Is Fish Healthy For Dogs?


Hello everyone, I am dr. Kashif Amin and today we discuss an important topic of Dogs is Fish food health and safety for our dogs.

We have understood all the actual recommendations from dog owners about the advantages of serving fish and now you want to know whether it actually is reasonable to feed your dog a fish-based food with wondrous health outcomes? To clarify the question – is fish Healthy for dogs? – we require to take a glance at what nutrients our dogs require and check whether fish can give all of the vitamins and minerals our dogs would usually get from other foods.

Is Fish Healthy For Dogs?

Is Fish Healthy For Dogs? Photo from Pexels

To give you the results you need we’ve asked Kashif Amin,  Animal Nutritionist, for her skillful view on which dogs might help most from a fish-based diet. He advised us fish can be a big source of protein for dogs with hypersensitivities and which types of fish should be withdrawn, and why.


Fish is a big, quickly digestible protein source for dogs. Particularly for dogs following digestive problems or with liver or kidney disorder, whilst being comparatively low in saturated fats and negative calories. These factors solely make fish a wonderful source of food and minerals such as calcium, magnesium, selenium, zinc, phosphorus, iodine and iron for dogs.

Nevertheless, there’s further to feeding fish to your dog.

Kashif describes how the vitamins and minerals, as well as Omega-3 fatty acids detected in fish, functions as a natural anti-inflammatory giving it excellent for dogs with allergies or intolerances to other non-fish proteins. Fish is also excellent for dogs with joint problems and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) and is a big source of healthful dietary fats that are supplemented with essential fatty acids, vital in a well-adjusted diet.



Fish is stuffed with useful vitamins and minerals that are vital to great strength in your dog. As most vitamins cannot be formed by the body, they require to be implemented in your dog’s food so by just adding some fish to your dog’s food, they will get a raft of health advantages supporting keep them in the best condition and well-being throughout their life.

Minerals are inorganic elements that are often digested more efficiently by the body if provided in foods rather than as supplements.

Kashif shares just a few of the fitness advantages of adding fish, as a source of protein, into a dog’s food.


According to me, Fish such as herring and cod are great reservoirs of vitamin A, known as retinol, which assists develop good eyesight in low light, reduces age-related sight loss and benefits in the therapy of many eye conditions. Vitamin A from retinol and retinal is a source of eye health. If vitamin A provided in the form of Retinoic acid in the excess amount it will damage the eyesight completely lead to permanent blindness.


According to me, Fish benefits keep healthful skin and coat, involving the lining of the nose which is crucial in your dog’s unique sense of smell. And for dogs with skin diseases, fish that’s rich in Omega 3, such as cod, helps diminish any itchiness, rashes or skin inflammation making your dog seem much more comfortable.


Immune system development is very important for the upcoming life of dogs, this system develops cells and antibodies to fight against the lethal diseases of dogs.

Seafood is a specially excellent source of selenium, which acts an imperative role in the immune system and assists limit injury to cells and tissues of the body.

Iron is necessary for the generation of red blood cells, which carry oxygen throughout the body. If your dog is undergoing a deficiency of iron it can cause them to feel weak and exhausted. The iron in whitefish is completely digested addressing this a good option. High protein foods such as beef and fish are great sources of zinc, with herring being an especially useful source.

Zinc supports the body to make new cells and enzymes, it boosts your dog process the carbohydrate, fat, and protein in their diet and it assists with injury healing. Sea fish is a great source of iodine, which benefits make thyroid hormones, vital in keeping cells and your dog’s metabolic rate sound.

There are eight B-complex vitamins and fish such as cod are a big source of B6, B12, and niacin (B3). These vitamins assist to break down and free energy from food, keep the nervous system and skin strong and support form hemoglobin, the matter in red blood cells that carries oxygen around the body.

Vitamin A also supports keep your dog’s immune system in tip-top functioning order, treating it fight off illness and disease, and is important for proper bone growth and development, and maintaining strong bones as your dog ages.


Omega-3 is a primary fatty acid existing in fish which assists maintain strong joints and tendons, keeping your dog fresh during its life. Omega-3 is useful in managing arthritis and other joint difficulties.

Vitamin D is also crucial to your dog’s well-being, with fish like herring and sprats an outstanding source. This vitamin boosts the body absorb calcium and phosphorous which are both necessary in healthy bones and teeth during your dog’s lifetime. And with 75% of dogs in this country not taking enough vitamin D in their foods, it’s imperative that we make sure they are fed a great source of this crucial vitamin, with natural sources from fish a much more effective source than a supplement.

