It’s definitely a case of ‘fish skin for the win’ when it comes to the health and well-being of our favourite four-legged friends.
On a ‘scale’ of 1-10, it’s safe to say that this salubrious snack is right up there in terms of satisfying your dog’s nutritional needs.
These tasty treats are easily digestible, high in protein, low in fat, and contain Omega-3, which protects your pet’s own skin and promotes a silky and shiny coat.
While it might not look as appetising as the deep-fried option that comes accompanied with chips, mushy peas and gravy from our local chippy, there is absolutely no doubt that our dogs love to feast on these fishy fritters.
They come with a range of health benefits when eaten in moderation, they can come in handy for those pets with medical or dietary conditions, they can come in all different shapes and sizes to aid digestion, and they’re easy to get hold of.
They’re a win-win for both pets and pet parents!
Why is fish skin a good treat for your dog?
- Packed with protein: Snacks don’t come much healthier than fish skins. They are packed with high-quality proteins, which is a perfect formula to aid the formation of strong bones and muscles.
- Highly nutritious: A combination of vitamins, healthy fats and nutrients such as Omega-3 are all palatable power plays for the development of heart, brain, and ocular health. They also help improve skin and joint health.
- Easily digestible: The fact that fish skins are highly palatable and easy to ingest and digest means that they’re also an ideal treat to boost the development of puppies. While they should only be fed in moderation, as a treat, and not as the main part of your puppy’s diet, they can help provide essential building blocks for our growing canines, from the age of 12 weeks.
- Dental health: Fish skins are a healthier and a more nutritious alternative to dental chews. Most jerky-based fish skin snacks take some considerable chewing time to tackle, which provides a toothbrush effect when cleaning away the plaque from your dog’s teeth.
What types of fish skin can your dog eat as a treat?
While it’s vital to understand which types of fish are safe for your seafood-loving soldier to consume, it’s also essential to acknowledge the source of where they are coming from.
Fish skin treats can be supplied from all over the world so it’s important to do your homework when casting that line in a bid to find the perfect fishy feast for your fabulous four-legged family member.
Here at Applaws, we would strongly advise our pet parents to look for a local supplier, who can assure you, upon purchase, that their fish isare sustainably caught and processed.
It is vital to stay away from those species raised in fish farms – unless they follow all sustainability standards – as they are usually cultivated without health criteria in mind and can therefore contain harmful levels of toxins and antibiotics.
Instead, opt for small wild-caught species whose bodies and skin have a little amount of mercury and parasites. Examples of these are listed below.
It is also recommended that pet parents avoid feeding their dogs the skins of large fishes that have been swimming in our oceans for extensive periods of time. This is because they are likely to carry higher amounts of harmful mercury that could threaten your dog’s health. These include:
- Albacore tuna
- King mackerel
Can I feed my dog raw fish skins?
Fish skins are a delightful delicacy for our dexterous dogs if sourced in the right way.
These tremendous treats are a body-boosting, mouth-watering, protein-packed, vitamin-enriched option for filling that chasm in between meal times.
They’re filled with antioxidants, contain ample amounts of Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids and carry plenty of collagen to help keep the skin and skeletal system healthy.
They are also free from artificial flavours and preservatives so you know exactly what you’re getting from them. There are so many pros to feeding your canine these snacks, which come in cubes or blocks, twisted or plaited together, or grounded up and mixed with rice powder.
There are, however, a few things to look out for. Avoid feeding your dogs raw fish skins as they can carry health risks and try to steer clear of preparing your own homemade fish skin snacks as they can expose your dog to harmful parasites and bacteria if they are not cooked properly.
Finally, over-feeding your sidekick can lead to obesity and other medical concerns, so please find a happy and healthy balance when satisfying your pet’s nutritional needs. You can always count on your vet to provide any other guidance or advice if needed!
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