Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (2023)

It’s labeled as one of the healthiest things you can eat, but can dogs eat flaxseed? Read this guide before you sprinkle it on their food.

Maybe you’ve heard of the host of nutritional benefits of flaxseeds. Before your dog flaxseed, read this guide. You’ll learn about the different types of flax seed and how much to give your pet.

Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (1)

For ultimate pet safety, I recommend consulting with your vet about all the questions you have about your dog eating any flaxseed.

Table Of Contents

  1. Can Dogs Have Flaxseed
  2. What Are The Benefits of Flaxseed
    • Flaxseed Nutrition
  3. What Is Flax Seed For
    • Flaxseed For Kidney Disease
    • Flaxseed Arthritis
    • Flaxseed And Digestion
    • Flaxseed Anti Inflammatory
    • Flaxseed and Skin Health
  4. Is Flaxseed Good For Dogs
  5. Is Flax Seed Bad For Dogs
  6. Can Dogs Have Flax Seed Oil
    • Is Flaxseed Oil Good For Dogs
    • Benefits of Flax Oil For Dogs
    • Flaxseed Oil For Dogs Side Effects
    • Flaxseed Oil For Dogs
  7. Ground Flaxseed For Dogs
    • How Much Ground Flaxseed Should I Give My Dog
  8. Flaxseed For Dogs Dosage
    • How To Feed Flaxseed To Dogs
  9. My Dog Ate Flaxseed
  10. Final Thoughts
  11. More Dog Food Resources

Can Dogs Have Flaxseed

You might find flaxseed sold in three different forms – whole flaxseed, ground flaxseed, and flaxseed oil. The good news is that if you give your dog the proper amounts, they can safely eat flaxseed. In fact, some people use ground flax seed as a dietary supplement for their pets.

Just know that dogs should not eat flax plant. It is unsafe and could even be poisonous.

Have you ever wondered, “flax seeds come from which fruit?” Well, they don’t come from a fruit; they come from the linum usitatissimum plant. And did you know that this is one of our oldest crops too? Yup! Cultivation started back around the beginning of civilization, about 5,000 years ago.

Keep reading to learn more about the recommended dosage of flax seed for dogs and the different things to watch out for.

Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (2)

What Are The Benefits of Flaxseed

If you’ve read magazines or recipes, you might have heard about the health benefits of flax seeds for humans. Well, the same is true for dogs. Keep in mind that the benefits of ground flaxseed are the same as whole flaxseed.

Most of the potential benefits of flaxseed come from the Omega-3 fatty acids it contains, such as docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid.

These are just a few of the many benefits of eating flaxseeds:

  • Healthy Immune System
  • Lowers Risk For Heart Disease
  • Lower Blood Pressure
  • Healthy Coat
  • Supports Healthy Adrenal Glands
  • Digestive Health

Flaxseed Nutrition

Here is a quick glance at the nutritional value of flaxseed.

In one tablespoon of whole flax seeds there are:

  • Calories:55
  • Water:7%
  • Protein:1.9 grams
  • Carbs:3 grams
  • Sugar:0.2 grams
  • Fiber:2.8 grams
  • Fat:4.3 grams

What Is Flax Seed For

The essential fatty acids and omega-3 fatty acids support your dog’s overall health. It’s a great way for pet owners to prevent health issues in their dogs.

Let’s look at some of the ways the good fats and dietary fiber help your dog.

Flaxseed For Kidney Disease

The essential nutrients in flax seeds help support healthy kidney function. This supplement could be helpful for dogs with kidney disease – but always speak to your dog’s veterinarian first.

Flaxseed Arthritis

If your pet has sore joints, flaxseed might help them! Its healthy fats support proper cell function, which can ease arthritis symptoms.

The best way to give older dogs flaxseed is to mix some oil into their wet dog food.

Flaxseed And Digestion

If your pet has digestive issues, then give them a small amount of flaxseed at a time. Since it is high in insoluble fibers, whole seeds can help with constipation.

Some dogs might experience flaxseed diarrhea if they eat too much, so be careful to only give them small amounts.

Flaxseed Anti Inflammatory

The anti-inflammatory properties also support your dog’s immune function.

This is because flax seeds contain something called lignans. They reduce inflammation in your dog’s body, which also benefits your dog’s cardiovascular health and could even help prevent cancer.

It does more than that! The anti-inflammatory properties of flaxseed can also lower blood pressure, improve kidney function, and maintain your dog’s healthy skin and coat.

The alpha-linolenic acid, or ALA, can be converted to DHA and EPA (the most effective anti-inflammatory omega-3 fatty acids). So it’s a wonderful supplement.

Flaxseed and Skin Health

This can also be a great thing to give dogs that suffer from itchy skin or slow-healing wounds. Linoleic Acid helps keep their skin hydrated. Hydrated skin heals quicker than dry skin.

Flaxseed oil has been known to reduce dry, flaky skin conditions in dogs too.

Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (3)

Is Flaxseed Good For Dogs

As you can see, flaxseed is really good for dogs! In fact, whole flax seeds have been shown to help older dogs that suffer from adrenal issues.

