When you think of fresh garden herbs, dogs are probably not the first thing that pops into your mind. But with all of the fantastic goodness that most herbs are full of, maybe it's time to start seasoning your pooch's dinner dish.
Many common herbs that could be growing in your backyard right now are jam-packed with vitamins, minerals and nutrients. Lots of them are safe for puppers to consume and can even help heal or prevent heaps of health problems. So which ones are best for canine use? Below are some of the most beneficial garden herbs out there for your four-legged friend.
Parsley Pretty much every list on the internet of herbs for dogs headlines with this popular plant. It's no surprise, seeing as parsley contains vitamins A, C and K. Vitamin K especially is associated with improving the health of blood, making this herb well suited for anemic fur-buddies. What's more, recent studies have found that parsley has cancer-preventing properties that can actually shrink tumors! Add to the list how fresh your pup's breath will be after he eats it, and you're really crazy not to be sprinkling this herb over your dog's food.
Oregano Another super popular herb for dogs is oregano. Once again packed with vitamins A, C and K, this herb takes things one step further packing a full punch of antioxidants! It's great for pooches whose muscles and joints get sore from exercise or old age. By giving your dog oregano, you're also decreasing his risk of bacterial infections. It's nature's detox herb, and works well as a treatment or a daily tonic.
Basil This herb smells and tastes delicious. That being said, it's health benefits far surpass it's yumminess. It's got the most vitamins of any herb on this list, including A, B6, C, E and K! Basil is absolutely loaded with potassium and gram for gram has far more calcium than dairy products. It definitely raises the ante, seeing as it contains antioxidants, antimicrobial and antiviral properties. You can rest assured that your dog won't be lacking anything if he's getting regular doses of this potent plant.
Turmeric Though not green and leafy likethe others, turmeric is a herb that should not be overlooked. It has some serious promise when it comes to treating cancer, which is definitely nothing to scoff at. Turmeric soothes and protects the digestive organs and is chock full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. Whether your dog has already been diagnosed with cancer or you'd just like to prevent the disease, do not underestimate the power of this bright yellow herb.
So now you know all the ways that your spice rack could be helping your canine. Getting these herbs into your pooch may prove to be more difficult, although lots of dogs do enjoy the new flavors on their supper. If you have a picky pup, you can try mixing the herbs into olive or coconut oil so that they take on a paste-like texture.
For doses, mini breeds only require a small pinch of goodness. The amount gently increases with your dog's weight, with mid-sized mutts needing about a teaspoon of herbs per meal all the way up to a tablespoon for giant breeds. As always, introduce new foods or herbs slowly to your dog, and go to the vet immediately if you notice any strange reactions developing.