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Can Dogs Eat Cinnamon?

By Colleen Williams
published: July 23, 2018 - updated: July 7, 2023 • 2 min. read
cinnamon sticks

Key Takeaways

  • Cinnamon is not toxic to dogs and has anti-inflammatory properties that can help dogs with arthritis symptoms.
  • Large amounts of cinnamon can cause stomach upset.
  • Try seasoning your dog’s food occasionally with a half teaspoon of cinnamon.
  • Do not allow your dog to inhale cinnamon because it can cause breathing trouble.

Cinnamon is a kitchen staple that can be found in almost every household. If your dog accidentally got into some, don’t worry; cinnamon is not toxic to dogs.

The commonly used spice is from a small tree that grows in warmer climates such as Indonesia or India – the bark is dried and rolled into cinnamon sticks, which can then be ground into powder. Humans have used cinnamon around the world as a natural remedy to nausea, diarrhea, and menstrual cramps and is believed to boost circulation, brain function, and digestion. While cinnamon has many health benefits for humans, can it do the same for our dogs?

cinnamon dogs

Benefits of cinnamon

Although it is not a necessary addition to their diet, cinnamon is non-toxic to dogs, so yes, your dog can safely consume it. Cinnamon has anti-inflammatory properties and can help senior dogs who’re struggling with arthritis. The spice also has antibacterial properties and can slow down the spoilage of food – just sprinkle half a teaspoon over the food before refrigerating.

The spice is also used to regulate blood sugar in diabetic (or pre-diabetic) dogs; studies have shown that half a teaspoon a day of cinnamon can help with insulin resistance and control blood glucose levels. Please consult your vet first, as this should not be used as a substitute for prescription medication.

Protect your pet

Hazards of cinnamon

As with anything, large amounts of cinnamon can be harmful and may leave your dog with an upset stomach. When giving cinnamon to your pup, do not allow him to inhale the spice as it can cause choking, coughing, and difficulty breathing. Never give your dog cinnamon-based pastries since these may contain sugar, raisins, nuts, chocolate, or nutmeg – all of which can be toxic to dogs. Maintain pet insurance on your dog, so you’ll be able to get treatment for any kind of stomach upset.

How do I feed my dog cinnamon?

A good rule of paw is to only let your pup have cinnamon in small amounts – half a teaspoon with food occasionally will give your dog all the beneficial properties it has to offer. And of course, if you’re considering feeding your dog cinnamon as a natural supplement, talk to your vet.

Curious about what is okay and not okay for your dog to eat? Check out our comprehensive guide on what human foods are safe and not safe for dogs

colleen williams
By Colleen Williams

Over the past decade, Colleen has written about health, wellness, beauty, and even pets for The New York Times, The Cut, Refinery29, xoVain, Healthy Paws Pet Insurance, and Seattle Met Magazine, as well as many beauty brands. She has a BFA in Art History from the University of New Mexico and an AAS in Fashion Design from Parsons School of Design in New York.

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