On the face it you would think dogs could eat Crab meat. Crab is full in flavor, high in protein and contains lots of vitamins and minerals. All of which are undoubtedly beneficial for your dog.
Well the fact is, dogs can eat crab meat however you do need to exercise some caution. There have been reported cases of dogs being allergic to crab and too much in one sitting can also cause stomach upset.
As is always the way when feeding your dog foods meant for humans, moderation and common sense is key.
Dogs and Crab Meat – Any Benefits
The benefits of your dog eating crab meat comes from the high protein and vitamin B12 count. As we all know, protein is essential for energy, muscle and cell restoration (more specifically protein helps supply the amino acids that build hair, skin, nails, muscles, tendons, ligaments, and cartilage).
Vitamin B12 plays an important role in intestinal health, as well as brain function. A dogs failure to absorb Vitamin B12 can lead to serious health issues.
If your dog has been diagnosed with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency, crab meat is a worthwhile addition to their diet. The high levels of vitamin B12, will help counter the fact that the pancreas is unable to efficiently process the vitamin from normal food.
Can Dogs eat Crab-Meat – The Precautions
We will move onto the potential allergy factor of your dog eating crab meat in a moment. However, on a purely nutritional standpoint, you do need to watch the levels of crab meat your dog eats due to the high levels of sodium and cholesterol.
While crab-meat as an occasional treat would not be any cause for concern, too much sodium over an extended period of time can lead to health issues such hypernatremia, which in turn can bring about heart disease, high blood pressure and circuitry issues.
Dogs and Crabs and Iodine Allergies
Crab meat is actually quite high in iodine, and unfortunately some dogs are allergic to this chemical.
If you are aware that your dog has a bad reaction to iodine you should definitely steer clear of feeding them crab.
This also means you should exercise caution the first time you feed your dog crab. If they have an iodine allergy that you were not aware of, the symptoms could quickly show after a tasty meal of this particular seafood crustacean.
Symptoms of iodine allergy in dogs include stomach upset, diarrhea and the resulting lethargy. Your dog may also have a watery nose and eyes and actually look like they have some strain of dog flu.
If your dog shows these signs within 5 hours of eating crab meat, an allergic reaction is very likely the reason.
Crab-meat preparation for dogs
It is crucial that you cook the crab-meat first. Raw crab meat, either from your own catch, (if you are the outside seafaring type) or fresh from the fish market, should not be experimented with. Raw food diets are a matter of controversy between dog owners, and there are increased bacterial risks. Uncooked seafood is especially prone to such dangers.
However, should you wish to learn more about raw food feeding your dog, I recommend heading over to the Raw Paws website. This is a great resource with lots of products and information to help you begin feeding your dog raw food safely.
However, here your best course of action is to feed the crab meat once cooked. This could then be offered to your dog as a small treat, or alternatively ground up with his kibble for an increased protein and flavor hit.
Some dogs maybe allergic to crab meat so tread carefully that very first time you feed your pooch any.
If you are all clear on the allergy front, you should still only feed in moderation due to the high sodium and potential stomach upset that too much of any one food can give a dog. Cook well first, and try not to eat it all yourself.