Whether it is about having a refreshing drink or a flavorful meal, mint turns out to be a great addition to all of them. As caring pet owners, we would like to offer such a flavorful taste to our dogs. But can dogs have mint?
Apart from Mentha pulegium, all mints are safe for dogs. Just take one or two fresh mint leaves and serve them on your dog’s platter. You will see he is in a good mood today with his sheer activeness. It’s all because of the refreshing aroma of the herb and its abundant vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, etc.
Although mint is good for dogs, mint-based products are not. So always consider giving them the mint leaves, not the mint candy, mint gums, mint oil, etc.
What Is Mint?
Mint, also known as Mentha, comes from the Lamiaceae family. It is a kind of perennial herb with a refreshing aroma. Some examples of mint are spearmint, apple mint, wild mint, and peppermint. In total, mint is available in 15 to 20 spices.
Most people use mint in their food to enhance flavour and reduce the sodium content. This herb can also offer health benefits, like regulating bowel movements, curing allergies and colds, and so on. Thanks to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Many market-based products, like toothpaste, gum, candy, etc., contain mint. It is because of their aromatic flavour that they offer a refreshing smell.
Can Dogs Have Mint?
One or two dried or fresh mint leaves won’t harm our canine friends. They can, in fact, do good for dogs’ health. Such as improving their gut health, skin, body organs, etc. Most dog owners prefer offering spearmint and peppermint to their pets. However, there are more safe options for mint that can suit dogs. Just make sure not to offer the pennyroyal mint, as it contains toxic compounds.
Any herb, including mint, should be an occasional treat for dogs. Also, the quantity should be fewer, as they don’t have a digestive system like humans.
What Are The Benefits Of Having Mint For Dogs?
Mint can offer many health benefits to our canine friends, as long as they eat it in the right way. This herb is rich in various nutrients, like vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, calcium, manganese, magnesium, zinc, and copper.
Vitamin A can give your dog improved vision, healthy skin, and good immunity. Again, vitamin C can be a booster for his bone health and will protect him from skin issues.
With magnesium, mint will take care of your dog’s nervous system and blood sugar levels. Manganese will develop hormones, tissue, and energy. On the other hand, the iron present in mint will promote dogs’ haemoglobin levels and protect them from anaemia. Calcium will keep their bones stronger, and zinc will promote their wound healing. Besides, this herb has anti-inflammatory properties that can prevent inflammation and joint issues.
Along with nutrients, mint also has a natural menthol. It can help dogs with stuffy or blocked noses. In short, this menthol works as a nasal decongestant.
Luckily, mint can be safe for allergic dogs too. Thanks to its rosmarinic acid, it keeps allergies at bay. Alongside, it has a refreshing aroma that can make the breath fresher. Eating mint can also make the teeth and gums of dogs clearer.
What Are The Risks Of Having Mint For Dogs?
Unfortunately, mint can pose health threats to our paw friends when they consume it in high amounts. This can lead to gastrointestinal upsets, including vomiting and diarrhoea.
There is a particular mint that is unsafe for dogs, even in small amounts; its name is Pennyroyal. People also call it Mentha pulegium or Churchwort. Eating this mint can result in poisoning the dog’s body with symptoms of weakness and vomiting. This is because pennyroyal contains pulegone, a toxic compound. Consuming this compound in high amounts can damage the liver and various body parts of dogs.
Risks can also come from mint when dogs eat mint products, not the mint leaves. We think mint is safe for dogs, and so are mint ice cream, mint candy, polo mint, mint essential oil, etc. Mint ice cream, mint candy, and other sugary treats made from mint contain flavours and artificial sweeteners. Those additional ingredients make mint products harsh for dogs. Again, the mint essential oil is highly concentrated. Eating it or coming into contact with it can irritate dogs’ skin and gut.
How To Offer Mint To Dogs?
Before offering mint to our dogs, we need to choose the right herb for them. As said earlier, pennyroyal mint is toxic for dogs. So choose any other dried mint for them. Then wash the mint properly so that no bacteria remain. Then tear one or two leaves and cut them into tiny pieces. You can sprinkle those pieces on your dog’s food, water, or any meal.
When Can Dogs Have Mint?
Mint can help with gastrointestinal imbalances in both humans and dogs. Sometimes it does the opposite when it is not the right time to have mint. For example, your dog can’t withstand herbs or any plant-based foods. In that case, mint may not be the right treat for him. Moreover, the health records of dogs restrict them from eating specific foods. Mint can fall into the category of unsafe foods for them.
As said earlier, mint contains a refreshing aroma that can promote fresher breath. But if your dog has nose sensitivity, mint can be his enemy. Inhaling the aroma of mint may lead to constant sneezing and coughing.
Even if you are certain of your dog’s health, don’t forget to ask his vet before letting him eat any herbs.
Frequently Asked Questions: Can Dogs Have Mint?
Can dogs eat mint every day?
Apart from dog foods, no food should be the primary source of a dog’s diet. If your dog likes mint, feed this herb to him once or twice a week.
How much mint can dogs have?
How much mint dogs can have depends on their type of breed. For example, dogs like Pomeranians can have ¼ of a mint leaf. An American Shepherd can eat ½ of a mint leaf. Again, Australian cattle dogs and such breeds can eat one leaf. Large breeds, like German Shepherds, can eat 1 ½ of mint leaves. Lastly, Saint Bernards and other extra-large dogs can eat two mint leaves.
Do dogs like mint?
Mint has a pungent smell that can attract any dog. Moreover, its taste is not so bad that any mammals would like to throw it up.
Is mint safe for all pets?
Almost all mammals can eat mint unless they are allergic to herbs and plants. However, one mint is not safe for them, i.e., Mentha pulegium. This can make all pets vomit, have diarrhoea, have toxicity, and so on. Meanwhile, the safe mint spices can offer antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
Most often, we see our dogs dealing with side effects from eating mint-based products. This makes us think, Can dogs have mint? The answer is yes; they are not having problems because of the mint, but because of the added ingredients in those products. That’s why vets always recommend feeding mint leaves to dogs, not mint candies and gums. Also, avoid Pennyroyal or Mentha pulegium, as they have toxic compounds.
If your paw friend ever eats this herb more than necessary, let him throw up everything. Then tell his vet about the symptoms that he is showing. Also, don’t offer him a mint or any herb for about a week after he eats it too much.