Can Dogs

Can Dogs Eat Tuna – Is Tuna Safe Or Bad For Canines?

In most local pet stores, when you browse dog food, you’ll realize there are countless different ingredients and components utilized to create it

Premium dog food brands manufacturers use duck, wild boar, fish, and lamb. This much variety can be confusing, let alone figuring out which protein sources are safe and healthy for your beloved dog. 

Fish-based dog foods are high in omega-3 fatty acids and proteins. 

If you’re like many people and like giving your four-legged friend a taste of your own meals.

You may have wondered can a dog eat tuna or not? The short answer is yes, but pet parent needs to consider some essential factors and specific ways to feed tuna to their dogs, and that’s what we’ll discuss in this article.

Can Dogs Eat Tuna? 

You can feed your dog tuna but always make sure to balance it as an occasional treat, not a regular meal.

This is due to the potentially high levels of mercury and sodium. 

The only health risk or concern related to tuna is the presence of mercuryThis is also present in any type of fish and concerns humans, not just animals.

Dogs can handle both raw and cooked tuna, but it is much better to feed your dog cooked tuna to be on the safe side. 

As some experts say, fresh tuna has higher mercury than canned tuna. 

But canned tuna has potentially higher levels of sodium.

Excessive mercury and excessive salt content can cause a harmful reaction in dogs. 

High sodium levels may cause pancreatitis and make your dog exceptionally thirsty. 

You need to check if there are any additional seasonings when you go out to buy canned tuna. Avoid canned tuna with the herbs like garlic or onions. These toxic ingredients may cause stomach upsets for dogs.

To be on the safe side, avoid canned tuna in oil and go for tuna canned in water with no additional ingredients.

Can Dogs Eat Tuna – Is Tuna Safe Or Bad For Canines?How much tuna should your dog eat?

A quarter tin of tuna should be an acceptable amount depending on the size of your dog.

You can try several other tuna recipes as a surprise and treat. It is safe to feed both raw and cooked tuna. 

Can puppies eat tuna?

Yes, like adult dogs, puppies can eat tuna but once again, in moderation. Tuna can be a healthy source of proteins for puppies and may be easier for them to eat than tougher meat like wild game-type meats.

Health Benefits Of Tuna For Dogs

Tuna has beneficial vitamins and minerals for dogs

Fish offers so many health benefits for all carnivorous animals. 

Tuna contains several vitamins and minerals which are highly and beneficial to canines. 

Such minerals include potassium, magnesium, selenium, and phosphorous. 

Also, tuna with B3, B6, B12, and omega 3 is great for heart health. 

Can Dogs Eat Tuna – Is Tuna Safe Or Bad For Canines? this dog likes eating tuna

It has also been shown in helping to prevent blood clots irregular heart rhythms, and improve cholesterol levels.

The fish oils also provide immense benefits to a dog’s coat and skin.

Dogs with a genetic predisposition to heart conditions can reduce their chances of heart issues with healthy doses of omega-3 fats.

Safe alternative to protein

Tuna is a safe, healthy, and easy protein alternative for dogs. Principally for dogs who have a sensitive constitution. 

Tuna is easy to digest and less likely to cause a stomach upset. 

Is Tuna Used In Dog Food Products

As a matter of fact, tuna fish is sometimes used for dog food, but it’s more common to see it in cat food products. As experts suggest, too much tuna can cause harsh health issues to canines. So it’s not usually found as the main ingredient. 

Fish is a good source of calcium, vitamin B, protein, selenium, and omega-3 fats. 

Fish types like tuna or salmon can be a healthy and yummy treat for dogs. Either fresh tuna canned or tinned tuna is also acceptable for dogs. 

How To Feed Your Dog Tuna?

So now that you know your dog can eat tuna, we’ll sum everything up in a quick guide.

  • Feed a small portion of raw tuna as compared to cooked fish. 
  •  Dogs can eat cooked and raw tuna. If you want to feed your buddy raw tuna, carefully remove all bones from the tuna. As they can cause issues. 

According to a few vets, raw tuna or fish has particular enzymes which can affect your dog’s health

  • If you want to serve canned tuna, get only water-based tuna and remove all bones mentioned above. 
  • Add small pieces of tuna to your dog’s wet food and surprise your honey buddy.
  • Cut up tuna into small pieces so that your pet can easily chew or swallow its food. One to two sliced pieces of tuna is a healthy and nutritious treat for your dog. 
  • Even though you can add tuna to any healthy recipe for your pet, make sure not to add any spices. 

Some dogs are allergic to tuna, so you should observe your pet’s reaction when introducing tuna. 

  • Start by feeding one small sliced piece of tuna and observing any allergic reaction.


Although dogs can eat tuna, as mentioned above, keep it in moderation.

Don’t force your dog to eat it if they don’t want to, as some dogs may not like it. Feed tuna in small portions and check for allergic reactions.

If in doubt about any food, think of it logically. 

Is it processed?

If a dog was born in the wild, would it catch this food by itself?

Would it be eating that food as part of its regular diet? 

If you’re not sure, the answer is probably no, and you should seek expert advice before feeding it.

Johni Barresto

Johni Barresto Is a father and animal lover. With a range of expertise in animal health, he decided to start Animal Heed. His passion is to share his knowledge to help animal owners worldwide. When not in front of his computer, he's out with his kids, teaching them the importance of animal care.

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