Sardines, also known as pilchards, are tiny, oily fish that are members of the herring family. They are reddish, silver and brownish in color and have a firm texture.
Sardines, despite their little size, are nutritional heavyweights for humans. You may have made a sardine and tomato sauce mix and wondered to yourself, can dogs eat sardines?
The answer is yes, dogs can eat sardines. These little fish are safe for dogs to eat and are an excellent source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids for dogs.
Read on to discover just how beneficial sardines are for your dog, the possible risks and dangers of feeding sardines to your dog, and how many sardines you should offer your dog.
Can Dogs Eat Sardines? – Are Sardines Safe For Dogs?
Yes, dogs can eat sardines and many of our canine friends absolutely love these little reddish-brown fish.
You may safely offer your dog some sardines in small amounts, as long as your dog is free from particular health issues such as diabetes, obesity and pancreatic or renal illness.
Keep in mind that if your dog is overweight, sardines generally aren’t the ideal choice of snack due to their high fat content.
What Are The Health Benefits Of Sardines For Dogs?
Sardines have a valuable nutritional profile and can provide meaningful health benefits for your dog.
Enhance Dog’s Skin And Coat
In the pet shop, you’ve certainly seen fish oil supplements in liquid pump form, and most people purchase them to aid in the health of their dog’s coat. These nutritious omega-3s can really help your dog’s skin and coat look and feel their best.
If you have a dog that suffers from allergies, skin irritations, or seasonal itching and dryness, then you may find that the healing properties of omega-3s help your dog a lot.
For those who don’t want to spend the money on pet shop pumps, canned or fresh sardines are an excellent substitute.
Enhance Dog’s Cognitive Function
DHA, in particular, is critical to the development and function of the brain. DHA has been linked to a better capacity to learn.
Providing your dog, particularly a puppy, with the right amount of this vital fat is critical.
Help Alleviate Joint Pain In Dogs
It has been demonstrated that the natural oils present in sardines have anti-inflammatory effects and may help decrease inflammation if your pet pooch has joint discomfort or arthritis.
We all know how important calcium is for strong, healthy bones, so eating sardines with their soft bones included is a great way for your dog to get calcium.
Adding sardines or fish oil to a dog’s diet as it gets older is common for both of these reasons.
Boost Your Dog’s Immune System And Heart Health
Sardines are a source of CoQ10, an antioxidant. It has been proved to be advantageous to the heart, the nervous system, and even the immune system of your canine kid.
What Are The Risks Of Letting Dogs Eat Sardines?
Dogs should not eat raw sardines because they may contain germs and parasites, as well as an enzyme that breaks down B vitamins.
You should avoid giving your dog too much sardines since the high fat and salt content may lead to gastrointestinal disorders, such as vomiting and diarrhea, as well as more severe conditions like as pancreatitis or sodium poisoning.
Although sardine bones are very soft, there is a very small chance that they may irritate your dog’s esophagus and gastrointestinal tract.
This is why it’s better to feed your dog a very small amount of sardines if you’re giving it to them for the very first time. Once you confirm your dog has no problem with the soft bones, it’s safe to give your dog larger portions of sardines, although still keeping the portions moderate.
In the unlikely event your dog struggles with the soft bones, then be sure to only feed your dog boneless sardine fillets.
Are Canned Sardines Safe For Dogs?
Canned sardines are safe for dogs to consume, but fresh fish is preferred. This is due to the fact that canned sardines will always have some extra substances such as salt, oil, or preservatives, which can be harmful to your dog’s health if consumed excessively.
If you’re feeding your dog canned sardines those that come in water, they’re safe to eat and often make a nutritious treat for your canine kid.
How Much Sardines Can A Dog Eat?
Sardine consumption may be estimated using the 10% rule, which is an excellent starting point. Snacks and treats like as sardines should not account for more than 10% of your dog’ s daily calorie intake.
If you have a tiny breed dog, you should limit the number of sardines you give her to no more than 2 per day.
Feeding your medium-sized dog up to half a can of sardines each day, or around 4 sardines, is safe.
It is okay to feed big breed dogs up to one can of sardines each day, which is around 8 sardines per can.
You should start off with a small quantity of sardines, and gradually increase the amount over the course of 3 to 4 weeks if you have never fed your dog sardines previously.
Can Dogs Eat Canned Sardines In Oil?
A lot of sardines are packed in oil to keep them fresh for longer periods of time. They may be packed in olive oil, for example. However, it’s not recommended to offer dogs sardines that have been packed in oil. Why? Because sardines are already considered to be a high-fat fish, and adding any more fat would be counterproductive.
Which Canned Sardines Is Best For Dogs?
Sardines in water, with no salt added, or sardines in natural oils such as olive oil or coconut oil or vegetable oil are the ideal canned sardines to give to your dog as a treat. Having fresh sardines on the other hand is even better. Given that sardines are a soft-boned fish, you may give them to your dog in whole form.
Can Dogs Eat Sardines In Tomato Sauce?
Sardines with tomato sauce are not recommended for dogs. It’s true that sardines in tomato sauce are generally healthy for dogs since they don’t include any hazardous ingredients. However, they are more likely than plain fish to include ingredients toxic to dogs.
The amount of salt found in sardines in tomato sauce is often the same level found in sardines in brine. In many cases, it’s even higher!
It’s also common for tomato sauce to be prepared using a lot of sunflower oil or another kind of oil. However, adding fatty oils to sardines which are already high in fat, is not good for your dog.
Paprika or spicy peppers may also be included in certain kinds of tomato-sauced sardines, which may make your dog ill.
Can Dogs Eat Sardines In Water?
