Herbs not only offer variety in taste, but they also contain valuable nutrients. Many herbs are also said to have a healing effect, so dog food fortified with herbs can be very healthy for four-legged friends. We have summarized for you which herbs are good for dogs and which are taboo.
Herbs for Dogs in Brief
By definition, herbs, like spices, are parts of plants that, due to their natural ingredients, have a taste or smell effect. While spices also include seeds, bark, or roots, herbs are exclusively fresh or dried leaves and flowers, sprouts, or parts thereof.
Kitchen herbs are all herbs that are typically used in cooking. Medicinal herbs also contain active ingredients that are used internally or externally to alleviate the symptoms of illness. For dogs, herbs can be harmful or healthy, depending on the active ingredients. Before you mix herbs in your dog’s food, you should therefore inform yourself precisely about possible toxins and active substances.
Poisonous Herbs for Dogs
Not every herb that grows in the home herb garden should end up in the dog bowl. Because some plants are not very tasty or even harmful for dogs. Contained toxins can lead to nausea, vomiting or diarrhea. If your bitch is pregnant or your four-legged friend has previous illnesses, you should first check which herbs are suitable for feeding. If in doubt, ask your veterinarian.
Wild garlic is poisonous for dogs even in small quantities.
Parsley and coriander are suitable in moderation for dogs, but should never be fed to pregnant bitches, as the herbs stimulate bleeding.
Rosemary is unsuitable for dogs with epilepsy because the essential oils promote seizures.
Chives are poisonous for dogs because the herb, like garlic, is a leek family and contains poisonous allium.
Stevia is a sweet herb that is used as a sugar substitute in cooking and baking. However, the sweet herb is poisonous for dogs because it can lead to hypoglycemia.
Woodruff contains coumarin and is harmful to dogs. Even the consumption of small amounts can cause digestive problems and symptoms of intoxication in four-legged friends.
Wasabi herb is not suitable for dogs. Hot spices and herbs should not be fed to dogs as these are poorly tolerated by four-legged friends.
Healthy Herbs for Dogs
Herbs are very popular as proven remedies in naturopathy. A healing effect has already been scientifically proven for some plants. The aromatic leaves help, for example, against respiratory problems, digestive problems, or loss of appetite. The following herbs are considered harmless or even healthy for the dog when dosed carefully.
Basil is one of the particularly tasty herbs for dogs. The green leaves contain many minerals and vitamins and are good for the fur nose.
Savory relieves gas and constipation in dogs. The herb can be dried or sprinkled fresh over the feed.
Nettle has a diuretic effect and can be used in dogs to treat urinary tract problems such as bladder infections. Stinging nettles can be given as tea or mixed with the food when dry.
Savory and dill have an appetizing effect and can encourage dogs with a poor appetite to eat.
Chamomile is used in dogs as tea or dried. The calming and pain-relieving effect helps with inflammation of the mucous membranes and respiratory infections.
Cress contains iron, calcium, and potassium and is, therefore, healthy addition to barfish or wet food.
Not every dog likes lavender because of its intense scent. The plant is also used as a remedy in dogs for sleep problems and flatulence.
Dandelion is a wild herb that is also commonly referred to as a weed. The herb stimulates the metabolism and is very tasty for many dogs.
Marjoram, oregano, sage, and thyme are herbs that contain many essential oils. With respiratory problems, dogs benefit from the cough-relieving and beneficial effects of the culinary herbs.
Not every dog likes mint, but it can relieve gastrointestinal complaints and help dogs with bad breath.
Parsley has a blood purifying effect and contains vital iron. However, parsley is unsuitable for pregnant bitches.
Rosemary can be good for dogs, especially if they have a loss of appetite. However, the herb is not suitable for all animals: Dogs with epilepsy are not allowed to eat rosemary, as the active ingredients it contains are cramp-inducing.
Lemon balm is digestive and antispasmodic and gives the feed a fresh aroma.
Preparation of Herbs for Dogs
Many herbs are easily digestible for dogs or even have a health-promoting effect. Because of the essential oils, it contains, you should always use herbs sparingly in dog food. Before feeding, fresh herbs can be finely chopped or pureed and then added to the feed. This is how the plants develop their full aroma because essential oils are released through the crushing.
Alternatively, dried herbs can be sprinkled or stirred into the food. Dried herbs often have a less intense aroma and also have a longer shelf life. It is best to get your dog used to new herbs slowly so that he can get used to the smell and taste.