Can Dogs Eat Sardines?

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Can Dogs Eat Sardiness

Sardines are nutrient-rich, small, oily fish that belong to the herring family. Most people avoid fish in general because they are fearful about mercury. However, you won’t have the same problem with sardines. They barely have any toxic waste because of their position on the food chain. Due to their small size, sardines only eat planktons. 

Although there’s a rumor about the various health benefits, the concern is: Can dogs eat sardines? The short answer is yes. Sardines are not just palatable for your dog, they are also suitable for him. This fish is highly beneficial in many ways for the health and overall well-being of your pet. 

But before you dash out and get your dog some sardines, there are a few things you need to understand.

Are Sardines Safe For Dogs?

Yes, sardines are safe for dogs to eat in moderation. But suppose your dog has some underlying problems like weight issues, pancreatitis, diabetes, or renal disorder, it would be best not to feed your dog sardines. It is also not advisable to give sardines to your pet if he is sensitive to mercury.

Are Sardiness for Dogs

The bones are another cause for concern. They are pointed, and can easily cause throat or abdominal injuries. Additionally, refrain from canned sardines as they may include seasoning, oil, spices, synthetic flavorings, and preservatives. Studies have shown that these can be toxic to dogs.

Why Feed Your Dog Sardines?

Sardines are loaded with protein, vitamins and trace minerals, including;

  • Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Coenzyme 10 Q10
  • Calcium
  • Vitamin B3
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Selenium
  • Zinc

The presence of Omega-3 fatty acids is good for your pets. They promote proper brain and eye development in dogs. Other than that, it is also beneficial for the dog’s skin and coat, and also promotes mobility by reinforcing sore joints.

Omega-3 can also regulate inflammation and enhance wound healing. Sardines are also a great source of coenzyme Q10, a potent antioxidant, and immune system booster that has plenty of benefits for dogs of all ages.

Consequently, it is advisable to offer sardines to puppies as a supplement that will benefit them during the crucial growth stage of their lives. 

Alternatively, you should remember that it is not safe for dogs to have excess saturated fats. This will lead to obesity, which can cause various health problems. High-fat foods, primarily those high in saturated fat, have been linked to clogging of arteries and cardiac arrest. Sardines are not just high in omega fatty acids but also low in harmful saturated fats.

Benefits of Sardines to Dogs

  • Better teeth
  • Brain health
  • Boost immune system
  • Cognitive Retinal function
  • Heart and kidney health
  • Joint maintenance
  • Kidney disease protection
  • Mobility
  • Muscle and connective tissue development
  • Reduce arthritis inflammation
  • Shiny coat and healthy skin

Reasons for Feed Your Dog Sardines

What Are The Health Concerns Of Feeding Sardines To Dogs?

Mercury is a naturally found element in water, air, and food. All fish have some levels of mercury in their body.

Bigger fish can have larger volumes of mercury because they consume other fish as well. On the other hand, sardines are tiny and at the bottom of the food chain, implying that they contain relatively low mercury concentrations than bigger fish like bluefin tuna. 

Another general concern with dogs eating sardines are their smaller bones. There is the added risk of choking and the danger of blockages.

The great news is that sardines are soft-boned, which means that you don’t have to be concerned about those! They’re safe for dogs and will be a good source of calcium. However, it would help if you observed your dog when serving raw sardines to ensure that they don’t have difficulty ingesting them. Also, if you prefer deep-frozen or fresh sardines, experts advise deboning the fish before giving it to your pets. In general, though, they’re a lot easier to serve than other fish. 

Sardines are not harmful fish, so they won’t trigger health issues. But, if you give too much to your dog, you can encounter issues with thiamin deficiency. However, you’d need to serve a tremendous quantity of raw fish for that to occur.

What To Look For When Buying Sardines For Dogs?

Dried sardines can be commonly found in pet shops, but they won’t contain as much nutritional value as fresh sardines. Canned sardines are more recommended than dried ones; however, fresh sardines would be the most beneficial. Still, choose your sardines carefully.

If you are in the supermarket, you’ll notice cans of sardines prepared in tomato sauce, water, and oil. You may likewise discover tins in hot sauce, mustard, and other sauces. When purchasing sardines for dogs, opt for a pack that’s:

  • In water
  • De-bone and skinless
  • Plain, without added flavorings
  • No extra salt added

How To Prepare Sardines for Your Dog?

Sardines can be fed to dogs raw or cooked. Don’t forget to remove the bones when you choose to feed your dog raw sardines. While sardines have soft bones, they can still be moderately hard since they haven’t been cooked to the point of fragmentation, similar to canned sardines. 

Methods to Prepare Sardines for Your Dog

If you like to cook them before feeding them to your pet, it is ideal to steam them lightly. This guarantees that the fish maintains most of its nutritional value, and it will preserve most of the oil and flavor, making it even tastier for your dog.

How Many Sardines Can a Dog Eat?

Experts recommend feeding a few sardines every week. Or, you can feed your small dog one small sardine (from a tin) or a half of a whole raw sardine per day. And you can feed your giant dog two canned sardines or one whole raw sardine per day. Adjust as you think is needed. 

Adding any new food into a dog’s meal must be done gradually. Observe any odd behaviour, especially relating to your dog’s toilet habits. 

Be particularly wary of your dog’s weight after introducing sardines to his diet. If he begins to add some pounds, reduce the amount of sardines served. Also,  double the allotted time for exercise your dog has every day, or seek help from your vet regarding some weight-loss advice.

How Many Sardines Can a Dog Eat

Wrap Up

In a nutshell, dogs can safely eat sardines, whether it’s fresh, lightly cooked, or canned. These small fish are an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acids, and essential minerals, and vitamins. Sardines are a natural, unique way to feed your dog as it boosts his immune system. 

Regardless of how you serve sardines, please take note that they are not enough to constitute a healthy diet for your dog. You can add sardines rather than using fish oils to your dog’s meal, though this is not a perfect diet.

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