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Can Dogs Eat Shrimp?

12/31/2018 by Colleen Williams
December 31st, 2018 by Colleen Williams

Yes, dogs can eat shrimp as long as it is plain and cooked, and only in small amounts. Steamed shrimp is the best shrimp for dogs, as fried or breaded shrimp contains unnecessary fats and oils that can be harmful.


Truth be told, there aren’t that many health benefits from shrimp as there are much better protein options like beef, fish, chicken or turkey. However, it is low in fat and calories, and some pups love the taste!

  • High in iron, calcium, and phosphorous
  • High in vitamin B12 and B3 (niacin) which is necessary for metabolic and GI health
  • High in antioxidants


While cooked, plain shrimp is okay for pups to eat, there are other things to consider when feeding your dog shrimp:

  • Raw shrimp is loaded with bacteria that can give your dog shellfish toxicity. It should always be thoroughly cooked and brought to the proper temperature before you give any to your dog.
  • Shrimp has high cholesterol, which can be harmful to your dog’s cardiovascular system.
  • Shrimp must be peeled and rid of veins and tails. Unpeeled shrimp is a choking hazard and can be hard to digest. If your dog eats a lot of unpeeled shrimp or shrimp with tails at once, those tough skins can get lodged in the intestines.
  • When cooking shrimp, remember that fried shrimp is unhealthy for your dog (large amounts of fat can cause GI upset or pancreatitis). Avoid cooking in butter, garlic and onions, or any other seasoning as well.
  • Remember – while shrimp may be okay served plain, that cocktail sauce is loaded with lots of dog no-nos (like garlic, onions, Worcestershire sauce), and especially if it’s low carb or “diet” and made with xylitol.

Curious about what is okay (and not so okay) for your dog to munch on? Check out our other articles on what human foods are safe for dogs.