It’s a staple of many vegetarian diets for humans, but can dogs eat tofu? Dig into the nutrition of this soy-based food and learn why it’s safe but you should still be careful.
As dog owners, we wonder if small amounts of soy products are safe for our furry friends. That is why I put together this guide. We will look closely at soy protein and whether it is as good for dogs as meat protein.
For ultimate pet safety, I recommend consulting with your vet about your dog eating tofu or anything else listed in this article.
- Can Dogs Eat Tofu?
- Dogs and Tofu: What to Watch Out For
- Can Dogs Eat Tofu? Yes, But Be Careful
- Additional Soy Foods and Dogs Information
- More Foods Dogs Can and Can’t Eat
Can Dogs Eat Tofu?
Pet owners, you’ve probably heard about the many health benefits of tofu for humans. It’s a good source of protein and has all nine essential amino acids. If something is this good for humans, it must be healthy for dogs too, right?
But if you have ever paused and wondered, “is tofu good for dogs?” You aren’t alone. Not all human foods are good for dogs too. We can eat soy sauce but it has way too much salt for dogs.
So you are right to be cautious and question it.
The good news is tofu is not toxic to dogs. But you should still be cautious when letting your dog eat it.
What is Tofu?
Tofu is used in the vegan lifestyle as a meat substitute. Some people like to put their dog on a vegetarian diet, but this is not advised.
Tofu is basically made coagulating soy milk and pressing it into blocks. It’s made the same way cheese is made, but it’s made from soybeans not dairy. There are 10 grams of protein in 1/2 a cup of tofu.
Dogs and Tofu: What to Watch Out For
A lot of people that are against feeding tofu to dogs point out that the majority of soybeans in the USA are made from GMO seeds. And they want to protect themselves and dogs from GMOs.
The danger of GMOs is still a hot debate and there isn’t enough science to prove the safety or danger of them. But if you want, there is organic tofu made from Non-GMO seeds.
GMOs are not the only thing to watch out for when it comes to dogs and tofu. The type of protein you feed your dog is very important. The main ingredient should always be animal protein. In fact, soy and tofu put your dog at risk for all of the following issues.
Tofu Is Not a Complete Protein Replacement for Dogs
Another thing you should be careful with is using tofu as a full-time protein replacement. Tofu doesn’t have the complete protein structure that dogs need to grow healthy strong bodies. You need to feed your dogs more than just tofu as a protein.
Dogs need meat proteins. Our furry friends are made to consume animal proteins as their main protein source. That is why you will see them in commercial dog foods. Dogs that don’t eat enough animal protein are at risk for liver problems and damage to their immune system.
Tofu Could Lead to Kidney Stones in Dogs
Tofu has high levels of silicate. If you feed your dog too much tofu, it could lead to an increased risk of kidney stones developing from the silica it’s processing. If you think your dog is suffering from this serious condition, please contact your veterinarian.
Some Dogs Are Allergic to Tofu
Recent studies show that some dogs are allergic to the protein sources in their foods, many of which come from soy milk.
If you want to give your dog tofu, watch for common signs of allergic reactions to soy, which include:
- Gastrointestinal Disorder
- Chewing at Feet
- Scratching or Rubbing Face
- Red, Itchy Ears
- Itchy Skin
- Hair Loss
Other signs of soy allergies include ear infections. If you notice any of these symptoms of food allergies in your dog after they eat tofu, please talk to your dog’s veterinarian as soon as possible.
It Could Cause Canine Bloat
Tofu could give some dogs tummy issues, called canine bloat. This is because soybeans cause gas in their gut.
If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, stop feeding them tofu immediately.
- Bloated abdomen
- Difficulty breathing
- Pale Nose or Mouth
- Excessive Drooling
Tofu Can Cause Hormonal Imbalance in Dogs
There are phytoestrogens in soy that might cause a hormonal imbalance in your furry friend. This can cause issues with their skin, coat, or even thyroid problems.
More Health Issues To Watch Out For
In addition to the issues listed above, watch out for bladder stones, kidney problems, or liver issues. There are a lot of potential side effects of giving your dog too much soy on a regular basis – including liver disease. Since tofu has high levels of silicate, it can lead to a higher risk of kidney stones, even in a healthy dog.
Since there are so many health problems associated with it, it’s best to only give them small quantities of firm tofu at a time.
Can Dogs Eat Tofu? Yes, But Be Careful
The short answer is that tofu is not toxic for dogs, so it is safe to feed it in moderation. It’s a really great source of protein and nutrients. The high protein content is safe as an occasional treat.
But if you feed it to your dog, be careful and watch out for a possible allergic reaction or canine bloat. Both of those are possible side effects.
Yes, dogs can eat tofu. Just be careful.
Additional Soy Foods and Dogs Information
Pet parents, here is more information about different types of soy and dogs and how safe it is for your pet’s diet.
More Foods Dogs Can and Can’t Eat
Find lots more articles on food dogs can eat here on Spoiled Hounds!
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