Skip to content
Previous article
Now Reading:
10 reasons why turmeric is good for dogs

10 reasons why turmeric is good for dogs

Discover how adding turmeric to your dog’s diet can boost their overall health and longevity 

If youre wondering whether or not dogs can eat turmeric, how much to give, and what health benefits it provides for dogs, youre not the only one!

Many dog lovers are looking for natural alternatives to conventional drug-based treatments to keep their dogs healthy and mobile.

Turmeric is one of the oldest medicinal plants and spices. This superfood has been used for millennia in cuisine. However, it has also been at the forefront of modern medical research and science, mainly used in integrative medicine to address chronic inflammation and arthritis, reduce NSAID drug use, support organ and joint health and cancer treatment and prevention.

In more than 20 years of using turmeric in my practice and including it as an ingredient in some of our natural dog health supplements, I've seen countless dogs benefiting from its anti-inflammatory properties without any side effects which are very common with NSAID drugs.

Is turmeric good for dogs, dose, curcumin

Can dogs eat turmeric?

Turmeric is generally safe and beneficial for dogs. The main active compound is curcumin a powerful compound that is confirmed to have a wide range of positive effects on canine and human health.

The science and research behind turmeric and curcumin

The following is a compilation of studies regarding the medicinal and healing effects of turmeric: 

1. Turmeric has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory effects

In 1949, scientists confirmed that turmeric has a natural antibiotic effect and it has also been clinically proven to possess anti-inflammatory and anti-parasitical properties.[1]

2. Turmeric is effective in combating plaque buildup and gingivitis

Thanks to its bactericidal properties, turmeric prevents plaque and tartar build up which helps to prevent not only gingivitis and gum related issues but also heart and kidney disease.

This is great news as many dogs suffer from these health issues and the most commonly used rinse in veterinary practice, chlorhexidine, is toxic and slows down healing.

3. Turmeric supports optimal heart health and prevents cardiovascular disease

Scientists found that turmeric can protect the heart from myocardial infarction and protecting it from unnecessary inflammation is the key to good health and longevity.[2]

4. Turmeric can help in the prevention of diabetes

This one may be a real surprise for many. Diabetes is often triggered by feeding calorie dense, low quality processed foods and obesity. However, if your dog's blood sugar levels suggest a pre diabetic state, or if your dog's breed carries a genetic predisposition, adding turmeric may be beneficial.[3]

5. Turmeric seems to inhibit gastric and duodenal ulcers

Generally, I'm opposed to animal testing, but a laboratory experiment on rats has proven that turmeric can protect them from ulcer formation unlike conventional anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that are known to cause ulcers.

This is one of the biggest reasons I prefer giving turmeric instead of NSAIDS for pain, arthritis, and injuries.[4]

6. Turmeric can reduce the chances of colon cancer and slows down the progression of lymphoma

Numerous studies have shown that curcumin, the main active ingredient in turmeric, provides significant protection against colon cancer, a disease that affects both dogs and people.[5]

I've seen many dogs with leukemia throughout my career. The conventional option for treatment is chemotherapy; however, considering the dramatic drop in the quality of life in dogs on chemotherapy due to the visits, injections, IV's, hospitalization, and treatment-related sickness, I would never take that route with my dog.

In contrast, I've personally seen some very promising results from turmeric, including slowing down and reducing the growth of lymphatic cancers, such as leukemia. 

Research confirms curcumin can trigger cancer cell death (apoptosis)[6]

8. Turmeric can protect DNA from radiation damage

Scientists have confirmed that the phytochemicals in turmeric can protect cells from radiation-induced damage. These phytochemicals, known as curcuminoids, are potent antioxidants that help to neutralize free radicals, which can damage cells when exposed to radiation.[7]

9. Turmeric is great for relieving arthritis symptoms and joint pain in dogs

Research has shown that turmeric reduces tissue and joint inflammation, pain, and discomfort and is a healthier, safer alternative to pharmaceutical anti-inflammatories that cause serious side effects such as kidney and liver damage. Based on research, turmeric appears to be a safer alternative.[8]

10. Turmeric has been shown to support cognitive health and overall mood

This is very exciting news as mental health issues, depression and aging-related cognitive issues, affect not only people but also dogs.[9]

What other dog supplements can support joint health?

Searching for the right information on preventing or treating arthritis and improving your dogs mobility can be difficult, as the information is often contradicting and confusing.

Apart from turmeric, research has shown several other medicinal plants to be effective in reducing joint pain and inflammation and relieving arthritis symptoms in dogs such as boswellia, ginger root, stinging nettle, and barley grass.

While turmeric supplements for dogs might seem like a good starting option, a mobility supplement that contains a science based blend of several herbs and nutrients that act in synergy will help you optimize your dog’s arthritis and mobility care plan.

JointButter® is the first fermented joint health and mobility support for dogs on the market and will soon be the newest addition to our Healing Store.

