If you are a dog owner, chances are you have a long list of questions about what foods are good and bad for your dog to eat. There are so many websites that voice a variety of opinions and guidelines (not always backed up by facts) relating to what you should and should not feed your four-legged friend.
Keep in mind that everyone is entitled to their opinion, no matter if you agree with it or not. When you really want the facts, consult your veterinarian or an animal nutritionist. Their job is to provide you with the correct information on your dog’s diet so that your dog will be properly nourished and remain healthy.
If your dog has gotten into something and you are unsure if it is safe for them to ingest, call animal poison control immediately or head to your local veterinary hospital. You’d rather be safe than sorry, especially when your dog’s life is at stake. Don’t share table scraps with your dog, unless they are on a diet of boiled chicken, rice, green beans or other vet approved people food. Yes, dogs are allowed “people food” with some minor stipulations. Ask your vet what foods your dog may eat, and you’ll be surprised. Not only can your dog eat certain foods, but they can also enjoy certain herbs and spices. Take basil, for example:
What is Basil?
Basil is a common ingredient in many recipes, especially authentic Italian dishes. This healthy herb will add plenty of flavor to your meal and many of you dog owners may wonder if you can incorporate it into your furry family member’s meals. So, is basil bad for dogs to eat? You will be glad to know that basil is not harmful to dogs and it has many medicinal qualities for both humans and canines.
The Pros of Basil for Your Dog
Basil has been known to help alleviate arthritis. Your dog may be young and develop arthritis or hip dysplasia or be an older dog that has developed arthritis associated with age. Whatever the reason, basil paired with a high-quality joint supplement may help. Ask your veterinarian which one they recommend. The natural, essential oils found in basil are also great for your dog and can add luster and shine to their coat. Basil has three very important properties, which include antiviral, antimicrobial and antioxidant benefits. This super herb may even be helpful in the fight against cancer. Basil is also anti-fungal and is a natural insect repellant. Basil also has a powerful beta-caryophyllene content which is great for treating inflammatory bowel disease, also known as IBS.
Calm Your Furry Friend
Just like lavender calms and soothes you, basil can positively alter your dog’s mood. Use basil to naturally decrease Corticosterone, which is a stress hormone, and reduce your dog’s anxiety and stress. These calming effects will make a huge difference in a once-anxious dog and help them get through thunderstorms, separation anxiety, and long car rides.
Possible Allergic Reaction May Occur
As with any new food, start introducing your dog to small amounts of basil at a time. While it is not common, some dogs may be allergic to herbs. Therefore, make sure to monitor them closely after feeding them the first few times. Check for signs of swelling, hives, shortness of breath or vomiting. If you feel that your dog is having an allergic reaction seek veterinary care immediately. Keep in mind that basil, which is often eaten raw, is a common ingredient in many of your table foods. This is very important if you feed your dog table food.
Herbs and Other Plant Foods for Your Dog
Most herbs are typically healthy for dogs, but there are a few exceptions. You may want to do some research and find out what to avoid, like parsley and oregano. Knowing what your dog can and can’t eat is very important and a key part of being a pet parent. No different than you monitor what you eat or what you feed your family, your dog’s diet is equally important.
There are many herbs and other plant foods that your dog can benefit from. Adding a sprinkle on top of each meal will provide your dog with extra nutrients and other health benefits that will keep your dog both happy and healthy.