Yes, Shih Tzus can eat pork, like all other dogs. Eating meat is a natural thing for dogs, and pork is one meat they can eat. The best pork you can offer your dog is plain pork and the parts without too much fat. Further, it would be best to avoid seasoned, fatty, and processed pork.
The term pork is a vast one, and it includes many other types of products. Thus, when I say your Shih Tzu can eat pork, it doesn’t mean you can feed any pork you can get in your hands.
Let’s go and tackle each of the famous types of pork you’ll probably ask if you can feed to your pet.
Can Shih Tzu eat raw pork?
Raw pork is the first thing you should slash off your feed list for your Shih Tzu.
Feeding raw or uncooked pork is not safe for dogs like it is for humans. It is because raw pork and even the undercooked ones may carry bacteria or parasites.
One parasite you can find on raw pork is the trichinella spiralis larvae. If transferred to dogs or even other animals, such a parasite can lead to what we call trichinosis.
Although it’s more likely to occur to humans than to dogs, it’s still risky to feed raw pork to your pet.
Infection of such can cause the following symptoms.
- Upset stomach
- Elevated fever
- Muscle inflammation
- Pain and stiffness
The symptoms may be more or less, depending on the immune system of the infected pet.
It would be best always to cook any pork you’re about to feed your dog to avoid any infection.
Can Shih Tzu eat cooked pork?
Yes, Shih Tzu can eat cooked pork. In fact, it is your better option compared to feeding a raw one.
Like I said, raw pork can carry parasites and other bacteria. Cooking the pork meat kills such bacteria and makes it safe for both humans and pets to eat.
One thing you should avoid giving your pet on cooked pork is the fatty parts.
While fats aren’t harmful in small amounts, too much fat can take a toll on your pet.
Compared to other fats found in other meat, pork fat is difficult for dogs to digest. For this reason, feeding pork fat can lead to indigestion and pancreatic inflammation.
Another thing to consider about feeding cooked pork is the seasoning and additives.
Most people feed cooked pork to dogs, but as a leftover. Thus, it can be a pork dish with ingredients and seasonings that can be bad for dogs.
Thus, if you’re feeding leftover pork to your pet, it would be best to get rid of seasonings as much as you can.
The best cooked pork for dogs is the plain and unseasoned one. No matter how bland it is, it is safer compared to the ones rich with flavor.
Lastly, if you’re just about to try feeding it for the first time, provide a small amount first. Afterward, observe your pet for any reaction.
If your pet doesn’t show any reaction, that means it’s safe. Pork sometimes causes allergic reactions, so be sure before feeding large amounts.
Can Shih Tzu eat pork liver?
Shih Tzus can eat chicken liver, so it should also be safe to feed the pork liver.
Still, feeding the liver to your pet should only be in small amounts. Too much liver can cause nutritional problems. It is because the liver is high in vitamin A.
Feeding more than three servings of liver a week can cause bone problems to your pet.
For this reason, liver meals should only be at a maximum of three times a week.
Can Shih Tzu eat ham?
We can eat ham in large amounts, but Shih Tzus and all other pets cannot.
Although ham is pork, it’s a product made from too much processing, and it can be way too fatty and salty.
For this reason, you should limit giving your pet ham to only a couple of bites, and not regularly.
We have written an extensive article that covers the effects of feeding ham to Shih Tzus. If you want to know more, check out this related article just about that: Can Shih Tzu eat ham?
Can Shih Tzu eat sausage?
Sausages are another pork product that gained favor from many people. However, like ham, sausages are a product of processing, and it can be too salty and are rich in seasoning.
For this reason, all kinds of pets, including Shih Tzus, should avoid eating sausages.
Sausages have ingredients that are toxic for Shih Tzus and other dogs. To know more about those ingredients, check out this article.
Can Shih Tzu eat bacon?
While we take delight in the crunch and rich taste of bacon, our dogs and other pets can’t.
Bacon may be pork, but it is made by curing with salt. For this reason, it ends up being way too salty for our dogs.
There are a lot more things about bacon that you should be aware of for your pet. To know more, read this related article where we covered bacon and its effects on Shih Tzus: Can Shih Tzu eat bacon?
Can Shih Tzu eat pork rib bones?
Pork rib bones have meat attached to it, and many dogs can delight in chewing on it, including Shih Tzus.
Still, there are some reminders you need to know before feeding pork rib bones to your pet.
First, these dogs may not take the pork rib bones well. They may even find it difficult to break it by chewing alone.
Unlike other dogs, this breed is way smaller, and their teeth may not tolerate the big pork rib bones.
For this reason, you can feed pork rib bones to your dog and let it gnaw on the meat that is still attached. Once you don’t see any more meat, take the bone away.
Another thing is to cook it first and avoid feeding it raw.
Indeed, a cooked bone can be brittle and can harm your pet if it splinters.
However, for a Shih Tzu, a pork rib bone will be large enough to break. Besides, a cooked bone is safe from bacteria that can harm your pet.
Lastly, always supervise your Shih Tzu when you’re feeding it bones. If possible, avoid feeding bones. Save those bones for the bigger dogs.
Can Shih Tzu eat cheese? Check it out!
What other meat can Shih Tzus eat?
While pork is good meat and is safe for Shih Tzus to eat, there are alternatives to offer. Other types of meat can even be safer and better for your dog.
Here’s a list of meat you can offer for your Shih Tzu:
- Organs such as liver and heart of chickens
- White chicken meat
As a general rule of thumb, always feed your pet cooked meat, and avoid feeding the raw ones.
Meat is a good source of protein and can be beneficial to any pet if appropriately fed. But, it can also be harmful if provided the wrong way.
Shih Tzus and other dogs can eat pork, but not all kinds of pork. There exists a wide range of pork products that can be quite tempting to feed to our pets.
Still, the best pork feed is none other than plainly cooked pork meat. The best ones are those without seasoning and the ones made without processing.
The rest of the pork can be given in small bites, and also not regularly.
Keeping in mind what is right and what is harmful to your Shih Tzu is ideal. By doing so, you can offer a wide range of food options while avoiding unwanted incidents.
Image credits – Photos by Karsten Winegeart and Usman Yousaf on Unsplash