My Dog Ate Anchovies What Should I Do?

Reviewed By Julie •  Updated: 03/04/23 •  3 min read
Dog Mild Toxicity Level
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Dog Ate Anchovies

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Anchovies, some people enjoy them on pizza or in Mediterranean dishes. Others love to eat these fish right out of the can! As you’re eating, your dog may come up and beg for some of these small fish. If he doesn’t get his anchovies, your dog may help himself. But what happens if a dog eats anchovies?

Has your dog eaten anchovies? Are you worried the anchovies will make your dog sick? If so, you’ve come to the right place. We understand it can be scary when your dog eats something like this.

We’ve gathered information about anchovies and whether they can make a dog sick. Let’s get started!

It is strongly recommended to contact a Pet Poison Helpline or your veterinarian.

What are Anchovies?

Anchovies are small fish that live in the ocean; however, some species live in brackish water, and some of these small fish live in fresh in South America. There are over 140 species of anchovies found in the Atlantic, Indian, and Pacific Oceans, the Black Sea, and the Mediterranean Sea. These fish are classified as oily fish.

These fish are found around the world, and they love to live in temperate waters. It’s rare to find anchovies in very cold water or very warm seas.

Anchovies have been eaten by humans for centuries. During Roman days, these fish wee the base for a fermented fish sauce called garum. The sauce was popular all across the Roman Empire. Today, these small fish are used in a variety of dishes and cuisines. Anchovies are also used in Worcestershire sauce, Caesar salad dressing, and many other sauces made with fish.

While anchovies are safe for humans, what about dogs? Can anchovies make a dog sick?

Anchovies & Dogs

The good news is that dogs can safely eat anchovies! And they can be a healthy treat for dogs. For instance, fish provide the protein dogs need, along with omega-3 fatty acids.

These small fish also tend to have lower levels of mercury because the fish are short-lived. In addition, anchovies are small and easy for most dogs to eat, and you won’t have to worry about fish bones getting stuck in your fur baby’s esophagus. Even so, it’s still best to cut these small fish in half before serving them to your dog.

Concerns with Anchovies & Dogs

One of the main concerns with anchovies is choosing the right ones to serve your dogs. In the US, it’s rare to find fresh or frozen anchovies. We have to rely on canned fish. When you head to the store, you’ll find there are three types of anchovies to choose from, including oil-packed, salt-packed, or marinated in vinegar.

It’s best to avoid salt-packed fish, as they contain too much sodium. Dogs can develop salt poisoning from eating food that’s too salty.

Next, while this is rare, some dogs may be allergic to fish. If you’re not sure whether your canine companion is allergic to fish or not, it may be safe to feed him one anchovy. Wait to see how he reacts. If he shows any symptoms of an allergic reaction, call the vet right away. It’s possible for a dog to have a severe allergic reaction called an anaphylactic reaction.

So, there you have it! Anchovies are safe for most dogs to eat. These fish can be given to your dog as a treat or a supplement to his regular food!

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Julie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she studied Animal science. Though contrary to the opinion of her parents she was meant to study pharmacy, but she was in love with animals especially cats. Julie currently works in an animal research institute (NGO) in California and loves spending quality time with her little cat. She has the passion for making research about animals, how they survive, their way of life among others and publishes it. Julie is also happily married with two kids.

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