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The Ultimate Guide To Feeding Your Dog Seafood!

    Seafood That Is Good For Your Dog!

Foods from the sea can be a healthy addition to your dog's diet ... or they can add unnecessary and harmful toxins and heavy metals.

We're often asked which aquatic foods you should feed your dog ... and which ones should be tossed back into the ocean. So here is your ultimate guide to foods from the sea.

Marine Phytoplankton

Phytoplankton is like rocket fuel for you and your dogs cells! They also happen to be tiny micro-algae that feed all forms of ocean life.  They provide an amazing array of nutrients from essential fatty acids, trace minerals, chlorophyll, antioxidants, and essential amino acids, to protein, carotenoids and vitamins.

Phytoplankton also contains high levels of DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) Omega-3 fatty acids, which support your dog's immune system, cognitive function, heart, skin and joint health.  Fish get their Omega-3s from  phytoplankton, and that's why people often feed their dogs fish oil ... but keep reading to find out why you shouldn't give your dog fish oil for these nutrients.

Phytoplankton can help your dog with digestive issues - and because they're made up of tiny nanoparticles that are absorbed by the mucous membranes (like the gums), they nourish your dog's cells without having to be digested first.

Phytoplankton also contains superoxide dismutase (SOD) which is a powerful antioxidant that can help prevent cancer, heart disease, eye problems and immune system issues.

Look for a  source of phytoplankton that's sustainably grown on land with sunlight, free of radiation and heavy metals, non-GMO (genetically modified) vegan, free of fillers and watered with filtered ocean water.
As long as your phytoplankton doesn't contain fillers, you'll only need a tiny amount - 1/16 tsp per day for any size dog

At Bark Avenue we carry a marine phytoplankton called Umac- Core, they are a wonderful company dedicated to providing people/ animals with the ultimate superfood. 

Green Lipped Mussel

Green lipped mussels come from New Zealand waters and they are another rich source of Omega fatty acids and minerals, as well as vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants and enzymes.

Green lipped mussels are a natural source of glycosaminoglycans (GAGS), which are the main components of cartilage and synovial fluid found in the joints. Studies have shown them to relieve discomfort and inflammation in dogs (and people) suffering from arthritis. They support joint mobility, cartilage maintenance, cardiovascular health and help maintain healthy skin too.

You can find green lipped mussel powders for dogs. Make sure that the product is cold extracted. Heat processing will destroy the nutrients.

Follow the dosing instructions on the package ... or give about 15 mg of powder per lb of your dog's body weight per day.  If your dog has severe inflammation, you can double the dose for the first two weeks and then reduce the dose to the recommended level.

Another way to give your dog green lipped mussels is with freeze-dried treats. You can give 2 mussels for every 10 lbs of body weight  per day. Again, make sure the product you buy hasn't been heat-treated.

Green Lipped Mussel Products We Carry

  • Super Snouts Joint Power
  • Liquid Glucosamine 
  • Freeze-Dried Mussels by K9 Natural


Kelp is a seaweed that comes from cold water areas like Iceland or Norway and is usually dried to a green powdered supplement.

Kelp is a rich source of vitamins, as well as minerals like calcium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous and 17 amino acids.  Kelp also contains abundant trace minerals.

Kelp benefits skin and coat health, increases circulation, promotes healthy teeth and gums and supports the immune system. It can ease arthritis pain and inflammation.  

Kelp is high in iodine, which means it can also support thyroid health and balance your dog's glandular functions. (If your dog is taking thyroid drugs, you may need to ask your vet to monitor his thyroid levels and adjust medication if necessary.)

Kelp contains sodium alginate which is said to help rid the body of heavy metals and radioactive elements.
Find a product made for dogs and follow the dosing directions on the packaging. 

Some Raw Dog Food Companies will add in kelp to their food. These companies are Bones & Company, Steve's Raw Pet Food & OC Raw Dog. 

  Small Oily Fish

Sardines, smelts, herring, mackerel, anchovies ...

Fish in general is a great source of protein, calcium, selenium, niacin and Omega-3 fats for your dog.  In fact, giving whole fish is a much better way to give your dog Omega-3 fatty acids than fish oil, which is unstable and can easily become rancid.

 But also feeding the whole fish has many incredible benefits for our pets. Feeding the whole fish provides full spectrum omegas that you will not find in most fish oils. These omegas are derived from all the gory parts. The eyes, brain and organs. Full spectrum omegas help decrease inflammation in all parts of the body, they help with cognitive function, neurological development, skin and coat health and so much more. At Bark Avenue, you will find a new product called Orijens that makes a whole food supplement derived from full body menhaden fish. Next time you stop in, ask us about Orijens! 

