Can Dogs Have Wasabi? What Happens If a Dog Eats Wasabi?

An ideal sushi experience is incomplete without the zesty dollop of wasabi hitting your senses. Most sushi eaters love wasabi but it may be too strong and surprising for most dogs.

The pistachio-green paste that comes with Sushi is called wasabi and is made using the fresh rootlike stem of Wasabia japonica.

Can Dogs Have Wasabi?

In small quantities wasabi is not harmful to the dogs. But it has a strong stimulating flavor and spiciness, so giving it to the dog is not recommended. It can hurt your dog’s mouth, stomach and intestine due to its spiciness.

Wasabi is not toxic for dogs but ensure you do not give it to your furry friend as a treat or just to find out if they like it or not. Spicy and zesty foods like wasabi can upset your pooch’s stomach, cause gas or bloating and may also burn their mouth.

You shouldn’t be giving all human foods to your dog. Not all human foods are fit for consumption and safe for your furry friend. For example, even if your dog eats garlic in powdered form, it may have side effects like high heart rate and cause anemia.

What is Wasabi?

Wasabi is the pistachio coloured paste that is served for a zesty kick with your sushi. It is made from rhizome – a plant stem growing underground where you would expect a root to grow, of the Wasabia Japonica plant.

Wasabia Japonica is a member of the Cruciferae family, related to cauliflower, mustard, cabbage, and broccoli. The signature spiciness of Wasabi comes from allyl isothiocyanate instead of pepper’s capsaicin. This is what gives a feeling of wasabi going up the nose when you eat it. Its scent receptors are packed tight in nasal passages.

The main chemicals that give it the unique flavour and heat are not active until it is made into a paste. It releases enzyme myrosinase when the cell wall is broken down, which hydrolyzes glucosinolates ( sulfur containing glucose derivatives group) to create isothiocyanates that give the zesty and spicy zing.

Is Wasabi Toxic to Dogs?

No, wasabi is not toxic for dogs but you should not feed it to your furry friend. It is too spicy and zesty for your dog. If your dog overeats then its digestive system may have difficulty in handling the heat which may cause vomiting, diarrhea, gas and burning in their mouth.

Wasabi paste is only meant to be mixed with other foods and used in very small quantities for human consumption only.

What happens if a dog eats wasabi?

Wasabi is not harmful for your dog but you should avoid feeding him/her wasabi as it is too hot and spicy. If your dog overeats then their digestive system goes for a toss as it cannot handle the heat of wasabi. This may cause diarrhea, vomiting, gas and burning sensation in their mouth.

If you dog eats wasabi, here are some thing you should do:

  • Firstly, remove any wasabi leftover from his/her mouth
  • Rinse your pooch’s mouth and nose with water
  • Give him/her sufficient water
  • Check your dog’s behaviour
  • In case your furry friend is having a reaction to wasabi, contact your vet immediately

How to Avoid Dogs Accidentally Eating Wasabi?

Make sure to keep wasabi away from your dog so that he/she will not get hold of it and start eating it. Also, avoid keeping the wasabi on a higher shelf and in the fridge, because dogs are smart and they may be able to find it.

When you order sushi at home, while you are having the wasabi, make sure to keep an eye on your pooch because they tend to snatch the food from your hands and eat it.

Also, when the sushis arrive, ensure not to leave the food and leave the room because your dog may eat it including the wasabi. If you leave the room where the food is, ensure to take your dog along or on the other hand, take the wasabi along. This ensures that your pooch will not eat it while you are gone.

Wasabi is not toxic for dogs, so do not panic if they happen to eat a little. Rather, follow the steps that we mentioned above in the section ‘What happens if a dog eats wasabi?’.  

If your dog happens to eat a little wasabi, it is not life-threatening and he/she may suffer from discomfort, vomiting or diarrhea. Observe your dog’s behaviour after he/she eats wasabi and contact a vet for guidance.

Can dogs eat wasabi peas?

No, wasabi peas are not suitable for dogs although they are rich in fiber, vitamins A, K and B as well as iron. They can cause kidney and digestive issues when consumed in large quantities.

Wasabi peas are a delightful crunchy snack made with dehydrated roasted peas and coated with wasabi. If your dog happens to eat a wasabi pea, it is not harmful but we suggest you keep it away from dogs.


Featured Images – Wikimedia Commons