can dogs eat raw chicken

It’s essential to ensure that the food we feed our dogs is both safe and nutritious. One question that often arises among pet owners is: can dogs eat raw chicken? This topic has created considerable debate among pet enthusiasts and veterinarians alike. Some believe raw chicken is beneficial to a dog’s health, while others warn about potential risks. 

It’s essential to understand the pros and cons of feeding raw chicken to your dog. In this blog, we’ll look at the benefits, risks, and expert opinions of feeding dogs raw chicken, as well as some safe practices. Let’s dive in.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Chicken?

Can dogs eat raw chicken? It is a complex question. It has been argued that raw chicken diets provide dogs with natural, unprocessed nutrients that mimic their ancestral diet. Protein in raw chicken contributes to healthier skin, hair, and teeth. 

However, feeding dogs raw chicken also carries serious risks, like Salmonella and Campylobacter infections, which can harm both pets and their owners. Furthermore, raw chicken bones can cause choking hazards and internal injuries. Therefore, it’s essential to weigh the benefits against the risks and talk to your vet before giving your dog raw chicken.

Is Raw Chicken Safe for Dogs?

The safety of raw chicken for dogs is a contentious issue. While raw chicken can indeed provide nutritional benefits, such as a high protein content and essential nutrients, it can also pose serious risks. Salmonella and Campylobacter can cause severe infections in both dogs and humans when consumed raw. 

In addition, raw chicken bones can splinter, causing choking or internal injuries. Even though some dogs may thrive on a raw diet, you should handle raw chicken safely and consult a vet before giving it to your dog.

Benefits of Feeding Dogs Raw Chicken

Benefits of Feeding Dogs Raw Chicken

Many dog owners recommend feeding their dogs raw chicken to provide a more natural and nutrient-rich diet. Here are some of the key benefits of feeding raw chicken.

High-Quality Protein

Raw chicken is an excellent source of high-quality protein, essential for building and repairing tissues, producing enzymes and hormones, and supporting overall growth and development in dogs. This protein-rich diet can lead to increased muscle mass and improved energy levels, helping dogs maintain a healthy weight and active lifestyle.


Raw chicken is packed with essential vitamins and minerals. Vitamins such as B6 and B12 support brain function and energy metabolism, while niacin aids in digestion and skin health. Minerals like zinc and phosphorus contribute to strong bones, immune function, and overall cellular health. The presence of these nutrients in their natural state can enhance a dog’s overall well-being.

Healthier Coat and Skin

A diet that includes raw chicken can lead to a shinier coat and healthier skin. The natural oils and fats in raw chicken provide the essential fatty acids that promote skin hydration and reduce inflammation, which can help alleviate conditions like dry skin and itching.

Improved Dental Health

Chewing on raw chicken bones can help improve a dog’s dental health by naturally cleaning teeth and massaging gums. The mechanical action of chewing can help reduce plaque buildup, prevent tartar formation, and promote fresher breath. However, it’s crucial to ensure that the bones are appropriate in size and not prone to splintering.

Enhanced Digestion

Many dog owners report improved digestion and stool quality when switching to a raw chicken diet. The natural enzymes in raw chicken can aid in better nutrient absorption and digestion, leading to firmer stools and reduced incidents of gastrointestinal issues.

Increased Vitality and Energy

A raw chicken diet can improve a dog’s overall energy levels and vitality. The balanced, nutrient-dense profile of raw chicken provides sustained energy, which can result in increased playfulness and a more vibrant demeanor.

Weight Management

The high protein and low carbohydrate content of raw chicken can help dogs maintain a healthy weight. Protein is more satiating than carbohydrates, which can reduce overeating and help dogs feel fuller for more extended periods, aiding in weight management.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Chicken Bones?

Despite some perceived benefits, dogs can get sick from raw chicken bones. Although raw bones can help clean teeth and gums, they can also splinter and cause choking, gastrointestinal blockages, or punctures in the mouth, throat, or intestines. 

Whenever dogs chew raw bones, it’s important to supervise them closely and choose the right size. Alternatively, ground bone and calcium supplements can provide dental benefits. Consult a vet before introducing raw bones into your dog’s diet to make sure it’s safe.

Is Chicken Better for Dogs Cooked or Raw?

Whether dogs should eat raw or cooked chicken depends on several factors. Cooking chicken kills harmful bacteria like Salmonella and reduces foodborne illnesses in dogs and humans. In addition, cooking removes some of the natural nutrients and enzymes in raw chicken. 

If you have a dog with a sensitive stomach or weakened immune system, you may want to cook the chicken. Conversely, raw chicken retains more nutrients and enzymes that are good for dogs but comes with a higher risk of bacterial contamination. Ultimately, it would help if you considered your dog’s health, dietary needs, and consultation with your vet.

Best Practices for Feeding Raw Chicken to Dogs

It’s important to handle raw chicken carefully and prepare it properly to keep your dog safe. Here are some essential best practices:

  1. Source Quality Chicken: To minimize the risk of bacterial contamination, choose fresh, high-quality chicken from a reputable supplier.
  2. Safe Handling: Practice proper hygiene by washing hands, utensils, and surfaces thoroughly after handling raw chicken to prevent cross-contamination.
  3. Storage: Store raw chicken in sealed containers in the refrigerator or freezer to maintain freshness and prevent spoilage.
  4. Preparation: Cut chicken into appropriate sizes and avoid feeding large pieces or bones that could pose choking hazards or cause intestinal blockages.
  5. Supervision: Always supervise your dog when they are eating raw chicken to monitor for any signs of choking or discomfort.
  6. Balance and Variety: Ensure a balanced diet by incorporating other protein sources, such as fruits, vegetables, and supplements, as recommended by your veterinarian.
  7. Consultation: Consult with a veterinarian before introducing raw chicken to your dog’s diet, especially if the dog has any health concerns or dietary restrictions.

Feeding raw chicken to your dog safely and effectively can be achieved by following these best practices.

Read More: Can Dogs Eat Sauerkraut?


Raw chicken can provide dogs with essential nutrients and high-quality protein. However, it also comes with significant risks, such as bacterial infections and bone hazards. The best way to decide is to weigh these factors, consult a vet, and handle and prepare things safely. When it comes to your dog’s diet, keeping their health and well-being in mind should always be the top priority.

Frank Washington

I'm passionate about canine wellness, particularly skin health. Drawing on years of experience and ongoing research, I hope to provide useful insights and practical tips to help dog owners ensure their pets have a vibrant, healthy coat. As a proponent of natural and holistic care, I founded as a resource center for fellow dog lovers looking to nourish their pet's skin from the inside out.