Yes, there are many ingredients common in the making of tomato sauce that is considered toxic to dogs. Whether it is Marinara, Arrabiata, or Puttanesca, it is best to refrain from giving it to your dogs.
Garlic is one of the most toxic foods for dogs. It contains the chemical compound thiosulfate, which brings about oxidative damage to their red blood cells, causing hemolytic anemia.
Initial signs of garlic toxicity include vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pains, and appetite loss. Further consumption of garlic would lead to anemia with symptoms that include pale gums, weakness, lethargy, rapid breathing, jaundice, and reddish urine.
Approximately ¼ to ½ oz of garlic for every pound of your dog’s weight would produce a harmful effect on your dog’s blood.
Just like garlic, onion belongs to the allium family of plants which are all toxic to dogs. It contains the same thiosulfate compound that has the same effect as garlic.
Whether it is sauteed into the spaghetti sauce or added in powdered form, its harmful effect is the same. Powdered onion and garlic are more potent than their fresh counterparts, so avoid them at all costs.
Toxicity to onions arises when a dog consumes more than 0.5% of its body weight in onions at one time.
Tomatoes, for the most part, are not toxic to dogs. Unripe or green tomatoes are the ones you should be wary of.
However, given the tomatoes in spaghetti sauces are cooked, then this has minimal effect on their health. It is the aforementioned garlic and onions that are toxic.
Consuming large amounts, however, could cause diarrhea and stomach upsets.
Meatballs are fine for dogs as long as it is made from plain beef.
But, of course, the meatballs we usually make or buy have onions, garlic, and even sausages that have too much salt. It is best to stay away from these.
Some recipes of spaghetti sauce call for red chili flakes like Spaghetti Arrabiata. This is a big no-no since it contains the substance capsaicin, which can irritate their digestive system.
Spicy foods can cause stomach pains, diarrhea, vomiting, and gas. Additionally, it can cause bloating, especially when your dog tries to get rid of the burning sensation in their mouths by drinking lots of water.
Store-bought mushrooms are generally safe for dogs to ingest, like button, shiitake, or portobello mushrooms. They are a good source of vitamin B6, potassium, selenium, and phosphorus.
It is another thing, though, when you decide to add wild mushrooms to your sauce. Some mushrooms can cause liver damage and gastrointestinal distress.
Salt is an essential ingredient in most spaghetti sauces to make them more savory. It is also added to the water to cook the pasta.
Too much salt in your dog’s body could deplete it of liquids when their body tries to balance out the amount of sodium in the body.
A condition called hypernatremia, which is essentially a rise in the sodium levels in the blood, can make the muscles lose electrolytes resulting in stiffness, muscle shaking, and jerking.
Although sodium is an essential mineral to maintain proper metabolism, too much consumption could lead to sodium toxicity. Signs include excessive thirst, frequent urination, fever, dehydration, and seizures.
Basil and oregano are common spices that flavor tomato sauces. They have antioxidant and antimicrobial properties, plus it helps with some digestive issues like diarrhea and gas.
It should, however, only be consumed moderately.
In small amounts, parsley can have beneficial effects on dogs like flushing out toxins in the kidney, as well as relieving pain and swelling from some inflammatory diseases.
The curly variety is the one recommended for use in dogs since it contains less of the compound called furanocoumarin that can be toxic in excessive amounts.
Capers are safe for dogs, and they are rich in vitamins and minerals, as well as flavonoids and alkaloids that can help to regulate various cellular functions. What makes it unsafe for dogs is the salted brine in which the sauce is usually bottled.
Capers can also lower blood sugar, so be careful when giving it too much to a diabetic dog that is under medication.
Red Or White Wine
Some recipes call for red or white wine, and you might not know that you are giving alcohol to your pet by feeding him sauce laced with it.
Alcohol is very toxic to dogs, and while some may evaporate during the cooking process, a small proportion can remain.
Ethanol can intoxicate and probably poison a dog, and a small amount may cause vomiting, lethargy, and loss of coordination.