Read This Before Feeding Your Dog Fish!

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Fish consumption is obviously healthy for dogs too.

With many vitamins and minerals as well as quality protein, the nutrition is off the charts.

Can I Give My Dog Fish?Yup! Sharing is a good idea, but not all types of fish belong in your dog’s diet.

Keep reading to learn what should be avoided and which kinds are best for canines.

Your Dog Can And Should Eat Fish

Though it is recommended you avoid feeding salmon as well as trout in order to prevent a possibility of serious poisoning.

Fantastic Fish Picks

Cod, sea bass, flounder, pollack, mackerel and smelts are all outstanding for dogs!

But for the best calcium boost go with canned sardines.

Everyone knows that dogs require plenty of protein, but calcium is equally essential and sardines are loaded with this key mineral! There also aren’t a lot of heavy metals in this particular fish.

And the soft digestible bones in sardines can help your dog with achy joints and mobility among many other benefits.

More broadly, nearly all fish species are fairly safe as long as the catch is fresh or frozen in a timely manner.

Watch this video for more discussion about your dog and fish.

The Omega-3 Nutrition

Fatty acids is a big reason we love feeding our dogs fish.

Think Omega-3! It’s such an amazing fat which is why fish oil is a top selling supplement.

Fatty fish are especially beneficial for your dog’s brain.

The amino acids, on the other hand, not so much. Your dog already produces those organic compounds.

Luckily, there are many other vitamins and minerals in fish.

FYI: You may notice improvement in the quality of your dog’s coat as a result of fish consumption.

A Salmon And Trout Warning

Salmon packs lots of magnesium among other valuable nutrients.

That is great but here is what’s really important when it comes to this fish:

Salmon Poisoning Disease (SPD) can occur if eaten uncooked or even under-cooked. And yes, the same goes for trout.

Make no mistake:

These parasites can be extremely deadly for your dog.

At the very least, make certain these two types of fish are properly cooked. Better yet, just skip them!

There is a Big Bony Problem

Be on the lookout for tiny, thin fish bones.

They are often quite sharp, dangerous and not so obvious. Despite this, you can usually give whole carcasses — the head included.

But cooked bones are easily problematic. They can get stuck in the throat or further down your dog’s digestive system.

So be sure to carefully screen the fish meat before chow time.

For this reason you may want to consider giving your dog fish raw. Uncooked bones are safer than cooked.

Otherwise, bones are a downside with the exception of edible whole sardines.

What About Other Seafood?

Fish is not the only ocean dwelling animal you can feed!

Crab is OK on occasion. What a great source of protein for active dogs!

Anyway, watch this little guy go to town on these fish…

The Bottom Line

You can feed your dog fresh fish. Moderate portions make sense.

In general, sharing is super healthy for pets.

Simply take some basic precautions which, to be totally safe, includes passing on a couple of fish species and removing bones when necessary.

What Do You Think? Have Your Say Below…

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18 thoughts on “Read This Before Feeding Your Dog Fish!”

  1. I buy tinned pilchards for my small dog. I rinse the fish well under warm running water to remove excess salt and oil as there is plenty oil in the fish. It`s convenient and economical. My Wauzer loves them.

  2. Can’t you just put the raw salmon in a blender and grind it up to be safe?

  3. I wish it was still possible to go fishing for Smelt in Detroit as we did when I was growing up. My dog would have loved some.

    1. More and more harmful substances are being found in fish caught offshore of Seattle, Vancouver etc. I’m talking about anti-depressants, cocaine, amphetamine and I can’t help but wonder if this can be an issue for smaller dogs.

      As for myself, I feed my dog trout which I catch in remote lakes in our mountains. Since they belong to the same family as salmon, can they carry SPD as well?

      In any case, it is important to check where the fish has been caught before you feed it to your dog. Different countries, different standards. I would avoid fish from Asia.

