Chicken is commonly used as a tantalizing treat for pointers, but it’s important to ask if it’s actually safe for them to eat.
Can Pointers Eat Chicken?
Pointers, like most dogs, can safely eat chicken if cooked and unseasoned. Raw chicken is not recommended due to the presence of harmful bacteria. It’s also possible for dogs to be allergic to chicken, so always consult a veterinarian.
Feeding your pointer chicken can have great benefits but also a few dangers. Becoming as educated as possible on what the risks and rewards are when feeding your pointer chicken can go a long way to keeping them safe and healthy.
Giving Your Pointer Chicken
Chicken is a great choice for dogs because it has so many good things in it. The main benefit for pointers is that it’s a good source of protein which will give your dog energy.
When we hear “energy” when talking about pointers we probably want to do everything in our power to lower it a few notches, but protein from chicken is good energy that will keep them stay healthy and happy.
Pointers are naturally very active and need good food to keep them healthy. Protein is important for these natural athletes and chicken definitely provides that.
Chicken can be given to your pointer in several ways.
- mixed with their dog food
- substituted for dog food
- given as a treat
The most popular option for feeding your pointer chicken is to mix cooked chunks in with their regular dog food. Be careful not to overdo it with the chicken because a lot of commercial dog food already contains chicken.
The next option is substituting your dog’s regular dry food with chicken. This is a risky option because there are other things that need to be added in to supplement the diet. Consult a veterinarian on the best way to do this.
Lastly, chicken is always a great treat for a pointer! They respond best to training when given food rewards and praise, and chicken can be a great reason for good behavior!
Always make sure to cook any chicken you give your dog, and never feed them the chicken bones. You can roast, poach, grill, bake, or boil the chicken for your pointer to get it ready for consumption.
Of course, there are always risks with feeding your dog different kinds of foods, so it’s important to do all your research! In the next couple of sections, I talk about a few dangers and benefits of feeding your pointer chicken.
Benefits and Dangers of Chicken in General
Just like everything in life, there are good things and bad things that can come out of something. As the saying goes, “Too much of a good thing is a bad thing.”
The same goes for healthy food for humans and dogs. Pointers need a good high-quality diet to keep them fueled and feeling good. This breed is naturally athletic and high energy, so they need food that can help fuel them in the best ways.
Chicken is a popular ingredient in commercial dog foods. We all want our pup to have the best and most natural ingredients possible without breaking the bank.
Chicken is a really good source of protein for pointers, and that’s why it’s such a popular ingredient in dog food (that, and it’s tasty!)
Chicken has Omega-6 fatty acids that are good for the dog’s skin and fur. Of course, you always want to be cautious about how much of these “good” things you are giving to your dog because their bodies aren’t as good at processing and storing fats as ours are.
I will discuss a little more about the potential dangers of too much Omega-6 in the next section.
Chicken also contains amino acids and glucosamine which are two things that can help encourage healthy bones in your pointer. Amino acids help develop healthy hormones and give good energy to pointers.
Glucosamine is said to help relieve some pain from arthritis. This is helpful in pointers because the breed has a higher danger of joint problems and hip dysplasia.
Not all good things are 100% good all the time. There are always some dangers in feeding your dogs certain foods.
Let’s revisit Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids, first. It seems that both of these fatty acids are important for a healthy diet in dogs (and people).
Chicken is very high in Omega-6 fatty acids and quite low in Omega-3. As I have come to understand it, a healthy diet requires a balance between the two, and chicken just isn’t cutting it.
This doesn’t mean that chicken is bad, it just means that there are other things that are important to incorporate into your pointer’s diet as well as chicken.
As well as an excess of Omega-6 fatty acids, it’s important to regulate the amount of extra chicken fat and skin given to your dog in fear of obesity and disease.
Lean chicken is the best option for your pup because it doesn’t have too much extra fat. Pointers can easily develop pancreatitis if given too many fatty foods. High Omega-6 content on top of fat trimmings and cooked skin can cause problems for your pointer that are easy to avoid.
It’s also recommended to avoid feeding your pointer raw chicken. There are a lot of people who believe in only feeding their dogs a raw diet because it is natural, but it’s important to be prepared for a change like that.
A raw food diet for dogs needs to be done with caution because raw chicken that is taken from the supermarket contains additives that aren’t good for your dog. Raw chicken carries bacteria that can cause salmonella.
We want to keep our dogs safe, so it’s highly recommended that all chicken is cooked and given to dogs without any seasonings, garlic, or onions.
If you have more questions about feeding your dog raw chicken, make sure to consult your veterinarian on if you should and how to do it. They will be able to give you guidance for your specific dog.
Dogs have allergies just like we do. Chicken ranks within the top ten most common allergies among dogs.
It’s possible for your pointer to be allergic to chicken, so you always want to be cautious when introducing a new food into their diet. This being said, it’s easy to get them tested! Visit your veterinarian to discover if your dog can eat chicken safely and they’ll be able to give you any tips you need!
This information will be beneficial for feeding them cooked chicken as well as help you know if you need to be careful about what commercial dog food you buy for your pup.
Many common dog foods use chicken as the main ingredient because it is such a great source of protein and dogs love it!
Dangers of Chicken Bones
Dangers, dangers everywhere! Don’t be too nervous about the number of things that have been labeled as “dangerous” when it comes to chicken. If you take the proper precautions, your dog will be safe!
Another “danger” I’m adding to the list is to never feed your dog cooked chicken bones.
That’s a strange thing to hear when the classic vision of a dog in real life, on t.v., and in animated form is chewing on a big juicy bone. It’s classic and true! Dogs love chewing on bones and it can be good for their teeth and gum health.
It’s important to avoid chicken bones, though, because they can so easily splinter and break off into shards.
These splinters can get lodged in your pointer’s throat or puncture and scrap their throat and stomach. It’s a very serious problem that would definitely require emergency assistance.
The best way to avoid problems is to take all cooked chicken meat off the bone before feeding it to them. DO NOT give them the bone to chew on. Reserve that fun activity for more solid bones such as some marrow bones.
Consult your veterinarian about what bones are safe and beneficial for your pointer!