Turmeric is a spice that is commonly used in Asian and Middle Eastern food preparations. It has a bright yellow-orange color and is derived from a plant, called Curcuma longa, which belongs to the ginger family. This spice is made by boiling, drying, and then grinding the rhizomes found in the root system of the plant. You’ll find it in many commercial spice mixtures, but the best part of this very special spice is its ability to detoxify the body.
Essentially, the way that turmeric works to cleanse your system is by stimulating bile production in the liver and excretion of the bile through the gallbladder. The main active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin, a powerful anti-inflammatory and antibacterial component believed to prevent and treat certain cancers and diseases. An amazing thing about turmeric is that the medicinal properties are beneficial across various species, including dogs.
Health Benefits of Turmeric
Turmeric has an immensely wide range of health benefits for dogs. Some of the most notable benefits of this spice for your pet are the treatment of different digestive issues, skin problems, and even the prevention of cancer! Your dog’s liver plays a huge role in filtering toxins from the body, and can affect all of his body’s systems. As curcumin increases the production of bile, turmeric actually boosts your dog’s liver’s ability to digest fat and remove harmful substances from the body. It is well-known among health enthusiasts that this spice can also be used to prevent gas and bloating; this is also true for your pet.
Curcumin as An Anti-Inflammatory
Curcumin is also known to treat inflammation, particularly that of the skin. This can lead to the reduction of inflammatory symptoms, such as arthritis, rashes, ear infections, and overall itchiness.
And now there are some very interesting studies involving turmeric and canine health in the treatment of cancer. There have been several cases of literal shrinkage of tumors when dogs are given this spice. In dogs and humans alike, curcumin actually causes cancer cell death.
To humans, the taste of this spice is best described as earthy and quite bitter. However, the taste is typically not a problem for pets. While a dog’s sense of smell is exceptionally more sensitive than ours, it is quite the opposite for their sense of taste. You can add a bit of this spice to their food daily, and they are not likely to even notice. The typical dosage for animals is 20mg of turmeric per pound of body weight. For example, if your dog weighs 40 pounds, the suggested amount around 800mg, or just over a quarter of a teaspoon.
However, it is important to use caution when introducing any new spices or herbs to your pet’s body. Always start with a much smaller dose and provide plenty of water for him, as the binding properties in turmeric can cause digestive upset and constipation when it is given in excess. Take note of any changes in your dog’s behavior, eating habits, and bowel movements when you start administering this spice, as you should with any new remedy. There haven’t been any notable long term side effects of giving dogs turmeric, but you should always seek advice from your veterinarian.