It can feel like tap dancing through a minefield trying to feed your dog human food. There are so many elements in everything, and even the most unusual items can be harmful to your dog (like raisins, who knew?).
Spices, too, are suspect. Is fennel safe for your dog, or will it render them lifeless in a matter of seconds? Often, you don’t think to ask the question until after you’ve given your dog the substance in question, at which point you begin frantically Googling whether or not what you’ve just given them is safe.
We’ve been there, so we understand — and today, if nothing else, we’ll put your mind at ease about fennel.
Is Fennel Safe for Dogs?
Fennel is nutritious for dogs. It’s perfectly safe for them and won’t harm them in any way.
On the other hand, fennel oil is a completely other story. This concentrated fennel should never be given to dogs because it has been known to cause photosensitive dermatitis, a severe eczema flare-up.
Because fennel oil isn’t as widely used as regular fennel, this isn’t a problem you’ll encounter very often, if at all.
If your dog is pregnant or breastfeeding, you should avoid giving them fennel. If you’re feeding them organic fennel, wash it thoroughly before serving.
It’s also worth noting that fennel might cause allergic reactions in some pets. It’s impossible to predict whether or not your dog will be affected, so all you can do is keep a watch on them after feeding them food containing fennel. Fortunately, the symptoms should be limited to an upset stomach, but you should still be aware of them.
Is Fennel Good for Dogs’ Health?
Fennel is a healthy meal for dogs, and you should urge your dog to eat it sometimes.
It’s high in A and C vitamins, as well as calcium, iron, and potassium. You want your dog to eat as many of these nutrients as possible because they are vital for everything from bone health to increasing your pup’s immune system.
If you have an English Bulldog, you should absolutely try to persuade them to eat some fennel.
Fennel has a strong smell, similar to licorice, and many dogs will respond to it in one way or another. If your dog reacts negatively to the smell, there may be nothing you can do to persuade them differently.
If you think you can persuade your dog to eat it, there are ways to do so without making a huge deal about it.
Finding a kibble that has fennel as an ingredient is the simplest method to get it into your dog’s diet. Your dog is likely to like the taste of the meal (while ignoring the fennel), and it will provide them with a variety of other necessary nutrients.
If you can’t locate a thyme food that you enjoy, try putting fennel seeds on their food before offering it to them. They won’t mind a few errant seeds, but don’t go overboard or their palates will be overloaded.
If everything else fails, fennel tea can be made by boiling the seeds in water. Pour the remaining water into their kibble bowl (after waiting for it to cool, of course).