Can Dogs Eat Oysters? All You Need To Know!

Can Dogs Eat Oysters? Have you ever tried to feed oysters to your dogs just because they look slimy, harmless, and delicious to you? They have a convincingly tender texture altogether, which can appeal to you about being safe for animals like dogs.

Oysters are lately coming into popularity among humans, due to which they are becoming more demanded and hence quite expensive. The question, ‘Are oysters healthy and safe for canines too?’ is essential because feeding anything to dogs unsuitable for their health can have adverse effects.

So, let us learn more about oysters and whether or not they are safe for dogs? Read the article completely to know more facts about the link between dogs and oysters.

Can Dogs Eat Oysters?

Dogs can safely eat oysters without any immediate side effects or toxicities. Oysters are very nutritious and can help dogs fulfill their daily requirements of essential nutrients very well.

can dogs eat oysters

Dogs have a simple dietary routine that must have special dog food supplements, healthy fruits, and veggies to ensure the proper growth of your dog.

Seafood like oysters should be included in a dog’s diet in moderation and not daily because of specific reasons discussed in other sections. However, oysters don’t have any significant potential harm for dogs and are completely safe for consumption.

Oysters Nutritional Facts

Oysters are from the bivalve mollusks family that usually live in marine and saltwater habitats. They are categorized as bivalves because of their two highly calcified shells that enclose the flavourful meat.

Generally, oysters are of different types, including pearl, saddle, feather, spiny, dimyarian, and windowpane oysters, and have their importance. Most edible oysters have the same salty taste and are considered a delicacy worldwide.

  • Oysters are highly nutritional and have several health benefits because of their very well-known purported aphrodisiac qualities. The edible slimy and plump part is protected in the calcified hard shells that need to be cracked open for eating the oyster.
  • Oysters are pretty low in calorie content but are rich in other essential nutrients such as proteins, vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats.
  • Oysters are an excellent source of protein containing all nine amino acids in abundance, enabling the body to stabilize hunger, control blood sugar levels, reduce the risk of heart disease, and promote weight loss.
  • Oysters are an abundant source of omega-3 fatty acids that helps in maintaining heart health, sharp brain functioning, and regulating body inflammation. Regular and adequate intake of omega-3 fats can lower the risks of heart disease and diabetes in your body.
  • They are rich in Vitamin B12, which is vital for maintaining a healthy nervous system, metabolism, blood cell formation, and preventing deficiency disorders.
  • Zinc proves necessary in improving immune health, boosting metabolism, and promoting cell growth. A small amount (50 g) of oyster consumption can provide you with 300% of the RDI of zinc.
  • Vitamin D is essential for cellular growth, bone strengthening, maintaining body temperature, and boosting immunity. Many people in the colder regions fail to get this vitamin regularly and suffer from deficiency disorders.
  • Oysters are rich in iron, which helps the body synthesize more hemoglobin and myoglobin to assist oxygen transport in the blood properly.
  • The presence of a mineral called selenium is helpful for thyroid functioning, managing oxidative stress, and boosting metabolism. It is also a powerful antioxidant that prevents cellular damage in the body. These benefits eventually lower the risk of chronic diseases like cancer, mental deterioration, and heart diseases.
  • Oysters also have a unique antioxidant, recently discovered and called DHMBA. It is potent in combating oxidative stress and the possibility of chronic diseases, improving liver health, lowering harmful cholesterol levels, and benefiting heart health.
  • Apart from all the advantages of oyster consumption, the only significant disadvantage is the presence of harmful bacteria and viruses in raw oysters that may cause harmful infections and harm the body severely. To avoid any potential infections, the way to tackle this issue is to cook the oyster before eating.
Oyster, Oysters, Shell, Mussel

Oysters Nutritional Stats

Oysters are a healthy variety of seafood with plenty of health benefits and several essential nutrients. Statistically, a 100 g serving of oysters has the following nutritional profile:

Calories: 68

Protein: 7 g

Fat: 3 g

Vitamin D: 80% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)

Vitamin B1: 7% of the RDI

Vitamin B3: 7% of the RDI

Vitamin B12: 324% of the RDI

Iron: 37% of the RDI

Magnesium: 12% of the RDI

Phosphorus: 14% of the RDI

Zinc: 605% of the RDI

Copper: 223% of the RDI

Manganese: 18% of the RDI

Selenium: 91% of the RDI

Oyster, Shell, Sea Food, Shellfish

Health Benefits Of Oysters For Dogs

Oysters are highly nutritional for humans, as we discussed previously, but it also contributes very well to the nutritional requirements of dogs. Some primary health benefits provided by oysters that help dogs to maintain good health are:

  • Eating oysters frequently can gradually help build a robust immune system and help the body fight against common disorders, fatal diseases, and infective problems. Including seafood like oysters in the dog’s diet can enhance their immunity to a great extent.
  • As their age increases, dogs lose their cognitive abilities, joint strength, and muscular health. This weakened body framework can cause several diseases and affect their health severely, but eating oysters would ensure strong bones, muscles, and joints in dogs. The protein and zinc in oysters are mainly responsible for improving muscle and joint health.
  • Some dogs have reduced energy levels due to specific reasons which ultimately make their body weak, lazy, and obese. In these circumstances, where your dog is feeling unenergetic at all times, oysters work as an energy booster supplementary food that provides instant energy to dogs.
Oysters, Seafood, Market, Plate, Dish

Can Puppies Eat Oysters?

