Mint is both a refreshing and versatile herb. It can be used in sweets, tea, and a lot more. It’s extract, made from the essential oils of mint leaves, is also commonplace in the culinary world.
Mint is very widespread, and grows in many gardens. If you are a dog owner you may be wondering if dogs can have mint.
And, in this case you might ask, “Can Dogs Eat Mint?” In this article, we will tell you whether mint is a safe food for dogs. Further, we will uncover any health benefits or harmful effects on our dogs that dog parents should know about.
Can Dogs Eat Mint?
Dogs can eat mint as long as it is ingested in small amounts.
There are many types of fruits, herbs and foods that are not good for dogs. Some harmful foods include grapes, chocolate and avocados. But mint, given in the right quantity, is not one of them.
First things first, let us explain that there are many types of mint leaves. Mint is not just a single species of plants, but rather a family of plants.
Some types of mint can be a good food for our furry pooches. They can contain a number of benefits for dogs (more on this in a second!).
Dogs can safely eat most types of fresh mint leaves. Most mint leaves such as spearmint are good for your dogs.
Benefits of Feeding Mint to Dogs
Mint itself can act as a breath freshener for dogs, thanks to their scent and flavor. There are a lot of treatments for bad doggie breath out there, but you can try mint before running out to buy these products. (Though, dog bad breath can be a sign of health issues so, if your dog has super bad breath, it’s a good idea to check in with your vet.)
Mint can even clean your dog’s mouth from bacteria. Mint inhibits bacterial growth for both humans and canines. That’s why dental products like toothbrushes and treats are mint flavored.
Next, mint leaves can act as a natural flea repellent. This is beneficial for dogs experiencing fleas; after all, they are nasty parasites and cause significant discomfort to our fur babies.
However, too much mint ingestion can be a harmful herb for our furry little friends.
Precautions Against Feeding Mint to Dogs
Despite their benefits, there are some precautions against feeding mint to your dogs.
Certain types of mint leaves can be benign or even beneficial, while other types are quite dangerous. For example, one type of mint leaf known as English pennyroyal, is toxic to dogs.
English pennyroyal mint leaves contain a chemical known as pelugeone. This chemical is not only toxic to dogs, but to us humans as well. Thus, they are not desirable for any of us.
An overconsumption of mint leaves can also lead to gastric distress. Thus, we advise you to limit dogs’ consumption of mint leaves.
Although most types of mint leaves are harmless and may even be beneficial for dogs, your dog must avoid mint-flavored sweets and toothpaste like mint candies as they either contain sugar or even worse, xylitol. Xylitol is another toxic chemical compound to dogs.
In conclusion, if you choose to feed your dogs mint, understand they can be nutritionally beneficial, as long as you avoid the toxic types.
Learn More About What Human Foods Are Healthy or Harmful for Dogs
This article is part of our special series of articles about “What Human Foods Can Dogs Eat?”
In the next installment, find out Can Dogs Eat Mustard?