- Turmeric is an Indian spice that has a pungent, spicy flavor. It has been used for medical purposes for more than 4,000 years.
- Turmeric health benefits for dogs include anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, as well as pain relief and treatment for cancer, arthritis, and different gastrointestinal disorders. Studies have proven that turmeric works just as efficiently as many conventional drugs, including steroids, ibuprofen, and aspirin.
- You can give turmeric to your dog in the form of turmeric paste or drops, chewable tablets, or different turmeric treats.
- Turmeric doesn’t have any specific side effects, but if you give it to your dog in large amounts, the pet might experience stomach upset, diarrhea, and, less commonly – vomiting.
- The appropriate turmeric dosage for dogs is 15 to 20 mg of turmeric per pound of body weight.
People in India have been using turmeric for thousands of years because of its potent medicinal properties. For now, there haven’t been any studies that examined turmeric’s benefits for dogs. However, scientists have conducted more than 6,000 studies that have proven turmeric’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. Based on this information, many veterinarians advise using the spice as a health supplement for dogs. Plus, many pet owners are turning to natural remedies rather than prescription medications for their pets, and this gold-colored powder can help relieve pain and canine chronic inflammation, contribute to your dog’s overall health, and increase its lifespan.
Table of Contents
What Is Turmeric?
Turmeric is a medical herb that is mainly grown and used in India. It has strong spicy notes. The turmeric plant belongs to the ginger family, and the spice itself is prepared by crunching the plant’s rhizomes (dried root stalks). The main ingredient responsible for turmeric’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects as well as its bright yellow color is curcumin.
Turmeric Health Benefits For Dogs
Studies have backed up many of turmeric’s health benefits. Whether it’s served as a paste, capsules, tablets, or simply in the form of powdered spice, giving your canine one cup of organic turmeric over the course of a year can do wonders. Here’s a list of turmeric’s health benefits for dogs:
Natural Anti-Inflammatory Agent
Inflammation is a natural bodily response to harmful pathogens, but chronic inflammation can turn into a significant health problem. Turmeric can relieve inflammation caused by different diseases by suppressing the molecules that provoke it. The most common conditions to cause chronic inflammation include arthritis, allergies, dental, digestive, kidney, neurological disease, and cancer. Some studies claim that curcumin contained in turmeric has the same anti-inflammatory effect as conventional anti-inflammatory medications and even be more effective than conventional drugs such as ibuprofen and aspirin.
Antioxidants are substances that can prevent or reduce cell damage caused by free radicals in cells. Free radicals are independently existing molecules that can cause DNA damage, leading to rapid aging and different diseases such as cancer.
Antioxidants found in turmeric can combat free radicals, therefore preventing a number of conditions, including cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. At the same time, curcumin has an anticoagulant effect meaning it decreases the risk of blood clots by thinning the blood.
Treatment For Arthritis
Dogs become more prone to osteoarthritis as they age because their joints become weaker and more easily inflamed. This condition makes dogs’ lives more uncomfortable and prevents pets from functioning normally. Luckily, turmeric can help prevent or even cure arthritis and relieve your dog’s pain and discomfort. It can be used either in combination with conventional drugs or as a standalone natural remedy. Unlike other medications, turmeric doesn’t have any side effects, and it is an effective natural remedy for this unpleasant condition.
Helps To Fight Cancer
Cancer is one of the most common diseases in dogs and has shortened many canine lives. There are many medications that can help fight cancer, but turmeric can actually prevent this disease. Because of its ability to prevent and stop the inflammation process, giving turmeric to your dog can hamper cancer at the very early stages of the disease.
However, if your dog has already been diagnosed with cancer, turmeric can be used as an effective treatment. Curcumin doesn’t just serve as an anti-inflammatory supplement; it can also relieve pain and fight cancer cells.
As mentioned above, turmeric is a natural pain suppressor. Inflammation causes a lot of discomfort, including swelling and joint pain, which interferes with your dog’s normal life and activities. Compared with other pain medications, turmeric is a safer alternative, so it’s worth consulting with your vet about giving turmeric to your dog to relieve painful symptoms.
Whenever your pet takes conventional medications, its liver is left to process the drugs, which can put a significant strain on the organ. If you use turmeric alongside other medications, it can ease the harmful effects on the liver and support liver health in general. Turmeric helps the liver to process nutrients and drugs, remove toxins, and clean the blood.
