Can You Eat Prairie Dog Meat? [Is The Meat Edible?]

can you eat prairie dog meat

Prairie dogs are very common in certain regions of North America and live in large numbers. This means they are a good food source for many predators and form a valuable link in the natural food chain. These animals are a good food source for other animals, but can people eat prairie dog meat? Is the meat edible?

You can eat prairie dog meat. This meat is said to be rich and oily, and some accounts say that it is sweet and tasty. Prairie dog meat can carry dangerous pathogens and be very rich. This meat must be cooked for a long time to be made safe to eat and is best when flavored with spices. 

There are so many prairie dogs in some regions that it is not unusual to wonder if they are edible. These animals are easy for people to hunt, and if they are edible, they can form a good food supply for a person. Let’s discuss eating prairie dog meat, how edible it is, and what it’s like to eat this meat. 

Can You Eat Prairie Dog Meat?

Prairie dogs are small rodents, similar in many ways to squirrels. These animals are abundant in many parts of North America, and many people wonder if they are safe to eat. 

You can eat prairie dog meat. Prairie dogs are similar to squirrels and rabbits and are generally considered to be in the same food category.

There are mixed opinions regarding how good prairie dog meat is to eat, but it is edible if it is carefully cooked. 

Meat from prairie dogs is edible but can be oily and very rich, requiring specialized cooking techniques to taste good. 

Nevertheless, whether you are looking for an unusual meal, surviving in the wilderness, or out hunting, prairie dogs can be a good source of nutrition. 

Do People Eat Prairie Dogs?

Yes, people eat prairie dogs. In fact, some accounts state that prairie dogs were a food source for Native Americans before settlers arrived, and there are many accounts of colonials enjoying these animals as food as well. 

They are carriers of potentially fatal diseases, so it’s important to clean them properly before eating prairie dogs.

What Does Prairie Dog Meat Taste Like?

Prairie dog meat is edible and has been eaten by many people. According to several YouTube videos, it tastes similar to rabbit and chicken when cooked properly. 

Most people who have eaten prairie dog meat say it is not very tasty, unless you season it properly.  

However, there are historical accounts of colonials and Native Americans enjoying the meat as sweet and delicious. 

Prairie dog meat is oily and rich. It can be very lean or fatty, depending on the animal. This meat can taste terrible due to its rich gaminess, but it can also taste delicious depending on how the prairie dog meat is prepared and cooked. 

The flavor of the meat is dependent on how it is cooked. Prairie dog meat usually needs some help to taste good, as when it is just roasted or boiled, it can taste bad. 

Most people who eat prairie dogs enjoy it most as a stew, where the flavors of the other ingredients improve the taste of the prairie dog meat. Alternatively, the meat is enjoyed fried in spiced batter. 

Recipes such as prairie dog wings are common in certain areas of the world and reportedly produce excellent-tasting meals from prairie dog meat. 

Prairie dog meat must be cooked well with specific methods to taste good, or the meat usually tastes quite unpalatable. 

Is Prairie Dog Meat Healthy?

Prairie dog meat is commonly eaten where these animals are abundantly available and is also known as good survival food in emergency situations. 

However, prairie dog meat is not the most nutritious food out there. The meat from these animals can be fatty depending on the time of year, or it can be very lean. Fatty prairie dog meat is very oily and can lead to an upset stomach. 

Lean prairie dog meat is the healthier option if available, but it is not healthy if eaten with nothing else. 

Exclusively eating meat such as prairie dog or rabbit meat can lead to protein poisoning, as these meats are very high in protein and not much else. 

The meat of prairie dogs does not have much nutrition other than protein, which makes this meat good survival or camping food, but it is not a food source that can sustain a person without a diet supplemented with other food sources. 

Are There Any Benefits To Eating Prairie Dog Meat?

Prairie dog meat was eaten in the past by indigenous people, because it is high in protein and fat. In addition, it was an ideal and semi-easy source of food for people who roamed the prairies in the past.

Today, with the easy availability of different types of meats in the superstore, most people don’t avidly hunt prairie dogs for meat. Instead, if there are no legal regulatiions forbidding it, most people hunt the rodents for sport. 

However, this doesnt’ mean you can’t eat the meat, if you shoose too. When cooked, the meat is a viable food source with essential nutrients and vitamins that all mammals need to survive.

How To Cook Prairie Dog?

I’ve personally never cooked or eaten prairie dogs, according to this video, cooking a prairie dog is no different than cooking a rabbit. 

This rodent cooking video walks you through on how to cook prairie dogs and prepare them properly so you can eat them. 

Is Prairie Dog Meat Bad Dangerous To Eat?

Prairie dogs are edible, but they are, after all, rodents. Prairie dogs are known carriers of diseases such as bubonic plague, sylvatic plague, and tularemia. All of these diseases are very dangerous to humans. 

These diseases are not passed on by eating the animal’s meat, but they are all passed on through physical contact. This means that touching the animal can lead to these diseases, even if the animal is deceased. 

Wild prairie dogs can carry multiple diseases, bacteria, and pathogens harmful to humans. These risks are present when handling these animals and when eating them. 

Any wild rodent is likely to carry a disease or pathogen of some kind, and prairie dogs are no exception. 

This means that it can be dangerous to handle, cook, and eat prairie dog meat. 

If you do find yourself in any situation where eating prairie dog meat is necessary, it is critical that the meat is very well cleaned and that it is very thoroughly cooked. 

High cooking temperatures over a long period are the only way to ensure that all of the potential hazards within this meat are removed and that the meat is safe to eat. Prairie dogs must be cooked for a long time to eat safely. 

Should You Eat Prairie Dog Meat?

Whether or not you eat a prairie dog you hunt is a personal choice. If you know how to properly clean, prepare, and skin then it’s fine. However, if you don’t know how to tell if the prairie dog meat is bad or infected with disease or parasites, I’d recommend not eating it.

Instead stick to the commonly hunted animals that people shoot and kill. The following are some of the meats that people hunt for both sport and food.

  • Bison
  • Deer
  • Antelope
  • Turkey
  • Geese
  • Ducks

Hunting prairie dogs and other rodents can be a fun sport.

However, when preparing the meat, you really have to know how to cook it properly. Otherwise, you could end up getting sick or making others who eat the meat sick.

Final Word

Prairie dog meat is not the best-tasting meat in the world, but you can eat it if it is well-prepared and cooked long enough to eliminate any dangers. 

Eating prairie dogs is relatively common in some areas, but most people will never need to eat one of these animals. If you do end up eating prairie dog, try to stew it or deep fry it for the best taste experience. 

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