Can Dogs Eat Rosemary? Is Rosemary Good for Dogs?

By Nadine Oraby | 2020 Update

The first thing that comes in my mind when I think about dog food is store-bought packed food. This thing has always made me wonder, whether dogs can eat other things, such as fruits, vegetables, or even herbs.

When I talk about herbs, rosemary comes to my mind, and makes me wonder if it is safe to feed my dog rosemary? Because they are nutritional for humans, does it mean that they are healthy for dogs to eat?

The answer is yes, it is safe and healthy for your pet dog to eat rosemary plant, but it depends on numerous factors, such as if it’s cooked or what form is it in.

But is it good for your pet dog to consume herbs? Will it make any such difference?

Luckily, I have just got the answers.

How Good is Rosemary for your Dog?

Before talking about whether rosemary is safe for your dog to eat or not, let’s talk about what rosemary is and how does it help?

Listed below are a few benefits of Rosemary leaves for your pet dog:

  • A natural antioxidant with high iron
  • Contains vitamin B6 that promotes mental health
  • Calcium to enhance teeth and bones growth

Rosemary is an herb that has rich antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that help keep your stomach clean and healthy. This is why you will find dried rosemary or rosemary extract listed as an ingredient at the back of many dog foods.

According to a study by ASPCA, rosemary has been listed as a non-toxic food for dogs.

Rosemary extract is added to dog food because several studies show that it helps to prevent cancer, and keeps your pet dog in a good mood altogether.

Keeping your dog’s stomach in check is what rosemary oil does, which makes it have a better diet altogether. Actively playing, improved mood and exercising are just some added benefits that can help your dog if rosemary is fed.

Forms of Rosemary That You Should Feed Your Dog

But, when I say that rosemary is good for your dog, it doesn’t mean that you can feed any form of rosemary to your dog. When it comes to feeding your dog, you can choose from several options.

  • Dried Rosemary: You can use rosemary leaves and break them into smaller pieces and mix it in your dog’s food
  • Rosemary Paste: Take a grinder and grind rosemary leaves. You can use this paste to enhance the flavor of food that you’re feeding your dog

Apart from these, it is highly not recommended to feed your dog rosemary oil or even mix it in its food as that is known to be dangerous.

Keep in mind that rosemary oil can make your dog vomit, sneeze or even cause severe health problems.

Another tip is to always check the ingredients of the dog food you are feeding to your dog and check if rosemary extract is already present in it or not. This way you will get a general idea of how much rosemary you should feed your dog.

Rosemary Dog Treat (Video)


What Quantity of Rosemary does your Dog Require?

Now that we have established that giving your pet dog rosemary is safe and healthy, the next thing that matters is the quantity you’re going to feed your dog.

It may be the rule of dressing up that “less is more”, but this rule is applicable everywhere. Your pet dog doesn’t need rosemary if it is already healthy.

Consider this, you take vitamins not because you need them, but because, they are good for your health.

In the same way, rosemary is good for your dog, but not necessary, which is why you should be giving it in very small quantities.

Here are a few basic feeding tips:

  • Half teaspoon of leaves in all three meals is more than enough
  • If you are giving it in the form of a paste, then no more than 1 teaspoon in all three meals combined

Do keep in mind that rosemary has a very strong and powerful fragrance, which is why you need to use the minimum amount possible. Apart from this, it is high in iron, which is linked to causing several problems.

So, what’s the verdict? Feed your dog rosemary but in controlled quantities. Wouldn’t it just be perfect to cook a meal for your dog that contains rosemary?

A recipe is what I give you. Read below to find out more.

Recipe for Homemade Dog Food With Rosemary Leaves

It is okay; if you’re not a fan of cooking food for your pet dog because let’s face, we don’t have the time to.

But once a week you could look up a recipe on the internet, and treat your pet dog.

Not only would that be a great way to bond with your pet, but make you feel like an adult. So, here’s a simple recipe that I follow and works out great for me.

The basic concoction should consist of high-quality protein sources, carbohydrates, and some vegetables to enhance the flavor.


  • 3 pound grounded beef
  • 2 shredded carrots (very small pieces)
  • 1 cup of peas
  • ½ teaspoon of crushed rosemary leaves
  • 2 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 whisked eggs


  • In a small bowl, mix the whisked eggs and crushed rosemary leaves with pounded ground beef and roll the beef with a roller, and then cut it into medium size square pieces
  • In a saucepan, add 2 tbsp. of olive oil and fry the cut pieces
  • Get a large bowl, add shredded carrots and peas with the cooked pieces of grounded beef
  • Serve your dog with fresh water

This food can last for 2 days, so it’s better to preserve it by freezing. You can adjust the number of ingredients if you want to make it a single serving dish, according to the size and breed of your pet dog.

