Rachel is a stay-at-home pet mom, caring for her dog, cat, turtle, tortoise, and fish. She's a content writer in various niches but most notably in the pet field, educating pet parents on the health and wellbeing of their furry friends. When she's not writing, she's reading, playing video games, or organizing something.
Food Vegetables

Can Dogs Eat Garlic?

Rachel Poli Author
Jun 25 ·

Can dogs eat garlic? The short answer is no; dogs shouldn’t eat garlic. Like onions, garlic is part of the allium family which contains thiosulfate. This compound is toxic to dogs when consumed.

Believe it or not, garlic does have some benefits for dogs when consumed in very small quantities. Is it worth the risk, though? This is a conversation to have between you and your veterinarian.

However, our recommendation is to be on the safe side and keep garlic away from your furry friend.

can dogs eat garlic?

What is thiosulfate?

Thiosulfate causes oxidative damage to the red blood cells. Thus, causing hemolytic anemia. Symptoms of anemia may include rapid breathing, lethargy, weakness, jaundice, and dark-colored urine. If you notice these signs in your pooch, then you should call your vet right away. 

Garlic toxicity can also occur, which causes symptoms such as gastrointestinal upset, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, abdominal pain, depression, and dehydration.

Garlic poisoning is rarely fatal, but it’s something that needs to be treated as soon as possible. Your vet will be able to make your pup as comfortable as possible, give them fluids, and treat them properly. In severe cases, your doggo may need a blood transfusion. 

What if dogs eat a little garlic?

If your pooch happens to eat a tiny bit of garlic, then that’s okay. According to some studies, it takes about 15 to 30 grams of body weight for garlic actually to be harmful to your pooch. The average clove of garlic weighs about three to seven grams, so your dog would have to eat a lot to really get sick.

Of course, you also need to be wary of your dog’s age and size. Smaller dogs are going to be more easily affected because they have smaller body weight. In addition, puppies and older dogs may get sick easier if their immune system isn’t strong enough.

Garlic can be healthy to dogs in some ways

Even though it’d be better to stay away from garlic, if your doggo eats a little bit of it, it’s okay. They might even get some nutritional benefits out of it. For example, garlic can prevent blood clots, decrease cholesterol build-up, prevent the formation of tumors, and is antibiotic, antifungal, and antiparasitic.

The compounds in garlic can also fight cancer in the lungs, stomach, colon, and rectum. Garlic will help enhance natural killer cells, which will destroy cancer cells and pathogenic bacteria. In addition, garlic can build up in your dog’s skin and coat oils. Thus, acting as a natural repellant against fleas and ticks.

Concerns of dogs eating garlic

Of course, too much garlic can make your dog sick, and you’ll need to bring them to the vet right away. While a little bit of garlic that happens to get onto the floor may be okay, there are other concerns to consider.

Puppies and pregnant dogs

If you have an expectant mother, then feeding her garlic isn’t a good idea. It may have a bad effect on her and the puppies. In addition, garlic changes the taste of breast milk, so it’s certainly not a good idea to feed it to them when they’re nursing.

Puppies under six months of age don’t produce red blood cells. So, keep them away from garlic so that it doesn’t mess with their system too much and make them sick.


If your furry friend is on medication for anything, then garlic can have a negative impact on their system. For example, if your pooch is on immune suppressants, heart medication, chemotherapy medication, blood thinners, insulin, antacids, or blood pressure medication, they should stay away from garlic.

If you feed your dogs little bits of garlic here and there and they have surgery coming up, then stop giving them garlic at least two weeks prior.

Serving garlic safely to dogs

If your vet says it’s okay to give your pooch a little garlic once in a while, then prepare it safely for your dog to consume. Peel the cloves off the garlic and mince them into fine pieces. Let it sit for a few minutes before sprinkling some onto your dog’s food.

Can dogs eat garlic bread?

Garlic bread is high in calories and fat. It also contains butter, oil, cheese, and other herbs that are not safe for your doggo to eat. While your dog should stay away from regular garlic, they should certainly stay away from garlic bread.

can dogs eat garlic?

Can dogs eat garlic?

The short answer is no. Dogs should stay away from garlic. A little won’t hurt them, and there are some benefits to it, but the risk of your furry friend getting sick might be too high.

As always, check with your veterinarian first before feeding your pooch any new foods.

Similar reading: other foods dogs can’t eat

Rachel Poli Author
Rachel is a stay-at-home pet mom, caring for her dog, cat, turtle, tortoise, and fish. She's a content writer in various niches but most notably in the pet field, educating pet parents on the health and wellbeing of their furry friends. When she's not writing, she's reading, playing video games, or organizing something.
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