A rich source of calcium is small fish like sprats that can be consumed whole and include small bones. Calcium produces bones and teeth their strength, guarantees blood clots normally, regulates muscle contractions including heartbeat and has a function in cellular functioning, nerve role, and digestion. Phosphorus is naturally located in protein-rich meals such as fish, particularly cod, and is a crucial part of bones and teeth.

It also performs a role in the proper function of some B vitamins. Fish abundant in magnesium include cod. This vital mineral works with calcium to make the minerals that make up your dog’s bones. In addition, magnesium helps in proper muscle functioning, maintaining heart health.


Feeding your dog dried fish skins is excellent for dental health. Their natural, coarse surface assists exclude tartar and plaque from your dog’s teeth helps maintain excellent dental and gum health as well as better breath.


Fish is excellent for dogs who experience allergies and intolerances such as sickness, skin redness, and itching, ear diseases, swelling, stomach pain, wind, and diarrhea.

Kashif reveals why fish, thanks to it being loaded in Omega-3 fats, does to be a type of protein that dogs with allergies and intolerances don’t react to.

Dogs can be allergic or dogmatic to a kind of vegetables, grasses, dust, fleas – the list goes on! And with allergies and intolerances come a range of problems such as sickness, skin rashes, and itching, ear diseases, swelling, stomach pain, wind, and diarrhea. So if your dog experiences any allergies or intolerances, a hypoallergenic diet can be an excellent alternative. Hypoallergenic simply means less likely to produce an allergic response.

Natural protein sources found in industrial dog food include beef, soy, chicken, turkey and egg outputs and these can produce an allergic reaction in dogs with food allergies.

Diets that contain a protein source not usually used in dog meals, such as fish, raises the chance of the dog not having used that protein source already. Meaning the protein isn’t identified as an allergen by the dog’s body. Feeding these ‘novel proteins’ [such as fish] minimizes the risk of an allergic response.

There are some nutrients that, when combined to a dog’s diet, can assist relieve the signs of an allergic response. These include Omega-3 fatty acids and vitamin A.

Kashif describes, “Omega-3 has an anti-inflammatory impact so supports counter any inflammation produced by an allergic response. It also assists maintain firm skin which can be destroyed by allergic responses. Adding Vitamin A also promotes skin damaged by an allergic reaction as it benefits with skin maintenance, cell growth, and hair maturity. Fish is an outstanding source of both Omega-3 and vitamin A.


Generally, excess of anything is a bad thing – whether it be fish, biscuits or any kind of diet. An unevenness of vitamins or simply taking on board too many calories is something dog owners would do well to desist.

The genuine benefit to fish in your dog’s diet though is its capacity to give so many great vitamins and fine properties without the enhanced chance of weight gain or a protein overload making your dog’s internal organs to have to fight harder to prepare the food.


Kashif understands when adding anything different to a dog’s diet it’s always an excellent concept to do it constantly, telling us “for example you wouldn’t quickly transform your dog from one kibble to another as it could induce stomach destructions.

He gives us her top tips on introducing fish into a dog’s diet.

Another way of introducing fish to your dog’s diet is by sprinkling some cod granola or sprinkles on their food at mealtimes. This can add credit to a meal and provides them with all the fitness benefits of fish.

Fish treats are another important way of introducing fish to your dog’s diet as an award or during training. Not only are they delicious but they are weaker in calories than many commercial treats making them a better option for your dog.


When it comes to deciding what fish to support your dog the main thing to consider is quality, Kashif explains.

He suggests withdrawing fish from countries without severe regulations on wellness and quality and suggests dog owners avoid intensively farmed fish, adding “as far as species to withdraw, don’t feed your dog tuna as it is too large in metal for dogs and always avoid cheap quality and unlabelled fish with unknown provenance as it could have toxins, mercury, antibiotics, for example.


When it comes to wishing a fish treat for your dog there are a number of aspects to look out for. Firstly, look at the components. Kashif explains what to look for.

Treats that are 100% fish or have a very great percentage of fish and only one or two other named ingredients are expected to be far greater than treats with a low percentage of fish and a load of ingredients that you’ve never listened to.

It’s also great to keep wild fish over farmed. Wild fish consume a natural diet analyzed to farmed fish that are often fed processed, high-fat, high-protein feed in order to generate larger fish, meaning wild-caught fish are low in calories and saturated fat than their farmed counterparts. Farmed fish are also often fed antibiotics and dyes to color the flesh, both of which you would not want to feed your dog! Wild fish are also not troubled with the health difficulties of some farmed fish such as lice and build-up of chemicals, such as mercury.