 Larger fish that are higher up the food chain can be contaminated with toxins like mercury and PCBs (carcinogenic chemicals called polychlorinated biphenyls), and should be avoided.

The solution is to give your dog the smaller fatty fish like sardines, smelts, herring, mackerel and anchovies. 

You can feed these fish whole and raw two or three times a week. Depending on your dog's taste, give them either thawed or still frozen (some dogs prefer their fish crunchy). OC Raw has freeze-dried and frozen raw fish that would be great for supplemental rotation.

Spirulina is full of powerful nutrients and contains high levels of chlorophyll as well as more than 50 percent protein. Like many other foods from the sea, it is a rich source of vitamins, minerals, amino acids and Omega-3 fatty acids, as well as enzymes and trace minerals.

Spirulina can help manage inflammation, prevent cancer, support the immune system, improve gastrointestinal health, and treat bacterial and yeast overgrowth, as well as radiation exposure.

Spirulina is a remarkable super-food, but poor quality spirulina can contain contaminants such as heavy metals (one study found lead, mercury, cadmium and arsenic in more than 25 spirulina products they tested).

So before you pick a brand, do your research.  Check for a seal showing a third party certification from the NSF (National Sanitation Foundation) or USP (US Pharmacopeial Convention).  Also ask the company for a Certificate of Analysis (COA) describing their product quality and origin. Make sure you buy a 100 percent organic product, without any additives, preservatives, fillers or colorants.


Seafood To Use With Caution or Avoid

Fish Oil

Fish oil - whatever kind of fish it comes from - has long been popular as a supplement for dogs. It provides Omega-3 essential fatty acids like DHA and EPA that support a healthy immune system, reduce inflammation, benefit skin and coat as well as cognitive function.

Unfortunately the good news ends right there ... or, right when you first open the bottle of fish oil (or even before you open it, in some cases).

Fish oil is extremely vulnerable to oxidative damage.  When Omega-3 fat particles are exposed to air, they break down into smaller compounds like MDA (malondialdehyde) and create oxygen-containing molecules called free radicals.  Both MDA and free radicals cause premature aging and disease because they damage proteins, DNA and other cellular structures.

This is called oxidative stress and it can cause inflammation in the body and can lead to chronic health problems, including gene mutation and cancer.

If you do decide to feed fish oil, make sure you ask your supplier for a Certificate of Analysis (COA) showing it has been tested for contaminants. Buy an oil that is in a dark colored glass container, keep it refrigerated and use it quickly. Every time you open the bottle, there's more oxidation and more risk of the oil causing health issues.

 Instead feed whole fish or supplements like Orijens or OC Raw Dog frozen sardine treats. There are many ways to make sure that your dog is receiving the benefits from marine life. Products like marine phytoplankton or those mentioned above are great ways to ensure they are reaping those benefits. Hopefully this will make you more aware of sourcing and product quality to ensure you're feeding the best possible product to your furry friend. 


Tilapia is a very popular fish because of its mild flavor and relatively low cost- in fact it's the fourth most consumed seafood in the US, after shrimp, tuna and salmon.

Tilapia is also the world's second most farmed fish (after carp). This means that tilapia doesn't offer a good nutrient profile, because farmed fish is usually fed GMO corn and soymeal based diets. Farmed tilapia is low in Omega-3s because farmed fish don't eat phytoplankton and other aquatic plants that provide these fats.  And it's also high in Omega-6s ( which is inflammatory)... leading to an often-cited claim that "tilapia is worse than bacon."

A high percentage of farmed tilapia comes from China where poor quality feeds are often used and fish are grown in overcrowded muddy ponds. This means that farmed fish usually contain high levels of pesticides and antibiotics used to prevent disease.

On the plus side, the Environmental Working Group ( considers tilapia a safe choice in terms of mercury contamination.

If you want to feed tilapia, check first whether your tilapia has an  Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) seal.  The ASC audits and certifies tilapia farms that have appropriate production standards.  Only about 15 percent of tilapia available in the US carries this seal.

Large Fish

It's safest to avoid giving your dog any large fish. Fish to avoid include tuna, walleye, marlin, shark, sturgeon and bluefish.

 Mercury gets into our waters due to industrial waste run-off into lakes, rivers and the ocean.  This means that mercury is present in a lot of fish, but it's found at much higher levels in larger predator fish higher up the food chain, as they eat other smaller sea creatures. 

Mercury "bioaccumulates"  in these predators, so eating larger fish can lead to a number of health issues. Mercury toxicity is serious and it's increasing. It accumulates in our bodies over time and causes problems ranging from nervous system disorders to endocrine issues, reproductive problems and accelerated aging.