Another thing that you can do is mix all the ingredients in a large mixing bowl, and then make meatballs. Then you can fry the meatballs and give it to your dog as a treat.

Not only will this prove to be a new dish for your pet dog, but tasty and healthy as well.

What are Other Herbs That My Dog Can Eat?

You’d be surprised to find out that many herbs are safe to eat by your pet dog. Not only do these herbs can make your dog’s food tasty, but their stomach and mind healthy as well.

So, here is a list of herbs that your pet dog can enjoy along with its benefits.


  • Contains antioxidant properties that will boost your pet dog’s digestive system
  • Helps fighting cancer and diseases associated with liver
  • Antibacterial properties and helps strengthening bones


  • Quickly calms an upset stomach of your pet dog
  • Leaves your pet dog with a fresh mouth, hence promoting teeth health
  • Prevents nausea and soothes your pet dog


  • Coriander is an all-rounder. It contains Vitamin A, Vitamin K and Vitamin C which helps in digestion, eyesight and makes the immune system strong
  • Helps prevents diarrhea, nausea, and dizziness
  • Helps with stomach gas as well

While these herbs can be given to your dog, make sure that these are given in moderate quantities. Just like rosemary, even if these herbs are good for your pet dog, it doesn’t mean that overfeeding them will do any good.

The Myth behind Rosemary Causing Seizures

As pet dog owners, we have to be extra careful about what we feed our dogs. This is why we need to address this myth that is still widely discussed even today.

The myth that giving your dog rosemary can cause seizures is not true. There are many reasons why this is a myth which is all listed below.

  • FDA regards rosemary as a safe herb for pet dogs and marks it non-toxic.
  • The majority of pet food companies use rosemary extract as a preservative for dog food. So, if there was a relation between seizures and rosemary, we would see almost every dog at the vet’s office.
  • Most people get confused between rosemary extract and rosemary oil, not knowing that the latter is what causes the seizures.
  • The most common cause of seizures in the dog is related to liver and kidney diseases.

But it is advised to not give or feed your dog herbs in general if it has epilepsy. In this case, it is better to be safe than sorry and consult a vet, before feeding your pet dog anything in general.

The Difference between Rosemary Oil and Rosemary Extract

As I mentioned before, the reason why we even have a “is rosemary good for dogs?”, the debate is because people can’t seem to differentiate between rosemary oil and rosemary extract.

It is an honest mistake to consider both of them the same thing, but still a mistake. The major difference is the amount of rosemary oil that both of these ingredients contain.

Other differences include:

  • Rosemary oil is an essential oil which is very strong, whereas, rosemary extract contains a part of rosemary oil, which is not as strong
  • Rosemary oil is produced by the method of steam distillation, whereas, rosemary extract is made by soaking its leaves
  • Rosemary oil is used for medicinal purposes, whereas, rosemary extract is diverse, as it can be used for skincare and healthcare through consumption via food
  • One dosage of rosemary extract contains around 6.4 to 6.7 mg of oil, which is 29 times less than what a pure dosage of rosemary essential oil would contain

The reason why people get usually confused between these two is that the word “extract” is usually used in place of “oil”.

Herbs That Can Make Your Pet Dog Actually Sick

Now, some herbs are not safe for your pet dog and you should steer clear of them at all costs.

Some of these can easily be found in your garden, so make sure that the backyard is safe for your pet dog to play in, as dogs do have a habit of sniffing and taking things in the mouth.

Herbs to Avoid:

  • Garlic: Mayo garlic sauce is widely loved by humans, but garlic is a toxic herb for your pet dog. Giving your pet dog garlic can cause anemia.
  • Ivy: This is a common house plant and a pet dog belonging in the same house as ivy, is known to cause diarrhea and other stomach problems if consumed by a dog.
  • Onions: Not an herb, but many people use it as an ingredient while cooking for their pet dog. Don’t be that person, as onions contain thiosulfates that are toxic for your dog.
  • Chives: Chives belong to the same class that garlic and onions belong to, which is why it’s not safe for your pet dog to have these.
  • Essential Oils: Some essential oils are very heavy and not safe to give your dog. You can use these oils for relaxing them by aromatherapy, which will calm them down.
  • Wormwood: Wormwood can prove to be addictive to your pet dog, which is why it’s not considered safe for your dog.

Other Related Questions

Can I give my puppy herbs?

Yes, you can feed your puppy herbs, but it’s better to patch test first. Also, you should consult your vet before giving your puppy anything that is not common.

What food should I give to my stressed dog?

Foods such as turkey and fish may calm down a stressed or anxious dog, but you should try to find out the real answer, as to why your pet dog is stressed. Comfort food is temporary.

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