Eggs are a healthy way to consume protein for humans. We typically eat them fully cooked but let’s face it, many of us have eaten raw cookie dough containing raw eggs. But have you ever considered a cracked raw egg over dog food? In this article, we reveal whether it’s healthy or has risks.
Keep reading as we dive into the debate to help you determine if raw eggs are a protein your dog needs or not. Let’s get cracking!
The Debate Over Feeding Dogs Raw Eggs
There are conflicting opinions over whether a cracked raw egg over dog food is healthy or if it can endanger your pup. If you do an online search, you’ll find many sources against feeding dogs raw eggs. But for each of those, you’ll also find one that says it’s a recommended way to get protein and other nutrients into a dog’s diet.
Resources like PetMD and AKC (American Kennel Club) dissuade you from feeding dogs raw eggs. For example, PetMD cites that cooked eggs, hard-boiled or scrambled, are perfectly healthy for canines. They have great nutritional value for dogs due to being a source of fatty acids, vitamins, minerals, and protein. Even the eggshell can be consumed. However, they report there’s no nutritional value from raw eggs.
They claim that a raw egg can cause a Salmonella bacterial infection in your dog, resulting in vomiting, diarrhea, fevers, and drowsiness. It’s the same type humans can contract.
Furthermore, the AKC claims that feeding raw eggs to a dog can cause biotin deficiency. Biotin supports healthy skin, cells, and digestion. While a lack of it is rare in canines, egg whites contain avidin, an enzyme that prevents the absorption of biotin. So, they recommend keeping dogs away from raw eggs.
Some claim these as myths. For example, pro-raw egg pet owners argue that while eggs can occasionally contain harmful Salmonella, dogs have a carnivorous digestive system that allows them to consume raw foods like meat and eggs. Since their stomachs have high acidity, it’s more likely to disregard Salmonella than contract it.
Another source of contention thought to be a myth is that egg whites contain avidin. While there is avidin in the whites, high levels of biotin in the egg yolk may balance out the threat. And since biotin deficiency is so rare in canines, they suggest a dog would need an extraordinary amount to be affected negatively.
So, who’s right? Are raw diets healthy or horrible for dogs?
So, Can You Crack Raw Eggs Over Your Dog’s Food?
While we have our opinion, which we’ll share shortly, feeding your dog’s raw eggs is a personal decision. Ultimately, it’s up to the pet owner. Of course, cooked eggs are safer, but the risks of a dog eating one raw are minimal. And the nutritional difference is negligible.
What do we suggest? Well, we would rather err on the side of caution and feed our dogs fully cooked hard-boiled or scrambled eggs as a regular practice. They’re an excellent source of protein that can easily be added to their food or given as a snack.
However, we also see no issue with feeding a fresh, raw egg every once in a while. When we’re at our family’s farm, and a freshly collected egg is accidentally broken, we absolutely let our dogs enjoy it.
We believe the key here is not to feed old or cheap raw eggs to reduce the chances of them being bad. Just keep in mind the risks and watch for any signs your dog isn’t feeling well afterward.
What Are the Risks of a Cracked Raw Egg Over Dog Food?
The risks of a cracked raw egg over dog food are usually very minimal, but as many resources point out, your pet could acquire Salmonella or, theoretically, a biotin deficiency.
A biotin deficiency is very rare, especially if you feed your dog the egg’s yolk, which contains biotin, along with the whites that contain the biotin-absorbing avidin. And balancing your pet’s meals with other nutrient-rich foods to ensure they get the vitamin will substantially lower the risk of a deficiency.
Overall, cooked eggs are safer. Think of it this way, if there’s an egg you wouldn’t eat, it’s likely not good for your dog either. For example, you wouldn’t pick up a dirty or old egg and pop it in your mouth. So why would you subject your dog to it? Human-grade food is the key to both your stomach and digestive systems.
Additionally, dogs with food sensitivities or sensitive stomachs may not handle the sudden change in diet. Watch for vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, and itchiness as some possible reactions.
What Benefits Do Eggs Have for Dogs?
Eggs have similar benefits for dogs as they do for humans. However, eggs should be considered a supplement and not your dog’s entire meal. Let’s look at three of the main advantages they have for your fur baby.
Fatty acids, saturated and unsaturated, are in egg yolk. They help build and maintain body cells. The fatty acids break down fat and allow vitamins in.
Vitamins build a dog’s immune system, regulate their metabolism, and help them grow. Therefore, they’re essential to a canine’s diet. The following concentrated vitamins are in egg yolk: vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin K, vitamin B1, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, riboflavin, niacin, choline, and folic acid.
Egg whites contain amino acids, which a dog needs to build muscle. It’s protein that gets broken down and absorbed through the animal’s GI (gastrointestinal intestinal) tract. The nutrients in egg whites are arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, and valine.
What Drawbacks Are There To Feeding Your Dog Eggs?
In addition to the risks associated with putting a cracked raw egg over your dog’s food, there are additional potential drawbacks to adding eggs to their meals.
Eggs average around 78 calories. While that’s not a lot, it’s an increase from your dog’s regular meal. So, you’ll just want to keep the calories in mind and find a balance with other food. Dogs struggling with obesity should probably lay off these high-calorie add-ons.
Secondly, eggs can cause your canine increased flatulence. If you think a raw or cooked egg is stinky, just wait for the horrific odor after it goes through your dog’s intestines!
Thirdly, dogs with pre-existing conditions like kidney disease, heart disease, or diabetes should always get veterinary permission before making changes to their diet. While eggs provide nutrients, those may not necessarily be helpful to your particular dog.
Finally, a drawback may be that your fur baby simply won’t eat it. Some pups are picky eaters, and eggs aren’t on the menu.
What About Feeding Eggshells?
You can feed your dog the entire egg, shell included. Eggshells are full of good things with health benefits that promote growth. They contain the following minerals: calcium, magnesium, sodium, phosphorus, chloride, potassium, iron, copper, zinc, manganese, selenium, and iodine.
How Do You Know If Your Dog Is Allergic to Eggs?
Before you feed your dog eggs, determine if they’re allergic. Similar to humans, canines can have food allergies. Specifically, they can be allergic to proteins in food.
If your dog has an allergic reaction, it may vomit, have diarrhea, or itchy skin. Consult your veterinarian if you suspect your pup may be allergic to eggs or another food.
How Many Times a Week Can Dogs Eat Eggs?
When adding eggs to your dog’s diet, ensure they also get other protein sources. You can probably feed them one every day of the week. But they probably shouldn’t consume more than one egg a day. So, you can safely cook a hard-boiled egg and feed your pup the whole thing, shell included, as a snack every day.
Consider Adding Eggs to Your Dog’s Meal for Added Nutrition
Adding a source of protein like eggs to your dog’s diet is a great way to enhance its nutrition. And easy if you eat eggs too. You can simply cook an extra for the furry member of your family. Remember, your pup can eat the shell too!
Are you ready to cook up some eggs from your fur baby? Let us know how it likes it in the comments below.
Stay Informed – Join the HypePets Community!
If you’re like us, your pets are like family. Stay up to date on the latest news, info, tips, and gear to help your pet live its best life!