Dog Nutrition: Can Dogs Eat Honey
Honey is a delicious food made by the endangered honeybees. Honeybees collect flower nectar and bring it back to their beehive, store it, and use it as food for their larvae and other bees. It is delicious and known worldwide for its health benefits. If you tried honey, you know how absolutely delicious and sweet it is but is honey safe for your dog? If it is, how much can your dog eat? How can you give your dog honey?
We will talk about all that a bit later so let’s start with the most critical question.
Is honey safe for dogs?
Yes, honey is safe for dogs, but if you think about adding honey to your dog’s diet, there are some things you need to know and understand so you can safely give your dog this delicious and healthy product.
You shouldn’t overfeed your dog on honey; in fact, too much honey could be bad for them. The safest amount is between one teaspoon and one tablespoon a day, depending on your dog’s size. Larger dogs can get more honey, and smaller dogs should get less honey.
Is honey good for dogs?
If you give your dog the recommended amounts of honey, it can be very beneficial and do wonders for their immune system and health. Honey is packed with nutrients essential for healthy body functions, and it is rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Some of the best things in honey include:
Vitamin B - Vitamin B is excellent for body functions such as energy levels, brain function; it helps prevent infections, supports cell growth and health, and helps with cell metabolism.
Vitamin C - Also known as ascorbic acid, vitamin C is essential for boosting the immune system, proper function, maintaining bones, teeth, cartilage, helping grow, repair, and develop body tissue, and is involved in numerous other body functions.
Vitamin D - This vitamin helps regulate calcium and phosphate in the body. Vitamin D insufficiency can lead to bone deformities and problems.
Vitamin E - This vitamin acts as an antioxidant and helps protect body cells from free radicals’ harmful impact.
Vitamin K - Essential for blood clotting and helps wounds to heal.
Honey also contains antioxidants such as phenolic acid and flavonoids, which help protect the body and is a great supplement that is often given to pregnant dogs to help develop future puppies.
If you feed your dog honey, your dog will also get sugars like fructose and glucose, minerals such as iron, zinc, manganese, phosphate, sodium, magnesium, copper, and potassium. These minerals are healthy and crucial for different body functions such as collagen and red blood cell productions.
Honey is considered a superfood, but it can be dangerous if you overfeed your dog with it. There are some cases where you should avoid feeding your dog honey, and as a dog owner, you should be aware of those cases.
Can honey be bad for dogs?
Everything not taken in moderation can become harmful for our dogs as well as for ourselves. Fast food can be a delicious guilty pleasure, but if we only ate fast food pretty soon, we will start noticing all the negative effects it has on our bodies. The same can happen with giving our dogs too much honey. It can indeed be healthy in small amounts, but honey is also packed with sugar.
Even though your dog might love honey because of the rich and sugary taste, too much honey can quickly lead to obesity. It is essential that your dog has a balanced and healthy diet, and honey should be added as a treat.
Foods that are rich in sugar (such as honey) can promote teeth decay. If you decide to give your dog honey, make sure you brush their teeth after. If your dog somehow gets their paws and teeth in the honey pot, keep an eye on stomach problems that can occur. Your dog might start vomiting, having diarrhea, and lose their appetite.
Honey should never be given to obese dogs, diabetic dogs, puppies and seniors with compromised immune systems, and dogs that are allergic to bee stings. Giving them honey can trigger bad reactions and have more negative than positive effects. Before you decide to give honey to your dog, you should really talk to your vet and ask for advice.
How should I give my dog honey?
There are many ways you can include honey in your dog’s diet, but first, let’s see what the safe dosage of honey your dog can eat is. The amount your dog can eat will be determined by their immune system, age, but mostly by their size. Here is a helpful guide on how much honey is safe for your dog:
Dogs that are up to 10 pounds - ¼ of a teaspoon per day
10 - 20 pounds - ½ teaspoon per day
20 - 50 pounds - 1 teaspoon per day
50 - 100 pounds - 1-2 teaspoons per day
100+ pounds - up to 3 teaspoons a day
The best way to control your dog’s honey intake is to give it to them on a teaspoon and simply let them lick it. But for those that are a bit more creative, here are some additional ideas.
- Spread a thin layer over their favorite treat as a fun twist to their usual treat taste.
- Add honey in a blender with other dog-safe ingredients such as watermelon or apple, blend it, and crush their favorite biscuit for a crunchy splash.
- Mix herbal honey for your dog.
The best thing you can do for your dog before adding honey to their diet is to talk to your vet. They will let you know everything about adding honey to your dog’s diet and whether your dog may or may not have it.
World Dog Finder team