Is Honey Bad for Dogs?

is honey bad for dogs

No, honey is not bad for dogs. In fact, it can be a healthy treat for them in moderation. Honey contains vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that can benefit your dog’s health. However, it is important to ensure that your dogs eat raw honey, as some processed honey can contain harmful additives. Give your dog honey sparingly and always consult with your veterinarian before feeding it to them.

Benefits of feeding honey to your dog

Honey is a natural remedy used for centuries to treat various ailments in humans and animals alike. There are several benefits to feeding honey to your dog in moderation.

Boost their energy levels:

Honey is a natural energy source and can help boost your dog’s energy levels. When the sugars in honey are metabolized, your dog may experience a spurt of energy. This is perfect for athletic dogs before running or agility competitors who need an extra edge during training or competition.

Soothe a kennel cough or sore throat:

Honey has antibacterial properties that can help to heal a sore throat. If your dog is barking more than usual or has difficulty swallowing, honey can help ease their discomfort. Manuka honey is known to be the best for this purpose.

Help with allergies:

If your dog is allergic to pollen, feeding them local honey sourced from local beekeepers can help build up their immunity to the allergen. This is because the bees transfer pollen from the flowers they visit and the honey they produce.

Help with gastrointestinal issues:

Honey can help to soothe an upset stomach and settle diarrhea. The probiotics in raw honey can help to restore the balance of good bacteria in your dog’s gut.

Speed healing of wounds and cuts:

The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties of honey can help to speed the healing of wounds and cuts. You can apply a small amount of honey to your dog’s skin to help with minor scrapes and irritation.

When should you avoid feeding raw honey to your dog?

While honey is not bad for dogs, it is important to give it to them in moderation. Too much honey can cause digestive issues like diarrhea and vomiting. It is also important to ensure that the honey you give your dog is pure and raw, as some processed honey can contain harmful additives.

If your dog is overweight:

You should avoid giving obese dogs honey as it is high in sugar. Excess sugar will lead to weight gain and other health problems.

If your dog has diabetes:

When dogs eat honey, it can cause a spike in their blood sugar levels. If your dog has diabetes, you should avoid giving them honey.

If your dog is allergic to bees:

If your dog is allergic to bees, you should not give them honey as it can contain trace amounts of pollen from the bees that produced it.

If your dog is a young puppy or an elderly:

If your dog is a young puppy or an elderly, you should not give them honey as it can contain bacteria that can be harmful to them.

How much honey should your dog eat?

The amount of honey you give your dog will depend on size and weight. Always start with smaller amounts and increase gradually as needed. A good general rule is to give your dog no more than 1 teaspoon of honey daily.

  • Up to 10lbs – not more than ¼ tsp daily
  • 10-20lbs – not more than ½ tsp daily
  • 20-50lbs – not more than 1 tsp daily
  • 50lbs+ – 2 tsp max daily

How to feed honey to your dog

It is important to slowly introduce honey into your dog’s diet to avoid any digestive upset. Start by mixing a small amount of honey into dog food and gradually increase the amount you give them over time.

Spread a thin layer of honey on their favorite treat 

Adding honey to their delicious meal will make it special for them. If you don’t want to scrub away a gooey mess, ensure your dog eats this treat in an area that’s easy to clean. Please note that some dogs are allergic to honey and may experience side effects like diarrhea, vomiting, and difficulty breathing. Stop feeding your dog honey immediately, and consult your veterinarian if you notice these symptoms.

Put some honey on a slice of fruit

Mix honey with pumpkin puree, cream cheese, or peanut butter for a delicious pet-safe snack. You can even layer some of these ingredients into a little parfait for a fun and sweet treat. Try layering a teaspoon each of plain yogurt and pumpkin puree in a small dish. Then add a drizzle of honey. For dog treats, garnish with a biscuit or crushed-up on top.

Let your dog lick it off a spoon or spatula

If your dog is resistant to having honey mixed into their food, you can try feeding it to them directly off a spoon or spatula. Start with just a small lick and see how they react before giving them more. Some dogs may not be too keen on the taste of honey, so don’t force them to eat it if they’re not enjoying it.

Create herbal honey for your dog

There are many benefits of giving your dog herbal honey. You can add a teaspoon of honey to their food or give it to them directly off a spoon. Many different herbs can be added to honey, such as chamomile, lavender, or ginger. These herbs can help to soothe your dog’s stomach and help with any digestive upset. Herbal honey can also be used topically on your dog’s skin to help with any itchiness or inflammation. Simply apply a thin layer of the honey to the affected area and let it sit for 10-15 minutes before rinsing off.

Final words

Honey is a healthy treat for dogs in moderation. The benefits of honey include boosting their energy levels, soothing a sore throat, and helping with allergies. However, it is important to ensure that the honey you give your dog is pure and raw, as some processed honey can contain harmful additives. Give your dogs honey sparingly, and always consult with your veterinarian before feeding it to them.