Yes, dogs can eat sardines in water. In fact, sardines packed in water is healthier and more ideal for a dog compared to sardines packed in oil. This is because sardines are a high fat fish, and if they’re packed in oil they take on even more fat, which is not good for your dog.
For this reason, sardines packed in water are a more healthy choice for your pet pooch.
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Can Dogs Eat Sardines Every day?
Yes, dogs can eat sardines every day. You simply need to make sure you the daily portion of sardines you give your dog is commensurate to your dog’s size and weight.
If you have a small breed dog, feed her no more than 2 sardines every day.
For a medium-sized dog, you may feed her up to half a can of sardines every day, or 4 sardines.
Larger breed dogs may comfortably eat up to one can of sardines each day, or roughly eight sardines.
If you have a dog that suffers from allergies, skin irritations, or seasonal itching and dryness, then you may find that the healing properties of omega-3s help your dog a lot. Sardines are a source of CoQ10, an antioxidant which has been proved to be advantageous to the heart, the nervous system, and even the immune system of dogs.
Is The Mercury In Sardines Harmful To Dogs?
When compared to bigger fish, sardines have a low quantity of mercury, a heavy metal that may be harmful in high doses. Sardines are small fry in the ocean food chain, and as such, they do not ingest other mercury-containing sea inhabitants and do not survive long enough to acquire large amounts of the poisons they do come into contact with.
In other words, the trace amounts of mercury found in sardines are not at levels high enough to be harmful to dogs.
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Can Sardines Give Dogs Diarrhea?
Sardines are not toxic to dogs and do not contain any substances which inherently cause diarrhea in dogs. However, if your dog has any pre-existing medical conditions, such as obesity, diabetes or pancreatic illness, then there is a possibility sardines could give your dog diarrhea.
Further, even if your dog has no existing medical conditions, there is still a chance sardines could give your dog diarrhea if you feed them too many sardines.
As with most treats and snacks, feed sardines to your dog in moderation.
How Many Sardines For Dogs?
When estimating how many sardines a dog can eat, the 10 percent guideline is a good starting point. Treats, titbits, and snacks like sardines should not account for more than 10% of your dog’s daily caloric consumption.
If you have a small breed dog, then you can feed her no more than 2 sardines per day.
If you have a medium breed dog, then you can feed her up to half a can of sardines per day, which is roughly 4 sardines.
As for larger breed dogs, you can safely feed them up to one can of sardines per day, which roughly 8 sardines.
However, if you’ve never given your dog sardines to eat before then it’s best to start with a lower amount initially and introduce them gradually over 3 to 4 weeks.
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Can Sardines Make Dogs Sick?
Sardines, like any other food, may make a dog ill if they consume too many of them. Over consumption of sardines may induce vomiting and diarrhea in your dog, as well as more severe health concerns including pancreatitis or sodium overdose.
Frozen Sardines For Dogs?
Dogs can eat frozen sardines, as long as they have been cooked thoroughly and then frozen. However, there is a big caveat. The bones from frozen sardines may be harder and more prone to shatter and create sharp edges that a dog could choke on.
Therefore, if you wish to feed your dog frozen sardines, then you must ensure you de-bone the sardines first, or else purchase sardines that have already been de-boned. Then you can cook the sardines and freeze them after, safe in the knowledge your dog will not be harmed by any sharp bones.
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How Often Should I Give My Dog Sardines?
On the basis that your dog actually likes sardines and has no allergic or negative reactions to eating them, then you can give your dog sardines everyday if you want to.
Just make sure the daily sardine quantity you feed your dog is proportional to his size and weight.
Feed your little breed dog no more than 2 sardines every day.
For a medium-sized dog, half a can of sardines every day is fine.
Larger breed dogs may consume up to one can (approximately 8 sardines) every day.
If your dog has allergies, skin irritations, or seasonal itching and dryness, the therapeutic qualities of omega-3s may be quite beneficial. Sardines include CoQ10, an antioxidant beneficial to the heart, neurological system, and even the immunological system of dogs.
Can Dogs Eat Sardines In Spring Water?
Yes, dogs may consume sardines that have been packed in spring water. When compared to sardines packed in oil, sardines packed in spring water are more nutritious and suitable for a dog’s diet. This is due to the fact that sardines are a high-fat fish, and if they’re packed in oil, they absorb even more fat, which is unhealthy for your dog.
Therefore, sardines packed in water are a more nutritious option for your canine companion.
Can Dogs Have Sardines In Olive Oil?
Many sardines are packed with olive oil to preserve their freshness. The skin and hair of dogs benefit greatly from olive oil; however, it is not advisable to offer them sardines packed in olive oil. Why? Because adding more fat is not something we’d want to do with sardines, since they are already a high-fat dish.
How Many Sardines Can I Feed My Dog?
It is a good starting point to use the 10 percent rule when predicting how many sardines may be consumed by a dog. It is recommended that treats, tidbits, and snacks such as sardines do not account for more than 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake.
If you have a small breed dog, you should limit the number of sardines you give her to no more than 2 per day.
As a general rule, if you have a medium-sized dog, you may give her up to half a can of sardines every day, which is around 4 sardines.
When it comes to bigger breed dogs, you may safely give them up to one can of sardines every day, which is equivalent to around 8 sardines.
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Final Thoughts On Can Dogs Eat Sardines
If you’ve made it this far through this article you now have a comprehensive understanding of the answer to the question, can dogs eat sardines? The answer is yes, dogs can eat sardines and many dogs enjoy these little fish treats.
However, it’s important you don’t over feed sardines to your dogs as this can cause health issues. Further, you must keep in mind that sardines are a high fat food and are not recommended for dogs who have obesity problems or diabetes.