Can Canine Eat Squid? | Hold the Tail Wagging - Birds Animals
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Can Canine Eat Squid? | Hold the Tail Wagging


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I recently received a freezer dump that included wild goose and squid.  My dogs love wild goose (nutrient profile on Patreon) but I’ve never fed squid before.  So my first step when I’m considering introducing new food to my dogs’ diet is to check out the nutrient profile.

In a quick search on the benefits of squid, I could only find sites that discouraged feeding squid raw – but these are also sites that don’t support raw feeding, so…the research continued. 

This is what I learned…

Benefits of Squid for Dogs

Moderate Protein – Squid (or calamari) is a moderate protein – so this isn’t something that I would feed as a main protein like beef, turkey, venison, and pork.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids – Squid is an okay source of Omega 3 fatty acids; the best source of Omega 3s are oily fishes like salmon, sardines, and mackerel.

Mercury Levels – If you’re concerned about mercury levels, calamari seems to be the least affected; sardine, trout, and herring have also tested low in mercury levels.

Choline – Squid is a great source of choline (which supports liver and cognitive health); eggs are the best source. When I created my first nutrient spreadsheet, choline (pronounced co-lean) was the first nutrient that I realized was partially absent from my dog’s diet.

Selenium – Squid is an excellent source of selenium, a mineral that helps support and strengthen the immune system.

Copper – This is my biggest concern – copper.  Squid is high in copper – this isn’t a bad thing.  Copper is an important mineral that supports bone health, the nervous system, the heart, iron metabolism, and the creation of red blood cells.  But too much copper can negatively impact liver health in dogs.  This is why I would like to see this protein in the ADF because it’ll help me understand how much I can add to a meal prep without reaching excessive copper levels.

Cholesterol – Calamari is high in cholesterol, however, this means something different in dogs than in humans.  It’s hard to find information about how high cholesterol foods impact our dogs.  Some sites seem to be very against fresh food or only want us to feed fresh food in moderation (as a treat).  From this, if I have a dog that repeatedly has high scores in their area when we do blood work, then I would speak to my vet about these foods.

Squid Nutritional Facts

I sent in a request to add squid (calamari) to the Animal Diet Formulator team to gain more information specific to dogs.  This is what I’ve learned via Google and the ADF confirms these numbers..

  • Calories  92 kcal
  • Carbohydrate  3.08 g
  • Fat  1.38 g  
  • Saturated Fat  0.36 g  
  • Monounsaturated Fat  0.11 g  
  • Polyunsaturated Fat  0.52 g    
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids  0.50 g    
  • Omega-6 Fatty Acids  0.01 g
  • Protein  15.58 g

Which Vitamins are in Squid?

  • Riboflavin (B2)  0.41 mg
  • Cobalamin (B12)  1.30 mcg
  • Choline  65.0 mg
  • Niacin (B3)   2.18 mg
  • Vitamin C  4.70 mg
  • Vitamin E  1.20 mg
  • Pantothenic Acid (B5)  0.50 mg
  • Pyridoxine (B6)  0.06 mg
  • Thiamin (B1)  0.02 mg
  • Folate  5.0 mcg
  • Vitamin A  10 mcg RAE

Which Minerals are in Squid?

  • Copper  1.89 mg
  • Selenium  44.8 mcg
  • Phosphorus  221.0 mg
  • Zinc  1.53 mg
  • Magnesium  33.0 mg
  • Potassium   246.0 mg
  • Iron  0.68 mg
  • Calcium  32.0 mg
  • Sodium  44.0 mg
  • Manganese  0.04 mg

Why I’m Adding Squid to My Dogs’ Raw Diet

Squid is a nutritious food that is high in protein and minerals while being low in carbs and calories.  Since I don’t plan to fry it up for my dogs, it’ll be a healthy addition to their diet.

I was excited to read that squid is a great source of Vitamins B12 and B6, selenium, and Vitamin E.  And although some sites warn us about the cholesterol, dogs don’t respond the same as humans (if you’re concerned, see your vet) and I read that shellfish tends to lower, not raise, blood cholesterol levels.

Is Squid Ink Safe for Dogs?

One of the main concerns was the squid ink. Did I need to clean the squid before adding it to my meal prep?


Turns out that squid ink is used as an ingredient in Meditteranean and Japanese dishes. According to Healthline, squid ink is comprised of “melanin, enzymes, polysaccharides, catecholamines (hormones), metals like cadmium, lead, and copper, as well as amino acids, such as glutamate, taurine, alanine, leucine, and aspartic acid.”

Benefits of Squid Ink

Of course, whenever I see a list of amazing benefits, I have to ask HOW MUCH squid do I have to add to my dogs’ diet to get these benefits. That, I don’t know.

How I Feed Squid to My Dogs’ Raw Diet

After making sure that squid is safe for my dogs, I began rotating it into my dogs’ diet. I grind a package of squid (not sure how many) and mix it into large batches of food. It’s never the main protein; instead, I prefer to add it as one of the ingredients in my meal prep.

More nutrient information from the USDA 

Read More About Raw Feeding




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