Dogs need a healthy dose of protein in their diet to stay fit, healthy and active.
As a responsible dog owner you need to know which foods you can and can’t feed your precious pup or dog.
A common question is:
can dogs eat calamari? Yes, but don’t feed your dog fried calamari. Prepared in this way- it will be hard to digest, contain fat, salt and other unhealthy ingredients and also strip the food of the nutrients you want it to receive.
What is Calamari?
Calamari is an Italian word for squid.
People often wonder the difference between calamari and squid.
Calamari is actually just “squid served as food.”.
The innards are usually removed to get the white meat.
If you see squid for sale at the supermarket it’s likely the other parts of the squid which are fine to eat but not as tender as calamari.
Calamari is a great source of protein and many dogs love eating this kind of seafood.
As well as being around 30% protein, calamari is also low in calories so ideal for large dogs that need a lot of protein.
It’s also low in fat with around 9%, which is ideal since dogs need to keep a moderate fat intake to avoid obesity that can lead to health problems.
If your dog doesn’t get enough protein in its diet, you can expect health problems which might range from mild to serious.
Food with protein has vitamin B12 in it which is essential for keeping energy and appetite levels high. Lack of it can lead to depression in dogs and a lackluster mood.
Protein builds muscle mass which is great for all dogs, especially large active dogs that lead energetic lives and work hard such as farm dogs.
Squid also contains iron, zinc and copper. Zinc promotes healthy growth so is great for puppies and growing dogs as they reach adulthood.
It also helps heal cuts and scrapes that your dog might get while bounding around in the great outdoors and zinc is also is great for the immune system. Iron and copper promotes the red cell count.
Calamari is often fried, but this is very bad for your dog’s health.
If your dog is on a diet of raw food you can serve it calamari which is rich in micro-nutrients. Or you can cook it by steaming or boiling it.
If you can buy fresh calamari from a local market or supplier its far better than using frozen calamari.
The fresher the better.
There is some chance your dog won’t like calamari. If your dog rejects the new food when you introduce it then don’t worry. Maybe try a few times if your dog is a fussy eater.
For the first time you let your dog try calamari only give a very small amount.
Some dogs can have an allergy to it which would be evident by vomiting, diarrhea, fever, nausea, constipation or acting lethargic.
Keep a close eye on your dog after the first meal.
If you find your dog’s stomach isn’t reacting well to the calamari make a visit to the veterinarian if you feel the reaction is severe and then follow the vet’s recommendations.
After you know that calamari is safe and a popular choice for your pooch you need to consider how much to feed it.
It shouldn’t be given as a full bowl or meal but rather a small amount mixed with other dog food. It does contain mercury and needs to be eaten in moderation in the same way people are advised to not eat too much.
Calamari should be used as a protein and flavor boost to a meal only.
Don’t be tempted to give any more than a few big spoons even if your furry friend is begging for more.
An older or inactive dog won’t need so much protein in its diet and calamari could be considered a tasty treat more than a protein source.
Chances are your dog will happily gobble up calamari and enjoy the texture and taste of this food which is also very healthy for it.
But before adding any other kinds of seafood to its diet make sure you research what you dog can safely consume.
For example salmon that isn’t cooked fully can be fatal for a canine.
Raw salmon is dangerous for dogs to eat as it can carry a parasite called Neorickettsia helminthoeca, which is poisonous to dogs.
When it comes to shellfish such as shrimp, crab and lobster, it needs to be properly cooked with all shells and sharp body parts removed so only the meat remains.
It is essential it is fresh and should be given in moderation.
So, we know it’s safe to feed your dog calamari as long as certain rules are followed.
The freshness and preparation of the calamari is important and also the amount of calamari your dog is given is also to be noted.
Many breeds of dog will eat as much food as they are given and will easily overeat if allowed.
Your dog will probably love the juicy, flavorful treat of calamari so just be aware of how much they are consuming for each meal and also overall on a monthly basis.
If you follow this advice your much loved pet or working dog will be fit, healthy and well.
You’ll find more Dog Nutrition Questions in the links below: