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Hot Dogs For Catfish Bait (Does It Work?)

hot dogs for catfish bait

People have been using hot dogs as catfish bait for a very long time all over the world. I’ve caught lots of catfish using hot dogs and I know of many other people who have as well.

So, to answer the question if hot dogs work for catching catfish, the answer is absolutely yes, they do work.

But that’s only if you can keep the hot dog on the hook! It’s not always as easy as it sounds.

How to Fish With a Hot Dog For Catfish

There’s a couple different ways you can rig your hot dog bait for catfish. Essentially, you fish hot dogs much like you would any other catfish bait, like chicken livers or shrimp.

But for catfish, you typically want to keep the bait on the bottom. So I’ll explain to you here how to setup up a bottom fishing rig to use with your hot dog.

How To Setup A Bottom Fishing Rig For Catfish (Slip Sinker)

To rig a slip sinker, first slide the eye of a slip sinker on the end of your fishing line. Then tie a swivel to the end of the line to prevent losing the sinker.

On the other end of the swivel, attach a 12-18” piece of fishing leader line and attach your hook. Ideally, your leader line will be a slightly lesser pound test than your main line, that way if your line breaks, it is only on the very end of your rig.

With this “slip sinker” setup, a catfish will be able to take the bait without feeling resistance from the heavy sinker.

The key to catching catfish with a bottom fishing rig is to keep the line tight! With a tight line, and by paying close attention, you’ll be hooking into cats in no time!

How To Hook A Hot Dog For Catfish

Baiting a hook with a hot dog for catfish is really pretty simple. The issue a lot of anglers run into is easily losing their bait. It’s frustrating and can be really irritating. But I’ve found a pretty good way to keep hot dogs on the hook. Here’s exact step-by-step I use when baiting a hook with a hot dog when fishing for catfish.

  1. Cut the hot dog in half
  2. Run the bait needle through the middle of the hot dog length wise.
  3. Attach the end of the snelled hook onto the bait needle and pass the line of the snelled hook through the hot dog.
  4. Finally, push the fishing hook all the way up into the hot dog up the the bend of the hook.

For a visual explanation on how to bait a hook with hot dogs for catfish, take a look at this video. It’s exactly how I bait my hooks.

A Few Tips For Using Hot Dogs as Catfish Bait

The following catfishing tips are from the experts over at

Here’s a few things to remember when using hot dogs as catfish bait:

  • Cheaper hot dogs seem to catch more fish. Eat the more expensive hot dogs yourself, but form the habit of tossing a package or two of the cheapest brands available into your cooler. If all else fails, you can still eat them, too.
  • Use hotdogs sparingly. Hotdogs are full of meat by-products and salts. It doesn’t take a big bait to lay down a scent trail. Catfish will find the baits. Use a piece about the size of your first thumb joint.

Written by Don

When I'm not bass fishing or looking for steelhead in my home state of Oregon I can be found working on house projects dreaming of my next fishing adventure.

I started this website to share just some of the things I've learned along my fishing journey, and the many things I'm still learning. Enjoy!

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