A dog with an unsure expression looking at raw poultry, indicating caution for dog consumption.

Can Dogs Eat Raw Poultry?

No, dogs should not eat raw poultry. While many might think that dogs, as descendants of wolves, would do well on this kind of diet, raw poultry can pose significant health risks due to harmful bacteria such as Salmonella and Campylobacter. These pathogens can cause serious illness in both dogs and humans.

A photo of Stefan Stumpfl, the co-author of this article.

By Stefan Stumpfl, in collaboration with Dr. Ali Raza.

Updated on Jun 27, 2024

Did You Know?

Raw poultry can carry harmful bacteria like Salmonella and E. coli, which can be dangerous to both dogs and humans.

Raw Poultry



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Feeding Frequency


Allergic Risk


Benefits and Risks of Raw Poultry

Feeding dogs raw poultry is almost always more risky than beneficial. Any potential benefits, like high protein content, are far outweighed by the risks of bacterial contamination. If raw poultry is not handled correctly, it can lead to foodborne illnesses that can be quite severe. Cooked poultry, on the other hand, can be safely incorporated into their diet and still offers the same high-protein benefits without the health hazards.

Other Products Containing Poultry?

You might find poultry in a variety of common household products and dog foods:

  • Commercial Dog Food: Properly processed and safe.
  • Cooked Lean Poultry: Suitable for most dogs when deboned and skinless.
  • Baked Treats: Ensure they're specifically made for dogs.

Avoid any raw or undercooked poultry items, as they can carry harmful bacteria.

How to Feed Poultry to Your Dog?

If you want to incorporate poultry into your dog's diet, cooking is key. Boil or bake the poultry thoroughly, and remove all bones and skin to avoid choking hazards and digestive issues. Offer small portions mixed into their regular food or as a treat. Remember, moderation is crucial.

What If Your Dog Reacts Badly to Raw Poultry?

If you believe your dog has ingested raw poultry and is showing symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, or lethargy, contact your vet immediately. They can provide the necessary treatment to manage any potential bacterial infections and ensure your pet's safety.

Safer Alternatives to Raw Poultry

There are plenty of other safe and nutritious options to offer your pup. Some great choices include:

  • Cooked Chicken or Turkey: High in protein and safe when cooked properly.
  • Beef or Lamb: Choose lean cuts and cook thoroughly.
  • Fish: Salmon and sardines are excellent, but always cook and debone.


Feeding raw poultry to dogs is generally a bad idea due to the significant risk of bacterial contamination. Stick to cooked poultry or other safer meat options. Always consult your vet before making any major changes to your dog's diet to ensure you're making the best choices for their health and well-being.