Look for treats that have the ‘blue fish label’ from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) as this ensures that the fish is identifiable and sustainable so you can be assured that you are contributing towards sustainable fish stocks – meaning that there are enough fish left in the sea to reproduce. You’ll also be assisting to minimize the environmental consequences of fishing operations and supporting the efficient management of fisheries.

So you’ll know that your dog’s treats are great for the ocean because the fish is wild, and obvious back to a certified fishery.


Fish, as the central part of your dog’s diet, is an excellent idea to provide dogs – particularly older dogs- with protein without burdening their digestive system in the same process that some protein-enriched red meats may do. So when you study its advantages in helping to keep a dog’s joints and tendons strong, fish can be helpful for older dogs in many ways.

Kashif explains why.

As your dog gets older, its collagen connective tissue levels declined. Collagen is actually a protein and as it makes up a large balance of the protein observed in your dog’s skin and body, it’s a very valuable one.

Collagen is accountable for the elasticity of your dog’s ligaments, joints, tendons, skin, and cartilage. It also defines the strength of teeth, hair, bones, and nails. So in older dogs, as their collagen levels declined it’s necessary to supplement their food with an excellent source of collagen to maintain skeletal and skin tone.

Fish, particularly fish skin, is a great source of collagen and is amazingly helpful to your dog’s health in older age. And supplementing their food with fish from a young age means that you’ll ensure their collagen levels are supported throughout their lives rather than waiting for the obvious signs of decreased collagen to show.


in spite of these nutritional advantages, some dog experts and dog owners believe that the adverse effects of fish-based diets are serious enough to question their value.

To begin with, although many dogs enjoy the taste of fish-flavored meals and although these food are greater in available protein, a dog cannot get all of their nutritional requirements through fish alone. Make sure this “sea-faring” food does contain all of the needed vitamins and minerals by assuring for a “formulated and balanced”. Dog foods labeled “fish formula” or “fish recipe” will contain other meats and proteins besides fish, which is a great point, unless your dog has a particular allergy you’re trying to bypass. The other protein sources assist to make the food more nutritionally formulated.

A more dangerous charge against fish-based foods is the chance that the fish have high levels of lethal metals in their systems, which your dog then ingests. This is normal in long-lived fish like tuna, Mahi-Mahi, swordfish, and other top-end predator fish. Short-lived fish like jack mackerel, herring, or catfish do not store these heavy metals to the same level and are secure options. Much of the fish meal applied in dog foods do to be from the shorter-lived fish resources.

Some fish meals that end up in commercial dog foods are processed with a chemical known as ethoxyquin. The amount of ethoxyquin practiced is likely of no harm to your dog in any way, but the negative implications of artificial chemicals turn some customers away.

Any fish that exist in the ocean will be opened to some small amount of pollutants or heavy metals. Discuss to your vet about your dog food option if you’re concerned about any potential problems.

Seasonings are another problem, mainly if feeding your dog family leftovers. Completely avoid giving your dog any fish that has been seasoned with garlic powder, garlic salt, onion powder, and lavish table salt during the food process. Do your most useful to feed fish as close to natural, fresh state as possible. Finally, bones in fish are brittle and critical, make sure to debone as important before feeding.

Overall, feeding fish to your dog is a sound option with a variety of advantages. Dogs who eat fish can often enjoy larger shares without excess calories, protein overload or weight gain. As evidence, fish is a staple for sled dogs around the globe, some of the fittest and strong doggy athletes alive. As always, just learn to keep everything in balance.


Recognize, every dog varies, and there are certain points to consider when determining what diet will excellently suit your dog’s age, size, and living. Nevertheless, there are also universal rules that you can heed to make sure your dog is getting a comprehensive and balanced diet and all they require.

Years ago, when such a kind of dog nutrition wasn’t possible, dogs were fed foods that were most prevalent in the area. In the Arctic, dogs were fed regularly fish and whale blubber; in the southern United States, a dog’s diet consisted chiefly of cornbread; in Europe, potatoes were the principal fare. These foods led to conditions such as the black tongue (pellagra in humans), rickets, and other less commonly known ailments, many of them deadly.

In the wild, the canine did not just limit himself to consuming just the meat of his prey. He ate the entire animal, including the contents of the stomach. Wild dogs were known to kill each other while fighting over the stomach contents of their prey. Thus, nature provided the wild animal with a portion of food considered nutritionally formulated.






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  1. […] equating is 16 x ln(your dog’s age in human years) + 31, with ln being the common logarithm of the dog’s actual age. For the non-math likely, that involves 1-year-old Fido would celebrate his 31st human […]

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