Are Spices Safe for Dogs? If so, what spices are safe and even good? What spices are toxic to dogs? Is it safe for my dog to eat turmeric? Can he have basil? What about cinnamon?

Cooking lovers always see it more delightful when they use their collection of special spices. Therefore, they love to add flavor and aroma to their dishes. But, they tend to feel afraid that their dogs might eat with them and it caused them harm. So, what are the spices that aren’t dangerous for dogs? What’s even good?

Furthermore, spices are not made just for us humans. However, our dogs also can get benefit from spices in their diet. Besides, here is how to use spices to enhance your dog’s health. As Josie Beug, DVM, a Miami-based holistic veterinarian set her tips about spices for dogs.

To clarify, here are the safe and beneficial spices for dogs

As Dr. Beug recommends, the following spices are safe for dogs


dried basil leaves
  1. Antibacterial
  2. Anti-cancer
  3. Fights free radicals
  4. Helps prevent diabetes
  5. Protects the liver
  6. Reduces pain and inflammation

Tip: If your dog suffers from arthritis, add basil to help reduce pain and inflammation.



  1. Alleviates nausea
  2. Anti-diarrheal
  3. Eases intestinal gas
  4. Anti-parasitic
  5. Helps detoxify the body
  6. Increases milk flow

Caution: Don’t add coriander to a pregnant dog’s diet, as it may stimulate uterine contractions.



  1. Anti-inflammatory
  2. Displays anti-cancer properties
  3. Regulates blood sugar
  4. Combats free radicals
  5. Protects against heart disease
  6. May lower the risk of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease in humans and similar conditions in dogs

Tip: Choose Ceylon cinnamon over the more common Cassia variety. Since it is much lower in the blood-thinning compound coumarin.



  1. Anti-inflammatory
  2. Antimicrobial, antifungal, antibacterial
  3. Improves digestion
  4. Lowers blood sugar
  5. Regulates menstruation
  6. Relieves diarrhea

Caution: Avoid giving dill to pregnant dogs, as it may induce menstruation and cause miscarriage.


fresh fennel and fennel seeds
  1. Acts as a diuretic to remove toxins
  2. Aids digestion
  3. Alleviates constipation, diarrhea and intestinal gas
  4. Benefits brain function Y Contains anti-cancer properties
  5. Increases milk production during lactation

Caution: Avoid giving your dog Excessive fennel amount as it may cause health issues. For instance, difficulty breathing and heart palpitation.


Fresh, dried and powdered ginger
  1. Anti-inflammatory
  2. Eases nausea and upset stomach
  3. Helps boost cognitive function
  4. Helps regulate blood sugar levels
  5. May block growth of cancerous tumors
  6. Reduces pain associated with osteoarthritis

Tip: Giving ginger to senior dogs may help boost cognitive function and decrease age-related joint pain.


Fresh mint leaves with dried mint
  1. Alleviates spasms in the colon
  2. Improves signs of irritable bowel syndrome
  3. Reduces intestinal gas
  4. Relieves indigestion
  5. Soothes upset stomach
  6. Treats diarrhea

Caution: Avoid giving to dogs with gastroesophageal reflux disease, as it may cause hypoglycemia in diabetics.


  1. Antibacterial
  2. Antifungal
  3. Anti-inflammatory
  4. Contains cancer-fighting polyphenols
  5. Relieves indigestion and diarrhea
  6. Rich in antioxidants to combat free radicals

Caution: Oregano may increase the risk of bleeding in dogs with bleeding disorders. So, use cautiously with diabetic dogs, as oregano can lower blood sugar.


Fresh and dried parsley
  1. Antibacterial
  2. Anti-inflammatory
  3. May help protect against urinary tract infections, kidney stones, and gallbladder stones
  4. Natural diuretic
  5. Rich in antioxidants

Caution: Avoid giving to dogs prone to calcium oxalate stones, as parsley is high in oxalates.


  1. Anti-cancer
  2. Anti-inflammatory
  3. Fights free radicals
  4. Helps heal the gut
  5. Improves brain function
  6. Reduces symptoms of arthritis

Caution: Turmeric acts as a blood thinner and may increase the risk of bleeding in association with some medications and botanicals, like NSAIDs, garlic and Gingko Biloba. Above all, Dr. Beug recommends a ¼ teaspoon for small dogs, ½ teaspoon for medium dogs and 1 teaspoon for large dogs per day, mixed into food. “The key is to remember that more is not better,” she says. “Besides, a heavy spice aroma may turn dogs off from the food.”

On the other hand, these are unsafe spices for dogs

Meanwhile, Dr. Beug advises avoiding the following spices:

  1. Garlic (dehydrated or powder): “Giving dogs small amounts of fresh garlic is safe and beneficial,” Dr. Beug says. However, she advises us to avoid powdered garlic. Moreover, It’s claimed it has increased concentration and potency.
  2. Onion powder: Thiosulphate, a compound in onions, can cause hemolytic anemia in dogs, a condition in which the red blood cells burst. So, Dr. Beug says  “Play it safe, and avoid it in any form.”
  3. Pepper: Black pepper is a popular component of golden paste (a mixture of turmeric powder, water, oil and black pepper that’s taken orally for its anti-inflammatory and other healing properties) to help increase the absorption of curcumin in turmeric. Dr. Beug advises avoiding it. However, piperine in black pepper also enhances the absorption of prescription medications. Also, increasing the chance of accidental overdose.
  4. Nutmeg: Nutmeg contains myristicin, as a result, it’s toxic to dogs and can cause symptoms ranging from disorientation to seizures.
  5. ROSEMARY “Rosemary is generally safe. However, avoid giving it to dogs prone to seizures, as it can worsen this condition,” Dr. Beug says.

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