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Can Dogs Eat Sushi Seaweed?

small seaweed sheets laying on a blue painted surface

Yes, dogs can eat sushi seaweed. Sushi Seaweed (called Nori) is a form of red algae often used as a wrap for sushi balls in traditional Japanese cuisine. That’s why Nori is often marketed as brittle, dried sheets of seaweed that are used for rolling sushi. This type of seaweed is safe for dogs, but in moderation and as long as it is plain and unseasoned. Keep reading to know more about sushi seaweed if your dog likes to enjoy this healthy treat.

Benefits of Sushi Seaweed for Dogs

You should always try to use seaweed supplements that offer various nutritional benefits to maximize the goodness. When used in moderation, several varieties of seaweeds are deemed nutritious and safe for dogs. However, sushi seaweed is one of the best options because of the following advantages.

  • High in nutrients – Sushi seaweed has many vitamins, minerals, and trace amounts of around 21 amino acids. This perfect mix of nutrients makes it a nutritional complex for your pooch’s health.
  • Boosts immunity – Sushi seaweed aids in the production of energy and helps in the maintenance and enhancement of your dog’s immune system.
  • Developmental benefits – Omega-3 fatty acids, iron, iodine, and magnesium found in sushi seaweed are useful for brain development. Similarly, they play a critical role in keeping the joints, skin, and coats of your pup healthy.
  • Regulates endocrine functioning – Sushi seaweed balances the activity of the thyroid gland, as well as other endocrine glands.
  • Digestible – Unlike some other plants, Nori is easy to digest because it doesn’t employ cellulose to wrap the cell walls.
  • Weight Loss – Fucoxanthin, which is found in sushi seaweed, assists fat burning and is ideal for obese and overweight dogs.
  • Cognitive enhancement – The presence of Vitamin B12 in seaweed sushi makes it an excellent alternative for improving canine cognition.
  • Low sodium content – Sushi seaweed contains very low sodium. The salty flavor comes from other minerals that are present in these marine plants.
  • Rich in fiber – Nori contains a lot of fiber which aids in bowel regularity and helps generate firm stools. Likewise, your dog can maintain a healthy digestive tract by absorbing excess water. This will reduce the chances of constipation, diarrhea, and even colon cancer.

Side Effects of Sushi Seaweed for Dogs

Nori sheets in a blue bowl on a marbled grey background

Seaweed can be helpful to your pups, but there are some precautions as well. For example, giving your dog an unsafe kind of seaweed can cause health problems. Many varieties of seaweed are available in the market, such as dried, capsules, supplements, and fresh. The issue with some commercial products is that they are dried or preserved by a chemical method. Hence, they can lead to some side effects.

Overfeeding sushi seaweed to your pet might result in arsenic poisoning. Eating seaweed from the ocean can make your dog salt sick. Likewise, they can develop allergic responses and may even consume jellyfish. Hence, you must seek immediate medical assistance if your pup is behaving abnormally after consuming sushi seaweed. Some common symptoms of seaweed poisoning in dogs include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Stomach ache
  • Digestive blockage

Other Types of Seaweed that Dogs Can Eat

Sushi seaweed is not the only seaweed that is beneficial for your dog’s health. Some other types of seaweed are also super healthy for canines. Some of them are discussed below.

Kelp

Kelp on a wooden plank with chop sticks

This is a safe form of seaweed for dogs if they consume it in small amounts. Kelp is low in fat and high in amino acids, proteins, and iodine. This sea plant is a safe dog treat since it includes 60 different minerals and vitamins.

Kombu

Kombu in a bowl sitting on a wooden plank

This is the most common type of edible kelp. It is commonly used by humans in dried or pickled form. Plain kombu is healthy for dogs in moderation. However, you must avoid this type of seaweed with harmful substances (seasonings, preservatives, etc.).

Wakame

Wakame in a wooden bowl on a white background.

Often known as marine algae, this sea plant has a unique flavor (sweet taste) and texture. Wakame is high in omega-3 fatty acids and eicosapentaenoic acid, making it one of the world’s most nutrient-dense plants. It is most commonly found dry and includes a trace quantity of arsenic and cadmium. As a result, feed it to your dog in small doses.

How to Feed Seaweed to Your Dog?

Dog at beach with seaweed draped over its head

Always give clean seaweed to your dog (in moderation) if you want to prevent your dog from seaweed toxicity. Also, make sure that the dry treat is broken up into small pieces. Other than that, the following are some things that you must keep in mind while feeding seaweed to dogs.

Limited quantity is beneficial – Only add a small amount of seaweed into your dog’s daily diet. This is because a limited dose of sushi seaweed is beneficial while its excess can cause harm.

Check Ingredients – Before purchasing any seaweed, make sure to read the ingredient list. This is because seaweed is prepared with chemicals. Some of these chemicals can be harmful to the immune system of your pooch.

Ensure hydration – Provide water with sushi seaweed or hydrate the treat in clean water. Not only will it aid in cleaning the plant, but it will also allow easy passage through the digestive tract.

Consult the veterinarian first – Like any other ingredient, don’t forget to ask your vet before feeding something new to your pup.

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