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Can Dogs Eat Tomato Sauce? Here’s What You Need to Know

NO! Dogs cannot consume tomato sauce or any tomato-based product as it contains toxic compounds which can harm your dogs’ health. It is wise to avoid feeding tomato sauce, tomato-based soup, ketchup, spaghetti sauce, pizza sauce, and tomato juice to your canine pets. This means you should offer your dog some other healthy alternatives.

Why Can’t Dogs Eat Tomato Sauce?

Tomato sauce can be delicious, nutritious, and a great source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants for the human diet. However, like all things concerning dogs and their nutrition, there are some caveats you should be aware of before offering this sauce to your pup.

Tomatoes are part of the nightshade vegetable family. Some of these are potatoes, eggplants, and peppers. You might anticipate that these fruits and vegetables are known to be harmful to dogs.

In general, dogs should not eat tomato sauce because it can make them sick. Tomato sauce is high in acid and contains the compound solanine, which is toxic to dogs. “Solanine is an alkaloid which is colorless. Symptoms of solanine poisoning include Diarrhea, Fever, temperature (hypothermia), Headache, Slow pulse and/or breathing, and Stomach or abdominal pain” according to MSU Michigan State University.

Tomato Sauce

Symptoms of solanine poisoning usually develop within 12 hours of ingestion. 

Call your veterinarian immediately if you think your dog has eaten something containing excess Solanine.

Other Ingredients in Tomato Sauce That are Toxic to Dogs:

The ingredients in tomato sauce can vary, but typically it contains onions, garlic, salt, sugar, additives, and spices. Some people like to make their own tomato sauce from scratch, while others prefer to buy it pre-made.

So, What are the Risks of Feeding these ingredients to Your Pet Dog?

Why are Onions in Tomato Sauce Harmful to Dogs?

Onions are harmful to dogs because they contain a toxin called thiosulphate. Thiosulphate can damage a dog’s red blood cells, which can cause them to become anemic. Symptoms of anemia include pale gums, weakness, and lethargy. If a dog eats large amounts of onions, it may also experience vomiting and diarrhea.

Why is Garlic in Tomato Sauce Harmful to Dogs?

Garlic is a plant that belongs to the onion family. Often used as a spice in food and believed to have medicinal properties. While garlic is safe for people, it can be harmful to dogs. Garlic contains a compound called allicin which can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs, including vomiting and diarrhea. In severe cases, garlic can also lead to anemia in dogs. In large amounts, garlic can lead to serious health problems. For this reason, it is important to keep it away from your pets. Garlic is also toxic to cats, so it’s essential to keep both pets away from any foods containing garlic.

Why is Salt in Tomato Sauce Harmful to Dogs?

Salt is a mineral that is found in many foods. It is also used to flavor food. While salt is necessary for human health, it can be harmful to dogs. Here are some of the ways salt can hurt dogs:

  • Excessive salt consumption can lead to sodium ion poisoning. This can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures. In severe cases, it can be fatal.
  • Salt can make dogs thirsty, which can lead to dehydration.
  • Salt can raise a dog’s blood pressure, which might damage the dog’s internal organs.
  • Salt can aggravate existing health conditions in dogs, such as heart disease and liver disease.

Why is Sugar in Tomato Sauce Harmful to Dogs?

While sugar may be a sweet treat for humans, it can be harmful – even deadly – to dogs. Here’s why you should keep your pup away from sugar:

Sugar is bad for dogs because it can induce diabetes. Just like in people, sugar causes blood sugar levels to spike. In some cases, this high blood sugar can lead to diabetes.

Sugar can even be deadly for dogs. Ingesting too much sugar might lead to liver failure in some cases.

Why Are Spices in Tomato Sauce Harmful to Dogs?

Dogs are curious creatures and will often eat anything they can get their paws on. This includes spices, which can be harmful to them. Spices contain several compounds that can be toxic to dogs, including capsaicin, curcumin, and gingerol. These compounds can cause stomach upset, diarrhea, and even liver damage in dogs. It’s important to keep spices out of your dog’s reach and call your veterinarian if your dog exhibits any signs of toxicity after eating spices.

