Golden Retriever in the grass looking at a plate of smoked salmon

Can dogs eat smoked salmon?

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Smoked salmon for humans is one of the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids and can ease inflammation and preserve brain function, all while being delicious. However, like most things, we often wonder what we can and cannot share with our pups, and it's important to always do your research before your dog can enjoy the same meal as you are. So that raises the big question: Can dogs eat smoked salmon? You may be wondering this if you're wanting to switch out your usual dog food and start experimenting with other protein sources and high-quality ingredients. Humans can eat smoked salmon, so is it safe for dogs? The short answer is no. However, this doesn't mean salmon altogether should be banned from your dog's diet. 

Smoked salmon is cured, meaning that it contains a lot of salt. Like humans, excessive amounts of salt in the diet can be detrimental to one's health, and the same goes for dogs. In consuming smoked salmon, dogs risk sodium ion poisoning. This does not mean salt should not be in a dog's diet; in fact, it is absolutely necessary. However, too much salt content in a dog's diet can cause sickness, dehydration or sodium poisoning, as mentioned. Moreover, another issue related to smoked salmon and feeding your dog raw fish is the risk of dangerous bacteria that can lead to several health issues. This can also be found with raw salmon. Apart from smoked salmon, the raw fish can also be extremely dangerous for dogs as it can contain flukes and specific bacteria that can cause severe health issues for dogs and humans. 

So what about cooked salmon? 

Although your pooch cannot eat smoked salmon, they can definitely enjoy the deliciousness of deboned, cooked salmon in moderation. Salmon contains many nutritional benefits and is rich in omega-3, potassium, selenium, vitamins A, B and D. The omega-3s found in cooked salmon are fantastic for maintaining healthy muscle, preventing inflammation, aiding in digestive issues and forming a silky smooth coat. Moreover, there are plenty of ways to feed your dog salmon, whether it be cooked, canned, or using salmon skin. Feeding salmon to younger puppies helps develop their brains, and it can help assist older dogs in concentrating better. The anti-inflammatory properties of salmon are thought to also combat inflammation that comes from allergies, arthritis or even IBS, all of which can seriously impact your dog's everyday life. 

It is essential to ensure that if you choose to feed your pup salmon, it is unseasoned and plain. Feeding your dog salmon that contains different seasonings and sauces can cause illness. Additionally, choosing boneless salmon when cooking for your dog is important, as the small bones can be sharp and cause irritation or choking when swallowed. As mentioned, it is imperative to ensure your salmon is cooked before feeding it to your furry friend, as undercooked salmon can lead to salmon poisoning. Salmon poisoning in dogs can be fatal. Further, salmon poisoning can be challenging to detect as signs of salmon poisoning can take anywhere from 6-10 days to develop. Symptoms of salmon poisoning can range from lack of appetite, dehydration, rapid weight loss, swollen lymph nodes, and so on. Therefore, any salmon you are feeding your dog must be thoroughly cooked before it hits their bowl. 

Can dogs eat salmon skin?

Yes! As long as the skin you are feeding them is cooked and plain, dogs can consume the skin of the salmon, and it contains many health benefits making it a great addition to their meals. However, salmon skin is high in fat which can lead to unhealthy weight gain, so it is important to feed them small portions of salmon skin. Another way to feed your dog salmon is through the tin. This is the healthiest and most cost-effective way to feed your dog salmon. It is always best to look for the canned salmon that has no added salt and is served in water, as it contains fewer additives than the salmon in oil. However, it is always best to use fresh salmon as it has a higher nutritional value, and you know exactly what's going into their bowl. 

As dog owners, we strive to find the best dog treats and meals that allow our pups to maintain a healthy and long life. So, yes, cooked salmon is an excellent addition to your dog's meals and contains numerous health benefits for your pup. Therefore, switching things up from your traditional dog food products and opting for fresh human foods such as salmon or other types of fish, can prove to offer many different benefits for your pup when researched correctly!