can dogs eat meatballs?

Can Dogs Eat Meatballs? Are Meatballs Safe For Dogs?

Can Dogs Eat Meatballs? Are Meatballs Safe For Dogs?

Meatballs are a classic cuisine that can be paired with many different foods. Their aromatic scent is sure to attract the attention of your furry friend and have him hanging around the kitchen during dinnertime. Meatballs are safe for humans to eat, but can dogs eat meatballs?

While your dog is likely to want a piece of your meatball while you eat, it is generally not the best option. Meatballs are high in fat and salt, which are both unhealthy for your dog. With that being said, some meatballs can be fed to your dog in moderation.

While the major ingredient, beef, is healthy for your dog, many other ingredients in meatballs are not, and some may even be poisonous to dogs. Let's look at the individual ingredients to see if they're suitable for dogs.

cooked meatballs in a bowl

Safe Meatball Ingredients

It's recommended to create your own meatballs if you want to give your dog meatballs. Meatball ingredients that are safe in moderation include:


Dogs may eat well cooked, unseasoned lean meat, which is a good source of protein. Beef is high in important fatty acids, vitamins, and minerals, which help to keep muscles, joints, skin, and coat healthy.


As part of a balanced diet, dogs can eat bread or breadcrumbs. Choose a bread that is minimal in sugar and salt when creating breadcrumbs for your dog.


Canines will not be harmed by small amounts of cheese if they are not lactose intolerant. Because cheese is high in fat and calories, eating too much of it can lead to obesity.


Eggs nutrients and protein content can help guarantee that your dog gets all of the nutrition he requires to live healthily. 

puppy asking for a meatball to eat

Dangerous Meatball Ingredients

The majority of store-bought meatballs contain harmful substances like onion and garlic, which should be avoided by dogs. Ingredients commonly used in meatballs that can be harmful to your dog include:

Garlic & Onion

Garlic and onion are poisonous to dogs. Garlic and garlic powder contain thiosulfate, which can harm a dog's red blood cells and cause anemia. Onions can cause red blood cells to break down in dogs.

Black Pepper

Most dogs don't like black pepper as it is too spicy. Pepper can lead to an upset stomach and nausea in your dog.


When it comes to salt content, store-bought meatballs are the worst. Salt is not recommended for dogs, this is because it can have a negative impact on a dog's health and increase the risk of cardiovascular issues.

raw meatballs

How To Prepare Meatballs Safely For Your Dog

When it comes to meatballs, the simplest and safest recipe for your dog is the one with the fewest ingredients. Avoid using any extra salt, pepper, spices, onions, or garlic.

Avoid feeding your dog fried meatballs. Deep-fried foods are high in calories, and they might also put your dog at risk of developing pancreatitis. Boiling, baking, or even grilling meatballs is a healthier option for your dog.

If you're concerned about your dog's caloric intake from meatballs, simply substitute a lighter meat, such as chicken or turkey.

Keep any meatballs your feed your dog simple, using only minimal ingredients and a healthy cooking method. Give your dog meatballs in moderation.

Review: Can Dogs Eat Meatballs?

Some meatballs are safe for dogs to eat, but processed, store-bought meatballs are not. Any meatball that contains garlic and onions should also be avoided as they are toxic to dogs.

You may, however, make your own homemade dog meatballs that are tasty, safe, and even beneficial for your dog. Depending on the ingredients you want to use, there are a variety of dog-safe recipes to select from.

Always remember that any new food should be introduced to your dog slowly to make sure that your dog does not experience any negative effects. Some foods may not agree with your dogs stomach and food allergies are always a concern.

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