Oysters have negligible health hazards for dogs’ health and have great benefits instead, which is an excellent sign of their non-toxic traits for smaller animals like cats and puppies.

white and brown long coated small dog wearing blue and white polka dot shirt

Puppies can safely eat oysters and get all the nutrients in adequate amounts to ensure proper health. Dogs generally are allergic to most of the other kinds of seafood, so oysters prove to be a lifesaver among them for a rich nutrition-fueling diet.

Furthermore, oysters are also smooth in texture and consistent in nutritional value, due to which they don’t harm the sensitive digestion of puppies at all.

Moreover, puppies require lots of energy providing and growth-promoting foods in their early stage to help them have a good and rapid growth rate.

Can dogs eat smoked oysters?

Smoked oysters are usually available in packaged or canned form. They are processed through cooking, flavoring, and preservation with artificial additives. After that, they are exposed to the smoky aroma of the burning wood, and that’s how they acquire the smoked flavor.

The smoked variety of oysters are antimicrobial and act as antioxidants for inducing significant health benefits in the process.

Although smoked oysters seem to be an elegant delicacy for humans, they are not very safe for dogs in large quantities or frequently. They are not toxic and are the best food choices to feed your dogs.

However, you may feed your dog smoked oysters once in a while as occasional treats, but you mustn’t include it in their regular diet.

Can dogs eat oysters in oil?

Oysters cooked in oil by any method are not suitable for dog consumption. Frying the oysters in saturated oil can increase the fat content and calories to the recipe, which leads to rapid weight gain.

oysters

Preparing the oyster recipe with oil certainly makes way for flavored additives, seasonings, and chemically enriched ingredients to be used. These artificial spices and oil can make the oyster unhealthy for dogs and should be avoided entirely to prevent fatal disorders.

However, a light sauteing of oysters or briskly baking them can be beneficial instead of raw oysters. Raw mollusks can cause bacterial and viral infections to the consumers and can be fatal depending on the situation, so they are recommended to be avoided.

Are Oysters Safe For Dogs?

Oysters are entirely safe for dogs and possess no such plausible threat to their health in general. They are highly nutritional and have many health benefits that significantly advantage your dogs.

Oyster flesh has a slimy texture and is easy to eat for dogs, so they don’t face any difficulties consuming it.

However, if you give them whole shelled oysters, they certainly would gulp it down and hurt themselves by choking or internal scars. It is necessary for you to deshell the oyster properly and serve only the tender flesh to them.

Are Oysters Good For Dogs?

Oysters are great for dog consumption because they are readily available, simple to eat, and highly nutritious. They are rich in proteins, omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins, iron, zinc, and selenium.

Proteins are vital for healthy muscular growth in dogs, while omega-3 fats boost overall health, prevent several diseases, and decrease organ inflammation.

Some dogs are allergic to chicken and fish, so oysters are a great alternative to these rich nutrients. Dogs are also fond of other seafood options like sardines, smelt, haddock, salmon, cod, and anchovies.

Are Oysters Bad For Dogs?

Oysters are essentially healthy for canines but should be included in the dog’s diet only in moderation. So it is excellent if you replace it with more nutritious alternatives for frequent consumption. However, oysters can be bad for dogs only because of the following reasons:

  • If they are fed in excess, the amount of zinc intake in the body increases and can lead to fatal problems such as diarrhea, unconsciousness, zinc poisoning, inflammation, nausea, and low blood pressure.
  • If you acquire raw oysters from marine water bodies, those are highly polluted and can potentially affect the aquatic wildlife with harmful toxins.
  • If the oysters are contaminated with a toxic alga called a dinoflagellate, that is harmful enough to cause fatal disorders like paralytic shellfish poisoning (PSP) in dogs.

Do Dogs Like Oysters?

Yes, dogs do like eating oysters because they have an excellent briny taste, a smooth texture, and exceptional health benefits.

black pug wearing red and white santa hat

Some varieties of oysters may have a different taste that might not appeal to your dog’s taste buds in particular, so the hit and trial method for determining the favorite oyster of your dog is necessary.

When introducing oysters to your dog for the first time, the quantity and frequency should be minimal. Look for any signs of indigestion or diarrhea in your dog as they have a sensitive stomach.

It may be possible that they had difficulties digesting the oyster if you feel that your dog can very well handle the nutrition of oysters. At the same time, digestion gradually increases the serving size and feeds oysters to them according to the schedule you see viable.

Can dogs eat cooked oysters?

Dogs can safely eat cooked oysters only when cooked on their own to make them more digestible and kill all the potentially harmful bacteria, viruses, and toxic algae present in them.

