Garlic for Dogs: Home Remedies and Safety Issues

Is It Safe?

55 User Reviews
5 star (39) 
  71%
1 star (16) 
  29%


Posted by Monica (USA) on 04/19/2008
5 out of 5 stars

Garlic is perfectly fine for dogs. It does Not break down their blood cells. Onions do though. You will know if they have had onions because they will pee red. With garlic they will not.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Victoria (Vln, Lithuania) on 03/29/2008
5 out of 5 stars

YEA. My 3 years old yorkie gets some garlic for almost 2 years once or twice a weak, he gets no fleas or worms. He is on raw food. And with this food and some garlic he is doing well.


Is It Safe?
Posted by cheryl (santa cruz, ca) on 02/07/2008
1 out of 5 stars

I read the suggestions about garlic for worms, and i used it on my dog and found no cure and no side effects. But, I was reading an old National Geographic magazine (Oct. 2007) and I came across a list of harmful food for dogs and one of them is garlic. It reads "Garlic breaks down a dog's red blood cells, leading to anemia and possible kidney failure from leaking hemoglobin". And for those of you who are curious.. the list reads on:
1.alcohal-depresses brain function and cause coma.
2.coffee- caffeine in a cup of coffee is a methylxanthine compound that can increase a dog's heart rate and trigger seizures.
3. macadamia nuts- just a couple can cause tremors, and even temporary paralysis in dog's hind legs
4.onions- damages is hemoglubin culmulative, so small tastes over time can be worse than wolfing down the whole bulb.
5. grapes (and that includes raisins)- can cause renal failure.
.. this probably isnt everthing so I hope you read up first before giving your pet something new.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Darren (Vancouver, Canada) on 02/05/2008
1 out of 5 stars

Hello, i almost lost my 10 year old Lab last week, all because he had been consuming garlic in his food. I was buying a very expensive dog food that I thought was providing the optimal nutrition and goodness for him. I didn't know that Garlic could cause hemolytic anemia and other deadly problems. I quickly learned, not from my vet, but because i am an RN with a developed intuition and my gutt had and was telling me that his condition had something to do with his food. I removed all forms of garlic form his diet and boom he has made a 180 recovery, thank god. I would encourage everyone to read what is in the bag of food that you are feeding your family/best friend.If you don't know if it is good for your dog do some reaserch on the ingredent.

Replied by Myra
(The Internet)
07/28/2015

I'm very sorry that your dog had this problem, I'm glad to hear he has gotten so much better. But I have to say that the theory that your dog got sick from the garlic in the food doesn't make sense. I'm sure your dog wasn't the only one eating that food, if large numbers of dogs were getting sick from it, it would be recalled and taken off the shelf. Not only that, but there are thousands of dog owners that feed their dogs garlic daily and those dogs live long, healthy lives. Was your dog tested for Heinz Body anemia, or did you simply change his feed and see his health improve? Personally I would wonder if there wasn't another ingredient that caused his illness, or perhaps the food was even contaminated.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Helen (Aldergrove, Canada) on 11/13/2007
1 out of 5 stars

Just a little warning about using garlic as a flea remedy: in large amounts garlic and onion can cause anemia in dogs by interfering with normal hemoglobin production. I've heard that garlic can work on fleas, but found that it only upset my puppy's stomach and gave her garlic scented farts (nasty!). Later on I read (National Geographic, among other sources) that it can interfere with hemoglobin production and should be avoided - though onions are worse for this.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Margaret (Bradford, UK) on 11/11/2007
5 out of 5 stars

We have two belgian shepherd dogs, both rescues. Katie is 7 years old and we have had her for 5 years. Claude is 5 years and we had hm from being a puppy. We have mostly fed them on home cooked food (always with Garlic and veg (not tomatoes). We have NEVER had fleas or worms (much to the distress of our vet on annual vet visits). We also give them a couple of Marrow bones (marrow bones only). Their helath and teeth are like puppies. The vet is always amazed. We also have two rescue cats one in now 12 years old and both have a similar diet to the dogs. Both are ful of fun and healthy and vermin free! All our other animals ov er the last 47 years lived long and healthy lives dying only of old age and having had the same diets


