Can Dogs Eat Fish?
As time goes by, we are learning more and more about the gastrointestinal tract of the canine and what they should be and should not be digesting. While your average doggo may not have the lightning quickness to scarf a bass from your neighbors pond, but if he did ever gain that ninja-quick snout snap, would the fish be good for him?
If you asked Fido and his ever-eager snout about whether fish is good for him, he would assure you with his best manners that it should immediately be in his belly - as he inches closer to your freshly fried-up catfish.
He wouldn't be wrong. Fish is a fantastic source of protein, healthy fats, and more!
Fidobiotics takes a swim through all of the information to bring the most in-depth water-tight information to YOU!
The Nutrient Makeup of Fish
When it comes to meat options, fish is among the healthiest choices. It is an excellent source of omega-3 fatty acids and easily digestible protein.
Omega-3 is an excellent nutrient for your dog to be ingesting, as it supports a healthy brain, and promotes a healthy inflammatory response.
For the most part, fish are quite low in total fat and saturated fat. Most fish contain between 5%-15% in total fat, a far-cry from many other fatty meat sources, such as pork.
Beyond the complete source of protein and Omega-3, fish is a great source of Vitamin A, b-Complex Vitamins, and Vitamin D. The ingestion of these nutrients are purported to support a healthy nervous system and promote healthy vision and bone development.
Additionally, fish is a fantastic source of iron, zinc, selenium, and iodine. Zinc is know to support a healthy immune system and is often found in immune support supplements for dogs. As mentioned earlier, mercury should be avoided when possible. Unfortunately, most fish will have at trace amounts at the very least. Selenium is an anti-oxidant that works to help mitigate those negative effects and promotes cell health. The iron in the fish is great for the seemingly invincible pupper, as it supports both bone health and red blood cell health.
These low-fat, high protein options chocked full of nutrients are ideal for your fur-friend fit for any adventure!
Where Else Can I Find Omega-3 For My Dog?
As noted above, fish is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. If you do not have access to that protein source, there are a number of ways to give him the fatty acids that will keep him happy, inside and out!
When it comes to supporting a healthy brain, dog calming aids with omega-3 are great for keeping the stresses at bay and maintaining a healthy metabolic rate.
The Best Fish For Dogs
While Fido will be quick to snatch up any kind of fish in his general direction, some types of fish should be avoided.
The longer an animal of the sea is alive, the higher the chance of mercury accumulation. Mercury is a toxin regarded as very dangerous and known to cause many ailments. When your little guy consumes fish, he is consuming whatever his dinner consumed, and so on. It is best to avoid tuna, swordfish, and other longer lived marine animals.
Most experts agree that the safest and healthiest fish for Fido are flounder, salmon, herring, walleye, and whitefish. These same deep-water delicacies can be found in many different dog foods and are a welcome sign that the formulation will be something both your dog's tongue and tummy will enjoy.
With that said, do not let fish be all that your hungry pup is consuming! Your dog is omnivorous, and, as such, needs a variety of foods to make up a healthy and balanced diet. When looking at your dog food, ensure that there are no corn fillers and that the protein source is among the top 2 ingredients, followed by a healthy grain or starch, such as sweet potatoes or oatmeal.
Feeding Raw Fish To Your Dog
Raw Food diets are all the rage these days, and for good reason, as it puts the pet-parent in control of what their fur-baby is consuming. With that said, it is always best to consult with your veterinarian about how best to prepare your dog's dinner.
Many followers of the raw food diet advocate for feeding your dog 100% raw for all the ingredients ingested. While that works for many, food-borne toxins exist and can harm your dog if you are not careful.
When it comes to fish, food borne toxins are not as big of a concern, but sickness and death persist from eating certain raw sea life. For best results, consider giving him sushi-grade fish, as it has been deemed safe enough for humans to eat - the risk should be quite minimal.