Can Dogs Eat Vinegar?


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There is no need for you to go to the local pet shop to get some pricey cleansers for cleaning your dog. You might also be buying different repellents for your pup to repel fleas, ticks, or other insects. Instead of these products, you can use vinegar for washing purposes as it is easily available at home. Vinegar has a variety of uses, including cleaning, freshening, reducing sores, relieving rough and itchy skin, and even preventing your furry friend from licking his body excessively, especially the paws.

You must also have seen pet owners washing their dog’s ears with vinegar, both within and outside the shower. Rinsing your dog’s fur with diluted vinegar helps prevent and treat different skin infections due to fungi. Giving your pet a vinegar bath is really simple and inexpensive. It can help maintain your dog’s health both internally and externally. You can also add diluted vinegar in a spray bottle to make a homemade spray and use it before you take your puppy out for a walk; it can assist in repelling fleas.

Apart from the washing benefits of vinegar for your dog, does it provide any nutritional benefits too? Isn’t it harmful to add vinegar to dog food? Is it even safe for canine consumption? Read the article below to know the answer to all these questions.

Can Dogs Eat Vinegar?

Yes, vinegar can be added to the dog’s diet. Of course, the dogs are not going to drink it directly from the bottle, but it can be added to their food. As a dietary supplement, it provides a number of health benefits. Though the dogs may not like its strong smell and taste, it gets dry after being added to the food and loses the smell. Moreover, you should know some safety tips described in the article before feeding your dog vinegar.

Can Dogs Eat All Types of Vinegar?

Not all types of vinegar are safe for dogs. You must know which of the vinegar varieties your dogs can consume in their diet. Some of these varieties are described here.

White Vinegar

You can safely add distilled white vinegar to your dog’s diet. It provides your dog with a number of health benefits. One can simply put it in the dog’s dinner by sprinkling some of the vinegar over food. But if your dog is small, has a sensitive stomach, or has any kidney disorder, too much consumption of white vinegar can be problematic. White vinegar is extensively used for the bathing purposes of dogs. In fact, it is already being used as an insect repellent by many dog owners. In addition, it is used to treat infections caused by pathogens and other skin conditions.

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is considered the healthiest option among all dog vinegar types. Choose unfiltered apple cider vinegar for the pup as it has a number of benefits due to the nutrition it provides. It has several vitamins and enzymes that help in digestion and boost the immune system. Not only does ACV act as a dietary supplement but also provides the dog with curative aid.

Red Wine Vinegar

The fermentation of red grapes produces red vinegar, and the fermentation of red wine extracted from the grapes produces red wine vinegar. Both of these varieties should be avoided in dog food. Although highly processed, it contains grapes juice as the primary ingredient. Thus, consumption of this vinegar may cause symptoms in dogs that are identical to toxicosis due to grapes, such as vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, and lack of appetite. Moreover, high concentrations of acetate found in this vinegar can cause an upset stomach in your dog.

Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar, thicker than red vinegar and dark in color, is usually safe for dogs if fed in very small quantities. Generally, your dog should stop consuming balsamic vinegar if he’s already used to it because this vinegar can cause toxicity if fed in large amounts. In addition, it offers no nutrition or health benefits for your dog, so what’s the point of feeding him balsamic vinegar regularly? If you want to use it as a salad dressing, keep in mind that the brands you choose from are free of artificial additives and high-fructose corn syrup.

Rice Vinegar

Rice is safe for dogs. Thus, they can have rice vinegar too. It is recommended to keep the quantity small as it is high in sugars. Processed one has added sugars and salts, which makes it worse. Too much sugar is unhealthy for dogs as it puts them at risk of obesity, diabetes, and dental issues.

Malt Vinegar

Malt vinegar is made from barley or corn malt. It is not safe for dogs that have a gluten allergy. If you let a gluten-intolerant dog eat vinegar, he will probably show signs like irritation, dry skin with rashes, ear infections, gastrointestinal upset, and weight loss. On the other hand, if the dog can digest the gluten well, you can feed him malt vinegar in small amounts only. Too much of it can deteriorate his teeth.

Can Dogs Eat Vinegar Chips?

Many brands make these famous salt and vinegar chips. These are not safe for your dog. Potato chips are generally not recommended for dogs. They are high in salts and seasonings. Never let dogs eat salt as they can develop poisoning, symptoms of which include nausea, convulsions, stomach pains, loss of appetite, lethargy, high fever, and extreme thirst. Moreover, potato chips have oils and fats, adding empty calories to a dog’s daily nutrition. It can make the dog prone directly to obesity and indirectly to other diseases like diabetes and arthritis.

The same reasons that make potato chips harmful for dogs make vinegar chips unsafe too.

Benefits of Vinegar

Vinegar is rich in vitamin C and polyphenols, both of which are potent antioxidants. They protect the cells against damage from oxidative stress and boost the dog’s immune system. As a result, it helps fight infections and treat several skin conditions. In addition, vinegar can help in preventing cancer and relieving hot spots. It also has anti-inflammatory properties that relieve muscle soreness, joint pain, and inflammation in arthritic dogs.

The amount of acetic acid in vinegar is enough for burning fats in the body, aiding digestion, lowering blood sugar levels, and maintaining cholesterol levels in the body. Moreover, vinegar is a detoxifying agent that can protect the dog from the harm of environmental toxins. These toxins can enter the dog’s body when he comes in contact with grass fertilizer or chemically infused household cleaners. As a cleaning agent, it helps cleanse internal organs.

It contains 19 minerals, including calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, sodium, and iron. All of these valuable minerals are required by the dog’s body.

If you are wondering about the serving ideas, dogs can have vinegar in the water bowl as well as in their foods.

How Much Vinegar Can Dogs Eat?

Dog owners should never add more than one tablespoon to the water bowl or the dog’s food. For small dogs, one-fourth of the spoon is enough. Don’t give twice or more in a day. If your pet dog already has a sensitive stomach or other gastrointestinal problem, avoid giving him vinegar at all.

Can Dogs Eat Vinegar in Large Amounts?

Most dogs don’t react well to vinegar. Instead, they show a severe allergic reaction after consuming too much vinegar. Symptoms of this allergy include vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, and itching.

Dogs need a proper pH balance in their body. Not only the blood but the urine pH needs to be maintained. Dog’s body pH level is a bit above 7. Vinegar is quite acidic, with a pH between 2 and 3. Consuming a large amount drops the dog’s pH levels, which can be fatal. Low pH results in a condition called metabolic acidosis. As a result, dog suffers depression and low mineral levels in the body that directly affects heart function.

If your dog already has any kidney disease, he might be suffering from a variation in pH; thus, adding vinegar to his dinner bowl can worsen the condition. Dog’s veterinarian advises keeping vinegar away from such a pet dog.


Dogs can have vinegar as there is nothing toxic inside, but not all varieties are safe. It has a lot of vitamins and minerals that make vinegar safe for dogs. It cleans the internal organs and detoxifies the toxins. It relieves inflammation and provides a number of other benefits. But it is safe as long as a dog eats just a teaspoon. Too much of it can cause stomach upset and imbalances the dog’s pH. If your dog has any kidney issues, keep vinegar away from him.

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