“Can dogs eat eggs? Are eggs safe for dogs?” are two of the most common questions dog owners ask vets when it comes to their pet diet.
Many times we wonder if our dogs can eat x food, especially when they look with their big, wet puppy eyes at every piece of food we put in our mouth.
We often consume eggs – boiled, fried, poached, scrambled, or added as an ingredient in some cake recipes. Eggs are full of nutrients – vitamins, minerals, and protein. They have vitamin E, lutein, selenium, and folic acid. All these nutrients have crucial functions in our body’s processes – they improve vision and brain health and help in the inflammatory process. But are eggs good for dogs?
So, Are Eggs Good For Dogs?
Eggs are good for dogs as long as they are cooked, preferably boiled or scrambled. They can be tasty treats or food supplements for your dog.
Make sure you don’t give your dog seasoned eggs (with pepper or salt) or scrambled eggs that contain onions, chives, garlic, or other potentially harmful ingredients. Also, make sure the eggs do not contain oil or butter, as they can be harmful to dogs’ health if consumed long-term.
Dogs have simple tastes and will devour the (unseasoned) eggs to the last bite. Add a bit of cheese (not very salty) on top if you want to make your dog’s meal even more delicious.
What Benefits Do Eggs Have for Dogs?
Eggs are rich in protein and other essential nutrients:
- Vitamin A (contained in the yolk) – essential for night vision and necessary for the maintenance of mucous membranes, skin, and in the growth process;
- Vitamin D (contained in the yolk) – helps absorb calcium and phosphorus from food and is thus essential for healthy bones and teeth;
- Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) – helps release energy from protein and fat;
- Vitamin B12 – is necessary for the formation of blood cells and nerve fibers;
- Iodine – is necessary for the production of thyroid hormones, which control a large part of the body’s metabolic activities;
- Selenium – antioxidant (protects cell membranes against oxidation);
- Zinc – is essential for growth and sexual maturation, important in enzyme activity.
Overall, these essential nutrients provide a number of health benefits to dogs, improving skin, fur, teeth, and bone health.
As such, eggs are an ingredient used in many homemade pet food diets and are considered safe and nutritious for most dogs. They can be safely incorporated into your dog’s diet; however, eggs should never become its main source of nutrition.
In general, eggs should be served in moderation a few times a week when used as a supplement to high-quality commercial foods or a meat-based diet.
Are Eggs Good For Puppies?
Yes, eggs have the same benefits for puppies as for adult dogs. Depending on your dogs’ size and breed, puppies should be fed at least half the amount you would feed an adult dog.
What Are the Risks if My Dog Eats Raw Eggs?
Do not feed raw eggs to your dog. Historically, dogs have been known to steal from birds’ nests and eat the eggs raw – including the shell – but it is not recommended for domestic pets today.
Eating raw or undercooked eggs has inherent risks for your pet, just as it does for humans. Even though these side effects may be relatively rare, veterinarians recommend cooking eggs before feeding them to your dog.
Dogs, like humans, are exposed to the risk of contracting Salmonella spp. if they consume raw eggs. Once this bacterium reaches your dog’s digestive system, it can cause the following symptoms:
- Diarrhea (sometimes with blood)
- Loss of appetite
Avoid giving raw eggs to dogs suffering from cancer, infections, or other serious health problems because their immune system will not be able to cope with the risk of potential contamination.
What Happens if My Dog Eats Raw Egg White?
Prolonged ingestion of raw egg whites can lead to biotin deficiency. This happens because of avidin, an enzyme in egg whites that prevents biotin from being absorbed into the body.
Biotin (vitamin B7) promotes healthy skin, metabolism, digestion, and cell proliferation in both dogs and humans. It most likely takes an excessive amount of egg white to cause a biotin deficiency in your dog, but even so, vets recommend against overdoing it. Biotin deficiency will certainly not happen if the egg white is consumed together with the yolk.
Can Dogs be Allergic to Eggs?
Yes, some dogs can be allergic to eggs. Dogs are generally allergic to the protein in food, and eggs (and other meat protein sources) are the most well-known allergens in dog food because these ingredients are among their most common food sources.
The symptoms of food allergies are diverse and include:
- Skin reactions – itching and skin infections
- Gastrointestinal problems – vomiting and/or chronic diarrhea
- Chronic inflammation of the ears
In some cases, dogs may show more than one of the symptoms listed above.
If you recently started giving your dog eggs and it shows the signs listed above, it may have an egg allergy. Stop feeding eggs to your dog eggs and notice if its health condition improves. Contact the veterinarian if the problems persist.
How to Feed Eggs to Your Dog
It is recommended to feed your dog with hard-boiled eggs cut into pieces, preferably immediately after cooking them. You can serve the boiled eggs as such or add them to your dog’s usual food. Dogs can also eat scrambled eggs. Cook the eggs in a non-stick pan without oil or seasoning.
Use organic eggs from free-range chickens whenever possible.
Although a certain amount of bacteria from raw food can be beneficial to your pet, proper egg storage will help ensure that any harmful bacteria cannot grow. Keep the eggs in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve them.
How Many Eggs Can My Dog Eat per Week?
With how many eggs you can feed your dog per week depends on several factors:
- Health problems
- Activity levels
If your dog is healthy, you can feed it eggs as follows:
|Dog size||Eggs per week|
|Small-sized dogs||1 egg|
|Medium-sized dogs||2 eggs|
|Large-sized dogs||3 eggs|
|Puppies||Half the amount|
When dogs are growing, the weekly amount of eggs can be slightly increased. But it is recommended not to overdo it because, in addition to the benefits, eggs put a lot of stress on the liver and have cholesterol.
Always feed your dog eggs in moderation and consult your veterinarian before giving them to your pet. Overfeeding can cause digestive disorders and lead to obesity. Eating raw eggs can lead to salmonellosis if the eggs are contaminated.
If you have an overweight dog, give it eggs with moderation because they are rich in fats and can make your pet gain extra weight.
If your dog suffers from gastrointestinal problems, feeding it eggs can help settle its stomach.
Eggs are a great way to supplement your dog’s diet. It will give your pup healthy skin, a shinier coat, and healthy bones, and can even help with its stomach problems.
Even if you feed your dog the best food from one of the most famous dog brands, you can always supplement its diet with eggs. Your dog will benefit greatly from this addition to its diet!