Honey is a deliciously sweet natural ingredient that is known to have many health benefits for humans. But does this apply to our furry best friends too? Can dogs eat honey, or is honey toxic to dogs?
Can dogs eat honey?
Yes, when fed in small quantities, honey is perfectly safe for dogs to eat. However, as with any type of sugary food, honey should only be fed to dogs in moderation.
When served to your dog correctly and safely, honey is a delicious treat that may have some benefits to your dog’s health.
What are the health benefits of honey?
Honey is somewhat of a superfood, and has antimicrobial and antifungal properties. It can help to soothe inflammation, particularly if your dog has a sore throat or painful stomach. Make sure to follow any veterinary advice first, but a little bit of honey may help to ease your dog’s pain and provide some comfort.
Some people claim that honey can reduce the symptoms of seasonal allergies. While there is no clear research to back this up, the theory is that locally-produced raw honey will reduce allergic reactions to flower pollen.
Another advantage to honey is that it appeals to your dog’s sweet tooth, and can tempt it to eat. This can be useful if your dog is off its food, or you can use honey to hide the flavor of unpleasant medication.
What should I be aware of when offering honey to my dog?
The main thing to bear in mind when offering honey to your dog is the high sugar content. Honey is very high in calories, and can quickly lead to weight gain if fed in large amounts.
Stick to no more than a quarter teaspoon of honey per 20 pounds of body-weight per day. This will be enough for your dog to get the health benefits of honey without risking excessive weight gain. Ensure your dog gets plenty of exercise to burn off those extra calories.
Never feed honey to dogs that are overweight or obese or those that suffer from health problems such as diabetes. Switch to healthier, lower-calorie treats such as fruits or vegetables instead.
Raw honey should never be fed to puppies, as their immune system is not yet able to protect against bacterial or fungal spores within the honey.
Sugary food such as honey can also cause tooth decay, so brushing your dog’s teeth is a good idea to keep them in pristine condition.
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