Can Dogs Eat Basil?

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No matter how much money we spend on our dog’s food, they are still eyeing up our meals and crying as if they have never been fed a day in their lives! Some of us are strong-willed and say no; others give in and indulge their dogs in tasty, human treats. 

But should we? We often ask ourselves what dogs can eat and if the food we offer them is safe.

After all, no one wants to spend the night in an emergency vet with a sick dog, do they? Instead, we let our thoughts run wild, wondering what is safe for dogs to eat, becoming more stressed the more we think about it. 

Well, no more! Today we are here to tell you what your dog can and can’t eat to help ease that stress! We have plenty of articles covering what your dog can and can’t eat, so be sure to check them out. 

But for now, let’s see if your dog can eat basil or not!

Table of Contents

Can dogs eat basil?

Let’s get straight into it, yes dogs can eat basil! The anti-inflammatory herb is packed full of antioxidants that can help your dog fight and prevent a range of illnesses.

Basil, as we know, is known for its calming properties, with many using the herb to ease arthritis pain and reduce anxiety and feelings of anxiousness. 

Some studies support these claims about basil, but there hasn’t been much research done or published about basil’s medicinal properties, in all honesty. Instead, these herbal remedies and claims about basil should be considered more as possible rather than probable. 

Whether you want to feed your dog basil for these reasons or not, you can rest easy knowing that your dog can enjoy basil if they wish! Whether it’s added to food you’ve given them or enjoyed as a fresh and tasty treat, basil is fine for your dogs to consume. 

We will cover how much basil your dog should eat later on, but it’s best only to give them basil in small quantities. Dogs have much smaller digestive systems than us, and the last thing you want to do is overwhelm or damage it.

Small quantities of basil will allow your dog to enjoy the tasty treat with minimal health risk.

Is basil good for dogs to eat?

As we touched on briefly, basil is a herb that’s packed full of fantastic benefits! The anti-inflammatory plant has high levels of antioxidants that can be used to prevent many illnesses, including cancer.

It can also prevent cellular damage, ease arthritis pain, and calm anxious dogs.

It sounds like the perfect treat, doesn’t it? The health benefits of this plant make it a fine choice to feed your dog, whether it’s dried or fresh basil! Basil is also low in calories and fat, meaning it can be a tasty treat for your dogs to enjoy! 

Thankfully basil is a fairly affordable herb and widely available, so you don’t need to go on a wild hunt to find it.

We’ve also got some handy tips coming up on how you can feed your dog basil! You can add basil to your dog’s diet for them to benefit from the antioxidants and herbal benefits of basil.

Is basil toxic to dogs?

Cute pug dog sniffing a basil plant.

While basil has many fantastic health benefits and can be given to your dog as a tasty treat, you should avoid giving them too much basil. It isn’t a toxic herb for dogs, but too much basil does pose a health risk. 

As we mentioned earlier, a dog’s digestive system is much smaller than ours, and in large quantities, they can struggle to digest basil. Your dog might have diarrhea, vomit, or suffer from an upset stomach as its body struggles to digest the basil.

They should feel better once the basil is out of their system, but take your dog to a vet immediately if you do become concerned. 

Feeding your dog too much basil for long periods could damage their digestive system and leave them with long-term health complications. They might struggle with indigestion or throat damage if they are vomiting a lot.

Take care to avoid this and only feed your dog small amounts of basil. 

How should I give my dog basil?

Now that we have covered that dogs can eat basil, but only in small quantities, let’s look at how you can serve this tasty treat to your dogs! You can feed them fresh basil leaves straight from the plant if you want!

Rinse the basil with water and dry it before feeding it to your dog. Check that any sprays or insecticides you have used on the plant aren’t harmful to dogs before you do this.

You can also sprinkle the dried herb over their dog food, offering them a new and exciting flavor to try. For smaller dogs, a pinch of basil is more than enough. Larger dogs can have as much as a teaspoon of basil sprinkled over their food.

We wouldn’t do this every day, but a couple of times a week should be fine. Remember to consult a vet if you have any concerns about what you feed your dog. 

Another great way to feed your dog basil is to add it to a dog-friendly pesto! Avoid using garlic in the pesto as it’s harmful to dogs. It’s best to avoid adding salt, too, as it can dehydrate your dog given in large quantities.

Offer your dog a small amount of pesto on top of their food or even with a small amount of cooked pasta if you want. Remember, this should be consumed sparingly or as a treat. 

Many pesto recipes online are easy to follow; just remember to remove or substitute any harmful ingredients for dogs!

Final Word

And just like that, we have reached the end of our basil journey today. As you can see, basil is a fantastic herb with lots of benefits that your dog is sure to love! Remember to only feed them basil in small amounts to avoid damaging their digestive system. 

There are a few different ways you can feed your dog basil, so why not get creative and treat them to some dog-friendly pesto today? Remember to consult a vet if you have any concerns or need more advice about feeding your dog.