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Can Dogs Eat Seaweed?

Can Dogs Eat Seaweed?

The short answer: It depends.

The long answer: Seaweed is the common name for several species of macroscopic, multicellular, marine algae that are packed with iodine, iron, and potassium. Whether in the form of kelp or nori (dried Japanese seaweed), seaweed is a safe snack for dogs to eat as long as they don’t contain salt or spices that are harmful for him. Unseasoned nori sheets can actually be used as dog training treats, while kelp can be found in pet supplements.      

On the other hand, dried wild seaweed should not be eaten by your dog while you are by the seashore. These may contain too much salt, foreign bodies (such as a hidden jellyfish), and unknown pollutants that could cause him harm. When consumed, the seaweed can also expand in your pooch’s belly and cause him pain. Vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite are some of the common symptoms of wild seaweed poisoning. 

How to feed seaweed to your dog: Try serving your pup a small piece or amount of seaweed, and watch how his body handles it. It is recommended that you serve the seaweed in ground form. When feeding nori, check the package to make sure the sheets do not contain high amounts of salt or ingredients such as onions and garlic. Cut up the sheets into smaller one-inch squares to control his consumption. 

Do not feed him unprocessed seaweed strips because these may cause blockage in his digestive system.  

Here are three ideas for seaweed treats your dog will love:

  1. Boost your pooch’s immune system with banana kelp treats
  2. Place a sprinkle of seaweed supplement over your dog’s food.
  3. Add flavour to your homemade chicken jerky with nori.   

In summary: Talk to your veterinarian to make sure your dog can safely eat seaweed. Added to his diet, seaweed can be a great source of iron, magnesium, iodine, potassium, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamin B12. While strolling on the beach, keep your canine on a leash to prevent him from munching on dried wild seaweed.


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