Can Dogs Eat Bologna?

Even though it makes for a tasty snack when consumed in moderation, you shouldn’t give your dog much of it in their diet.

Instead, you should only occasionally offer bologna.

Despite not being strict carnivores, they have evolved to eat primarily meat.

Most of their diet should be made up of fats and proteins, which is precisely what meat contains.

One of the varieties of meat is bologna.

That may give the impression that it would be appropriate for dogs.

Bologna is a highly processed form of meat; it typically has a lot of additives and is sodium-rich.

Because of this, it isn’t an excellent food for either humans or dogs; however, it’s not harmful to dogs either.

So, can dogs eat bologna?

Please read this blog post before you share your bologna with your pup.

We’ll take a look at everything you might need to know about feeding your dog bologna.

Why Is Bologna Bad For Dogs?

bologna on the table

Before feeding this to your dog, you should consider bologna’s ingredients and how they might harm the dog’s health.

Eating this food frequently can make your dog sick, especially in significant amounts.


These substances maintain cured meat’s flavor and pleasing fragrance while giving the product the desired pink color.

Additionally, preservatives stop harmful bacteria from growing in meat.

Sadly, the nitrates added to processed meat are frequently bad for humans, but because of dogs’ larger digestive systems, they are even worse.

Nitrates are also one of the main contributors to severe diseases in dogs, such as bowel and stomach cancers.

In addition, they frequently result in pancreatitis, stomach ulcers, and liver and kidney disease.


The flavor of the bologna is enhanced by the unavoidable ingredient salt (sodium chloride).

Have you heard that processed meats are referred to as salt bombs due to their high sodium content?

Most salami, including bologna, has more than 30 mg per 2 g slice.

Short-term effects of such a salt concentration include increased thirst, frequent urination, and bloating.

Even worse, chronic salt consumption will cause hypertension and ensuing heart disease.


Bologna has a high calorie and fat content, as I have already mentioned.

Unfortunately, they are primarily omega-6 fatty acids, which can be dangerous if not balanced with omega-3 fatty acids, rather than healthy dietary fat that is good for the dog’s body.

Most of the time, it is subpar meat, lard, and leftover fat that neither humans nor animals should consume.

For the sake of comparison, you should be aware that a serving of 2 ounces (57 g) of bologna contains nearly as much fat as a large cup of ice cream.

Consumption frequently causes rapid weight gain and obesity, followed by diabetes, pancreatitis, and heart disease.

dog on the left side bologna on the right side


When making bologna meat, most US producers use corn syrup as an additive.

Although it enhances the flavor of the meat, keep in mind that it is made of cornstarch.

In other words, this ingredient raises the body’s sugar levels, typically having adverse effects like diabetes and heart disease.


Since bologna frequently contains the worst meat imaginable, it must be enhanced in flavor to make it palatable for consumption.

As a result, many herbs and spices, including onions and garlic, which are toxic to dogs in large quantities, are used in its preparation.

Synthetic Antioxidants

BHA (butylated hydroxytoluene) and BHT (Butylated Hydroxy-Anisole) are artificial antioxidants that potentially seriously harm dogs’ health.

Sometimes they can cause cancer or damage a dog’s neurological system. Because of the preservatives in processed meats like bologna, you should expect your pet to experience thyroid, liver, and kidney problems.

What Happens If Dogs Eat Bologna?

Your dog can eat the bologna because it is not toxic to them.

Small amounts of bologna would not cause your dog any trouble if they ate it.

Feeding your dog too much or too frequently would, on the other hand, be problematic.

High consumption of bologna meat has been linked to several health problems, including:

  • Kidney problems

  • High blood pressure

  • Cardiovascular or heart diseases

  • Stomach and bowel cancer

  • Diabetes

  • Pancreatitis

cutted bologna on the table

That is due to the numerous additives and various types of meat used in bologna.

Here is a list of potential additives in any sausage in case you’re wondering why bologna is so unhealthy:

  • Nitrates

  • Fats

  • Sodium

  • Herbs 

  • Spices

  • BHT and BHA

Remember that none of these diseases should be your concern if your dog only occasionally consumes bologna.

You’re safe if you feed your dog a bland diet and give it treats occasionally.

Can Bologna Kill A Dog?

There won’t be any serious consequences if your dog gets their paws on some bologna.

Your dog won’t suffer any harm from one piece.

However, issues may occur if your dog overeats bologna over time.

Bologna has a lot of sodium in it.

That can eventually lead to serious health problems like pancreatitis.

Your dogs may die as a result of this, which has the potential to be fatal.

cutted bologna rolled

However, various factors, including genetics and dietary habits, frequently contribute to this issue.

Furthermore, it would take many pieces of bologna every day for years for this to become a problem.

Problems will be more likely to affect smaller dogs.

How Much Bologna Can A Dog Eat?

Bologna is considered a special treat for dogs but not healthy food.

Therefore, for medium dogs, two bite-sized chunks should be served per serving, with servings occurring no more frequently than once or twice per month.

We advise starting with a much smaller serving size to see how your dog’s stomach responds to the new human food due to the high risk of allergic reaction.

You can resume using the recommended serving size the following time if there are no adverse side effects.

Bologna is a good snack for healthy adult dogs, but it is not something you should give your puppy.

Puppies’ stomachs are more delicate, and they wouldn’t appreciate trying new foods.

What To Do If Your Dog Ate A Lot Of Bologna

Try to determine how much bologna your dog consumed as a first step.

That is vital information if your dog recently ate a lot of meat, mainly if it contained garlic or onions.

If you think your dog ate bologna made with garlic, please contact your veterinarian as a responsible dog owner.

Then keep an eye out for signs of fatigue or poor digestion.

Call your vet immediately if your dog is acting seriously ill.

The likelihood is that your dog will be able to digest it just fine, but if you have any concerns at all, consult your dog’s veterinarian.

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Bologna

bologna on the left side brown dog on the tight side

So, can dogs eat bologna?

Even though you can occasionally treat your dog with bologna meat, you shouldn’t make it a regular part of its diet and dogs can not eat bologna.

Feeding your dog food designed specifically for dogs is the best choice if you’re looking for a healthy diet for them.

Additionally, it is not a healthy treat for overweight dogs at all.

Most certain meats are prepared and without additional seasonings, like roast beef.

Bologna’s high fat and salt content mean that while eating a little bit probably won’t kill them, overeating it could.

Simply avoiding it entirely is the best and safest course of action.

Meat containing corn starch, sodium chloride, or additional sweeteners is not suitable for dogs, especially tiny dogs.

Before You Go…

Now you know the answer to the question, “Can dogs eat bologna?”.

If you want to learn more, read the following articles too!

Mena Emad, DVM
Mena has a Bachelor’s degree in veterinary medicine. His expertise, passion for animal welfare, extensive knowledge, and experience in the field of veterinary medicine make him an excellent resource for our readers.