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Can Dogs Eat Lobster? Vet-Approved Facts & FAQ

Written by: Ed Malaker

Last Updated on June 6, 2024 by Dogster Team

lobster meat and shell on wooden board

Can Dogs Eat Lobster? Vet-Approved Facts & FAQ

VET APPROVED

Dr. Lauren Demos  Photo

REVIEWED & FACT-CHECKED BY

Dr. Lauren Demos

DVM (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

Providing your dog with a varied diet can help them have access to more nutrients and keep them happier, as they likely enjoy trying new foods. However, it’s important to ensure that those foods are good for canines. One item that many people wonder about is lobster, as it’s a popular food, especially on special occasions.

Fortunately, dogs can eat lobster, but keep reading for the best ways to serve it, the potential risks, and other interesting facts that will help you be better informed.

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Benefits of Feeding Lobster to Dogs

Low Calorie

One of the biggest benefits of giving lobster to your dog is that it’s low in calories, so it won’t contribute to weight gain like many other treats will.

Chunks of cooked cut lobster meat on a plastic white cutting board
Image Credit: BW Folsom, Shutterstock

High Protein

Lobster is high in protein, which is important for energy and muscle growth. Dogs require a large amount of protein to stay active throughout the day, and puppies need even more to help them develop into healthy adults.

Nutrients

Lobster adds many important nutrients to your pet’s health, including vitamin B12, selenium, and zinc. Additionally, it offers omega-3 fatty acids, which are beneficial for heart health and can aid in reducing inflammation. Glucosamine and chondroitin are also important ingredients that help with joint health.

close view of meat from cooked lobster
Image Credit: Toasted Pictures, Shutterstock

Taste

Many dog owners report that their pets are quite fond of lobster and are often happy when it is available.

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Downsides of Feeding Lobster to Dogs

Allergies

Dogs can develop allergies to various foods, including shellfish like lobster. Common signs of an allergic reaction include itching, hives, swelling, vomiting, and diarrhea. If you suspect that your dog might be allergic to shellfish or lobster, consult a veterinarian before offering it to your pet.

dog scratching ear
Image Credit: TamaraLSanchez, Shutterstock

High Sodium Content

A significant concern when feeding lobster to dogs is its high sodium content. Excessive salt intake can lead to salt toxicosis in dogs, resulting in signs like extreme thirst, urination, vomiting, diarrhea, tremors, and seizures. Since most human dishes are seasoned with salt, it’s crucial to avoid giving seasoned or salted lobster to your dog.

High Cholesterol

Lobster contains a high amount of cholesterol, which can be problematic for dogs and lead to diarrhea, vomiting, and other health problems.

Fresh cooked lobster meat at seafood market
Image Credit: Cindy Goff, Shutterstock

Choking Hazards and Digestive Issues

Feeding whole pieces of lobster to dogs can pose a choking hazard, particularly if the dog is small or the lobster contains sharp shells or bones. Swallowing these can lead to serious injuries or blockages in your dog’s digestive system, requiring immediate medical attention. Therefore, remove all shells and bones, and only feed your dog small, easily digestible portions of cooked lobster.

Tips for Feeding Lobster to Dogs:
  • Remove the lobster shell, any bones, and any seasoning or sauces that may harm your pet.
  • Boil or steam the lobster without added salt or spices.
  • While lobster can offer nutritional benefits to dogs, you should only give it to your pet occasionally as a treat. Stick to commercial dog food for their primary meals, as it provides a balanced nutrition that’s difficult to replicate at home.

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Alternatives to Lobster

If you’re looking for safe alternatives to lobster with similar nutritional benefits, several dog-friendly options are available. Consider small amounts of cooked lean meats like chicken, turkey, or lean beef for protein. For omega-3 fatty acids, you can incorporate fish like salmon or sardines into your dog’s diet.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What Should I Do If My Dog Accidentally Eats Seasoned Lobster?

If your dog consumes seasoned lobster or any food with harmful substances, monitor them closely for adverse reactions, and contact your veterinarian immediately if you notice any concerning signs.

shepherd dog being checked by a vet
Image Credit: VeronArt16, Shutterstock

Can Puppies Eat Lobster?

Puppies have more delicate digestive systems than adult dogs and are more susceptible to allergies, so it’s better to avoid feeding lobster to puppies and focus on a puppy-specific diet.

Can Dogs Eat Lobster Tails?

While lobster tails are the safest part to feed dogs, they should be thoroughly cooked, free of seasoning, and served in small portions to avoid potential hazards.

Fresh cooked lobster meat at seafood market
Image Credit: Cindy Goff, Shutterstock

Can Dogs Eat Lobster on a Raw Diet?

Feeding lobster to a dog on a raw diet can be risky due to the potential presence of parasites and the difficulty of properly preparing it to ensure safety. Therefore, cooking it properly before feeding it to your dog is best.

Are Commercial Lobster Treats Available?

Some commercial dog treats are lobster flavored, but it’s crucial to check the ingredient list and consult your veterinarian before offering them to your dog.

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Conclusion

Lobster can be a healthy and safe treat for your pet on special occasions if you serve it fully cooked without seasonings and with the bones and shells removed. It provides several healthy nutrients that can benefit your dog’s health and coat, and it’s low calorie, so it won’t contribute to weight gain, and many dogs enjoy the taste. However, be careful that they aren’t allergic to it, and note that lobster is high in sodium and cholesterol, so you will need to watch the portion size.


Featured Image Credit: Joerg Beuge, Shutterstock

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