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Can My Dog Eat Salmon?

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“Can my dog eat salmon?” You’d be often wondering if your dog can eat the fish that is lauded to be extremely healthy for humans. Salmon is said to contain a variety of healthy nutrients and fats. Moreover, if prepared correctly, your dog can benefit from eating this fish. However, there are some varieties of salmon that are dangerous for your dog. 

Before feeding salmon to your puppy, go through this article to understand the risks and benefits of feeding salmon to your dog. 

A dog with a bowl of salmon, egg and bananas in front of him

Can My Dog Eat Salmon?

Your dog can eat salmon. The fish is extremely popular primarily because it contains omega-3 fatty acids in abundance. These fatty acids reduce inflammation, strengthen the immune system, and help keep your dog’s coat smooth, healthy, and shiny.

Moreover, salmon is an extremely good source of protein. Salmon is commonly used as an ingredient in dog food. Additionally, if your pet is allergic to meats like chicken, then a good alternative is salmon. 

How to Prepare Salmon for Dogs?

Boneless, well-cooked salmon is an extremely good choice for your dog. Choosing boneless fillets is advisable because regular salmon has a lot of small bones in them and can end up choking your dog. Be sure that you check for bones in the boneless fillet as well. After doing so, grill, poach, steam, bake, or roast the salmon without any pepper, salt, and oil. You shouldn’t use any other seasoning like onions, garlic, or tomatoes too. 

Fun fact: Did you know that just like dogs, salmon also have a very strong sense of smell? 

How Much Salmon Can I Feed My Dog?

Every dog has different food portion sizes. But like with all foods, controlling food portions is imperative. A dog can eat 10 grams of salmon per 500 grams of its body weight. You should limit your dog’s salmon consumption to only one time a week.

Can Salmon Make Dogs Sick?

Raw or undercooked salmon can make dogs sick. Salmon contains a bacterium called Neorickettsia helminthoeca. It causes salmon poisoning disease, which can be deadly if not treated properly. Moreover, salmon naturally contains a lot of small bones. These bones can cause choking hazards for dogs. In some instances bones can get lodged in their intestines or stomach. That is why it’s always advisable to buy boneless cuts of salmon.  

A dog eating salmon

5 Reasons to Avoid Giving Salmon to Dogs

Can salmon upset a dogs stomach? Yes. Here are some reasons why you shouldn’t feed your dog salmon.

Risk of Radiation

The Fukushima nuclear mishap caused a considerable amount of radiation to be leaked into the Pacific Ocean in 2011. This radiation expanded to North America’s West Coast and presently the fish there have shown signs of radiation. 

Use of Polychlorinated Biphenyls (PCBs)

PCBs are man-made chemicals that have the potential to cause cancer. Back in the 1970s Governments had banned the use of these chemicals. However, these chemicals are still found in some products that were manufactured before the ban.

As PCBs work well under high temperatures, they were used to manufacture heat transfer and electrical equipment. However, leaks and poor disposal methods helped these chemicals found their way into oceans, and subsequently into seafood. These chemicals can cause muscle spasms, bronchitis, skin issues, and more. 

Heavy Metals

One of the most common places where one can find heavy metals is inside fish and oceans. These metals don’t break down easily and are most commonly used for industrial purposes. Heavy metals like lead, mercury, arsenic, and cadmium are most commonly found inside fish. 

If consumed, they can cause severe problems like cancer, liver problems, kidney damage, and blindness.

Parasites

Wild salmon is known to have parasites like flukes or roundworms in them. Moreover, the fluke parasite is extremely dangerous because it can cause salmon poisoning if they’re infected by Neorickettsia helminthoeca.

Genetically Modified Organisms 

The first animal to be approved by the FDA for genetic modification was the farmed salmon. Scientists modified the Atlantic salmon to make them hungry throughout the year. GMO salmon is said to be safe, but studies haven’t delved deeper into their long-term effects. And other studies of GMO foods have shown that it can lead to allergies, digestive issues, and organ problems.

A dog vomiting

Signs of Salmon Poisoning in Dogs

If you’re worried that your dog has salmon poisoning, go through this list of symptoms to be sure. 

  • Lethargy
  • Weight loss
  • Low appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting
  • Fever

If your dog is showing any of these signs, then immediately make an appointment with your vet. If left untreated, your dog can die of salmon poisoning. 

boneless fillets of salmon

Frequently Asked Questions 

We list answers to the most common queries related to feeding salmon to dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Salmon Skin?

Is salmon skin good for dogs? Yes.

Your dog can eat salmon skin if it is cooked without any toxic ingredients. Salmon skin also contains high levels of fat. Feed this to your dog rarely or as a treat.

Can Dogs Eat Cooked Salmon?

Yes, your dog can eat cooked salmon as long as it is boneless. Salmon has small bones that can choke your dog. Moreover, it’s best to cook salmon without oil, salt, pepper, and any other seasoning. 

Can Dogs Eat Smoked Salmon?

It is best to avoid giving your dog smoked salmon. This is because the fish isn’t cooked. Rather, it’s cured and can contain bacteria and flukes. Also, smoked salmon contains a lot of salt. It isn’t healthy for your dog. 

Can Dogs Have Canned Salmon?

Feeding your dog canned salmon is a good choice because they make for healthy treats. And as discussed earlier, salmon contains omega-3 fatty acids in abundance which is good for your pup. While choosing canned salmon, choose a tin that is packaged in water without any salts. 

A dog eating sushi

Conclusion

Fish is an extremely healthy source of protein for your dog. Egg is another excellent source of protein for your dogs. Salmon has other nutrients like selenium, calcium, and niacin (vitamin B) that are extremely good for the development of your dog. However, ensure to control your dog’s salmon consumption. You don’t want to overdo it. But apart from that, your dog will love the occasional fresh piece of cooked salmon. 

Paul Andrewshttps://www.linkedin.com/in/paul-andrews-172490189/
A digital marketing expert by profession, Andrews is a gifted writer and animal lover at heart. A self-confessed "pawrent", Andrews is well-versed in all things dogs. He uses his years of experience of raising puppies into show quality dogs to help guide first time pet parents. He believes in spreading the joy that comes with being a dog dad and advocates more families to adopt pets.

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