4 min read

Can Dogs Eat Mushrooms?


By Kevin Hughes

Published: 05/10/2024, edited: 06/14/2024

Reviewed by a licensed veterinary professional: Dr. Linda Simon, MVB MRCVS

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Mushrooms are a mainstay of many meals. This woody, earthy tasting veg is frequently used in risottos and stir fries, or served alongside meats — sauteed and piled on top of a ribeye steak, or as part of a pie filling with chicken.

Mushrooms are also a staple topping on many pizzas, and because of its hearty, filling quality, ‘shrooms are a classic replacement for meat in a whole host of vegetarian dishes — stews and lasagnas being great examples. 

However; some words of warning, here. There is an incredible range of different mushroom varieties — thousands in the USA — and many of these simply aren’t safe to be eaten. So, as us humans have to be careful with what types of mushroom we eat, it stands to reason that dogs do too — or rather, as pet parents, we have to be cautious on their behalf.

Can dogs eat mushrooms? They can, but only if it’s a type of mushroom that’s been classed as safe to consume, and only if it’s been prepared properly, without lots of extra seasoning. Let’s dig in and find out more.

Can dogs have mushrooms to eat?

Dogs can have mushrooms to eat — though don’t be surprised if your pup isn’t really interested in eating this type of fungi. Mushrooms typically have a distinct, strong flavor that your dog may not like, and the texture — slightly chewy, even rubbery — might not meet with their approval either. Don’t be offended if you give your dog some mushroom, only for him or her to spit it back out!

Some of the most common types of mushroom to eat include portabella, porcini, white button, crimini and shiitake. These are fine for human consumption, so will be for dogs, too, providing you prepare them properly.

Whichever type you choose from that list, store-bought mushrooms are the safest bet, especially if you give them a thorough wash first before serving them. You’ll want to trim the stalks right down, too, and slice the mushroom up. Don’t give a whole mushroom to your dog as it’s considered a potential choking hazard.

Can dogs eat raw mushrooms?

Can dogs eat mushrooms that are still raw? We wouldn’t advise it, even if the mushroom is a safe variety and taken straight out of the store packet. Raw mushrooms have quite a tough structure, because of the presence of a substance called chitin. They are difficult to eat and digest when raw; it’s rare that humans will eat raw mushrooms, so why would your dog?

Can dogs eat cooked mushrooms?

Yes — the best way for dogs to eat mushrooms is when they’ve been cooked. Cooking mushrooms softens them up and makes them easier to eat. However, as with the majority of human foods that you may wish to share with your pup, mushrooms should be cooked with hardly any additional seasoning.

So, if you’re making a creamy mushroom stroganoff, for example, don’t think you can spoon a portion of that into your dog’s bowl. No. Mushrooms should be cooked with next to nothing, if you’re planning to share them with your dog; a very small amount of oil and a tiny pinch of salt — dogs do need some sodium in their diet — is just about acceptable. Nothing more. Mushrooms are ideally best served to your dog completely plain.

Can dogs eat wild mushrooms?

Now — when it comes to wild dogs and mushrooms, it’s a completely different ball game. Let’s be clear here. There’s 100% no way that dogs should eat wild mushrooms!

While some dogs have been trained to hunt for mushrooms and truffles, especially breeds like the Lagotto Romagnolo and English Springer Spaniel, these dogs know their role is to find and identify mushrooms — not to eat them. These dogs have been specially trained, and know what, and what not, to do.

We all know that many dogs like to forage and snaffle stuff as they walk — especially if they’re a breed that’s particularly scent-driven. It’s typical to see dogs walking with their heads down, noses engaged in what they can sniff out — and, if you’re walking in the countryside there’s a good chance your pup might detect the presence of mushrooms and quickly gobble some up.

Not good. When you’re out and about with your dog, do keep vigilant and look out for any wild mushrooms; keep your pup well away from them. You might see mushrooms sprouting up in your backyard, too, if you have turf. Mow them down or remove them if so to eliminate the risk of your dog eating them.

What should I do if my dog has eaten mushrooms that are poisonous?

Not all wild mushrooms are toxic or poisonous to dogs, but many types are. Sadly, mushroom poisoning in dogs is a genuine condition and can result in serious illness if not diagnosed and treated.

Typical symptoms of mushroom poisoning in dogs include:

If you suspect your dog has ingested mushrooms that are toxic, and is presenting symptoms of poisoning, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Are mushrooms good for dogs?

While mushrooms contain several different vitamins — including Vitamin A, C and E — as well as magnesium, iron and protein, your dog will be getting all of this from a complete dog food. Mushrooms are not a food that will give your pup any notable gain, so there’s not really an advantage in feeding your dog mushrooms.

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© 2024 Wag Labs, Inc. All rights reserved.