Why Food Additives in Tomato Sauce are Harmful to Dogs

Food additives are chemicals added to food to improve its appearance, flavor, or texture. Unfortunately, many of these additives can be harmful to dogs. For example, artificial colors can cause dogs to develop allergies or skin problems, and preservatives might damage the liver or kidneys. Some artificial flavors can also be toxic to dogs. Additives can upset a dog’s stomach and cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Myths on Feeding Tomato Sauce to Dogs:

Myth: Tomato Sauce is a Good Source of Protein for Dogs

Tomato sauce is a popular condiment used on many dishes. It is considered a healthy addition to human diets and a good source of protein. In contrast, tomato sauce can actually be harmful to dogs.

Most commercial tomato sauces are loaded with sugar and other unhealthy additives that can harm your dog’s health. In addition, tomato sauce does not have enough protein for a dog to thrive on. So it’s not a good source of protein for them. Dogs need animal-based proteins, not plant-based proteins like those found in tomatoes.

Tomato sauce can also cause digestive problems in dogs, such as gas and diarrhea. If you want to give your dog a treat, stick to dog-safe foods like raw meat or cooked chicken, rather than feeding it tomato sauce.

Can Dogs Eat Spaghetti Sauce?

Well, just like any tomato-based food, spaghetti sauce is risky for your dogs. Furthermore, spaghetti sauce is added with preservatives such as onions, chives, and garlic. These added ingredients are also harmful to dogs. There are many debates on what humans can and cannot eat, so it’s no surprise that the same goes for dogs. You will notice that some spaghetti sauce brands contain these preservatives.

Spaghetti sauce is not suitable for dogs because it contains harmful ingredients to them. The sauce can contain high sodium levels, which can cause dogs to become dehydrated. It can also contain sugar, leading to weight gain and other health problems, as we discussed earlier. Be sure to keep spaghetti sauce out of reach of pets. If ingested, the sauce can cause serious health problems, such as vomiting, diarrhea, and stomach pain.

Can Dogs Eat Pizza Sauce?

Dogs can eat pizza sauce, but it’s not recommended. Pizza sauce is made with tomatoes. However, pizza sauce also contains spices and herbs, which can make dogs sick if they overeat it. It’s best to avoid giving your dog pizza sauce or any other food that’s high in seasonings, salt, or sugar.

Can Dogs Eat Tomato Soup?

Tomato soup is just like tomato sauce. It should not be fed to dogs.

Too much tomato base food can upset your dog’s stomach.

Can Dogs Eat ketchup?

Ketchup is a condiment that is made from tomatoes, sugar, and vinegar. It is often used on hamburgers, hot dogs, and French fries. Ketchup is also a common ingredient in many recipes. Can dogs eat ketchup? The answer to that question is NO! It is not recommended for dogs to eat.

What Are Some Healthy Alternatives to Tomato Sauce for your Dog?

There are a variety of tomato sauce alternatives that are healthier for your dog than the traditional variety. These include pureed pumpkin, unsweetened applesauce, and homemade chicken or beef stock. All of these options are low in sodium and high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They also contain no sugar or artificial additives.

What to do if Your Dog Ate Tomato Sauce?

If your dog ate tomato sauce, there is no need to panic. While it is not recommended to give your dog tomato sauce, it is not poisonous and will not cause any serious harm unless excessive amounts are ingested. However, there are a few things you can do to help your dog feel better. First, make sure your dog drinks plenty of water. Dogs do not typically like the taste of tomato sauce, so they may not drink enough water on their own. You can also try feeding your dog some bland food, like boiled chicken or rice. If your dog continues to have trouble eating or drinking, or appears to be in pain, take them to the vet for a check-up. It’s always important to consult with a veterinarian if you have any concerns about your pet’s health.


As you can see from the above analysis, a small amount of tomato sauce can be safe for most dogs if fed in moderation. However, experts recommend steering clear of tomato-based foods. Avoid products made with high sugar content, salt, garlic, and those containing artificial colors or flavors. Always consult your veterinarian before giving your dog tomato-based sauces, especially if your dog has any health issues.