Is ginger safe for dogs to eat?

JAIPUR, INDIA - OCTOBER 26: Fresh ginger for sale in a market, Rajasthan, Jaipur, India on October 26, 2022 in Jaipur, India. (Photo by Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images)
JAIPUR, INDIA - OCTOBER 26: Fresh ginger for sale in a market, Rajasthan, Jaipur, India on October 26, 2022 in Jaipur, India. (Photo by Eric Lafforgue/Art in All of Us/Corbis via Getty Images) /

Dogs deserve to taste every delicious treat in the world, but they may be unable to digest it all. While you’re sipping ginger tea or eating a gingerbread cookie, your dog might look at you with pleading puppy eyes.

This can lead to the question of “Is ginger safe for dogs to eat?” These are a few things to consider before giving it to your pup.

What Is Ginger?

Some common ingredients seem all-natural, but companies really produce them with chemical additives. Ginger isn’t one of them. It’s an organic compound that comes in root and powdered forms to create numerous recipes easily.

You can find ginger at farmer’s markets and grocery stores. It’s also easy to grow in indoor or outdoor gardens. Once you get it back to your house, the savory scent might draw your dog’s attention.

Is Ginger Safe for Dogs to Eat?

Good news for your pup — ginger is safe for dogs to eat. As always, it’s best in moderation, but you don’t need to worry if your dog eats a small amount.

Start with tiny doses if you’re wondering how much ginger is safe for your dog to enjoy. Vets typically advise that dogs eat one-fourth of a teaspoon for small breed dogs and three-fourths of a teaspoon for large breed dogs.

However, calling your vet to double-check the dosage is always best. They may recommend something different based on your dog’s age, health conditions or medications.

When Should Dogs Eat Ginger?

If dogs can eat ginger, when should you consider feeding your pup some? Learn when and why pet parents give it to their dogs.

1. Before Attending Social Events

Anxious dogs might get upset stomachs while hanging out in social settings. If you want to take your pup to a dog-friendly happy hour so they can mingle with everyone, you could give them a ginger treat before leaving home. Their stomach will stay calm and they’ll have a great time meeting new friends.

2. After Getting Nauseous
Sometimes dogs throw up because they’re sick or ate something in the yard. You can always give your dog some ginger tea to soothe their stomach afterward. Brew a tea bag for the recommended time, then let it cool to room temperature. Your dog can lap it in a bowl if you don’t add any sweetener or creamer.

3. While Dealing with Flatulence
Overactive gas problems happen all the time for dogs. Your pup might grab a slice of pizza off the kitchen counter and enjoy every secret bite. However, high-fat pepperoni toppings aren’t good for dogs, so their digestive system will struggle to process them. They may have more gas than usual and benefit from a soothing ginger treat.

Your pup might enjoy a store-bought treat or a homemade ginger cookie whether the holidays have arrived or not. The chewy texture is easy to digest and a fun change from their standard kibble diet.

Health Benefits of Ginger for Dogs

Your dog might enjoy these few health benefits if they start eating ginger regularly. Consider their current health conditions to see if these benefits would improve their quality of life.

1. Has Anti-Inflammatory Properties
You could start giving your pup ginger treats for anti-inflammatory relief. The natural root reduces inflammation with therapeutic effects, which helps dogs after a lifetime of an unhealthy diet or red rashes on their bellies.

Anti-inflammatory foods are also great for painful joints because they reduce the inflammation creating joint pain. Many older dogs deal with joint pain daily but could find some all-natural relief with ginger treats.

2. Soothes the Digestive Tract
The anti-inflammatory properties of ginger also soothe upset stomachs. It helps people by reducing inflammatory bowel disease (IBS) symptoms and can do the same in dogs. It’s something to consider if your pup struggles to eat or keep food down due to similar IBS challenges.

3. Protects Cells With Antioxidants
Dogs can have ginger tea, treats and homebaked goods because the organic compound contains antioxidants. They’re potent compounds that fight oxidative stress in cells that would otherwise complicate a human or animal’s health. By strengthening the cells with antioxidants, ginger could help your dog stay healthier for longer.

Potential Risks of Ginger Dog Treats

There are multiple benefits of ginger for dogs, but pet parents should also be aware that these potential risks could become a concern.

1. Lowering Blood Pressure Too Much
Doctors sometimes recommend adding ginger to their patient’s diets to manage their hypertension without additional medications. It lowers blood pressure as the body digests it, which may not be great for your dog if they have diabetes or heart disease.

2. Thinning the Blood
Researchers also found ginger thins the blood, which isn’t good if your dog has an upcoming surgery. The change in blood viscosity affects their anesthesia and may make it less effective if your vet doesn’t know they had ginger.

3. Affecting Your Dog’s Pregnancy
There isn’t much existing research on pregnant dogs eating ginger treats. It may not be safe for your dog to have if they’re far along in their pregnancy. Consult their vet if you have any questions.

Consider Treating Your Pup to Ginger Snacks

It is safe for dogs to eat in moderation. It may help with their nausea and anxiety, but it could also pose a health risk for some existing conditions. Call your dog’s vet for a quick chat to double-check that it’s safe for them to enjoy.

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