Can dogs eat raw fish?

In this article, we will answer the query, “Can dogs eat raw fish?” along with some other questions like is raw fish safe for your dog? Can dogs eat raw fish bones? What types of fish are safe for your dog? And what can you do if your dog ate raw fish?

Can dogs eat raw fish?

No, dogs cannot eat raw fish. It is not safe for your dog to consume raw fish because raw fish has many harmful bacteria, parasites, and heavy metals which are toxic to your dog. Moreover, raw fish can upset the stomach of your dog if consumed in large quantities.

Is raw fish safe for your dog?

No, raw fish is not safe for your dog to consume. Following are the health hazards of giving raw fish to your dog:

Stomach upset

If your dog consumed raw fish, there is a higher chance that your dog will upset his stomach. This is due to the bones in the raw fish which are not digested properly by your dog’s stomach. Following are the clinical signs of stomach upset in your dog:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Lethargy
  • Weakness

Bacterial infections

The first problem associated with consuming raw fish is bacterial infections like salmonella and listeria. Both are deadly bacteria for your dog and cause serious problems for your dog. Following are the clinical signs of salmonella infection in your dog:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
  • Lethargy
  • Weakness
  • Loss of appetite

Listeria is also deadly for your dog. It attacks the nervous system of your dog. Following are the clinical signs of listeria infection in your dog:

  • Head pressing
  • Circling
  • Loss of appetite
  • Unilateral facial paralysis

If you see these signs, you should take your dog to the vet because this disease is fatal for your dog.

Choking

The next problem associated with consuming raw fish is choking. Choking is the obstruction of the esophagus in the body. Choking is mainly due to the bones in the raw fish. The fish bones can put pressure on the trachea leading to difficulty in breathing. Immediate medical treatment is required in case of choking in your dog.

Salmon poisoning

Salmon poisoning is one of the deadly diseases caused by harmful pathogens in raw fish. Salmon poisoning is caused by Neorickettsia helminthoeca which is a bacteria present in flukes ingested by fish. Your dog can contract salmon poisoning by eating raw fish having this bacterium. 

Heavy metals

Some fish species have heavy metals like lead and mercury. Lead and mercury poisoning is very dangerous for your dog. 

You will see nervous signs in your dog in lead and mercury poisoning. If you catch a fish in a pond that is near an industrial area then there is a possibility of heavy metal poisoning in your dog if he consumes this fish.

You should catch fish from freshwater far away from industrial areas to keep your dog safe.

Worms

The next problem associated with consuming raw fish is parasites. Roundworms, tapeworms, and flukes are the most common parasites present in raw fish. These parasites can also cause intestinal obstruction if the parasitic infestation is not treated in time. 

Following are the clinical signs of parasitic infestation in your dog:

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Dehydration
  • Lethargy
  • Weakness
  • Loss of appetite

So far we have discussed the harmful effects of consuming raw fish for your dog. Now let’s dive into the details of can dogs eat raw fish bones?

Can dogs eat raw fish bones?

No, dogs cannot eat raw fish bones. It is not safe for your dog to consume raw fish bones because they can cause choking in your dog. Dogs are not able to chew on them properly because of their small size and they are easily swallowed which can lead to choking in your dog.

What types of fish are safe for your dog?

Following are the types of fish that are safe for your dog:

  • Herring
  • Catfish
  • Salmon
  • Cod
  • Whiting
  • Whitefish

You can give moderate amounts of these fish types to your dog so that your dog can have an adequate amount of omega-3 fatty acids.

What can you do if your dog consumes raw fish?

You should monitor your dog for any clinical signs and abnormal behaviors. If you see any abnormal behavior in your dog you should call your vet and take your dog to the vet if necessary. Your vet will treat your dog and perform some tests to check the health status of your dog.

Conclusion

In this article, we answered the query, “Can dogs eat raw fish?” We also discussed other questions like is raw fish safe for your dog? Can dogs eat raw fish bones? What types of fish are safe for your dog? And what can you do if your dog ate raw fish?

References

https://www.petsandparasites.org/dog-owners/roundworms/#:~:text=Adult%20roundworms%20live%20in%20the,roundworms%20move%20into%20the%20lungs.

https://www.purina.com/articles/dog/nutrition/can-dogs-eat-fish#:~:text=Raw%20fish%20is%20bad%20for,Dogs%20can%20eat%20cooked%20fish.

https://www.masterclass.com/articles/can-dogs-eat-raw-fish#4-hazards-of-feeding-your-dog-raw-fish

https://www.dogsnaturallymagazine.com/can-dogs-eat-raw-fish/

https://www.thesprucepets.com/can-dogs-eat-raw-fish-4846476

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