Is It Safe For Dogs To Eat Cabbage? 

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can dogs eat cabbage

Yes, dogs can eat cabbage! A sensible amount of cabbage to feed your dog (as recommended by a vet) is an eighth of a cup for every 20 pounds of your dog’s weight.

But keep in mind that you must follow some rules, so it won’t cause any harm to your dog.

For now, you’ll be glad to know that most vegetables like carrots, kale, spinach, green beans, broccoli, and cucumber are a great treat as replacement and meal toppers. 

These low-fat foods add a healthy dose of nutrients and vitamins to your dog’s diet. 

So Can Dogs Eat Cabbage Safely? 

The answer is yes. All kinds of antioxidant-rich cabbage are beneficial and 100% safe for dogs. While it’s safe for your canine companion to eat cabbage, keep in mind that moderation is vital. 

If your dog weighs relatively low, add about an eighth of a cup of cabbage leaves to its diet. 

You can double that amount if you have a significantly larger dog. 

If your dog is eating cabbage for the first time, be sure to introduce it in slow phases. 

Adhering to this recommended feeding portion will ensure the best results and keep your dog fit as a fiddle!

Cooked Cabbage or Raw Cabbage? 

cooked cabbage

Both modes of preparation will do just fine. They’re harmless to your dog’s digestive system, and each is bursting with health benefits. 

Most dog owners settle for the cooked option since it’s known to have more health benefits. 

If you wish to serve your dog with cooked cabbage, then steam or boil your cabbage in a pot of hot water and be sure to cook it very lightly. 

Light cooking ensures that the minerals and vitamins stay intact. When it reaches the appropriate temperature, allow it to cool off for about 10 to 15 minutes before feeding it to your dog. 

The reason for this is to ensure that your dog doesn’t get any burns. 

While many health benefits are associated with raw cabbage, too much of it can cause serious problems, especially when done often. 

Is Red Cabbage Safe For Dogs? 

red cabbage

Indeed. All the types of cabbage we eat like humans are 100% safe for your dog – be it white, green, or red. 

However, all the different colors have their unique nutritional benefits. 

Red cabbages are generally denser nutritionally compared to green cabbage. They contain approximately 10x more vitamins. 

What’s more, red cabbages are significantly richer in cancer-fighting properties known as flavonoids. 

Other cruciferous vegetables that contain flavonoids include broccoli, cauliflower, and kale

Red cabbage also contains higher anti-inflammatory properties as well as antioxidants compared to its white and green counterparts. 

Is Green Cabbage Safe for Dogs? 

green cabbage

Green cabbage is entirely safe for your dog. Like the other types of cabbage, the green kind of cabbage is healthy and perfectly safe for your dog to eat. 

What are Some of the Health Benefits of Cabbage to Dogs? 

Cabbage contains a lot of healthy nutrients and it’s also good for the skin. Let’s talk below more about each benefit.

Contains Cancer-Fighting Properties

It’s scientifically proven[1] that cruciferous vegetables (cabbage included) significantly reduce dogs’ risk of different cancers. 

When you include cruciferous foods in your canine’s meals, you help slow the growth of cancerous cells and strengthen your dog’s treatment response. 

That is because of a phytonutrient known as flavonoid that’s present in veggies like cabbage.  

Rich In Healthy Nutrients

The antioxidant properties in cabbages help dogs to lead a healthier and longer life.    

The fiber-rich content in cabbages prevents digestion complications. 

Did you know that consuming the recommended portion of fiber helps add healthy bacteria into your dog’s gastrointestinal system? These bacteria will help keep your canine companion feeling energized and alert. 

Cabbage is highly rich in Vitamin C, a nutrient that keeps your dog’s blood vessels, bones, and skin healthy. Vitamin K and B, also present in cabbages, help to strengthen the blood’s clotting ability and help in hormone regulation, respectively.  

Promotes Healthier Skin

Cabbage does wonders for your dog’s skin health. They generally improve the quality of skin in humans and dogs.[2

This cruciferous veggie contains vitamins C and K, which shield your dog’s skin from damage in the form of free radicals. 

The rich amounts of vitamins in a ball of cabbage will keep your dog’s skin radiant. 

Vitamin C and D will work jointly to give your dog’s skin healthy skin and a clear complexion. The skin cells will be kept intact and safe from the sun’s harmful UV rays. 

What Are Some of the Dangers of Cabbage to Dogs? 

Cabbage is also dangerous when you overfeed your dog with it. Make sure you follow every rule so your dog will enjoy every moment of eating cabbage.

Below we will talk more about the dangers of cabbage.

Excessive Flatulence and Gas

These occur when you feed your dog with exaggerated portions of cabbage leaves. As healthy as they are, you should serve cabbages in moderation. 

Always check with your vet to ensure you’re giving your dog the right amount of cabbage. 

As a general rule, you should offer a small serving of new foods like cabbage, then keep an eye on your furry friend for at least 24 hours. 

Look out for negative symptoms such as water stool to prevent serious complications. 

Causes Hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland exhibits an abnormally low activity. This state occurs when your dog eats plenty of raw cabbage for days on end. 

Cabbage is rich in thiocyanate. It’s a natural compound that significantly impacts your dog’s thyroid gland. 

However, you can prevent this condition by cooking your four-legged friend’s cabbage by steaming or boiling it. 

The excess steam weakens the impact of the thiocyanate compound. 

What Are Some Healthy Alternatives to Cabbage? 

Can’t feed your dog cabbage for one reason or another? Don’t sweat it! Try out these crunchy, dog-friendly cabbage substitutes: 

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts are among the best cabbage alternatives. Like cabbage, brussels sprouts are rich in antioxidants, fiber, and essential vitamins. 

They’re paw-perfectly fine for your dogs but in moderate quantities. Excessive amounts can lead to an increase in gastrointestinal problems. 

Kidney Beans 

Similar to cabbage, kidney beans are rich in antioxidants. Most people make the mistake of feeding raw kidney beans to their dogs. 

Don’t be one of them. Do it the right way by soaking this healthy cabbage alternative overnight. 

Serve them to your dog when they’re unseasoned. You must follow this step since kidney beans are known to cause serious harm to a dog’s digestive system. 

Savoy Cabbage

Otherwise known as ‘ruffled cabbage’ or ‘curly cabbage,’ savoy cabbage is just about the same size as your regular cabbage but thicker kale-like veins. 

It’s a lot tougher than the average cabbage, so it needs to be steamed appropriately before serving. It has equal amounts of nutrients as green cabbage. 

Celery Root

This profoundly flavorful veggie is highly earthy and a tad spicy in flavor. If your dog doesn’t mind the unique taste, the celery root will be a good treat as an alternative in the absence of a cabbage. 

It’s a little juicy when raw and has an irresistible crunch that will leave your canine companion begging for more. 

I’ve tried the celery root quite a few times, and I can say that it’s worth a try.  

You can read our article about Can Dogs Eat Celery to learn how to feed it correctly.

The Bottom Line

Dogs can eat cabbage and it is safe as long as you feed it in moderation. 

Every dog is different, don’t forget to contact your vet first. He will let you know whether or not it’s safe for your dog to eat cabbage.

Make sure you don’t add salt while cooking. Salt can be dangerous for them.

Photo of author
Andrei Bratu
Andrei is the owner of Dog Food Camp and manages the team of expert writers on the site. He is passionate about helping dog lovers learn about canine nutrition.

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