Can Dogs Eat Jalapenos? Are Jalapenos Safe for Dogs?

Is a spicy jalapeno Sloppy Joe burger your favorite weekend treat? Do you notice Fido’s eyes light up when you tuck in? If you answered yes to both, you are not alone.

Sharing is caring, right? Well, not in this case, as dogs should not eat Jalapenos. Although they aren’t toxic in any way, you can be sure that both you and the dog are in for a nasty 24-hour period of being ill from both ends. So, please do all you can to avoid him eating these spicy chilis.

Here in this guide, we will run you through why dogs can’t eat jalapenos, the consequences of him eating them, and other, less spicy, alternatives for him to try.

Let’s take a closer look.

Divider 8What is a Jalapeño?

A jalapeno is a medium-sized chili. It is usually green in color, but if left on the plant, it will gradually turn red. A mature jalapeno will grow to measure an average of 2 to 4 inches long.

On the Scoville spice measuring scale, a Jalapeno scores an average of 5,000 Scoville Heat Units. For humans, this is hot, but not too hot. But for Fido, it’ll blow his socks off.

Spicy foods and chilis contain a compound called capsaicin, and it is this compound that causes a burning sensation in your mouth. When it hits the stomach, it then irritates the lining, which will cause your pooch to feel really ill.

Sad dog on pillow
Dog feeling unwell. Image Credit: PickPik

Why Can’t Dogs Eat Jalapeños?

The reason why dogs cannot eat jalapenos is that they are too hot for him to handle. A dog’s digestive system is not designed to eat spicy foods.

Dogs do not get the option of Piri Piri chicken in the wild, but you can be sure that if he did, he would eat it regardless. So, as his dog mom or dog dad, the responsibility is yours. Mild foods only, please!

His stomach is neither used to spicy food nor designed to eat it. And just like humans that suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome, spicy foods will irritate those with a sensitive stomach more than those who do not have it. And this is the same for Fido and his delicate stomach.

As we have already mentioned, jalapenos, unlike other human foods, are not toxic to dogs. Which is excellent if he accidentally eats one, because there is no reason to head to the nearest vet.

But, get ready for armageddon. Because the next 24 hours (or longer!) will be full of poorly tummies, sickness and diarrhea, and a generally unhappy pooch.

So with this in mind, you should avoid feeding him jalapenos at all costs, or anything spicy for that matter.

small jalapeno
Featured Image Credit: Epp, Wikimedia Commons

What Should I do if my dog Eats a Jalapeño?

As already mentioned, there isn’t a lot you can do. Just be ready for the fallout.

Make sure he is as comfortable as possible and that he has access to fresh water at all times so that he doesn’t become dehydrated. If you have an heirloom rug that sits pride of place in the living room, you might want to remove it or prevent him from having access to it.

If his sickness or diarrhea goes on for longer than 48 hours, you should get him to the vet. This could be as a result of his body reacting severely to it, or that it has damaged his internal digestive lining.

Alternatively, it could be that something else unrelated that is at fault.

Is There Anything I Can Feed My Dog to Counteract the Spiciness?

To help with his diarrhea, you can try feeding him a natural remedy, such as plain oatmeal or canned pumpkin. This often helps to bind him up with extra fiber.

You could also try adding a few tablespoons of cows milk to his water bowl. Not only will this help to soothe his stomach lining, but it will also encourage him to drink more water to replenish the fluids that he has lost.

jalapeno
Featured Image Credit: TilmanBaumann, Wikimedia Commons

What Alternatives Can I Feed My Dog?

Unfortunately, nothing spicy. But you could always feed your dog a few slices or bites of bell pepper. Any color will do (although the red bell pepper is the most nutritious).

They are crunchy, low in fat and calories, and full of vitamins and minerals for his overall health. A healthy treat that dogs love, minus the spicy kick.

Divider 7Final Thoughts

Now you know not to feed your pooch jalapenos, or anything spicy for that matter. Not only will it make him very unwell for 24 to 48 hours, but the neverending gas will be unbearable for you and the whole family.

If he has a spicy snackcident, be sure to keep an eye on him for the following 48 hours. There are plenty of healthy snacks for Fido to choose from, with bell peppers being one of them.


Featured Image Credit: Brett_Hondow, Pixabay