To many people, garlic is a wonder-food that prevents heart diseases, lowers blood pressure, lowers high cholesterol levels and provides many other countless benefits to the human body. However, when it comes to dogs eating garlic, you can easily notice that there’s a great deal of controversy about the subject.
You’ll hear some people say that garlic is very toxic to dogs and should never be fed to them, while other people say that garlic is completely fine to feed dogs and poses no health risk whatsoever.
Where does the truth lie?
Can dogs eat garlic? Is garlic good or bad for dogs?
Can Dogs Have Garlic?
The answer is, it greatly depends.
Given in just the right amounts (and I mean exactly the right amounts, like scientifically calculated by a professional animal care professional right amount), dogs can eat garlic just fine.
However, go just the least bit above that amount, and your dog can get severely poisoned and, if not immediately treated, can ultimately die.
So, given that this is a very tricky subject and you have to do calculations to find out the EXACT amount of garlic you can give your dog, it’s up to you to determine whether you’re willing to go through all of that work just to give your dog some garlic.
It should also be mentioned that dogs should NEVER be fed garlic when:
- They have an anemic condition
- They are going to have surgery soon
- They are less than 8 weeks old
How Much Garlic Can Dogs Have?
As we talked about above, the answer all lies in the dosage of garlic you feed your dog.
The general guideline about how much garlic is safe for dogs to eat per day depending on their body weight says that it’s safe to feed your dog 0.5 clove of garlic a day for every 10 pounds they weight.
If your dog is very large in size, it’s preferable that you don’t feed them more than 2 clove a day, even if the above formula permits you to do so.
However, please note that this is by no means the ultimate guide you should follow on the subject, and it’s always much more preferable and safe that you talk to your veterinarian about it so they can give you an exact answer for your dog and your dog only.
Why Is Garlic Good For Dogs In Right Dosages?
Given in just the right amounts to dogs, garlic can be very beneficial.
- Improves the condition of your dog’s digestive tract
- Repels ticks and fleas
- Improves your dog’s immune system
- Helps detoxify your dog’s liver from various toxins
- Fights various forms of infections
- Helps keep blood cholesterol levels in check
- Helps fight cardiovascular diseases and blood clots
Why Is Garlic Bad For Dogs In High Dosages?
Just like the fact that garlic given in just the exact right amounts can be beneficial to dogs, garlic given in the least excessive amounts can be very deadly to dogs.
Given in wrong amounts, garlic:
- Can lead to hemolytic anemia, where the red blood cells in your dog’s body are destroyed and removed from the bloodstream before their normal lifespan is over.
- Can lead to gastroenteritis, which is the inflammation of your dog’s stomach and intestines that leads to immense pain
- Nausea and vomiting
- Disinterest in food
- Greatly increased heart rate
- Weakness and lethargy
- Pale gum color
- Sudden collapse
These signs can take anywhere from 2-4 days to appear after your dog has consumed a dangerous amount of garlic.
These signs can be seen in even the slightest over-feed of garlic in dogs, which is why you should always contact your veterinarian before you feed your dog any garlic, so they inform you of exactly how much garlic is safe to give to your buddy.
One thing to keep in mind is that garlic is 5 times more toxic to dogs than onions, and onions consumed in wrong amounts are considered to be really toxic to dogs. So, this is a big deal!
Garlic In Dog Food
On a final note, many dog foods out there tend to contain lots of garlic as part of their ingredients, and dog owners usually don’t bother to check whether that is the case every time.
However, it’s very important that you do your due diligence, for the safety of your loved Fido.
On the nutritional label of the dog food you get your dog, the ingredients are listed in descending order by concentration levels.
This means that the ingredients you find mentioned first are the ingredients found in most quantities in this particular product.
Beware of products that contain lots of garlic in them, as these could lead to serious problems if your dog eats them. Always do your research!