A dog with a wary expression looking at gravy, showing they are harmful to dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Gravy?

No, dogs should not eat gravy. Gravy often contains harmful ingredients like onions, garlic, and excessive salt that can be detrimental to your dog's health. Even small amounts can pose a risk, leading to potential poisoning or sodium ion toxicity.

A photo of Stefan Stumpfl, the co-author of this article.

By Stefan Stumpfl, in collaboration with Dr. Ali Raza.

Updated on Jun 22, 2024

Did You Know?

Gravy often contains seasonings like onions and garlic, which are toxic to dogs.




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Feeding Frequency


Allergic Risk


Why is Gravy Bad for Dogs?

Gravy is loaded with ingredients that are unsuitable for dogs. Onions and garlic, common in many gravy recipes, can cause anemia and gastrointestinal distress. Furthermore, the high salt content can lead to dangerous sodium levels in dogs, resulting in increased thirst, urination, and even kidney damage.

How Much Gravy Can Dogs Eat?

Ideally, dogs should not consume gravy at all. If your dog happened to lick a small amount, monitor them closely for any adverse effects, but avoid intentionally giving them gravy. Regular exposure can accumulate harm over time, so it’s best to eliminate it from their diet altogether.

Common Misconceptions

There's a common belief that a little bit of gravy can make your dog's dry food tastier and is harmless. However, even small amounts contain toxic ingredients that can lead to serious health problems. It's not worth the risk.

Similar Harmful Products

Many other items share the dangerous profile of gravy:

  • Canned Soups: Often contain high levels of salt and toxic vegetables.
  • Seasoned Meats: Typically include onion and garlic, posing the same risks.
  • Processed Sauces: Loaded with harmful additives and excessive sodium.

What to Do If Your Dog Eats Gravy?

If your dog accidentally consumes gravy, immediately contact your veterinarian. Avoid inducing vomiting without professional guidance as it might cause further harm. Ensure your dog has access to fresh water and observe them closely for any signs of distress.

In the long term, ingesting harmful foods like gravy can lead to significant health issues. Treatments can be costly, but this is where pet insurance becomes invaluable. It can help manage unexpected medical expenses, providing peace of mind.

What are Healthy Alternatives?

Here are some delicious, dog-friendly options to consider:

  • Plain Cooked Meat: Unseasoned and suitable for your furry friend.
  • Bone Broth: Low in sodium and beneficial for joint health.
  • Vegetable Purees: Carrot or pumpkin puree can add flavor without the risks.


In summary, gravy is not safe for dogs due to its toxic ingredients and high salt content. It's wise to avoid giving it to them entirely. Always consult with your veterinarian when considering dietary changes, especially if your dog has specific health needs. Stay informed and keep your furry friend safe!