JointButter® is a new generation fermented formula, based on science and more than 30 years of experience in veterinary practice to help you keep your dog active and mobile for many years to come.

The general perception is that a mobility supplement is required only for senior dogs, however providing the right building blocks and herbs will support healthy joint, muscle and tendon development in growing and middle aged dogs.

Declines in mobility, injuries, back and joint pain and arthritis are some of the most common causes of general health decline. I personally would never give my dog NSAID drugs as they can cause severe side-effects, damage the intestinal lining and internal organs and slow down the healing process.

Science and research have confirmed that there are other alternatives that not only reduce inflammation and discomfort but also help to rebuild joints and increase quality of life.

Turmeric benefits for dogs FAQ

  • Is turmeric good for dogs?

Yes turmeric (and its main active component curcumin) is one of the most popular natural canine anti-inflammatory foods.  However, the benefits of curcumin in dogs extend far beyond its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and antioxidant properties, helping improve digestion, supporting the liver, heart and brain health and aging to prevent cancer.

  • How much turmeric should I give my dog?

Recommended turmeric dosage depends on your dog's size, overall health, and existing health issues. In general, the recommended dose is around 15mg–20mg per pound of body weight per day, or roughly 1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon per day for every 10 pounds of body weight.

Many dog lovers consider using more advanced  supplement formulas where other ingredients such as black pepper increase the bioavailability of curcumin.

  • Can I sprinkle turmeric on my dogs food?

Turmeric can be sprinkled over your dog’s food, however, to fully benefit from turmeric, most sources recommend to add black pepper and a healthy fat, such as coconut oil, to make the curcumin more bioavailable. Fermentation process also greatly increases the bioavailability of curcumin in turmeric.

  • Can turmeric have side effects in dogs?

Turmeric is considered safe for dogs, but you should start with small doses and gradually increase the amount to avoid digestive issues, such as stomach upset, vomiting, and diarrhea. Turmeric allergy is rare in dogs.

  • Does turmeric affect a dogs liver?

Turmeric  supports healthy liver function in dogs by stimulating bile production, breaking down fats and removing waste and toxins from the body. This is why turmeric is one of the main ingredients in LiverTune®, our naturally fermented liver support and detox supplement and also JointButter®, the first fermented joint and mobility support for dogs.




  1. Gupta, S. C., Patchva, S., Koh, W., & Aggarwal, B. B. (2012). Discovery of curcumin, a component of golden spice, and its miraculous biological activities. Clinical and Experimental Pharmacology & Physiology, 39(3), 283–299.

  2. Wongcharoen, W., Jai-Aue, S., Phrommintikul, A., Nawarawong, W., Woragidpoonpol, S., Tepsuwan, T., ... Chattipakorn, N. (2012). Effects of curcuminoids on frequency of acute myocardial infarction after coronary artery bypass grafting. The American Journal of Cardiology, 110(1), 40–44.

  3. Chuengsamarn, S., Rattanamongkolgul, S., Luechapudiporn, R., Phisalaphong, C., & Jirawatnotai, S. (2012). Curcumin extract for prevention of type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care, 35(11), 2121–2127.

  4. Rafatullah, S., Tariq, M., Al-Yahya, M. A., & Mossa, J. S. (1990). Evaluation of turmeric (Curcuma longa) for gastric and duodenal antiulcer activity in rats. Journal of Ethnopharmacology, 29(1), 25–34.

  5. Rao, C. V., Simi, B., & Reddy, B. S. (1993). Inhibition by dietary curcumin of azoxymethane-induced ornithine decarboxylase, tyrosine protein kinase, arachidonic acid metabolism and aberrant crypt foci formation in the rat colon. Carcinogenesis, 14(11), 2219–2225.

  6. Kuo, M. L., Huang, T. S., & Lin, J. K. (1996). Curcumin, an antioxidant and anti-tumor promoter, induces apoptosis in human leukemia cells. Biochimica et Biophysica Acta (BBA) - Molecular Basis of Disease, 1317(2), 95–100.

  7. Parshad, R., Sanford, K. K., Price, F. M., Steele, V. E., Tarone, R. E., Kelloff, G. J., & Boone, C. W. (1998). Protective action of plant polyphenols on radiation-induced chromatid breaks in cultured human cells. Anticancer Research, 18(5A), 3263–3266.

  8. Nieman, D. C., Shanely, R. A., Luo, B., Dew, D., Meaney, M. P., & Sha, W. (Year). A commercialized dietary supplement alleviates joint pain in community adults: a double-blind, placebo-controlled community trial.

  9. Sanmukhani, J., Satodia, V., Trivedi, J., Patel, T., Tiwari, D., Panchal, B., ... Tripathi, C. B. (2014). Efficacy and safety of curcumin in major depressive disorder: a randomized controlled trial. Phytotherapy Research, 28(4), 579–585.