Giving your dog fresh salmon can be a great way to provide him with Omega-3s as well as vitamin D. It's an excellent source of protein and is rich in minerals like magnesium, potassium and iron. Also, most dogs love eating salmon, which you can feed raw.

Salmon can benefit skin, coat, immune system, cognitive function and has anti-inflammatory effects. But there are several things you need to be cautious about in feeding salmon to your dog.

First of all, don't feed farmed salmon at all. Salmon farms use large volumes of antibiotics to prevent disease. They've also been shown to contain high levels of contaminants like PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), which are known to be cancer-causing chemicals.  Also now, genetically modified (GMO) salmon are being produced. While the US Food And Drug Administration (FDA) claims GMO salmon is safe, there have been no studies conducted on the long term effects of eating GMO salmon. GMO salmon is also unlabeled so you and your dog could be eating it unknowingly.

Another factor to consider is that salmon is considered a high allergen for dogs, so if your dog is eating salmon and struggling with allergies consider switching him/her to another protein to see if the salmon could be the culprit. 

In conclusion always make sure you feed wild salmon. Farmed salmon is a whole issue in and of itself.

Seafood Products To Look Out For At Bark Avenue:

Marine Phytoplankton
OC Raw Fish Patties Or Nuggets
OC Raw Sardines
OC Raw Freeze-Dried Fish
Liquid Glucosamine 
Super Snouts Joint Powder (Green Lipped Mussels)
Orijens Whole Fish Supplement

So What Is The Next Step? 

Come to Bark Avenue! There are an abundance of ways to prevent disease in our animals. There is no need for harsh and toxic medications!

Here at Bark Avenue we truly believe that food acts as medicine. If used properly, it can heal the body and provide the upmost source of health and vitality. We carry many different super foods and supplements. We are always excited to talk with our customers about nutrition and health. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to come talk to us! 

Thank you so much for being a customer here at Bark Avenue!
 We are very grateful to be a part of your furry companions health journey. 

With Love,
Kiana & The Bark Avenue Team

Source: Dogs Naturally Magazine,,, 
Congratulations Tammy!

Tammy Doak, one of Bark Avenue's owners has just completed her certification as a Small Animal Naturopath and a Carnivore Nutritional Consultant! 

We are so excited for Tammy as she has been working on her certifications for the past 5 years! 

To set up a Wellness Consultation, contact Tammy at or you can reach her at 817-656-2275.
            What's New At Bark Avenue?          
The world's first 100% human-grade dry food for dogs is here! To bring Whole Food Clusters to you,  The Honest Kitchen built their own human food kitchen, and invented a unique process they call MadeHonest™. Whole Food Clusters look better because they're made better!

Open Farm Dry Kibble

At Open Farm, they go to great lengths to source the world's best ingredients. Their meats are sourced from high welfare family farms that are antibiotic and growth hormone free and their fruits and veggies are exclusively non-GMO.

July Promotions!

Fromm Dog Kibble - Gold or Four Star Formulas
  • $3 Off Small Bags
  • $4 Off Medium Bags
  • $5 Off Large Gold 

Northwest Naturals Frozen Raw
  • 15% Off (excluding bulk boxes)

Small Batch Freeze-Dried
  • $6 Off Freeze-Dried Sliders
  • $3 Off Freeze-Dried Bites
  • $2 Off Freeze-Dried Hearts 

Honest Kitchen
  • 20% Off Dehydrated Food 
  • Buy One, Get One Free (BOGO) On Perfect Purees for Cats & Bone Broth for Dogs & Cats

The Bear & The Rat Frozen Yogurt Treats
  • $1 Off 4 pack Cups
Open Farm
  • Purchase a Small Bag Of Kibble Along With 2  Additional Open Farm Products (Freeze-Dried Food, Treats, Tetrapack, Bone Broth or Kefir) and Receive 25% Off Your Entire Open Farm Purchase
Primal - 20% On The Following Items
  • 2 & 5lb Grind Chubs
  • Marrow Bones
  • Turkey Necks
  • Chicken Necks
  • Chicken Backs
OC Raw
  • 20% Off Frozen Fish Patties or Rox
  • 20% Off Frozen Sardines
  • 20% Off Freeze-Dried Fish Treats

Be On The Lookout for A Weekend Sale July 19th- 21st!

Dr Will Falconer has written the e-book, "Vital Animals Don't Get Heartworms".  
It truly is a life-changing way to look at heartworm prevention.  Click on the following link to get your copy today:Ă‚ 

Tammy & John | Bark Avenue Market & Bakery | 817-656-2275 | |