If you are thinking of feeding your dog an adequately cooked oyster dish with added seasoning and spices, that is a complete no because that’s toxic and unsuitable for your lovely dog.

So, cooked oysters (free from any additives) are the best form of oyster that can be served to your dog and keep them healthy.

Can dogs eat raw oysters?

Raw oysters are safe most of the time, but in a few conditions, consumption of raw oysters may cause viral and bacterial infections in your dog that could be fatal for their health.

Make sure you buy and acquire edible oysters from well-known high-quality venues and sellers so that you don’t affect your dog’s health accidentally by compromising the quality of seafood you are feeding.

Can dogs eat smoked oysters in oil?

Smoked oysters and oil-cooked oysters are individually not recommended for feeding your dogs because of the toxic harm they may cause to your puppy’s digestive health.

clear glass bowl on brown wooden table

Similarly, oysters cooked in oil with a smokey flavor also possess the same potential threats to your dog’s health.

They are to be avoided by your dogs because they are certainly not suitable for canine consumption because of the extra ingredients and processing done in the dish’s preparation.

However, a sauteed oyster with brisk smoke is never dangerous to your dog and can be fed to them once in a while as a rare occasional treat.

Can dogs eat clams?

Yes, dogs can eat clams, but only when they are well cooked, appropriately deshelled, and in moderate serving sizes. When infected with toxic algae or marine pollutants, clams are toxic to dogs.

The internal tissues in clams are most likely to absorb these toxins and get contaminated severely. The serving frequency should be strictly occasional to avoid severe issues in dogs due to the indirect toxin transfer to their body.

Can dogs eat fried oysters?

No, dogs cannot eat fried oysters because oil-cooked foods are forbidden for dogs as they can cause severe heart and digestive diseases. Apart from the diseases, oil intake leads to obesity, rapid weight gain, and increased cholesterol levels.

How Many Oysters Can A Dogs Eat?

As we already discussed, oysters are healthy for dogs when fed in moderation. Keeping the serving size under control is the high zinc content in oysters.

oysters and sauce

If dogs have excessive zinc intake in their body, they may suffer from food poisoning, diarrhea, zinc poisoning, and low blood pressure.

At first, introduce a couple of oysters to your dog, and if he reacts well to them, you can add a few more in their serving from next time onwards. Just remember to keep the frequency in moderation too.

How Often Can A Dogs Eat Oysters?

The ideal serving frequency is once or twice a month. Oysters are a great source of essential nutrients and are valuable for including in a dog’s diet. However, they must be considered occasional treats and not regular dietary options.

Feeding other dog foods, fruit, veggies, and supplements is crucial daily and shouldn’t be compromised at all. Seafood like oysters, sardines, and other suitable yet healthy fishes should be included as occasional treats in rotation to provide variety to your dog.

How To Feed Oysters To Dogs?

Feeding oysters to your dogs in a healthy way is necessary to ensure the provision of nutrients in the best possible way and avoid any side effects or health issues in their bodies.

You must follow the given instructions properly for preparing a good oyster meal for your lovely dog:

  • Remove the oyster flesh from the shell and dispose of the shell properly.
  • Cook the oyster to eliminate any harmful microorganisms present in it. You may then cook it in any of the following ways – Roasting, Light saute, Baking, Steaming, Grilling, Dehydrating. (Keep the cooking temperature near 60 degrees celsius in all methods)
  • Do not use ingredients like oil, spices, condiments, additives, and flavors while preparing oysters, as we have already discussed their ill effects for dogs.
  • Lastly, feed the oysters to your dogs in limited quantities, and make sure you don’t overfeed them.

Do Oysters Affect The Digestive System Of Dogs?

Oysters have several health benefits for dogs and improve their digestion and metabolism when fed in moderation and from a high-quality source.

Still, they also can affect the digestive system of dogs and cause fatalities to their health when they are consumed in the following conditions:

  • Presence of toxins, heavy toxic metals, and other marine pollutants
  • Commercial dog foods having fish in them can contain harmful preservatives.
  • Risk of infections caused by bacterias such as listeria and salmonella, and parasites, such as tapeworms and roundworms. (Most infestations are found in raw oysters)
  • Allergic reactions
  • Risk of vitamin deficiency
  • Shells and scales are choking hazards and can cause intestinal blockage.

FAQs

Can dogs eat shrimp?

Yes, dogs can safely eat shrimp only when cooked without any additives and should be served in moderation.

Can dogs eat tuna?

Yes, dogs can eat tuna in moderation and should not be overfed because it may cause toxicities in their body.

Can dogs eat crab?

Yes, dogs can eat cooked crab as it is very nutritious, but remember to keep the serving size in moderation.

Can dogs eat raw bacon?

Yes, you can feed a small amount of raw bacon to your dog, but it is not recommended as it has various disadvantages for dog consumption.

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Author
Gulshan
Hi, I am Gulshan, a pet blogger, and author. I've been working with the local pet groups for the past five years. I have been fascinated by our pets and am here to share that wonder with you.