Whether it is about having good health or good skin, chia seeds are a boon for everything. They are gluten-free and rich in nutrients, which every dog should have. But can dogs have chia seeds?
Well, dogs can eat chia seeds and enjoy their rich nutrient profile. They can control a dog’s appetite, make their heart healthy, and offer many more benefits. These benefits will be inevitable for your dog if you feed them these seeds in moderation. Besides, you must follow the right way of having them.
Surprisingly, chia seeds can pose health hazards sometimes. That’s why it is important to be certain about the safety concerns related to these seeds.
All About Chia Seeds
Chia seeds, also called edible seeds, come from the Salvia hispanica plant. This plant belongs to the mint family. It is mostly seen in South America, Central America, and Mexico.
These seeds are oval with black, white, brown, and grey tints. They act as hygroscopic, which absorbs water and becomes ten times more than their actual weight. After absorbing water, chia seeds become mucilaginous, which gives the seeds a gel texture.
Because they have immense nutrients and offer many health benefits, people consider these seeds a “superfood”. It has almost every nutrient that humans need. Such as vitamin C, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, fibre, and so on.
Can Dogs Have Chia Seeds?
Since chia seeds have no toxins but nutrients, they can be a great addition to dogs’ diets. These seeds can support their vision health, weight management, joint health, bone health, muscle health, and so on. Thanks to its loaded vitamins, minerals, and antioxidant properties. In short, chia seeds are not only safe for dogs but also good for dogs.
Since these seeds are plant-based foods, you can’t offer them to dogs as much as we eat them. Keep the quantity small. Besides, you must properly serve these seeds, like soaking them in water at first. Most importantly, you should ask your vet first if your dog can have chia seeds.
Benefits Of Having Chia Seeds For Dogs
Your dog may expect several health benefits from having chia seeds in the right amount and in the right way. One of the main nutrients in chia seeds is omega-3 fatty acids. This can help your dog avoid inflammation and promote skin, brain, and immune system health.
Another supernutrient in chia seeds is fibre. This can be a great aid for dogs dealing with digestive issues. Two tablespoons of chia seeds contain five grams of fibre. Hence, a small amount of these seeds can be a saviour for your dog’s digestive tract.
Surprisingly, chia seeds have more calcium than milk, more iron than spinach, and more vitamin C than oranges. We know calcium keeps bones healthy, iron enhances haemoglobin levels, and vitamin C prevents skin issues. Besides, this “superfood” has other essential minerals too. Such as zinc, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and phosphorus. These all can keep your dog’s heart healthy, prevent him from developing cancer, and boost his immune system.
The antioxidant properties present in chia seeds can keep free radicals from damaging your dog’s body. Also, they can maintain their blood sugar level, which can be a better option for diabetic dogs.
Risks Of Having Chia Seeds For Dogs
Feeding chia seeds to dogs requires some precautions. If you don’t maintain that, these seeds can be a danger to your dog.
We usually consume chia seeds after soaking them in water for a few hours. Their job is to absorb liquid, which makes them ten times heavier after being soaked. If you offer dry chia seeds to your dog, they will absorb the liquid from his body. This can trigger the intestinal blockage in him.
Another risk associated with chia seeds is GI issues. As said earlier, chia seeds are high in fibre. Taking more chia seeds means taking more fibre. Meanwhile, excess amounts of fibre can cause bloating, gassiness, and even diarrhoea.
While offering any human food to dogs, we need to first introduce them to dogs. For example, if you give two teaspoons of chia seeds to your canine friend for the first time, he may not be able to have them. In turn, the seeds can trigger his allergies. That’s why you must start by offering small amounts of chia seeds first.
Anyway, dogs eating a good amount of these seeds when they are eating them for the first time may pose health risks. Such as rashes, vomiting, diarrhoea, inflammation, and so on.
How To Offer Chia Seeds To Dogs?
Before you let your paw friend eat chia seeds, make sure they are organic and fresh. Also, check for the pesticides and chemicals that might be present in low-quality chia seeds. Then take the required amount of these seeds and mix them with water. Let the seeds soak in water for about an hour.
Now you can let your dog eat the soaked seeds alone, as they are flavourless and odourless. Another better way would be to mix these seeds in fresh juice or with veggies.
If your dog does not have any GI issues, you may sprinkle a bit of chia seeds on the salad that your dog will eat.
When Can Dogs Have Chia Seeds?
Although chia seeds are a “superfood” for us, they do offer some side effects. It means these seeds may not be the best option for all dogs every time. Some dogs are allergic to plant-based foods, which chia seeds are. So make sure in advance whether your dog has any allergic issues or not.
You can consider offering these seeds to your dog when he is struggling with constipation. Besides, for good heart health, they can be a nice aid for them.
Let’s say your dog is healthy enough to consume chia seeds, or he needs to consume chia seeds. Yet, you need to ask your vet if these seeds can be good for your dog. Because sometimes the old health records of dogs don’t allow them to have certain foods, including superfoods.
Frequently Asked Questions: Can Dogs Have Chia Seeds?
Can dogs eat chia seeds every day?
For better results, you must offer chia seeds to dogs occasionally, not frequently. However, if your dog likes having this superfood, you may offer ¼ of a teaspoon of it every day.
What is better for dogs, chia seeds or flax seeds?
Both chia seeds and flax seeds are good for dogs. They have everything to support a dog’s electrolyte balance. However, chia seeds are higher in vitamin C, calcium, and iron than flax seeds. Meanwhile, flax seeds are higher in vitamin B6 than chia seeds.
Will chia seeds help dogs with diarrhoea?
The fibre content present in chia seeds supports healthy digestion in both humans and animals. Therefore, they can cure an uncomfortable GI tract that includes bloating, gassiness, or diarrhoea.
How many chia seeds can dogs have?
While feeding chia seeds to your dog, you must maintain a certain proportion. For example, a 10-pound dog should have ¼ teaspoon of chia seeds. Whereas, a 20-pound dog should have ½ teaspoon of chia seeds. It means that for every 10 pounds, the amount should be ¼ teaspoon.
After learning about the health risks of chia seeds, you may have a second thought: Can dogs have chia seeds? The answer is yes, if the amount is moderate, the dog is not allergic, and his vet allows him to have them.
If your dog ever eats chia seeds more than required, he may vomit and have watery poop. It is because of the excess fibre that these seeds contain. Don’t panic in such situations. Just observe his symptoms and inform your vet about them. Also, don’t let your paw friend have chia seeds or any seeds for a couple of days.