About the author

Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM is an Integrative veterinarian, nutritionist and creator of natural supplements for dogs and people. Helping you and your dog prevent disease, treat nutritional deficiencies, and enjoy happier, healthier, and longer lives together.

Most Popular

  • Flying with dogs
    In my article, I share the personal story of how I'm able to fly with my dog, Pax, thanks to overcoming challenges with sleepwalking and night terrors. This unique experience not only allowed me to travel with my service dog but also serves as a reminder that even difficult situations can have positive outcomes.
  • dog and pony
    Successful communication is essential for building healthier and more fulfilling relationships and happier lives. In this article, I'll share with you 8 communication hacks to help you avoid unnecessary drama, prioritize active listening and address conflicts effectively.
  • Dalmatian eating fruit
    Can dogs eat bananas, apples, strawberries and other fruit? What about grapes? Find out what fruits are safe, toxic, and healthy for dogs. Learn about the potential health benefits and risks of feeding fruit to your canine companion, and get tips on the ideal time to feed it.
  • Illustration of the anatomy of a heart
    As dog lovers, we all want our beloved pups to live long and healthy lives. Protecting your dog's heart from potential health issues is important, and in this blog Dr. Dobias shares some key points that you might not yet be aware of, read on to find out what you can do to keep your dog's heart safe. 

Dog Health

  • Husky lying on blanket with heart toy
    Dogs have our hearts and that is why we need to protect their heart. Dog’s as they age often face muscle problems and spinal misalignment and you might be surprised to know how that can hurt their heart. Learn how to protect your dog’s spine and by extension their heart.
  • The secret ingredient for a perfect No. 2
    Dogs and humans have evolved side-by-side but they are still quite different when it comes to their digestive tracts and dietary habits. We have studied their original environments such as the soils of the African savanna and consulted with top experts in the field of probiotics and microbiology to come up with a combination that reflects healthy bacterial flora of canines.
  • Man being pointed at
    Criticism can hurt a brand, but constructive feedback can help it grow. In this blog Dr. Dobias talks about the differences between these approaches, and how to handle the power of influence and opinion with care. 
  • Broccoli with vitamins and minerals
    Are you worried that your and your dog's diet is missing something? Maybe you're worried about toxin levels in food, the environment, or flea and tick products. Let's face it; we can't remove ourselves entirely from our toxin-filled world, but we can do things to reduce our exposure to harmful substances. 

Human health

  • Dr. Dobias with Pax
    How do you navigate the seas of life? How do you deal with disappointment? Whatever life throws at us, we can always rely on our dogs to bring joy into our days. In this blog I share my thoughts on the support our dogs provide during the difficult moments in life. 
  • Why 1 in 4 Americans suffer from non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD)
    Learn more about the alarming prevalence of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (NAFLD) affecting 1 in 4 Americans. Discover its main risk factors, diagnosis methods, and treatment options to better manage or prevent this silent yet severe condition. 
  • A new perspective on brain health, memory loss, Alzheimer's Disease, and dementia in people and dogs
    The Science of DHA and the Brain: Omega-3 fatty acids, primarily DHA, are the unsung heroes of brain health. They play crucial roles in brain physiology and biological activities, with exciting links between Omega-3 levels and cognitive function. Higher DHA levels have been shown to preserve the integrity of the Blood-Brain Barrier (BBB), your brain's security system
  • Dr. Dobias and Pax
    It appears that most of the world is ready for change, but whenever I think about the solutions to any of the problems that plague our world, I can’t prevent myself from thinking that we humans are acting like little toddlers who have broken a toy and do not know how to fix it. Despite my generally optimistic attitude, I have had a hard time staying positive at times because I know how complex this all is. Read here for some tools that make me feel good about the world, which I would like to share with you.

News, stories and good life

  • Dr. Peter Dobias with his dog Pax on his lap
    Do you have trouble staying positive during difficult times? These days we are surrounded by a lot of negative messaging, and it's easy to let that get you down. Here are some of my tips for remaining positive, and don't forget to share your tips with me!
  • Man raising fist on a mountain
    Most of us have been exposed to panic-inducing information about the virus spread, however, I have noticed the general absence of one piece of information, how to make your immune system stronger and body more resilient. (It will definitely not happen by stockpiling toilet paper!) I have always loved immunology and the current situation has prompted me to put together two simple lists on how to increase your dog’s and your own immunity.
  • Man with dog wearing a collar
    Does your dog have ear problems, nasal or oral tumors, reverse sneezing or an  itchy head or hair loss on their head? Learn how you can address some of these problems and save thousands in vet care costs.
  • Terrier eating raw food
    Now there is no need to guess if there is something missing in your dogs diet.  The HairQ Test is a highly accurate test for mineral deficiencies, toxins and heavy metals in dogs to finely tune your dog’s diet and supplement schedule.



Your cart is currently empty.

Start Shopping