Is It Safe?
Posted by Marilyn (Bloomfield, New Jersey) on 10/31/2007
5 out of 5 stars

My dog (shepard/pit mix) was diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma when she was 51/2 yrs old. This is a cancer that forms in the lining of the blood vessels and is known to affect the spleen and heart. At this time, there is no known cure. The condition started inside her nose and was making its way toward the brain. The veterinarian gave her 5 wks to live but instead she lived for 22 months. No medication was prescribed and I believe that she lived that long due to a diet consisting of vitamins, steamed vegetables with chicken and fish and 1 clove of garlic with every meal. (She was 60 lbs at the time) Her coat became very shiny and soft,(not to mention she stopped shedding), she was exhibiting energy and was even found with normal blood values even though her condition condemned her to anemia. Unfortunately she lost her battle to the cancer as it eventually made it's way to the brain. While some state that garlic is dangerous, used correctly and in moderation, it will demonstrate homeopathic properties. Given what I know and what I've experienced, I intend to continue using it with my future canine companions and support its use in moderation.


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Posted by Joey (Las Vegas, NV) on 10/25/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Sorry to bust everyone's bubble, but I have been feeding my dog a heaping teaspoon of crushed garlic twice-a-day with his dry food for 10 years. I took him to a new vet a few months ago. He guessed his age as FIVE. My dog loves it. He is in perfect health and I believe garlic is one of the things that has kept him young. He's now 10 years 7 months. Then again I also feed him 2000 mg of MSM a day, a multi vitamin, glucosmine/condorotin (spell check please) and water soluble silver and minerals. I don't buy into what the so-called experts say. I go by what my experience teaches me. And I think garlic has been GREAT for him. In fact, he very rarely gets sick and I don't use any poison flea control crap that the vets push on you or vaccinations that can ruin his immune system. He's a Sheltie Mix and his coat is gorgeous. And I predict he'll live to at least 20. All animals can live longer lives through correct supplementation.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Sarah (West Chester, Pennsylvania) on 10/22/2007
1 out of 5 stars

I was giving my Belgian Sheepdog less than the the manufacturer's recommended dosage of garlic. I wanted an alternative for the control of parasitic insects. The garlic caused my dog to get an ulcer which ruptured his stomache - He died. There may not be scientific data to say garlic is not safe - but it wans't safe for my dog. I still search for the right balance between natural and pharmaseutical. Everthing and anything we give can have a concequence. I have to live with the fact that by trying to help my dog I killed him.

Replied by Mary MD
(Binghamton, USA)
06/10/2008

Sorry you lost your dog. It sounds to me though that there is no definitive proof that it was the garlic which caused the ulcerations in his stomach. So, please don't blame yourself. Dogs which have never been fed garlic get stomach ulcers. It's true that massive amounts of garlic
can be an anticoagulant thus thinning the blood, but so can aspirin and ibuprofen in humans if taken in large amounts. I doubt it was the garlic regardless of what your vet said. I've given my dog and cats garlic for years without any adverse effects. Recently I took in a stray mother cat with mastitis and a softball sized ulcer on her underbelly. If left outside she would have died from infection, but she didn't. I gave her 3/4 tsp of garlic daily for 2 weeks and she recovered completely. The large gaping wound closed, and she is healthy and happy. Garlic is a strong antibacterial and antiviral agent.


Is It Safe?
Posted by Denise (Corrolitos, Ca) on 10/13/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I have appreciated the comments on earthclinic in regards to dogs and garlic. I was raised with dogs eating garlic to prevent or rid them of worms and fleas.I ended up terribly concerned at the sudden rash of information this is harmful to my dogs as no one would want to intentionally cause illness or death of a beloved pet. my dogs are sisters now three years old they had been eating garlic powder since 6 months I am certain it rid them of worms They eat canned food mixed with dry and water or broth with what would be a reasonable amount of garlic POWDER ie: suitable for a pet parents taste. I had stopped feeding them the powder for awhile gravely concerned for their health. Suddenly I noticed duller coats, itching ,fleas and a brief return of' hinny draging (worms) after this I returned them to the seasoning amount of garlic powder behold shinner coats less flea annoyance and no worms. I spoke to pet food providers asking about tomatoes since their brand of dog food contained tomatoes I was told the tomatoes in the food are not harmful to dogs since they are powdered. Last I can say Im not feeding my dogs tomatoes (too much acid) but Im keeping my eyes open and tolerating my garlic powder kisses.


