ketchup for dogs

What Happens If Your Dog Consumes Ketchup? 5 Risks

By Dog Child


Most pet owners are worried about what they should and should not give their pets. It is more common in dog owners because some food could be toxic to your paw friend.

Among these controversial foods is tomato ketchup. Most people wonder if they should feed their dog's ketchup. Even if they don’t feed them, what happens if it licks some ketchup from a burger?

If you’ve ever wanted the answer to the question, “can dogs eat ketchup” this article will give you the answer in detail. Here is the answer to what happens if your dog consumes ketchup and its associated risks.

Can Dogs Eat Ketchup?

In short, dogs should not eat ketchup. Consuming ketchup in large amounts is potentially harmful to your dog and will put its health at significant risk. 

Ketchup harms dogs primarily due to its ingredients, like salt, sweeteners, onion powder, and garlic powder. These ingredients are very dangerous for your dog to consume.

Dogs can consume ripe tomatoes as they do not harm their systems. However, unripe green tomatoes are harmful to dogs as they contain solanine and tomatine, which are toxic to their bodies.

What Happens if Your Dog Consumers Ketchup? 5 Risk

Your dog will most likely show the following symptoms if it consumes excessive ketchup. However, your dog may not show symptoms if it consumes a minimal amount of ketchup.

Diarrhea & Vomiting

Consuming ketchup could cause diarrhea in dogs. It is especially common when dogs consume very high amounts of ketchup.

Consuming large amounts of ketchup could also cause vomiting in dogs. It occurs because the dog’s stomach cannot handle all of the vinegar and sugar included in ketchup.

If your dog vomits, you must monitor them closely to ensure they do not get dehydrated. If vomiting continues for over 24 hours, you must take your dog to the vet.

Bloating & Gas

It is common for dogs to experience digestive issues when they eat high amounts of tomato ketchup. Again, it occurs due to the high amounts of sugar and vinegar in ketchup.

It could also be due to its toxic seasonings that cause bloating and gas in dogs. Ketchup is hard to digest, so your dog will have issues going to the bathroom.


Dogs who eat too much ketchup may feel excessively tired or lethargic. They might not feel up to doing anything, which could impact their health and activity levels.

They feel lethargic because of the high sugar content in sugar. It gives dogs a temporary boost of energy followed by a crash. Therefore, your dog will feel more tired than it already is.


Dehydration could occur when your dog eats excessive amounts of ketchup. It could primarily occur when your dog vomits after eating too much ketchup.

Dehydration is extremely dangerous for dogs as it could lead to several other health issues. Therefore, you must monitor your dog for signs like dry mouth, increased thirst, sunken eyes, and lethargy.

If you notice your dog having these signs, you must immediately take it to the vet. If not, it could cause harm to your dog’s life.

Choking & Seizures

Choking could happen, especially when your dog chews on the edible plastic in ketchup packets. It is a dangerous thing that could put your dog’s life at risk.

If your dog is coughing or having difficulty breathing, it could be due to choking on a ketchup packet.

In rare cases, eating ketchup may cause your dog to experience seizures. However, this typically occurs when a dog consumes a lot of ketchup. It could also occur when a dog consumes ketchup with other toxic foods.

Why Is Ketchup Bad For Dogs?

Ketchup is not a healthy food at all. It has very little nutritional value for dogs and does more harm than good.

The ingredients, including seasonings and preservatives in commercial ketchup products, threaten a dog’s health.

Here are the reasons why you should not feed ketchup to your dog.

It Contains An Excess Amount Of Salt

Ketchup has high sodium content. Your dog may not experience the adverse effects of consuming ketchup today. However, its health will suffer in the long run because of high sodium levels in its body.

There’s also the risk of insufficient water to flush out toxins in the body due to excess sodium. 

High sodium content is also linked with adverse health conditions, including high blood pressure, dehydration, and heart disease.

If a dog is already having diabetes or kidney disease, it is at greater risk as it is more sensitive to sodium buildup with preservatives included in ketchup.

It Might Contain Onion/ Garlic Powder

The main ingredient of ketchup is tomato. However, it may also contain garlic powder and onion powder as ingredients. These are harmful to your dog even when consumed in small amounts.

Onion and garlic powder are linked to several health issues in dogs, including low blood sugar, anemia, and intestinal upset. In some cases, it could even cause death in dogs.

Garlic and onion are highly toxic to dogs; you should give them even small amounts of these ingredients.

It Contains Excess Sugar, And Other Sweeteners

Ketchup is typically a mix of tomato paste, seasonings, and syrup. It contains sugar and sweeteners like fructose, corn syrup, and xylitol. 

These ingredients are very harmful to your dog and could cause long-term health issues. They can spike your dog’s blood sugar levels and cause an upset stomach. 

High sugar consumption could also cause diabetes, obesity, and pancreatitis.

It Contains Preservatives

Almost every ketchup bottle contains preservatives that harm your dog’s health. These preservatives are used to increase the shelf life of ketchup products. Therefore, you’d hardly find one that doesn’t contain preservatives.

These preservatives could cause allergic reactions in people and dogs. Although it could take a long time for people to see a harmful effect, for dogs, it’s instantaneous. Even a tiny amount could considerably harm a dog.

Some harmful preservatives found in ketchup are potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, and calcium disodium EDTA.

Long-Term Use Of Ketchup Is Linked To Obesity And Heart Disease

Too much of anything as unhealthy as ketchup is not suitable for your dog. Long-term use of ketchup is linked to heart disease and obesity in dogs. 

Your dog might be addicted to the taste of ketchup and would want to have it every day. Therefore, it’s better to avoid giving it at all costs.

What To Do If A Dog Eats Ketchup?

Sometimes your dog may accidentally or purposefully consume ketchup. Here’s what you can do if this happens:

  • Monitor your dog closely for 24 to 48 hours to identify any behavioral changes like vomiting, diarrhea, etc.
  • Check the ingredients to see if the ketchup has onion or garlic powder. If so, you must take immediate action, as these ingredients are incredibly harmful to dogs.
  • Take your dog to the vet immediately.
  • Give plenty of water to your dog and add electrolytes to it if they are vomiting or having diarrhea.
  • Keep ketchup bottles and packets out of your dog’s reach to prevent it from consuming the same in the future.

To prevent being disobedient to you and consuming harmful foods such as ketchup is best. A properly-trained dog will obey your commands and stay away from foods that are harmful to it. Click here for info on how to train your dog to obey you.

Final Thoughts

Ketchup is harmful to dogs. You should not give any amount of ketchup to your dog, and it is best to keep it away from its reach.

Ketchup contains a lot of salt, sugar, artificial sweeteners, and preservatives, which are harmful to your dog’s health. 

If your dog consumes ketchup, monitor it closely for 24 to 48 hours to identify unusual behavior. If you detect anything abnormal or vomiting and diarrhea persists for more than 24 hours, take your dog to the vet immediately.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Ketchup Harmful To Dogs?

Ketchup is harmful to dogs as it contains high amounts of salt, sugar, preservatives, and condiments like onions and garlic powder.

What Happens If A Dog Licks Ketchup?

If your dog licks and consumes a large amount of ketchup, it could cause your dog to show symptoms like diarrhea, vomiting, lethargy, choking, and bloating & gas.

Does All Ketchup Contain Xylitol?

A tablespoon of ketchup contains 2 g of xylitol, which can make a 40-pound dog sick.