Treatment For Gastrointestinal Disorders
Turmeric is an effective home remedy for different gastrointestinal disorders, including Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Many studies have shown turmeric’s ability to deal with gut inflammation and improve the functioning of the digestive system.
Works As Well As Steroids
Steroids are commonly used to treat dogs that suffer from allergies, asthma-like diseases, joint pain, and bee stings. But studies have shown that curcumin can work just as well as steroids. The Journal of Pharmacy and Pharmacology has also published research that proves that combining steroids with curcumin reduces some side effects of these drugs, including increased thirst, hunger, and energy loss.
The main advantage of using turmeric is that this home remedy has no side effects at all, but it can still be as effective as conventional drugs.
How To Give Turmeric To Dogs?
You can give turmeric to your pet as a powder or drops that you mix in with food or as chewable tablets, which makes it very easy to introduce the spice to your dog. You can also buy different treats with curcumin or pet food that contains this spice. But be aware that pet food or treats may not have enough curcumin to provide any health benefits.
It’s best to use turmeric powder to create a paste by mixing the powder with olive or coconut oil and ground pepper. You can store the paste for up to two weeks after making it. The best way to use this paste is to add it to wet dog food. Give a tablespoon of the paste daily if you have a large dog, half a tablespoon for medium-sized dogs, and ¼ of a spoon if you have a small pup.
Chewable turmeric tablets can make a great supplement for your canine’s diet. The tablets come in different flavors to make them more appealing for dogs, but you should look closely at the labels to ensure that the tablets you purchase don’t contain any added ingredients such as corn, wheat, soy, or eggs.
The benefit of using turmeric drops for dogs is that they are easier to swallow and absorb. Their dosage is the same as with turmeric powder, and it fully depends on your dog’s size.
Things to keep in mind
It’s best to mix turmeric with your dog’s food because many dogs don’t like its bitter taste. Turmeric can be hard to digest when served separately, and that’s why you should mix it with fats and black pepper instead of just sprinkling it on top of your dog’s meal. This will ease the digestion process and increase turmeric’s bioavailability.
You should also be careful to give your dog the correct amount of turmeric based on the pet’s weight and not go overboard with the spice. Adding too much of it to your pet’s diet won’t benefit your dog either. The average dose of turmeric for dogs is 50 – 250 mg, given up to three times a day.
If you are administering store-bought turmeric paste or tablets, check the labels for dosage recommendations. If you are not sure how much turmeric to give to your dog, simply ask your veterinarian.
If you see that your dog is rejecting turmeric treats or supplements, then it may be best for you to take a break from giving the spice to your pet.
Turmeric Side Effects
Normally, turmeric doesn’t cause any side effects, but if the spice is given in large amounts, your dog may experience gastrointestinal upset. If your dog suffers from gallbladder obstruction or bleeding disorders such as Von Willebrand’s disease, you should not give it turmeric or turmeric supplements.
Turmeric is often contraindicated for dogs with certain liver and blood clotting disorders, as it can worsen the pet’s symptoms because of its anticoagulant properties. If you suspect that the spice may negatively influence your pet’s health condition, ask your veterinarian whether your dog can have turmeric. You should also ask for a consultation if your dog already takes antiplatelet or anticoagulation medications.
If you use turmeric in the paste form, you need to give it with caution and watch for your dog’s reaction. Since this paste contains a lot of fat, your dog’s body can have an adverse reaction to the sudden increase of fat in the diet, resulting in diarrhea or sometimes pancreatitis.
If you apply turmeric topically, perform a patch test on a small area of the pet’s skin beforehand, as many dogs can develop allergic reactions to turmeric.
How much turmeric is safe to give my dog?
What does turmeric do for dogs?
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects. It also relieves pain, supports the liver, and improves heart health.
What are the side effects of turmeric in dogs?
When given in large doses, turmeric can cause vomiting and diarrhea in dogs.
How do you give turmeric to dogs?
You can give turmeric to your dog in the form of a paste, drops, or chewable tablets.
Can I put turmeric in my dog’s food?
Yes, you can put turmeric in your dog’s food, but if you want to get the most health benefits for your dog, use turmeric paste.