Homemade Salmon Dog Treat Recipe

Are you looking for a homemade salmon dog treat recipe that doesn’t cost you an arm and a leg?

What if I told you that you could make these DIY dog treats for FREE?

If you need a high value treat for your dog, but can’t afford to buy the prepackaged salmon dog treats, this is the way to go.

I came up with this homemade salmon dog treat recipe on a whim one day, our family had eaten salmon for dinner and I was cleaning up the pan with all the skin in it.

Yup, I make these homemade dog treats out of the skin and bits of meat that are left over from cooking a salmon fillet. Read on to learn this easy trick!

Why Salmon?

First, I had all this skin with bits of salmon meat stuck to it (plus some salmon meat that my kids didn’t finish) that was going to get thrown away. As I thought about it, I realized it could be very useful to train my reactive dog.

Second, salmon (wild pacific) is super-healthy for our dogs, with benefits like:

  • Improves joint mobility by decreasing joint inflammation
  • Supports healthy skin and fur
  • Improves skin allergies and irritations
  • Supports and strengthens immune system
  • Improves brain function

Third, salmon is a high value treat. In other words, it smells. A lot. Dogs love the fishy smell – and will work hard to get it!

How Do I Use These Homemade Salmon Treats for Dogs?

woman training dog using salmon treats for dogs

On some days, I will bring a bag of 100% salmon pieces from this recipe. But more often, I mix these pieces in with other treats.

For example, I will take a bag of cubed chicken and mix these salmon pieces in. It makes all the chicken smell deliciously fishy and the entire bag of treats becomes higher value.

What do I mean by high value? When you are training a dog, the more they like the treat you are offering, the more motivated they are to learn.

If your dog is reactive, they are much more likely to focus on a high value treat instead of react at an approaching dog or person.

If you have so-so treats, they will choose to bark since the treat isn’t that appealing to them.

Homemade Salmon Dog Treat Recipe

salmon dog treats with skins on acutting board


1 or 2 large salmon fillets
Olive oil
Coconut oil


  • Brush salmon (meat side) with olive oil and sprinkle with salt.
  • Cook in 425° oven until meat flakes with a fork, about 20-25 minutes.
  • Remove from oven. Slide a metal spatula between the skin and the salmon meat. Remove the meat and put on your dinner plates.
  • Eat!
  • After dinner, put any leftover meat from dinner plates in the pan with the salmon skin. Brush the leftover skin and meat with melted coconut oil.
  • Put back in oven, and set oven temperature to 200°.
  • Continue to cook the salmon skin for 2-4 hours until skin and any meat becomes stiff and jerky-like. Remove from oven and let cool.
  • Break or cut into bite-size piece, and vwa-LA! Your homemade salmon dog treat recipe is now ready to use with your dog!
  • Put into small zip-lock bags and freeze all but one bag – put that in the frig. Don’t put too much in a bag: just enough for 1-3 days of training.
  • As you start to use up one bag, remove the next bag from the freezer and put into the frig to thaw.

If you prefer to use the whole salmon fillet, make salmon jerky dog treats by cooking the whole fillet until it becomes hard, then slice into jerky pieces.

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Homemade Dog Treats for FREE!

Congratulations, you just made excellent training treats that are super-motivating for your dog and it didn’t cost you a thing!

Give it a try: most dogs will really, really want to earn these DIY dog treats and your training sessions will improve.

Remember, rotate the type of high value treats you use with your dog. If they get used to a treat its value goes down.

Read these articles for more high value dog treat ideas and single ingredient dog training treats.

Do you have a favorite homemade dog treat you make for your dogs? Share it in the comments below!

Until next time-



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Karen Pedersen Written by:

Karen is an independent copywriter who loves dogs and everything about them. She is married to Scott, has 4 kids, and likes to take a natural and holistic approach to living and pet ownership.

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