Should You Be Feeding Turmeric To Your Dog?

You've probably been seeing turmeric everywhere lately — golden milk lattes, turmeric rice, and orange-tinted Buddha bowls are becoming increasingly popular for human consumption by the day. We look to turmeric for a number of anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and immune-boosting benefits. Basically, we eat turmeric because we want to treat our bodies well.

This is why I'm surprised we haven't started feeding it to our dogs already. I've seen all the pups being carted around in strollers, the luxury dog grooming spas, and the plethora of plush dog beds sold in stores; it's clear that we intend on treating our furry friends with care, too. Yet our dogs' nutrition somehow tends to take a back seat. All too often, people buy their dogs the cheapest kibble on the market and call it a day, scooping bland meal after meal into their dog's bowl.

Dogs, like people, need a nutritious, varied diet to stay happy and healthy. Some dog foods make our canine best friends feel lethargic and heavy, while others keep them lithe and lovable. Dogs are affected by the things you feed them — wouldn't you want to feed them right?

Enter: Turmeric.

Some specialists have been speculating: Do 'superfoods' we love, such as turmeric, also have benefits for dogs? And it turns out that in this case, they might.

Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin, which gives the powder its bright yellow color. According to Dogs Naturally Magazine, "Curcumin has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antibacterial, antifungal, wound healing and anticancer activities. It can help fight diseases like arthritis, diabetes, cancer, liver disease, gastrointestinal issues, Alzheimer's and more. "

Yes, your dog can get Alzheimer's, too. And arthritis. And cancer, GI distress, infections... Many of the afflictions we can use turmeric to prevent can affect dogs as well as humans.

Curcumin's natural qualities band together to prevent all kinds of painful and uncomfortable afflictions for your pet — which could even help your furry friend live just that much longer.

However, curcumin also has some natural qualities that could make your pet stink. Kimberly, writer of canine health blog "Keep the Tail Wagging", reported, "Whenever I add turmeric to our dogs' food, after two or three days, they start to smell like cat pee around the head and face." To us, though, a little smell is worth the added years on our pets' lives.

So how does one go about giving turmeric to a dog?

Well, while you probably wouldn't do well to feed your dog a turmeric latte or other treat that could upset their stomachs, it might be a good idea to sprinkle some of the orange-tinted dust over your dog's bowl before letting them chow down. They might even enjoy the extra boost of flavor!