Last Updated on July 1, 2021 by adrienne hardwick
Humans eat raw eggs all the time. That sneaky bite (or ten) of raw cookie dough, the lick of the spoon when you finish mixing up the cake batter, or maybe you’re one of those people who like to drink raw eggs in the morning. So, if you can eat them can your dog?
You can mix raw egg with dog food. In fact, raw egg does have nutritional benefits such as protein and helpful fatty amino acids that provide healthier skin and a shiny coat. While there is a minimal risk of salmonella, raw eggs are the perfect treat as part of a balanced diet.
If you want to learn more about the benefits of raw eggs for your dog, the best way to serve them, and any potential risks that come with raw eggs, you’re in the perfect place.
Benefits of Raw Eggs
Just because your dog can eat raw eggs isn’t always a good enough reason for you to give it to them. So, let’s take you through some of the key benefits of feeding your pup raw eggs.
First, they are a massive source of protein. This is important for maintaining healthy muscles and also providing them with plenty of energy to get through the day. You will also find they are packed with fatty amino acids that boost skin health and keep their coats shiny and soft.
They are also full of fantastic vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, vitamin B, riboflavin, folate, iron, and selenium. These help everything from maintaining a strong immune system, good eye health, and supporting healthy joints and bones.
Are Raw Eggs Safe for Dogs?
Raw eggs are safe for dogs. If you read online, there are a lot of articles that will take you through the dangers of raw eggs. Sure, there are some risks – but none of them are nearly as terrifying or dangerous as these pieces make them out to be.
Yes, there is a small risk of your dog contracting salmonella from raw eggs. Let me tell you why this is unlikely though. First, dogs are natural scavengers and their ability to digest and fight off bacteria is much better and more robust than ours.
There are pups who have more sensitive digestive systems, but on the whole, you will find dogs are able to eat a lot of weird things without getting sick. While dogs can get salmonella, it is highly unlikely and their highly acidic stomachs tend to kill it off.
Secondly, in the UK it is law for commercial hens to be vaccinated against salmonella – making them equally safe for dogs and humans. In other countries, this may not be the case, but in the UK your eggs are perfectly safe unless you know you’re getting them from unvaccinated hens.
There are also articles explaining biotin deficiencies and how they can come from raw eggs. Now, there is some truth to this but, once again, it has been exaggerated. The biotin inhibitor is called Advin and is found in vitamin B7 and is found in the egg whites.
However, the yolks contain incredibly high levels of biotin that effectively balance the Advin in the whites out. Therefore, the risk of a deficiency becomes exceptionally low. Furthermore, your dog would have to eat A LOT of eggs to become deficient, and I really do mean a lot.
Scrambled vs Raw Eggs
Both options are perfectly valid, and we actually have a guide on giving your dog scrambled eggs that you can find here. Scrambled eggs are particularly encouraged when your dog has an upset stomach, and both options provide excellent nutritional value to your pup.
However, raw eggs are superior in the sense that none of the vitamins and minerals are reduced or removed through cooking. They remain a healthier option in terms of nutritional value and are encouraged as a treat as well as part of raw feeding.
Just remember, no more than 10% of your dog’s diet should consist of treat-like foods such as eggs. This is to keep them on a balanced diet and ensure they are getting the right amount of nutrients to remain healthy.
Take a look at our guide to tell all about feeding scrambled eggs to your dog.
How to Feed Raw Eggs to Dogs
It’s so simple, you just crack the egg over your dog’s food and it’s done. You aren’t limited to chicken eggs either – you can try duck, quail, ostrich, anything you like. The important thing is that you pick eggs that are suitable for your dog’s size so that you don’t overfeed.
If your dog has an allergy to chicken eggs, some of the suggested alternatives might be a much better match. Quail eggs are also perfect for small dogs as they are still packed with nutrients but are small enough that you won’t be overfeeding them.
Duck eggs are much larger and, therefore, might be suited to large or giant breeds because they can get just as much out of one duck egg as two chicken eggs. It’s all up to you, just make sure you keep their diet balanced and feed them eggs no more than two or three times a week.
How Many Raw Eggs Should I Feed My Dog?
This can be a little tricky because it depends on the type of egg and the size of the dog. To keep things simple, let’s just stick with a standard chicken egg as I briefly discussed other egg sizes in the previous section.
For small dogs, you should beat one chicken egg and feed it to them over a couple of days. Larger dogs can handle the calorific content of a whole chicken egg, and medium dogs should have half an egg. However, there is another factor at play.
The activity levels of your dog also count. If you have a very active dog (we’re talking herding breeds and working dogs) you will likely find that they need a little more. Couch potatoes, on the other hand, will need less.
You know your dog better than anyone, so it’s down to common sense and determining the best additions to your dog’s diet. You should also ensure that you consult your vet first so that they can approve any changes and give you advice about the next steps.
Are Eggshells What They’re Cracked Up to Be?
You’ll have to excuse our little pun (or don’t, I love it), but there is a lot of controversy surrounding eggshells – just visit any raw feeding group on Facebook.
The eggshell is actually really good for your dog, and you shouldn’t throw it away. Now, I know some owners are worried about the sharp pieces causing injuries or blockages, and while this is highly unlikely you can grind the shells down for your own peace of mind.
Eggshells are packed with calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and potassium to name but a few. These are great for healthy bones, teeth, and gums, as well as boosting muscle strength. It’s a fantastic nutritional boost to their diet that they are sure to love.
Some dogs love to eat the whole egg, cracking it open themselves and eating it all. Just be warned, this option can get pretty messy. Not all dogs will enjoy the shell, but most will, and grinding it up into a powder can be a great way to get those extra nutrients into them.
Does raw egg in dog food help dry skin?
Raw egg in dog food can help dry skin, it is full of helpful amino acids that provide a shinier coat as well as healthier skin. You will notice that over time, raw eggs help to stop flakiness and your dog will itch a lot less as the skin becomes better moisturised.
Can raw eggs cause dog poisoning?
Raw eggs do have a low risk of causing dog poisoning in the form of salmonella. In the UK, hens that are used for commercial laying must be vaccinated against salmonella so the risk is exceptionally low unless you are using your own eggs from unvaccinated hens.
Raw eggs are a great treat to add to your dog’s food. They have loads of nutritional benefits to keep them healthy, taste great, and even the shells can be served for extra crunch and nutrients. While salmonella is always going to be a risk, it remains exceptionally low.
If you found this guide interesting and helpful, make sure you check out the rest of our canine care series. It’s written by us, the experts, to help you become the best dog owner and it covers everything from diet and health all the way to training, behaviour, and little quirks.
For over a decade, Adrienne has been a freelance content writer and blogger who’s passion lies in anything related to dogs. Growing up, dogs were a very important part of family life in the Hardwick household. Now, Adrienne is the proud parent to two Swedish Vallhunds called Moose and Pumpkin.