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In the Fall of 2021, Rodrigo decided that he wasn't into raw eggs anymore. When I shared this on social media, I was surprised that he wasn't the only dog that said “nope” to raw eggs. Before I wrote off feeding raw eggs to my dog – it IS a superfood – I decided to cook the eggs instead. I'm not sure which is the best way to cook eggs for dogs, so I chose over easy and Rodrigo was elated and inhaled his meal.
So, now I cook everyone's eggs with the exception of milk fast day, when I whip up a raw egg into kefir and/or raw goat's milk for Rodrigo. He'll eat it this way, but prefers his eggs cooked.
When Dogs Stop Eating a Food
Over the years, I've learned several reasons why one of my dogs will stop eating their food or an ingredient on their plate (actually, it's a pasta bowl), including:
- I'm feeding too much; I recently reduced the amount of food I feed to Rodrigo by 2 ounces
- The food is turning; dogs have a super sniffer and can tell if a food has turned long before I can tell
- My dog has a sensitivity to an ingredient; Rodrigo and Scout won't eat raw chicken, a food high on their sensitivity list
- My dog doesn't like the texture of a food
- The last time my dog ate this meal, s/he got sick; dogs have a memory and, like humans, will refuse a food if it made them sick previously
And, most recently, I learned that as a dog ages, they may prefer warmed food.
I'm not sure why Rodrigo stopped eating raw eggs, but cooking them made a difference so now I'm cooking everyone's eggs (it's easier this way).
Benefits of Eggs for Dogs
I feed eggs to my dogs three or four days a week because they are a great source of
- essential amino acids
- fatty acids
- Vitamins A
- Vitamin B6
- Vitamin B12
- Vitamin D
- and more
And eggs aren't just for raw fed dogs.
The Concern Over Egg Whites
There is a concern that the egg whites will serve as a biotin blocker. However, this is only a real issue if we're feeding egg whites only or we're feeding a dog too many eggs. The yolk offsets this concern and I limit how many eggs I feed to my dogs (1 egg per dog, 3 to 4 days weekly).
The Concern Over Salmonella
Another concern people raise about feeding raw eggs is salmonella. However, it's important to remember that dogs can handle bacteria in a raw food diet. That being said, there are things that we can do to keep the risk low. I store the eggs in the fridge instead of on the counter to slow the growth of bacteria. I also only feed pasture-raised, certified organic eggs to my dogs. A healthy chicken produces nutrient-rich, healthy eggs.
Doesn't Cooking Eggs Destroy the Nutrients?
I see this statement posted on social media all the time – cooking kills all of the nutrients. I think this belief is due to kibble, which is cooked multiple times, requiring companies to use a synthetic vitamin mix to add nutrients back into the food. This isn't the case with cooking for our dogs.
I don't cook my dogs' eggs repeatedly. In fact, I cook them very lightly because I want to yolk to remain runny because it's easier to mix into their food and it's closer to raw without being raw. Hey, the dogs love it and Rodrigo is eating his eggs now, so I'm happy.
Best Way to Cook Eggs for Dogs
So, my dogs currently eat eggs over-easy, but that's not the only way to cook eggs. Before I settled on eggs over-easy, I compared the nutrient breakdown of several egg styles, including:
- raw eggs
- poached eggs
- scrambled eggs
- fried eggs
- boiled eggs
As you can see when reviewing the graph above, the nutrients don't change much when comparing the various ways to cook eggs. Several people shared that soft boiled or poached were best for dogs, basically any way that has a runny yolk. However, I wasn't able to find any evidence that this is best for dogs. It sounds like this recommendation is based on the personal experience and opinions of individuals.
Making it Easy to Cook Eggs
I cook eggs on the stove in a skillet with a little olive oil (perfectly safe for dogs) added to the pan. But I'd like to try using my Instant Pot and I'm considering purchasing a pan for poaching eggs or cooking soft boiled eggs. Yes, these can be done in a pot on the stove, but I'm not big into cooking and can use all the help I can get.
Instant Pot Recipe/Instructions
When using the Instant Pot, all you need is cold water (has to be cold so that the eggs cook slowly) and fresh medium or large eggs from the fridge.
Follow these steps when using low-pressure setting:
- add cold tap water into the Instant Pot
- add eggs, placing them on the steamer rack (some call it a trivet)
- close the lid and seal; set on low-pressure for 1 minute
- when the Instant Pot beeps, the eggs are finished
- wait 60 seconds and then vent the pot, transfer the eggs to a bowl and run cold water over them to cool (about 30 seconds) to stop the cooking
Follow these steps when using high-pressure setting:
- follow the steps above, but set the Instant Pot to high-pressure for one minute
- when the Instant Pot beeps, wait 30 seconds (instead of the 60 above) before flipping the switch to venting
Other Equipment that Cooks “Perfect” Eggs
If you're cooking challenged like me, here is the equipment I'm considering:
- Farberware Nonstick Dishwasher Safe Egg Poacher Pan/Skillet with 4 Poaching Cups and Lid
- Elite Gourmet Easy Electric 7 Egg Capacity Cooker
So, while feeding raw eggs is fine for many dogs, if you find that your dog is eating around the egg, try cooking it for your dog and see if that changes their mind.