Can Dogs Eat Red Meat

Can Dogs Eat Red Meat?

Last Updated: August 18, 2023
correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Generally, dogs can eat moderate amounts of red meat without ill effects. Protein and other nutrients are essential for your dog’s health, so red meat is a great source. Red meat is safe to feed to your dog, but there are some things to consider. The first step is to make sure the meat is thoroughly cooked. As undercooked meat may contain harmful bacteria, it can be dangerous for dogs.

In this article you will know the answer to the query “Can Dogs Eat Red Meat?“.

Generally dogs can eat moderate amounts of red meat without ill effects. 

Can Dogs Eat Red Meat

Protein and other nutrients are essential for your dogs health so red meat is a great source. 

Red meat is safe to feed to your dog but there are some things to consider.

The first step is to make sure the meat is thoroughly cooked. As undercooked meat may contain harmful bacteria it can be dangerous for dogs.

You should also avoid giving your dog fatty cuts of meat which may cause gastrointestinal problems. 

Fattening red meat can cause weight gain and other health issues because it is hard to digest and high in saturated fats.

Finally cut the meat into small pieces so that your dog can chew and digest it easily.

As long as it is cooked properly and served in moderation red meat can be a healthy and nutritious option for your dog. 

If you are concerned about feeding red meat to your dog talk to your veterinarian.

What Are The Main Types of Red Meat?

Dogs can eat the following types of red meat:

  • Beef
  • Pork
  • Lamb

How Do These Differ?

Below are the nutritional differences between them.


Approximately 558 grams of beef are in one cup along with 39 grams of protein 43 grams of fat and 0 grams of carbohydrates as well as some minerals like iron calcium and potassium. Besides omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids beef is also a good source of protein. Dogs can benefit from it by maintaining a healthy coat and skin.


The nutrient composition of pork is very similar to that of beef. In one cup of pork there are 561 calories 39g of protein 43g of fat and trace amounts of carbs vitamins and minerals. Selenium phosphorus zinc and B vitamins are all found in pork.


The nutritional content of lamb is also similar to that of beef and pork. A cup of lamb contains 562 calories 39 grams of protein 43 grams of fat and trace amounts of carbs vitamins and minerals. Iron zinc and B vitamins can all be found in lamb. As well as being rich in omega-3 fatty acids lamb is also a good source of protein.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Red Meat?

Dogs should not be fed raw meat despite some people believing it is better for their health.

It is possible for raw meat to contain harmful bacteria that can cause your dog to become ill.

Furthermore raw meat is difficult for your dog to digest and may result in digestive problems.

Among the bacteria found in raw meat are E. coli and Salmonella both of which can cause food poisoning in dogs. Meat should always be cooked thoroughly before being fed to your dog.

Lamb is one of the safest meats to consume.

The risk of food poisoning from lamb is lower than that of beef pork or chicken.

As a result lamb is less likely to contain harmful bacteria than other meats.

To kill any bacteria present the lamb must still be cooked properly to kill them.

Poultry is the most dangerous meat to consume.

Compared to lamb pork or beef poultry is more likely to contain harmful bacteria.

The reason for this is that poultry is often contaminated with Salmonella and other bacteria. Food poisoning can result from these bacteria if poultry is not cooked properly.

How Often Should Your Dog Eat Raw Meat?

It is important to feed your dog raw meat in moderation if you decide to do so.

It is recommended that dogs eat raw meat only once or twice a week.

Additionally make sure that your dogs meat is properly cooked before feeding it.

Does Raw Meat Make Dogs Aggressive?

Several dog owners believe that feeding their dogs raw meat will make them more aggressive.

In spite of this there is no scientific evidence to support this claim.

It has even been shown that raw meat can help reduce aggression in dogs.

A veterinarian or animal behaviorist can provide expert advice if you are concerned about the behavior of your dog.

How To Cook Red Meat?

In order to cook red meat properly it must be thoroughly cooked. Meat that has been treated in this manner will be killed by any harmful bacteria. To ensure that beef pork or lamb reaches a minimum internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit use a food thermometer.

Meat should be cooked to an internal temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit for ground beef and 145 degrees Fahrenheit for pork and lamb.