Is Flax Seed Bad For Dogs

Processed flax seed is safe for dogs in small amounts. Raw flaxseed or flax plants are dangerous. Dogs are at risk of suffering from flax poisoning if they eat too much flax seed or eat flax plants.

Flaxseed poisoning symptoms are vomiting and diarrhea.

Some dogs might also get dermatitis if they come into contact with the raw plant. If this happens, just wash the affected area with gentle soap and water. If your dog is itching a lot from it, your vet may tell you to use a topical ointment.

You should also talk to your dog’s veterinarian if your dog is on anticoagulants, blood pressure medications, or insulin. Flax could interfere with these medications.

Can Dogs Have Flax Seed Oil

Yes, your furry friend can safely take flax seed oil. You can mix it into their dog food or use it as an ingredient in homemade dog treats.

Is Flaxseed Oil Good For Dogs

Also called linseed oil, it’s a great source of omega-6 fatty acids. Yes, your dog will experience all the anti-inflammatory properties of flaxseed even from the flaxseed oil. It’s great for dry skin and even helps with adrenal issues.

Benefits of Flax Oil For Dogs

Dogs don’t experience the health benefits of flax oil as efficiently as fish oil, but it can still be good for them since it has amino acids.

Flax oil might be a better way to give your dog healthy fats, especially if they are sensitive to the high fiber content of ground flax seed.

Flaxseed Oil For Dogs Side Effects

Any time that you introduce a new food to your dog, watch for any signs of food sensitivities. If your dog has an upset stomach, either give them more food with it or don’t give it to them anymore.

Many pet parents give their dog flax supplements with a bowl of food.

Flaxseed Oil For Dogs

There are many health supplements for dogs that use flax oil. Always use the recommended amount and follow the direction on the bottle. It’s usually mixed in with wet dog food so that dogs don’t even notice it.

Ground Flaxseed For Dogs

Ok, so you know about the seeds and oil, but can dogs eat flaxseed meal? Is ground flax seed good for dogs?

Yes, ground flaxseed is a great source of omega fatty acids so dogs can eat a little bit at a time.

Remember, not all flax is safe for dogs. Do not give your pet a raw flax plant or let them eat raw flax plant. Even raw or unprocessed flaxseed or flax meal is dangerous for dogs.

If your dog eats raw flax meal, they might have diarrhea or vomit or show signs of weakness, abnormal breathing, a fast heart rate, or even seizures (if they ate a lot of it).

Always contact your dog’s veterinarian if your dog shows serious signs of illness.

How Much Ground Flaxseed Should I Give My Dog

Due to the high fiber content, you should be very careful with how many ground seeds you give your dog in one day. Use the chart below to guide you.

Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (4)

Flaxseed For Dogs Dosage

Even though it is safe, you should still only give your dog a small amount at a time. If you notice your dog has loose stool at first, this is normal. Sometimes the healthy fats in a flax supplement might make poop come out softer.

How To Feed Flaxseed To Dogs

How much you give your dog depends on their size and what type of flax you are giving them. Whole flax seeds will just pass through your dog’s digestive system without giving your dog any of the benefits or nutrients. It’s best to give dogs ground flaxseed or flaxseed oil.

The general guide for giving flaxseed to dogs is ½ teaspoon of ground flaxseed or ¼ to ½ teaspoon of flaxseed oil daily for every 10 pounds of a dog’s weight.

The easiest way to feed flaxseed to dogs is to put it in their food. Sprinkle the ground flaxseed or drizzle the oil on top.

Here is a handy chart with the recommended amounts based on size.

Can Dogs Eat Flaxseed? What You Need To Know (5)

My Dog Ate Flaxseed

If your dog ate processed flaxseed, they would probably be ok. If your pet ate raw flaxseed or a flax plant, you might want to watch them closely.

Dogs that eat too much flaxseed are at risk for cyanide poisoning. And if they have cyanide poisoning, they’ll need to be treated immediately.

Your veterinarian will probably give your dog sodium nitrate and sodium thiosulfate as an antidote. If your dog is having trouble breathing, it might need additional oxygen.

The raw plant is very dangerous for dogs because it contains cyanogenic glycosides. Please contact your dog’s vet if you think your dog ate raw flax plant.

Final Thoughts

The short answer is that dogs can eat flaxseed. In fact, it’s a good thing to add to your pet’s diet.

Now you know more about dogs and flaxseeds. In fact, if you want to keep learning more about “can dogs eat chia seeds and flax seeds” read that guide too.

Flaxseed supplements can help with joint pain and even give your dog the healthy fats it needs.

More Dog Food Resources

Here are more resources about what dogs can and cannot eat. Stay informed and keep your dog safe.

  • Can Dogs Have Nutritional Yeast
  • Can Dogs Eat Oregano
  • Can Dogs Eat Poppy Seeds
  • Can Dogs Eat Rosemary
  • Can Dogs Eat Sunflower Seeds
  • Nuts Dogs Can Eat

Find lots of articles aboutfood dogs can eat(and ones they can’t) here on Spoiled Hounds!

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