Can dogs eat ginger?
Yes, dogs can eat ginger in moderation. In fact, ginger can be considered a superfood for dogs, due to the amount of goodness it contains. Ginger has many different properties that can help a dog’s body to function correctly.
Ginger can also help to alleviate different health conditions, such as arthritis, due to its anti-inflammatory properties. Let’s delve into the wonderful world of ginger and see how it can benefit our furry friends!
Table of Contents
What is ginger?
Ginger is a flowering plant that is grown worldwide for different cuisines and remedies. The rhizome (or root) of the plant is harvested and consumed, along with the leaves and shoots.
Ginger is commonly used in Asian cooking, but has slowly made its way into the Western world. Ginger is available in both fresh and dried forms.
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Is ginger good for dogs?
Yes, ginger is good for dogs when it is offered in small quantities. It also has many medicinal properties which can help dogs who suffer from different conditions and ailments
Ginger contains anti-inflammatory properties, which can help with the condition arthritis. Arthritis is a health condition that commonly affects older animals, where a joint becomes swollen and inflamed. This is often painful and requires pain relief medication.
Ginger may help to relieve the symptoms of arthritis by reducing inflammation. If your dog has been diagnosed with arthritis, speak with your veterinary surgeon about adding ginger to their diet.
Note: Arthritis cannot be controlled by ginger alone, and prescription medication should always be used, as prescribed by your veterinary surgeon.
Did anyone else’s Grandma used to give you a ginger biscuit when you felt sick? Or was that just mine?
Ginger contains anti-sickness properties, due to two different compounds – gingerol and shogaol. These two compounds ease the feeling of nausea as well as support the digestive system.
Dogs can feel sick for different reasons. A small amount of ginger may help to alleviate these symptoms, but if continual vomiting occurs, seek veterinary advice as soon as possible.
Ginger helps to support the gastrointestinal system and ease gas buildup. Some dog breeds may be more prone to gas and flatulence, such as Pugs, Frenchies and Bulldogs.
Ginger can help to ease symptoms of flatulence by speeding up the digestive process, and reducing the amount of gas that can build up in the stomach and intestines.
Bloat, or ‘gastric dilatation-volvulus is extremely dangerous in large breed dogs. This is a life-threatening condition that needs immediate veterinary treatment.
If your dog suffers from ongoing flatulence, ginger may help to ease these symptoms.
If your dog shows sudden signs of bloat, then do not try to treat it with ginger but seek immediate veterinary attention.
Ginger can act as a natural antioxidant. Antioxidants help to protect our dog’s cells in their body from oxidation, or in other words, damage.
Damage to cells can cause diseases, such as cancer. By feeding your dog ginger, you may be able to help protect against cancers and different diseases.
Ginger can help to improve a dogs circulation, increasing the amount of blood flow that the tissues receive.
Ginger can cause vaso-dilation in dogs. This is a fancy word that means that the veins in the body dilate, increasing the volume of blood that flows through them.
As a result of vaso-dilation, blood pressure can also significantly reduce, helping with animals who have been diagnosed with hypertension (increased blood pressure).
Is ginger bad for dogs?
No, ginger is not bad for dogs. You just need to make sure that you do not offer them too much ginger and dogs should always be monitored after they have been given ginger for the first time. Some dogs can have different reactions to ginger, including:
Dogs can suffer from allergies to many things, including the environment, pollen and insects. However, they can also be allergic to foods and some dogs may have an allergy to ginger.
Symptoms of an allergic reaction include:
- Swelling around the throat
- Swelling around the eyes and ears
- Increased licking of the feet
If you think that your dog is having an allergic reaction, seek veterinary advice immediately.
In some instances, ginger may interfere with medications that have been prescribed by your vet.
If you want to introduce ginger into your dog’s diet and they are on lifelong medication, it may be worth checking with a vet to see if it is safe to do so. Dogs with liver or kidney disease should refrain from consuming ginger.
