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Can dogs eat arugula? Is it safe for pooches?

Can dogs eat arugula? Is it safe for pooches?
Can dogs eat arugula

Lettuce, iceberg salad, and leafy greens and salads in general are quite flavorless. However, arugula is the complete opposite. Unlike the above mentioned greens, arugula is quite peppery and is generally full of flavor. Given that, dog owners wonder can dogs eat arugula?

Besides being full of flavor, this leafy green also has a ton of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals that are wonderful for your health. For example, it’s high in fiber and phytochemicals and low in sugar and carbohydrates.

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So, now that we know the basics about arugula, let’s dive in deeper and take a look at all the benefits of arugula and whether or not dogs can eat this leafy green.

Can dogs eat arugula – All the facts

We’ve written about many kinds of vegetables and if dogs can eat them. For example, radish, edamame beans, kale, or even beets. However, we’ve never taken a closer look at arugula.

Dogs can actually eat arugula, this leafy green is in fact safe for dogs. However, it is quite unusual for dogs to eat it. And in fact, despite all the nutrients that can be found in arugula, dogs don’t need to eat it.

But, let’s see what health benefits arugula has.

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Important nutrients

We’ve already mentioned briefly that arugula has many nutrients that are beneficial for your health.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture and their food database, 100g of arugula contains:

  • 24 calories,
  • 2.35g of protein,
  • 0.59g of fats,
  • 3.53g of carbs, including 1.2 from the fiber.

Besides this, arugula has 176mg of Calcium, 14.1mg of Vitamin C, and 2352 IU of Vitamin A. This green contains also Potassium, Folate (A form of vitamin B) as well as vitamin K too.

Health benefits for dogs

Dogs obviously don’t need to have arugula in their diet, but in some cases it might be beneficial.

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Anti-cancer properties

Even though the final results of the research weren’t published yet, many experts believe that arugula has anti-cancer properties.

Apparently the phytochemicals found in arugula— thiocyanates, sulforaphane, and indoles—slow the progression of some cancers in dogs, particularly esophageal and colon cancers.

Healthy bones

Arugula is full of vitamin K, which helps keep your dogs bones healthy and strong.

This is because dogs who have plenty of vitamin K absorb calcium more efficiently. This means that they are less likely to suffer from osteoporosis in old age.

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Of course, your dog gets plenty of vitamin K from meat!

Risks of arugula

So, obviously, we’ve answered the question can dogs eat arugula. They can. However, only because they can, doesn’t mean they should! Besides the health benefits, there are many risks that come with feeding your dog arugula.

The first risk is that you don’t know if your dog is allergic to arugula. If you decide to feed your dog arugula, please make sure to slowly introduce it over a period of 1-2 weeks. Also, observe your dog, look out for any signs of allergies 48 hours after consumption.

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There are two main concerns we have with arugula.


Leafy green vegetables are goitrogenic foods. This means that they cause a hormonal imbalance in dogs by inhibiting adequate synthesis of thyroid hormone.

If your dogs thyroid isn’t working properly it can lead to serious health issues. For example hyperthyroidism, hypthyroidism and goiters can occur.

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However, the risk of this happening is very slim. For this to occur your dog would have to eat large quantities of arugula every day, for a long period of time.

Oxalic Acid

Unlike spinach and chard, arugula isn’t high in oxalic acid. The issue with this acid is that it binds with essential minerals like calcium, magnesium and potassium. When this happens your dog isn’t able to absorb these nutrients from the other foods in their diets.

How to feed arugula to your dog

Now that you know that dogs can eat arugula and that this leafy green has some health benefits for dogs, you might wonder how to feed arugula to your dog.

Just like with any human food you give your dog, you shouldn’t use seasonings, spices not even salt. Also don’t use fats nor sugars.

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So if you decide to feed your dog arugula make sure you thoroughly wash it. Then, cut the arugula into bite sized pieces and serve the arugula plain!

You can feed arugula fresh or cooked. However, be aware that cooking will actually lessen instances of gas or upset stomachs.

If you’d like to learn which fruits, vegetables or human foods in general are safe for your dog you can check out the following articles: