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Can I Feed Pizza To My Dog?

The aroma of a freshly baked pizza can make anyone salivate – especially your dog! However, is it safe to feed your dog a slice of this cheesy and saucy meal? You may be asking yourself – “Can my dog eat pizza?”

Probably not.

If your beloved pet stares you down every time you bite into a slice of pizza, it’s only natural to feel tempted to give it some – although this can be potentially harmful to your pup. Dogs have very different digestive systems from humans – so this warrants some serious study – pizza is important business, after all!

Back to the question – Can my dog eat pizza? It’s time to find out!

Is Pizza Safe For My Dog?

Can pizza hurt dogs? Yes, if your dog eats too much pizza or sometimes, even just a slice, it might get an upset stomach among other side effects.

So, why is pizza bad for dogs? Here are some explanations that offer some clarity.

Dogs Are Lactose Intolerant

Can you imagine ordering a pizza without cheese? That’s like asking for daylight without a sunrise – it’s not possible! However, while humans are capable of digesting an occasional bout of mozzarella, even if it’s not low fat, dogs have a tough time with it.

Unlike humans, dogs of any breed are lactose intolerant for the most part. Yogurt and cottage cheese are dog-friendly forms of dairy but cheese, even low fat, when consumed excessively can have a negative impact on a dog’s digestive system.

While it’s perfectly all right to give your dog a teeny bit of cheese just to cheer it up, a slice of pizza with a thick layer of cheese is not a great idea.

Pizza Can Weigh Your Dog Down

Despite all the exercise humans do, a pizza every week will show on you and the weighing scale. The same goes for dogs. Whether your dog falls sick after eating pizza or not, the fat content in this highly processed meal can cause obesity.

As dogs become overweight, they feel more tied down and suffer other consequences like arthritis, heartburn, acidity, fatigue, and more.

Having said that, it’s hard to ignore a dog who’s incessantly begging you for some food, isn’t it? If you want to keep your dog safe and happy, leave the pizza for yourself and keep a bag of low-fat dog kibble by your side for your dog to munch on.

Pizza Offers Zero Nutrition

Just like humans, dogs have a sensitive gut biome that thrives on the intake of natural and healthy foods. A dog’s digestive tract produces 300 times the amount of acids and enzymes that a human’s digestive tract does – we don’t have to digest uncooked food, after all.

A dog’s system can easily break down proteins from meats and other raw diets but pizza offers just empty calories that contribute to poor nutrition – especially when prepared with highly refined flour and preservatives.

Pizza will end up making your dog feel bloated and low on energy. A nice snack made up of whole wheat bread and some meat broth is a better way to pamper your pet buddy.

How to Keep Your Dog Healthy and Happy

Which Ingredients On The Pizza Are Dangerous For My Dog?

Pizza is all about the cheese, the toppings, and the sauce, isn’t it? Without these ingredients, all you have is flat bread with crunchy crusts. No one wants pizza like that but your dog is probably better off without it completely.

Can my dog eat cheese on the pizza? We’ve already established the fact that cheese on a pizza can turn your dog’s tummy, but what about the other ingredients on the pizza? Are they dangerous for your dog?

Yes, they are and here’s why:


Let’s begin with the pizza dough. The yeast in pizza dough is constantly fermenting and rising, making the bread puff up. During fermentation, yeast produces a significant amount of ethanol which can significantly harm your dog internally.

Additionally, pizza dough and crusts are made up of unhealthy carbohydrates, a sizable amount of salt, and oils which can be dangerous for dogs to consume on a regular basis. While a small bite won’t do much harm, a frequent slice of pizza can have an adverse effect on your dog’s overall wellbeing in the long run.

If you’re the kind who leaves out the crust every time you eat pizza, you must be wondering, Can I give my dog pizza crust? Just once, maybe, but not always because crusts contain substances like salt, herbs, and oils that aren’t safe for dogs.

Onions And Garlic

Cooked or raw, onions carry an enzyme called thiosulfate which is fine for humans but toxic for dogs. Organosulfur, another ingredient in onions, can cause a number of health conditions in dogs.  While a small bite of pizza with onions won’t kill your dog, an entire slice of onion toppings can damage your dog’s liver or cause severe allergic reactions.  Garlic has medicinal properties that benefit humans greatly but the opposite is true for dogs. Just like onions, garlic contains Thiosulfate which is toxic for dogs.


A traditional pizza sauce is usually made from a tomato puree but there’s so much more where that came from. Pizza sauces get their delicious flavor from a good number of onions, garlic pods, chilies, salt, herbs like basil, oregano, and so on.

Brewed in a pan with a nice amount of butter and vegetable oils, pizza sauce contains ingredients that are not good for dogs at all. High on sodium and spices, pizza sauce can cause gastrointestinal issues, heart disease, and high blood pressure in dogs.

ALSO READ: A Basic Guide to Feeding Your Dog

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Pizza? 

Are you worried, thinking, What happens if my dog ate pizza?

If your dog’s eaten just a little bit of your pizza and it seems all right, you have nothing to worry about. If your dog’s eaten more pizza than it should have, the symptoms of any gastrointestinal issues are almost immediate.

This means your dog is likely to show signs of discomfort, vomiting, diarrhea, and fatigue. These side effects could also be an indication of an allergic reaction to the sauce, the cheese, the toppings, the dough, or the seasoning.

In this case, let your dog go without a meal and stay on an empty stomach for a short while. The next time you feed your dog, make it a simple but nutritious meal of boiled rice in chicken broth. This concoction will soothe the gut, absorb the toxins, and settle the stomach to stop the vomiting.

If your dog has eaten raw pizza dough, the damage could be worse. Take your dog to the vet immediately and seek medical help.

Final Thoughts

Instead of a one-word answer to your question, Can my dog eat pizza?, we’ve given you an entire block on content listing reasons and reasonable explanations to make things clear.

If your dog loves pizza a lot, make it a homemade version that will do the trick.

Use fresh meats instead of processed meats. Try whole-wheat bread instead of pizza dough, and make a simple tomato sauce using natural ingredients without any spices, oil, or salt.

In summary – can pizza kill dogs? Probably not, but instead of giving them potential gut issues and discomfort, consider making a special dog-friendly pizza just for them – this will be a tasty, special treat that they’ll love you for!