As humans, we may have a wide range of spice tolerance and palette for heat. You may crave all things spicy in all your dishes. On the other hand, you may think even mild Jalapeños bring too much of a punch for you. Jalapeño peppers can be a quick and easy way to add spice to food. However, can dogs eat Jalapeños? Dog’s not should be eating Jalapeños because the heat can upset their gastrointestinal system.
Before you let your dog lick up that last few spoonfuls of zesty chili or munch on that last few jalapeño poppers before they get tossed into the trash, think again. To help protect your dog’s health, here we share some important things to know about just how much heat your dog can handle.
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Can Dogs Eat Jalapeños?
In general, it’s probably not the best idea to let your dog eat jalapeños and other peppers. While your dog may enjoy eating them, the intense heat from the peppers may not be best for their gastrointestinal system. Jalapeños aren’t toxic for dogs, such as other foods like macadamia nuts or chocolate. However, the heat from jalapeños and other similar spicy foods can add some discomfort to your dog’s stomach. In general, it’s best to avoid strong foods like jalapeños for your dog.
Especially as puppies are raised with a fairly intentional diet, they shouldn’t be eating human food. Their dog food mix contains ingredients that promote growth, strength, and overall health as they get started. As a dog gets older, their mix might change slightly depending on the vitamins and minerals they need especially, but the bland, rich, and traditional kibble bits don’t throw in many surprise ingredients.
Depending on how much you feed your dog table scraps, their digestive system is probably most used to regular and simple ingredients. When you throw in food like a jalapeño, their stomach may be in for a shock.
This introduction of new foods may affect dogs differently depending on their size. Typically, dogs that are large or medium size who may have already tried other ingredients from the table won’t have a problem digesting spicy foods like jalapeños.
However, smaller dogs who have slightly more fragile digestive systems may experience more noticeable or severe side effects as they attempt to digest the pepper. Therefore, if you have a small dog and notice they’ve eaten something spicy like a jalapeño, be sure to pay close attention to their health and overall mood as they attempt to digest this ingredient they’re not used to and their system isn’t designed for.
What to Do When Your Dog Eats a Jalapeño
Sometimes when your dog consumes spicy food like a jalapeño, there may be no cause for concern. Especially if your dog is large to medium-size, they may not have trouble digesting the spicy pepper. However, some dogs may experience some discomfort as their system attempts to digest the pepper.
Side effects in digesting jalapeños to look out for include diarrhea, vomiting, and other indications of stomach pain. They may have a gagging reflex or dry heave. Peppers and other hot foods can also cause gas, an unfortunate side effect for both you and your dog. Keep in mind that your dog may also suffer from pain as they excrete following eating a jalapeño or other spicy cuisine. Be sure to provide lots of love and care as they may be in pain during this time. If your dog seems to be in pain or choking, always contact a veterinarian immediately.
While there’s no sure-fire cure for treating an upset stomach due to consuming a jalapeño, there are some easy ways you can help your pet feel better as they digest the pepper. In addition to calling your veterinarian, there are some other remedies you can try to help your dog feel better. Put out a little bowl of milk to help calm their taste buds and digestive system from the intense heat. Give them lots of water, too, especially if they are vomiting or have diarrhea to prevent dehydration.
Hold the Spice for Your Dog
As much as they may crave wanting to lick up your plate after you’ve enjoyed the majority of jalapeño poppers or spicy tacos, put in some restraint. A dog’s digestive system wasn’t designed to handle a flaming hot wing challenge. If your dog is larger and is used to eating table scraps, them eating spicy food like a jalapeño may not be a concern for a trip to the vet. However, if you notice additional concerning side effects, call for medical attention.
Prevent them from eating spicy foods like jalapeños in the first place and seek attention as soon as it becomes apparent that your dog is in pain. In being intentional about what your dog consumes, and eliminating those things that can harm them, you can promote the health and well-being of your puppy or adult dog.
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Garrett loves animals and is a huge advocate for all Doodle dog breeds. He owns his own Goldendoodle named Kona. In addition, he volunteers at the Humane Society of Silicon Valley, where he fosters dogs and helps animals. Garrett enjoys writing about Doodles and believes that dogs can teach humans more about how to live than humans can teach a dog.
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