Whilst ginger can act as a digestive aid, ironically, consuming too much ginger may cause gastrointestinal.
Ingesting too much ginger can cause:
- Vomiting upset
- Excessive gas
If you think that your dog has eaten a large volume of ginger, speak with your veterinary practice for advice.
Ginger for dogs - how to serve
Dogs can be offered ginger in a variety of ways. Keep in mind that ginger has a strong flavor which many dogs may not enjoy eating, so don’t be alarmed if they don’t want it!
Smaller dogs should not exceed ¼ teaspoon per day and larger dogs should be given no more than ¾ teaspoon per day.
Fresh ginger is the most potent, has little to no processing and is widely available. Fresh ginger should be peeled. It can then be blended into a pulp, sliced thinly or chopped into bite sized pieces. This can be given on its own or sprinkled over your dog’s food.
Powdered ginger is widely available, where ginger is dried and then processed into a powdered form. This can be mixed into dog biscuit recipes (link to a recipe here?), added to their water or simply sprinkled over their food.
Ginger capsules are available to give to your dog as a tablet. Always purchase from a trusted source and consult with your veterinary surgeon beforehand. Make sure that there are no additional additives to the capsules.
Home brewed ginger tea – delicious! Simply boil a kettle and infuse fresh ginger with hot water. Let the tea fully cool before offering it to your dog. You can even leave the ginger in the tea for a tasty snack at the end.
Always introduce new foods slowly and over a period of time. If you notice any adverse reactions after your dog has eaten ginger, do not offer any more and speak with your veterinary surgeon for advice.
Can dogs eat gingerbread cookies?
No, dogs should not eat gingerbread cookies. However, you could find a recipe online for dog-friendly biscuits and add in ginger. Then you have your own dog biscuits, full of superfood goodness, ready to offer to your pooch.
Can dogs eat biscuits?
Yes and no, depending on what the biscuit is! As a general rule, dogs should not eat biscuits, cookies, oreos, or, quite frankly, anything that is made for human consumption.
Full guide here: Can dogs eat biscuits?
Can dogs eat ginger snaps?
No, dogs should not be offered ginger snaps. Ginger snaps will often contain ingredients that can be toxic to dogs, as well as containing high levels of sugar. In high concentrations, sugar can cause severe health problems.
Can dogs eat ginger nut cookies?
No, dogs should not eat ginger nut cookies. Not only will they contain high levels of sugar, but most nuts are toxic to dogs.
Nuts such as macadamias, pistachios, and walnuts are toxic to dogs and veterinary attention should be sought immediately if they have been eaten.
Can dogs eat pickled ginger?
Yes and no. Whilst a small amount is unlikely to do any harm, it is best to refrain from feeding pickled ginger to your dog, due to high salt levels. Vinegar is often used to pickle ginger, and this can often cause a gastrointestinal upset.
Can dogs eat candied ginger?
Yes and no. Candied ginger can contain high levels of sugar, therefore it should be avoided. A small amount, however, is unlikely to cause any harm.
Sweet ginger products can also contain an ingredient called xylitol, and this is extremely dangerous to dogs if it is ingested. Always check the ingredients of pre-prepared ginger.
Moral of the story? The best form of ginger to offer your dog is fresh root ginger. It is the least processed ingredient and is widely available.
Can dogs eat ginger – final thoughts
On the whole, ginger is a superfood and can provide dogs with a multitude of benefits. Whilst it may not offer a variety of vitamins and minerals that other superfoods do, ginger can act as a strong anti-inflammatory, natural antioxidant and help to boost your dog’s circulatory system.
Fresh ginger is the best form of ginger to give to your dog, then powdered ginger. If your dog will eat fresh ginger you can give them a little piece as a snack, or you can combine with their everyday food. If you’re feeling creative, try baking them into dog biscuit recipes!
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New foods should always be introduced to your dog slowly, with ginger being no exception. If you are worried about your dog, post ginger ingestion, speak with your veterinary practice as soon as possible.