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Posted by Cheryl (WAPAKONETA, Ohio) on 10/12/2007
1 out of 5 stars

In this month's(October 2007) issue of National Geographic on Pet threats, Garlic is listed as a no-no. According to NG, "garlic breaks down a dogs red blood cells, leading to anemia and possible kidney failure from leaking hemoglobin"


Is It Safe?
Posted by Dean (Los Angeles, California) on 09/30/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I have cooked chicken breasts or whole chickens for my Samoyeds for many years. They do not eat canned dog food or dry dog food. I have always sprinkled garlic while cooking their meals. They get steamed long grain brown rice as well in the mix. I just saw on a morning show that you shouldn't give your dog garlic (I think it was the Today Show). Now I'm worried, I've fed them garlic for years, do I stop now? They are 11 and 12 and in excellent health and very playful. People always think they are pups. I have the vet check their blood yearly and nothing has ever come back bad but I've never asked her about garlic, I will when I return home but in the meantime. Now that this show mentioned chocolate and garlic in the same breath as bad, I'm concerned. I also sprinkle 1500mg of glucosimine daily in their food. Is there a study of if the dogs are always fed garlic and then what happens if it is just pulled from their diet all together? thanks.


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Posted by trixie (portland, OR) on 09/21/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I feed my dog Nutro Natural with glucosamine and chondroitin. She is 12 and has always been super healthy. In the past year, she has started to become quite a picky eater and her sister-dog usually gets to her food before she does. I recently started to add just a small pinch of garlic powder to her food and she eats it right up. It hasn't caused any side- effects and it ensures she gets the correct daily dosage of food (and our other dog does, too!)


Is It Safe?
Posted by Lou (NY, NY) on 09/13/2007
5 out of 5 stars

Been feeding my chihuahua raw garlic (1 clove)and some powered garlic (aged) 3x a week for YEARS! He's 9 years old. And he gets a one mile walk every day for exercise. I thank God for his health, that he has never been to the vet for any problems!


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Posted by Jermin Bautista (Caloocan, Philippines) on 09/02/2007
5 out of 5 stars

I fed my dog his regular dinner (Dog food) tonight. I'm using royal canin for adult. my chihuahua is a 1 yr and a half and a bit picky on dog foods so I decided to sprinkle a small amount of a regular McKormic Garlic. He ate it in a minute and even went repeatedly back to his food dish for more. I think garlic is good for your dogs but just don't feed it' in large amounts. thus, if parasites hate it then its a natural way to prevent it.anything that is too much is BAD. i believe you shoud be avoiding chocolates and sweets for your dogs including nuts rather than Garlic. Its a ntural Herb and those sites that indicate garlic is bad is all wrong.some dogs were fed heavy on garlic, some maybe had food allergies, some had just blamed garlic on their already diseased dogs. If it's poisonous then every dog will die in just a pinch of garlic. It's just common sense. And to end this up, Garlic is safe in good amounts (According to your dog's weight, allergy tests.

Replied by kath7777
(TampaBay, FL)
06/23/2009

While I am grateful for all of this information; I must add: I've spent most of today, cleaning up after my poor Boston Terrier, because my husband (innocently) gave him too much chicken from his Chinese Garlic chicken with broccoli, last night. Poor Georgie is suffering, and it's not his fault, what happened to the carpet, while he was home, alone! He's not only got diarrhea, but he looks like he's straining with a bad stomach ache, while he's outside, 'going'. All my furbabies love their dry kibbles (they get good ones), and good canned food, as well...Don't know if there's a difference with the specific garlic; but we'll never give our precious Georgie any more of our Chinese food, that's for sure!

Replied by Farideh
(Reston, VA)
06/23/2009

Most chinese restaurants add MSG to the food too, don't forget. I can't believe it was the garlic that would cause the diarrhea.We give our dogs garlic all the time and never have problems.

Replied by Tina
(Boothbay, Maine)
03/29/2010

It was probably the MSG in the Chinese food that made your dog sick



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