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Can Dogs Eat Parsley? Vet-Reviewed Facts & FAQ

Written by: Elizabeth Gray

Last Updated on March 25, 2024 by Dogster Team

Can Dogs Eat Parsley? Vet-Reviewed Facts & FAQ


Dr. Karyn Kanowski Photo


Dr. Karyn Kanowski

BVSc MRCVS (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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You might be familiar with parsley as a common ingredient in cooking, but the herb also offers many health benefits and is considered a superfood for humans 1. As dog owners, we want our pets to stay healthy, but is parsley safe for them to eat? Dogs can safely eat some types of parsley, while other varieties should be avoided due to possible health consequences.

In this article, we’ll discuss which types of parsley are safe for your dog. You’ll also learn the uses and benefits of this herb, plus how to include it in your dog’s diet.


Which Varieties of Parsley are Safe for Your Dog?

Parsley can be generally divided into two types: flat-leaf and curly. Flat-leaf parsley is commonly known as Italian, Hamburg, or turnip-rooted parsley, and is more frequently used in cooking than curly parsley.

According to the ASPCA Animal Poison Control, flat-leaf parsley is toxic to dogs, cats, and horses. Flat-leaf parsley can make your dog’s skin overly sensitive to light when eaten in large enough quantities. This medical condition, known as photosensitization, makes your dog vulnerable to sunburn and dermatitis. However, a large amount of the plant needs to be eaten to cause this sort of effect.

While it’s unlikely you would feed your dog enough flat-leaf parsley to cause photosensitization, it’s better to be safe and offer the curly variety only.

curly parsley on the ground close-up
Image by: ailin1, Shutterstock

Is Parsley Healthy for Your Dog?

Parsley contains antioxidants, folic acid, and Vitamins C, A, and K. These nutrients can help support your dog’s immune system, eyes, blood clotting, and urinary health. Parsley also helps fight bad breath, and is often found in dental chews.

One thing to keep in mind is that parsley is also a natural diuretic. That means it triggers the body to produce more urine to flush substances out. If your dog eats too much parsley, they may need a few extra trips outside, or have an unexpected accident in the house.

divider-dog paw

How Do I Feed Parsley to My Dog?

Because of its health benefits and breath-freshening properties, parsley is found in some dog food, treats, and chews. Feeding these items is an easy way to include parsley in your dog’s diet.

You can also buy fresh parsley from the store or even grow your own at home. Wash the herb thoroughly before feeding it to your dog. Ask your vet for a suggested amount of parsley to feed based on your dog’s weight. You can mix parsley into your dog’s food or combine it with other healthy human food treats, like cooked lean meats.

Shiba Inu dog eating from stainless steel bowl
Image by: Africa Studio, Shutterstock


Frequently Asked Questions

Are There Other Safe Herbs I Can Feed My Dog

Besides curly parsley, you can feed your dog several herbs. Before feeding your pup any of the following herbs, check with your veterinarian to ensure it’s okay, particularly if your dog is on a special diet, or has any health issues.

  • Cilantro
  • Basil
  • Dill
  • Mint
  • Peppermint
  • Oregano
  • Thyme
  • Sage
  • Rosemary

Do I Need to Feed Parsley to My Dog?

For most healthy dogs, the only thing they really need to eat is a nutritionally balanced diet. Commercial dog food is formulated with all the essential vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients your pup needs to stay healthy. Your dog shouldn’t need the nutrition from parsley to stay healthy, so in that sense, no, you don’t need to feed it.

If you’re interested in feeding parsley to help your dog’s breath, it’s important to ensure there’s no medical reason for the foul mouth odor. See your vet for a dental exam and checkup, and ensure you’re performing regular preventative dental care, such as brushing your dog’s teeth.



Parsley is a beneficial superfood for humans, and dogs can also safely enjoy the curly-leaf version of this herb. However, you should check with your vet before offering parsley to your pet since it may not be appropriate for dogs with certain health conditions. Even safe foods could still upset your dog’s stomach until they get used to them, so start by feeding a small amount of parsley to see how your pup handles it.

Featured Image Credit: LenaProkopenko, Shutterstock

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