Turmeric is commonly used as a cooking ingredient, for example in curries. It contains antioxidants and is often said to provide health benefits such as being good for heartburn, eczema and even stomach ulcers. It’s also supposed to be good for joint pains and arthritis. If you’re familiar with turmeric and its benefits then you may be wondering about turmeric for dogs – is turmeric safe for dogs and does it provide the same benefits for them?
Is turmeric safe for dogs?
The short answer is yes, turmeric is safe for dogs even though turmeric is a spice and you’re probably aware that it’s not normally a good idea to give spices to dogs.
The reason you can give dogs turmeric is that it does actually have beneficial effects for dogs just like it does for us humans, and feeding dogs turmeric can improve their health. This is especially true for dogs with arthritis (as turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory) or itchy skin.
You can give your dog turmeric on a daily basis. We recommend that you add it to your dog’s normal food – it’s not a good idea to feed your dog spicy indian food containing turmeric, for example.
Health benefits of turmeric for dogs
Here’s a list of some of the many health benefits of turmeric for dogs; it can help with:
- Joint pain, inflammation and arthritis – this is very important because all dogs are prone to arthritis.
- Treating skin infections and wounds – you can mix it with honey to create a paste that can be applied to the wound.
- Heart health – it can lower cholesterol levels and thin the blood, helping to prevent blood clots.
- Liver health and function.
- Inhibiting cancer/tumor growth.
- Preventing depression (yes, dogs can get depressed…)
- Allergy relief.
- Improving digestion and reducing gas.
- Preventing diarrhea.
That’s a pretty long list of potential health benefits!
Turmeric dosage for dogs
The normal recommended turmeric dosage for dogs is somewhere between an eighth to a quarter of a teaspoon for each ten pounds of your dog’s weight, which is equivalent to about fifteen to twenty milligrams per pound of body weight. When first starting to give your dog turmeric, it’s probably best to start off at the lower end of this dosage, or even below it, and then gradually increase it until you reach the full recommended dosage.
How to give your dog turmeric
Giving turmeric to your dog is very simple. You can simply sprinkle turmeric onto your dog’s food and mix it in. If you feed your dog your own cooking, then you can obviously just add turmeric to your recipes. Instead of using turmeric powder, you can also mix turmeric paste into your dog’s food. In fact, this may be the best way of giving turmeric to your dog as the paste form supposedly gives more benefits than the powder form.
Whichever form you choose, you should try and make sure you use the highest quality organic turmeric that you can. Cheaper and lower quality turmeric won’t provide the same health benefits for your dog.
Also, when you first start to feed your dog turmeric it’s a good idea to keep an eye on them for any adverse reactions or side effects. If they do show any symptoms of side effects, you should stop giving them turmeric immediately.
Whilst turmeric is normally safe for dogs. it can sometimes result in some side effects:
- Turmeric can sometimes cause your dog to become constipated. You should make sure your dog is drinking plenty of water when eating turmeric.
- Some dogs can experience upset stomachs as a result of eating turmeric.
- Dogs that are susceptible to problems with kidney stones shouldn’t be given turmeric.
- You also be wary of giving your dog turmeric if you are already giving it diabetic medicine or aspirin.
That said, the majority of dogs show no symptoms of side effects and can eat turmeric with no problems whatsoever.
Turmeric can be very beneficial for dogs and is normally very safe for them. If you’re going to introduce turmeric into your dog’s diet we recommend that you do so gradually while monitoring carefully for any side effects.