Sharing your favorite meal with your pup is common for most dog owners. However, not all human foods are safe for dogs. If you love sourdough bread, you probably wonder whether you can share it with your dog. Here is an exclusive look at whether your dog can eat sourdough bread and everything you need to know about feeding it to your dog.
What Is Sourdough Bread?
Sourdough bread is made from water, flour, salt, and live yeast or a starter that contains naturally occurring Lactobacillaceae that produce lactic acid, giving it a characteristic sour taste. It starts with a sourdough starter that cultivates live yeast for a tangy and distinct flavor. To make the starter, water and flour are mixed and left to ferment over a few days. After five days, the lactic acid bacteria and live yeast are leavened and might be added to the bread dough. Sourdough bread has more vitamins, proteins, probiotics, and minerals than white bread. It has minerals such as iron that enhance metabolism and red blood cell production, and selenium which boosts the immune system. Sourdough has high vitamin B content for the improved functioning of the nervous system and metabolism regulation. One of the best things about sourdough bread is that it contains higher protein levels than an egg, making it a devious way of increasing your protein intake. According to Dog Training Me, it also comes with probiotic-like and prebiotic benefits that help improve your mineral vitamin absorption. The lactic acid bacteria in the sourdough feature antioxidant benefits that protect the body from diseases.
So, Can Dogs Eat Sourdough Bread?
Yes, your dog can eat sourdough bread in little amounts and with moderation. Like other bread types, sourdough bread is not toxic to a dog as long as they don’t have cornmeal and wheat allergies and are given small amounts. Sourdough is not a healthy food to add to your dog’s diet frequently. Sourdough bread mainly consists of carbohydrates; hence not an ideal source of nutrients that your pup requires for a balanced and complete diet. You should not replace a specialized diet for your dog with human food such as sourdough bread. Things could also worsen if the sourdough bread is uncooked, meaning that the dog will eat raw dough. Generally, you might feed your dog small amounts of sourdough bread, but you should not make it a habit. According to Petfoodfuss.com, knowing what the sourdough bread contains and the tolerances of your dog will be necessary when it comes to giving it food and treats.
Potential Risks of Sourdough Bread
While it’s safe to give sourdough bread to your dog in small amounts, there are several potential risks you need to watch out for. A few of the potential dangers of feeding sourdough bread to your dog include;
If your dog eats unbaked sourdough bread or one that is not adequately cooked, sourdough bread can increase in size inside your dog’s stomach, causing pain and bloating. When the dough rises inside your dog’s body, the stomach will be filled with gas, resulting in severe pain and potentially lethal conditions. The symptoms of bloating in your pup include; a distended belly, vomiting, shallow or rapid breathing, foamy saliva, drooling, and inability to vomit. If you notice any of these signs on your furry friend, you should contact your vet immediately.
The fermentation process when preparing sourdough bread produces ethanol that can also be dangerous to your dog’s health. Only two percent of the produced ethanol remains after baking. However, if the bread is not baked correctly, consuming sourdough bread might result into alcohol poisoning in dogs. The ethanol can get into the bloodstream, causing blood to lower blood sugar, pressure, and hypothermia. The age and size will determine the severity of alcohol poisoning, your dog’s weight, and the amount of sourdough bread ingested. The symptoms of alcohol poisoning include; dehydration, breathing difficulty, vomiting, disorientation, loss of body movements, diarrhea, vomiting, breathing difficulty, seizures, or even coma. If your dog is showing symptoms of alcohol poisoning after ingesting sourdough bread, consult your vet as soon as possible. According to The Goody Pet, the treatment for alcohol toxicosis includes induced vomiting or instilling cold water inside the stomach to reduce ethanol production. The vet might also administer intravenous fluids to enhance the elimination of ethanol from the body and stabilize the electrolytes. During severe cases where the dog suffers from serious breathing issues, the drug yohimbine is administered.
Wheat and grains are an essential share of your pup’s diet. However, if your dog has been diagnosed to be sensitive to wheat, giving sourdough bread to it is not a perfect idea. However, wheat allergy is a rare condition and should be diagnosed by your vet to rule out other allergens such as dairy and animal meat. A few furry friends are hypersensitive to wheat because the gluten component is difficult to break down. About 30 percent of humans cannot properly break down gluten. With canines having a digestive system that is unadapted to plant food, they find it difficult to digest wheat and plant forage.
Sourdough bread is regularly scattered with cornmeal. With corn not being a natural portion of your dog’s diet, most pups cannot break it down. Therefore, most canines develop an allergy after gradual exposure to cornmeal. The symptoms of corn allergy include; itchy skin, ear infections, weight issues, and coarse coat. If your furry friend experiences these symptoms after ingesting sour bread, take them to your vet for a checkup. Your vet might require you to switch to a gluten-free or grain-free diet and stop giving sourdough bread to them.
Ultimately, it is safe to give your small dog amounts of sourdough bread unless the furry friend is hypersensitive to cornmeal, wheat, or other grain types. You should never replace a specialized dog’s diet with human food, and sourdough bread consists mainly of calories without other vital nutrients. Therefore, you should not make it a routine to give them these foods. Always understand the constituents of the bread and dog’s tolerances regarding treats and foods.