Is a little salt OK for dogs? Essential Tips

Salt: the good news

Dogs need salt for their cells to function and a healthy amount of it is between 0.25g – 1.5g per 100g of food. At these levels, salt isn’t bad for dogs and helps maintain cellular functions like fluid balance, acid-base balance and nerve signal transmission.

Your dog also needs the ‘chloride’ in sodium chloride to produce the stomach’s hydrochloric acid, which helps with their digestion. So far, all good.

Should Your Dog Avoid Salty Foods?

The most common way dogs get hypernatremia involves them getting into things they shouldn’t. Puppy-proofing your home to prevent your dog from accessing dangerous substances will go a long way toward protection. And if you take your dog to the ocean, stop them from drinking excess amounts of salt water and instead provide lots of opportunities to drink fresh water.

But what about salty foods like potato chips? Are they safe to feed your dog? Yes, in limited amounts. Dr. Klein explains, “The feeding of salty foods in moderation should not cause salt toxicity. But in small dogs with metabolic issues, it may cause more concern if there is no access to fresh water. Generally, the feeding of excessive salty foods is not good for dogs, especially for those that have certain medical issues such as heart disease because it can cause fluid retention.”

How Do Dogs Consume Too Much Salt?

But how does a dog consume a significant dose of salt? According to Dr. Klein, the most common causes of hypernatremia in dogs taken to veterinary hospitals include:

Is a little salt OK for dogs?

Dogs can also suffer from salt poisoning if they get into enema solutions, which contain sodium, or eat excess quantities of table salt or soy sauce. And although feeding your dog salt to induce vomiting was once a suggested practice, it’s no longer recommended, as it can lead to salt toxicosis as well.

Hypernatremia is also tied with access to water. Dogs can tolerate fairly high salt levels if they are able to drink a lot and therefore flush the salt from their system. But if there is no fresh water available or dogs can’t access their fresh water supply, then the pet will be at higher risk.

Why Salt is Bad for Your Dog

How much salt can a dog have? What does salt do for dogs? These kinds of questions are more and more common as dogs become more than just pets — they’re part of the family. Whether Fido snuck a little too much people food or you’re concerned about saltwater ingestion, we’ve got everything you need to know. Contents

When concerning salt, or any nutrient, really, it’s important to remember that moderation is key to a healthy pup. Too much of even a good thing can be a bad thing, and dogs aren’t always the best at portion control. So, is salt bad for dogs? Let’s look: