Dog on floor staring at egg

Key takeaway

Eggs can be a healthy snack for dogs when they’re cooked thoroughly. However, some dogs should not eat eggs, such as those with allergies or medical conditions. Before feeding your dog a new food, consult your vet to ensure it’s safe and healthy for them.

Sharing human food with your pets is part of the pet parent experience. However, some foods are dangerous for your pets, while others can be healthy and nutritious, such as eggs. Cooked eggs are a safe snack for dogs, and they’re very nutritious. Eggs are a great source of protein, fatty acids, and vitamins that can support your dog’s overall health and wellbeing.1

Now that you understand that eggs are safe for dogs, you must learn how to feed eggs to your dog properly. Of course, you should always feed your dog in moderation and monitor them after feeding them anything new to ensure they don’t have a bad reaction. This article will discuss feeding your dog eggs, the benefits of eggs for dogs, and how to safely feed dogs eggs.

Can dogs eat eggs?

Feeding Your Dog Eggs

Dogs can eat eggs. However, you should ensure the eggs are fully cooked and never feed your dog raw eggs that could be contaminated with bacteria. Additionally, you should only feed your dog high-quality eggs from a trusted source. Dogs of all ages can enjoy eggs, including senior dogs and puppies. Eggs offer dogs the benefit of protein, and they can make an effective dietary supplement or treat for dogs.1

Of course, if you want to feed your dog something new, talk to your vet first. Some dogs shouldn’t eat eggs, and consuming too many eggs can lead to obesity and diabetes if your dog is consuming too many calories and not getting enough physical activity. Moreover, eggs should not be used as a meal for your dogs because it doesn't provide all the vitamins and nutrients your dog needs to stay healthy. Instead, you can use eggs for treats or as a way to share a healthy snack with your animal companion.

Are Eggs Good for Dogs?

Eggs are a healthy snack for your dog, and they come with many benefits. The benefits of giving your dog eggs include:

Benefits of feeding your dog eggs

Protein: Eggs are packed with protein that your dog needs to build strong muscles while helping their body function properly. Protein also contributes to healthy skin and fur.

Fatty Acids: Healthy fatty acids promote healthy skin and coat while playing a role in immune function and cell growth. They also aid in joint health. If your dog isn’t getting enough fatty acids, they may have dry, flaky skin or a dull coat.

Vitamins: Eggs are filled with essential vitamins your dog needs to stay healthy, including:

  • Iron
  • Selenium
  • Vitamin A
  • Folate
  • Riboflavin
  • Vitamin B121

Even though eggs have many nutritional benefits, dogs cannot survive or thrive on eggs alone. They need a balanced diet of kibble or wet food that contains all the nutrients they need for proper growth and development. Additionally, you should never overfeed your dog eggs. If you want to give them eggs with their dinner, consider giving them fewer treats or less kibble throughout the day so they can eat the proper amount of calories without gaining weight.

How to Feed a Dog Eggs

Now that you understand the benefits of eggs for dogs, it’s time to learn how to feed your dog eggs.

1. Choose your eggs carefully

Your eggs should come from a trusted and organic source to ensure quality. It’s typically best to purchase free-range eggs on an organic diet because the healthier the chicken that laid the egg is, the healthier the egg will be.1 Additionally, consider purchasing eggs that have not been chemically treated.1

You should also keep your eggs for your dog in the fridge as you do with your own eggs. It’s typically best to refrigerate eggs in the carton at 40 degrees Fahrenheit or colder.2

2. Cook the eggs

Always feed your dog cooked eggs. Now, if you’re asking yourself, “can dogs eat hard-boiled eggs?”, you’ll be happy to know that you can feed your dog either hard-boiled or scrambled egg whites. What’s most important is that the egg is fully cooked. It's also important to avoid seasoning the egg before giving it to your dog. Your dog does not need added salt or pepper. If you plan to scramble your dog’s eggs, refrain from using any oil or butter.

Never, under any circumstances, feed your dog raw eggs. Raw diets are dangerous for dogs and humans and can result in serious illnesses due to the bacteria. Feeding your dog raw eggs puts them at risk of contracting salmonella and having fever, vomiting, canine diarrhea, and lethargy.1 Expired eggs or those that have been sitting out can also contain harmful bacteria.1

Child feeding egg whites to dog

3. Feed your dog eggs

It’s recommended to only feed your pet egg whites because egg yolks have a higher fat content, which can potentially lead to pancreatitis. Additionally, egg whites are the healthiest part of the egg since most of the protein is located here, making them a safer and healthier alternative than eggs with yolks.

