Can Boston Terriers Eat Shrimp? What You Need To Know (2021)

It can be tempting to want to offer your sweet pup a little piece of food that you are eating. Some food is safe for Bostons whereas other food may be extremely harmful.

In general, shrimp should be avoided or only fed sparingly to Boston Terriers because of its high salt and cholesterol content.

Before feeding any new food to your dog, I always recommend speaking with your veterinarian to make sure it is safe to give your dog.

boston terrier looking at shrimp

This article will cover the risks of feeding shrimp to your Boston Terrier.

Boston Terriers And Shrimp Consumption

Here is what you need to know about Boston Terriers eating shrimp…

Is It Safe For Boston Terriers To Shrimp?

While you may think shrimp is a good snack for your Boston Terrier, it can actually be unhealthy if fed incorrectly.

Raw shrimp, shrimp tails, or shrimp that still has the shell on can be especially harmful and may cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Plain cooked shrimp with no added seasonings with the shell removed should be fed sparingly. Some Boston Terriers may be able to safely eat a small piece of plain cooked shrimp whereas other Bostons may have a shellfish allergy.

It is best to ask your veterinarian prior to giving your Boston Terrier any shrimp.

If you want to see some low-calorie snack ideas for your Boston Terrier check out the treats right below here on Amazon or check out this video from the founder of Boston Terrier Society talking about the 5 brands of dog treats Boston Terriers love. See the video on YouTube by clicking here…5 Treats Boston’s Love!

three shrimp on a cutting board

Are Shrimp Good For Boston Terriers?

There may be some health benefits of feeding shrimp, but in general, the risks outweigh the benefits. Plain cooked shrimp is low in calories and is protein rich.

It can also be a good source of vitamins and minerals including selenium, vitamin B12, and phosphorus.

While these benefits may sound appealing, shrimp is also high in cholesterol and sodium which can be unhealthy for your Boston Terrier. The shells can also be harmful if ingested.

Many times, shrimp is cooked with seasonings, oils, and other ingredients which can also be very harmful to Boston Terriers. Be sure you stick to plain, cooked shrimp with the shell removed.

What Are The Dangers Of Feeding Shrimp To My Boston Terrier?

Shrimp is not the healthiest snack for Boston Terriers because of its high levels of cholesterol and sodium. Raw shrimp can be particularly harmful due to the presence of dangerous bacteria.

Cooked shrimp can cause some dogs to have vomiting and diarrhea as well. Because of this, it is best to avoid feeding your dog shrimp.

Here are five health problems you should consider before giving your Boston Terrier shrimp.

1) Harmful Bacteria

If you feed your dog raw shrimp, they could become very sick. 

Raw shrimp contains harmful bacteria that may cause your dog to develop an upset stomach, vomiting, and diarrhea.

Shrimp that has not been cooked thoroughly can also cause similar symptoms.

2) Dangerous Ingredients

Shrimp is often cooked with spices and oils that may be harmful to your Boston Terrier.

Garlic, onions, and other spices are not safe for your Boston Terrier to eat.

If you plan on giving your Boston a tiny bite of shrimp, make sure it is plain boiled shrimp without any seasonings with the shell removed.

3) High in Cholesterol and Sodium

Shrimp contains high levels of cholesterol. Cholesterol is not good for Boston Terriers especially because Boston Terriers may be prone to developing heart disease.

The natural sodium found in shrimp is also not good for your Boston Terrier.

There are other healthier treat options to consider for your Boston Terrier including unsalted canned green beans, a small piece of apple, or baby carrots.

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4) Allergic Reaction

Shrimp can cause some dogs to develop an allergic reaction.

This could be in the form of itchy skin and hives, or they could develop vomiting and diarrhea after eating shrimp.

It is best to avoid feeding shrimp because your Boston Terrier may be allergic.

5) Intestinal Problems

If your Boston Terrier eats a lot of shrimp with the shells, this could cause a more serious issue.

The shells of shrimp are indigestible and can therefore lead to an intestinal obstruction or constipation if eaten in large amounts.

If your Boston Terrier has eaten shrimp shells, you should contact your veterinarian right away.

How To Feed Your Boston Terrier Shrimp

As stated before, there are many risks associated with feeding your Boston Terrier shrimp. You should always consult with your veterinarian before giving your pet any shrimp.

What Kind Of Shrimp Can Boston Terriers Eat?

There are a few types of shrimp that may have a lower risk of adverse effects. 

The safest form of shrimp for dogs is plain boiled shrimp with the shell removed. Your Boston Terrier should eat no more than half of a shrimp rarely as a treat because shrimp is high in cholesterol and sodium.

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What Kind Of Shrimp Should Boston Terriers Avoid?

Other forms of shrimp can be extremely harmful to Boston Terriers and may cause an upset stomach or food poisoning. Never feed your Boston Terrier:

  • Raw shrimp
  • Shrimp shells
  • Shrimp tails
  • Fried shrimp
  • Seasoned shrimp

How Much Shrimp Can Boston Terriers Eat?

Dogs should not eat more than 10 percent of their daily calorie intake from treats. This means that Boston Terriers should eat no more than 30 to 60 calories a day of treats.

Because there are a few risks associated with eating shrimp, I would speak with your vet before offering your Boston any shrimp.

Most adult Boston Terriers should eat no more than half of a shrimp rarely as a treat.

Can I Give My Boston Terrier Shrimp Every Day?

I do not recommend giving your Boston Terrier shrimp every day.

Shrimp is very high in cholesterol and sodium and is therefore not healthy for your Boston to eat every day.

Can Boston Terriers Eat Raw Shrimp?

It is unsafe for Boston Terriers to eat raw shrimp.

Raw shrimp can contain harmful bacteria that can cause your Boston Terrier to develop vomiting and diarrhea.

You should always cook shrimp before giving any to your Boston Terrier.

raw shrimp

Can Boston Terriers Eat Shrimp Shells?

I do not recommend giving your Boston Terrier any shrimp shells.

Dogs are not able to digest shrimp shells so they could cause your Boston Terrier to become very sick. The worst-case scenario would be that your dog could develop an intestinal obstruction from eating too many shrimp shells.

What Should I Do If My Dog Ate A Shrimp Tail?

Have you ever wondered what to do if your dog eats shrimp tails? In general, shrimp tails are not good for dogs and can even cause intestinal troubles because the tails are indigestible.

If your dog has eaten shrimp tails, it would probably be a good idea to call your veterinarian to get additional advice.

Can Boston Terrier Puppies Eat Shrimp?

I do not recommend giving your Boston Terrier puppy any shrimp.

Shrimp is high in cholesterol and is often cooked with unhealthy ingredients so it is best to avoid giving shrimp to your Boston Terrier puppy.


Shrimp is not a very healthy snack for Boston Terriers.

I generally do not recommend giving shrimp to Boston Terriers because shrimp contains high levels of sodium and cholesterol.

If you decide to give your Boston a small bite of shrimp make sure it’s fully cooked without any added seasonings, oils, or other ingredients. Also, make sure to remove the shell before you give any to your dog.

Finally, it is always best to speak with your veterinarian before giving your Boston Terrier any new food or treat.

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Addie Reinhard, DVM

Addie Reinhard, DVM- Dr. Addie Reinhard is an experienced small animal veterinarian. She is a Boston Terrier lover and always enjoys caring for her Boston patients at the veterinary clinic. She is passionate about providing helpful educational resources to pet parents regarding animal diseases and preventative care. She lives in Lexington, KY with her husband, greyhound, and four cats.

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