Can Dogs Eat Clam Chowder

Can Dogs Eat Clam Chowder?

Last Updated: August 18, 2023
correct answerThe Short Answer is:

Maybe. The other ingredients in clam chowder may pose problems for dogs, despite clams' remarkable health benefits. It is important to read the ingredients carefully to make sure your dog will not react to anything. The consumption of onions and garlic, whether cooked or powdered, is toxic to all dogs.

In this article you will know the answer to the query “Can Dogs Eat Clam Chowder?“.

There is a very popular dish known as clam chowder that originated in the northeastern part of the United States which is commonly referred to as New England around the 1700s.

Can Dogs Eat Clam Chowder

It was quickly popularized by the French and British settlers after they came across enormous quantities of clams while out at sea fishing.  

In order to keep a home warm this hearty soup would have been cooked in the fireplaces which would have been burning ferociously in the winter.  

Clam chowder provided many calories nutrients and warmth to those living in harsh conditions allowing them to not just survive but also thrive and grow. 

Clam chowder can be found in many countries all over the world today and it is eaten all year round.  Purists have cited some key differences in the original New England Clam Chowder and insist that you havenot had true clam chowder until you have tried one made in that region. Last but not least while many other chowders include tomatoes it is considered a grave sin to add tomatoes to clam chowder ruining its overall taste and consistency. 

There are times when we find ourselves staring at a bowl of steaming hot clam chowder with those little oyster crackers. Our beloved four-legged family members might also be able to be seen by their ears waving and their eyes pleading. It causes us to wonder if clam chowder is safe for dogs to eat. 

Is Clam Chowder Safe for Dogs to Eat?

I will discuss the most commonly used ingredients in clam chowder in this section.

Its important to look at the ingredients when purchasing something that looks good on paper to ensure it does not trigger any allergies or dog-specific restrictions.

Clambake chowder typically contains five main ingredients: clams bacon flour milk and potatoes.  

Lets take a closer look at these ingredients one by one in order to determine whether or not they are safe for your dog to consume. 


Although you should use caution when feeding your dog clams they are an excellent source of protein. It is possible for dogs to be allergic to clams but this is rare. You should always let them try one or two at first and make sure they do not have any negative reactions. Likewise as with most things limit the number of clams they consume too much of a good thing can quickly become a bad thing.

Bacon and Milk

With bacon and milk you should follow the same approach. Although dogs can eat small amounts of these ingredients the salt in bacon and fat in milk can lead to an upset stomach or worse if they eat too much. 


It is unlikely that flour will have a negative effect on dogs in small doses or when baked into a recipe but it is important to remember that dogs like humans can be allergic to flour. 


As a final ingredient potatoes round out clam chowders main ingredients. 

Raw potatoes can make our four-legged friends very ill so we should never feed them. Potatoes that our dogs eat must be fully cooked and we want to limit their consumption due to their high starch content. 

But we do not stop there in our quest to find out whether our pups can eat clam chowder.

Is clam chowder seasoning safe for dogs?

Although these five ingredients form the bulk of the chowder its flavor is determined by the many different kinds of seasonings.

In addition any clam chowder worth its salt contains a lot of seasoning

Garlic onion butter thyme salt and pepper are some of the most common seasonings. We will take a moment to review these secondary ingredients and make sure they are safe for our dogs just like the main ingredients.

Onions and garlic

When we see a recipe with onions and garlic we as dog owners should slam on the brakes right away. 

Garlic and onions produce a chemical called thiosulfate when they are cooked which is toxic for dogs! 

Ingesting these foods when cooked can make our furry family members sick or even worse. We want to do everything possible to keep them from ingesting them.

Butter salt and pepper

In terms of the other secondary ingredients there isnot anything that jumps out as toxic but a lot of them are ingredients we want to limit. As an example butter is extremely high in fat which our dogs do not want to eat in large quantities. So as long as we limit how much of these common secondary ingredients our dogs eat they are unlikely to have a negative impact. 

Is Clam Chowder nutritious for my dog?

As one of the first things we want to consider when deciding if a food is safe for our dogs is its nutritional value. Keep in mind that their bodies are different from ours and they may react differently to the amount of fat or protein in certain foods. 

Also keep in mind that every dog is different; for example larger dogs will need more fat in their diet than smaller dogs. As a result depending on the size of your dog you may have to adjust the levels and expectations.

Clam chowders will vary slightly in their nutritional values from recipe to recipe but the values we are going to use are averages based on some extensive research.  

How much clam chowder should I feed my dog?

Average serving size of clam chowder is one cup while an average amount of food your dog should eat per meal ranges between 1-3 cups depending on their size. 

Has clam chowder got enough protein in it for my dog?

About eleven grams of protein are found in an average serving of clam chowder. Dogs would need between twenty-five and thirty grams of protein per day depending on their size.

Can my dog eat clam chowder with enough fat in it? 

Dogs need around 20 grams of fat a day and clam chowder provides 13 of those grams. 

Does my dog consume too many calories from clam chowder?

Calories are another important nutrient as dogs use them to power their bodies. The amount of calories your dog needs will vary greatly depending on their size age and level of activity but a good rule of thumb is about a thousand calories per day. Approximately 250 calories are contained in one serving of clam chowder. 

In addition clam chowder contains several vitamins and minerals that are good for our dogs. Vitamins A C and calcium are among them. 

So can dogs have clam chowder?

As we discussed at the beginning of this article is clam chowder safe for dogs to eat? 

Theres a good chance that you would not get the answer you were hoping for. This is especially true when it comes to clam chowders you buy in a restaurant or at the supermarket. 

Despite having a list of ingredients these chowders would not specify how much of each ingredient they use in the recipe. Therefore you can not tell how much butter or garlic was used in the recipe making it difficult to determine whether its safe for your dog.

You can make your own version of clam chowder if you absolutely must serve your dog clam chowder. Even though this is a viable option allowing you to control how much of each ingredient is added and not adding toxic ingredients like cooked onions it is hard to argue that this is a feasible able and safe solution.

As an alternative you might want to add clams to your dogs existing diet perhaps as a weekly treat. Besides being very flavorful your dog will love the texture of clams as he eats them. If you like you can mix it with parts of their traditional diet spreading the flavor out and giving them a special meal all while keeping their health in mind.

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Amanda Dogs Trainer

Amanda (Author)

With over a decade of experience, Amanda is a distinguished dog trainer. Her expertise in canine behavior has transformed countless lives, fostering harmonious human-canine connections. Through compassionate and personalized approaches, she empowers owners to understand and connect with their furry companions, creating a legacy of joyful tails and transformed lives.

Osvaldo Maciel Dogs Trainer

Osvaldo Maciel (Content Reviewer)

Osvaldo Maciel, a stalwart in the field with 14 years of experience, is a revered dog trainer. His journey is defined by a profound understanding of canine behavior, shaping unbreakable human-canine bonds. Osvaldo guides owners to connect with their beloved pets, leaving an indelible mark of happiness and transformation. His legacy shines through the countless lives he has touched.

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