The cooking process kills harmful bacteria that can cause food poisoning making red meat safer. Meat cooked at a high temperature kills any bacteria that may be present making it safer to consume.

Many people believe that cooking meat at a lower temperature makes it tender and juicy but this isnot true. Rather than making meat more tender and moist cooking it at a low temperature tends to make it tougher and drier. Cooking red meat at a high temperature for a short period of time is the best method. By doing this any bacteria present in the meat will be killed and the meat will be cooked through.

Beef lamb and pork can be made safer to eat if they are cooked properly. A temperature of 160 degrees Fahrenheit should be reached inside each of these meats in order to kill harmful bacteria. A variety of methods can be used to cook them including grilling skillet cooking and baking.

Can dogs eat the fat from red meat?

It is not recommended for dogs to consume fat from red meat. The fat found in beef pork and lamb can be hard for dogs to digest and may result in gastrointestinal problems. Red meat fat is also a source of saturated fat which can contribute to weight gain and other health problems. To avoid any health problems only feed your dog a small amount of fat from red meat.

How much red meat should you feed your dog?

A dogs age size and activity level will determine how much red meat it should consume. Its important to start puppies with a small amount and gradually increase it as they grow. Depending on how active an adult dog is the amount will vary. In dogs with high activity levels more meat may be needed while in dogs with low activity levels less meat may be needed. If you want to know how much red meat is right for your dog you should speak to your veterinarian.

Is red meat healthier than white meat for dogs?

As each meat has its own benefits and drawbacks there is no scientific consensus about whether red meat or white meat is healthier for dogs. Although red meat is a good source of protein vitamins and minerals it can also be high in fat and cholesterol. In general white meat is lower in fat and calories than red meat but it may not be as nutrient-dense. Your dogs dietary requirements ultimately determine which meat is best for him. White meat provides your dog with the necessary nutrients for a balanced diet while red meat helps him maintain a healthy weight. You should consult your veterinarian before making any drastic dietary changes to your dog.

I would like to compare the two of them in more detail.

White Meat (Chicken):

In one cup of cooked chicken you will find:

  • Calories: 261
  • Protein: 35 grams
  • Fat: 13 grams
  • Carbs: 0 grams

Red Meat (Turkey)

The following nutrients are found in one cup of cooked turkey:

  • Calories: 323
  • Protein: 42 grams
  • Fat: 16 grams
  • Carbs: 0 grams

The protein content of white meat and red meat is similar as you can see. The calories and fat content of white meat are lower than that of red meat. It is therefore a better choice for dogs who are trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy weight. Additionally white meat contains nutrients such as niacin and selenium.

On the other hand red meat is a good source of iron and zinc. Your dogs immune system needs these minerals to function properly as well as his red blood cells. Also red meat is a good source of B-vitamins which are essential for energy production.

So which is better for your dog?

It depends on your dogs individual dietary needs. The best choice for your overweight or obese dog may be white meat. The best option for your dog however might be red meat if he is active and has a healthy weight.

What Meat Should Dogs Avoid?

It is recommended that you do not feed your dog certain types of meat. The following are among them:

  • It is important to avoid giving your dog raw meat since it may contain bacteria that can make them sick and lead to food poisoning
  • Cooked bones as can splinter and cause choking or gastrointestinal blockages.
  • Fatty meats as can cause pancreatitis.
  • Spicy meats as can irritate your dog’s stomach.
  • You should avoid processed meats because they may contain chemicals and preservatives that can harm your dog.

What To Do If Your Dog Eats Red Meat and Gets Sick?

You should contact your veterinarian right away if your dog eats red meat and then becomes ill. Dogs with food poisoning may experience vomiting diarrhea and lethargy. Dehydration and even death can result from food poisoning if left untreated. According to the severity of the symptoms food poisoning will be treated differently. You may need to hospitalize your dog for intravenous fluids and other treatments in some cases.

The Bottom Line

You can include red meat in your dogs diet as a healthy nutrient-dense food. Despite this red meat should be fed in moderation and spicy or fatty meats should be avoided. Contact your veterinarian immediately if your dog becomes ill after eating red meat.

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Amanda Dogs Trainer

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With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

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