Feeding your best buddy some shrimp may seem okay because, after all, it’s meat and dogs are eager carnivores. Does this tasty crustacean really belong in a dog’s diet? Most folks will tell you that it’s generally okay in small amounts.
In truth, shrimp contains a lot of protein which is desirable for canines. On the other hand, it’s well known that this popular seafood contains high levels of cholesterol.
Providing a few on occasion is certainly much different than giving it on a regular basis. Here we’ll weigh all aspect of feeding shrimp to a beloved pet dog.
Can I Give My Dog Shrimp? Answer: On occasion, when cooked and properly prepared
But keep in mind that out-of-the-ordinary human foods can disrupt digestion.
Further, it’s not wise or economical to provide this type of shellfish regularly. A few here and there isn’t likely to be harmful but some dogs have digestive trouble or allergies to certain types of seafood. Just be smart and practice moderation. If your dog loves shrimp, don’t turn it into a habit where they’re often expecting to receive some.
The Nutritional Facts
It turns out that, if your dog can tolerate shrimp, it can be a nutritious treat. Often overlooked, they contain selenium which is a great antioxidant. In fact, this ocean critter has two different types of antioxidants which means there are potential health benefits. Phosphorous and vitamin-B12 are also plentiful in shrimp. At the same time, it’s low in calories, carbs and fat. Sure, cholesterol is a concern but since you hopefully won’t be feeding it often the risks will be minimized.
Raw vs. Cooked Prawn
Cooking shrimp obviously helps to kill off any harmful bacteria that can cause upset stomach and/or sickness. Others say that eating raw shrimp is the closest a dog would come to eating some on their own. We favor playing it safe by serving it cooked and this goes for any type of seafood!
Other Shrimp Considerations
If you do give your dog some shrimp, be sure to remove the shell completely. This includes the tail, head and legs. Eating anything other than the meat could cause a digestive blockage. Even if your dog only gets a morsel of shrimp, as a reward or a treat for example, make sure it’s completely cooked and properly peeled before letting them indulge.
Sometimes dogs get into things that they shouldn’t. In such cases, and shrimp is no different, expect vomiting or diarrhea or both. Their body will do its best to rid themselves of the shrimp, assuming it doesn’t agree with them. Depending on the amount eaten, consider quarantining your dog to an area that’s easy to clean up. Weather permitting, outdoors makes sense because things could get messy. Be sure to provide plenty of fresh water!
More seriously, if your dog seems to be allergic to prawns, consult with a veterinarian if the symptoms are concerning. Shellfish, such as crab, are a common allergen.
A Better Diet Plan
Dog food manufacturers try to replicate the sort of diet a dog would be eating out in the wild. They’ve successfully come up with canine formulations mimicking the ratio of proteins, carbs and fats in an easy-to-distribute form. Yes, shrimp contains an element of what’s desirable for an active dog, yet they aren’t used to chowing down on this ocean creature.
A high-quality dog food is superior because it’s more practical over the long term. You won’t need to do supplementation with something like shrimp or other people foods. For a safe and healthy treat, quality dog biscuits are a consistent way to nourish your pet with the same levels of protein.
Conclusion on Shrimp
You can occasionally treat your dog to some shrimp or prawns but limit consumption and don’t make it a habit. Responsible owners have reported providing it to their four-legged friends without incident. If you’re keen on feeding your dog this protein packed food, restrict the amount they get but also be sure to properly prepare it. Afterwards, closely monitor them for allergic reactions especially when providing it for the first time.