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Today's Smile: Hot dog do's and don'ts

July 1 kicks off National Hot Dog Month, first celebrated in 1956.
National Hot Dog Month
Posted at 5:29 PM, Jul 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-01 19:42:51-04

(NBC 26) — “Hot dogs are just a great part of American culture.”

In the "dog" days of summer, it’s a classic for any ball game or just for hanging out with the "grill friends," but let's be frank...are you doing it wrong?

“Our most controversial rule is ketchup on a hot dog,” Eric Mittenthal said, the president of the National Hot Dog and Sausage Council. “We say if you're over the age of 18 you should not be putting ketchup on a hot dog.”

So maybe save the ketchup this 4th of July? The holiday is dubbed the number one dog day of the year; Americans eat about 150 million on July 4th alone. Mittenthal adds, be careful on how many bites you're taking! The Council said it should take you only 5 bites for a regular hot dog and 7 for a foot-long.

But if you want to "mustard up" the courage to try something new for #WeinerWednesday (like Taco Tuesday but for hot dogs): “One of the hotly debated ways of eating a hot dog is with peanut butter on it,” he said.

Some people say it’s not the "wurst;" and for the most controversial question of them all, Mittenthal settles the debate: is a hotdog a sandwich?

“The answer is no," he says. "The reason why is quite simple. When it’s on a bun it's a hot dog, when it’s not on a bun it's a hot dog.”

So fire up the grill and celebrate National Hot Dog Month to relish the good times with family and friends. You can also check out more hot dog etiquette, here.