forms of peanut butter, and only a little amount of this high-calorie delicacy
But there’s no butter or salt on the popcorn.
But just cooked rice
Sweet potatoes are a kind of potato that is used
Squash in the winter
Summer squash and zucchini
And, if you want a quick refresher on some typical human foods and components that are poisonous to dogs, here are a few notable examples:
Pits from apricots or peaches
Onions with garlic
Raisins and grapes
Xylitol, as well as foods and beverages that include this sugar replacement
Can dogs eat ham hocks? Absolutely. Ham hocks are a byproduct of a meat production process. They have been a regular part of the American diet for centuries. Even though they aren’t a traditional food for dogs, they are a perfectly acceptable treat for your dog. As long as you are feeding your dog a quality dog food, your dog will not have any problems eating this type of food. It is not harmful to your dog, and it is safe for your pet to eat.
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