  4. My vet said fish would give dogs worms, true or not.

  5. I lived in Alaska for 18 years and we had a black Lab/Husky mix. They are very common in Alaska as they are used as sled dogs. We took Teela to a vet who told us to feed her salmon regularly, as well as veggies, fruits, organ meats (chicken livers and hearts/turkey liver and hearts), which we did.

    Teela lived to the ripe old age of 19 1/2 years (got her at 6 weeks from the pound in 1992 and she passed away in 2011 when we finally put her down due to poor health). That dog was absolutely amazing! I agree that most of the dog food these days is garbage. Good healthy food for humans and dogs alike. (Teela loved to eat carrots, apples, cherries, squash, green beans….)

  6. Raw fish, whole with bones and all, is a great addition to a dog’s diet. I feed my dog raw and he gets sardines and mackerel a few times a week. He loves them!

  7. The benefits of a full fish diet are well documented. If you have a dog with digestive issues or skin/coat issues, try switching to fish before spending a fortune on vet bills. Make sure there’s no grain too.

  8. I am feeding my dogs fish daily and my Doberman Pinscher is putting on weight. Is there something wrong with it?

    1. Either the amount of food your dog is taking in is more than they need or they aren’t getting enough exercise. It’s unlikely to be fish that is the cause, unless you are feeding large amounts of oily fish only? Their coats will look great but it’s very calorific unless you choose a low fat alternative such as tuna. Even then it should not make up all of the diet as they may be nutritionally deficient.

      Fish is a great source of protein though. It’s our responsibility as owners to keep our dogs at a healthy weight. They will be happier, healthier and be by your side a whole lot longer. A visit to your vet may be worthwhile, especially as only one dog has gained weight. There may be other reasons for this. A vet can also help with dietary and feeding advice.

      1. Yes, it is the fish! It contains a lot of protein and fatty omega-3. Saloni should feed her less. Protein, in itself, is already very filling for both people and dogs.

  9. My small dog loves fish very much, more than meat. She also loves chicken liver and cow liver but I’m not sure if liver is okay.

    1. Yes both fish and liver are good for dogs. Have you ever read Dr. Andrew Jones or Dr. Becker? Wolves in the wild go for the organ meat first. Also, fish that’s high in Omega 3’s is great.

      1. I agree Jody. Liver is great for dogs but should be limited in quantity. Ideally a small serving once a week or a small treat daily. It’s hard to find any set guidelines to this though. Vets and nutritionists seem to agree, no more than 5% of total diet to avoid vitamin A overdose (hypervitaminosis A). In my opinion, for a large dog, a small meal weekly or a daily liver treat is enough. For small dogs, go with occasional liver treats. You’re right about how good omega-3 fish oil is too! I serve it to mine twice weekly.

  10. I feed my Akita raw fish every day. It’s ridiculous to suggest that feeding raw fish with bones would be hazardous to a dog. It’s their natural diet. Akitas have been fed fish for centuries in Japan!

    1. It probably depends where the salmon is from. I believe this type of poisoning is found in raw fish from the Pacific Northwest region, from San Francisco to the Coast of Alaska. We have a Labrador Retriever who loves salmon but we know where it’s farmed in Scotland and it’s fine.

      Raw fish is not bad if that’s all they’ve ever been fed. Bones in fish are most harmful and do the damage after cooking! When raw they are soft. As long as you’re making sure they are getting their nutrients and some Omega-3 type fish, I’m sure they will thrive!

    2. Right on Andrew. We’re tired of the ridiculousness. Feed your pets real food because it’s good for dogs. A lot of the commercial stuff is making them sick. Frankly I am sick of being lied to while our pets suffer.

      1. You are right about commercial food. I now have a very sick dog because of it. I thought I had chosen a good food for him, but it was rubbish and even the vets offer no better than prescription diets which are even worse.

        Why are they so blinkered about feeding proper whole food balanced meals either raw or lightly cooked? Mine is getting lightly cooked because he has cancer and his immune system is compromised and I fear it might be too late to save him. For sure, I think it was a commercial diet that has brought him to this.

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