How you feed your dog eggs depends on the way you cook them. There are only two safe options for cooking egg whites: hard-boiled and scrambled. Here are just a few ideas for ways you can feed your dog eggs:

  • As a food topper: Some dogs can be picky eaters. If your dog won’t eat their food once you pour it into their bowl, consider adding something delicious on top to increase their appetite. Scrambled eggs typically work best as a food topper, but you can also chop up hard-boiled egg whites and mix it into your dog’s food.
  • Plain: Your dog can also eat eggs alone, which can be a great choice if you simply want to feed them an egg or you have some egg left over from your breakfast. Remember, never let your dog eat an egg with seasoning, butter, or oil and only feed them the egg whites.
  • As a treat: Eggs are a healthy alternative to treats. However, if you want to give your dog an egg as a treat, feed it to them as soon as possible. This is because eggs that sit out can start to grow harmful bacteria.

If you’re planning on feeding your dog eggs, don’t ever let the egg sit out for more than two hours after it has been cooked.2 If you’re going to use eggs as a food topper, clean your dog’s bowls out when they’re done so they don’t end up eating bacteria that has formed since the egg was cooked.

Some dogs should not have eggs at all. Believe it or not, dogs can be allergic to eggs, so it’s important to know the symptoms of food allergies in dogs to ensure your dog doesn’t have a negative reaction to eggs. Common signs of food allergies include:

Can Dogs Eat Eggshells?

Technically, dogs can eat eggshells, but it’s not always the best idea to feed them to your dog. Eggshells are filled with several nutrients, including calcium, but there are safer ways to supplement their diet than feeding them eggshells with sharp edges.1 If you want to feed your dog eggshells for any reason, it’s always best to discuss it with your vet. Your vet may be able to find other options to get your pet the nutrients they need.

When Not to Give a Dog Eggs

While eggs are a healthy snack for dogs, some dogs should not eat them. For example, dogs who are allergic should never be given eggs. Additionally, dogs shouldn't eat raw eggs.

Graphic: Risks of feeding your dog raw eggs

Of course, accidents happen. Maybe you drop an egg or get raw egg on the floor while you’re cooking. If your dog consumes raw eggs, monitor them for symptoms over the next few hours. For peace of mind, you can also call your vet and see if they recommend bringing your dog in to get tested for salmonellosis.1

It’s always best to play it safe when it comes to your pet's health. Before you start feeding your dog any new foods, including eggs, talk to your vet. Eggs may not benefit some dogs due to medical conditions, including diabetes and obesity.1

Can Dogs Eat Eggs?: Frequently Asked Questions

Can I give my dog an egg daily?

It’s considered relatively safe to feed your dog egg whites daily. However, talk to your veterinarian to ensure eggs are safe for them, whether they have a medical illness or not.

How should I cook eggs for my dog?

As long as the eggs are thoroughly cooked, you can cook the eggs any way you want. Additionally, the eggs you feed your dog should never contain oil, butter, salt, pepper, or additional seasonings.

Can dogs eat raw eggs?

Dogs should never consume raw eggs because they contain bacteria and salmonella, which can harm your pet. Salmonella can also be passed from dogs to humans, so it’s always best to cook raw food before feeding it to your pet.

Can eggs give my dog diarrhea?

Some dogs may have an upset stomach after ingesting eggs, especially if your dog’s digestive system isn’t used to it. Food allergies can also cause diarrhea in dogs.

Final Notes

Egg whites are considered a relatively safe and healthy snack for dogs when consumed in moderation and cooked thoroughly. However, it’s always best to consult your vet before introducing your dog to any new foods. Even if it’s just a little bit of egg, new foods can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs, resulting in vomiting after eating and diarrhea.

A Dutch-affiliated veterinarian can help you determine whether feeding your dog eggs is safe and recommended depending on their lifestyle, age, size, and medical history. While many dogs enjoy eating eggs, some dogs should not have any human foods at all.

References

  1. Arford, Kaitlyn. “Can Dogs Eat Eggs?” American Kennel Club, American Kennel Club, 24 Nov. 2021, https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/nutrition/can-dogs-eat-eggs/.

  2. “Eggs.” The Nutrition Source, 6 July 2021, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/eggs/.