Can dogs eat radishes?

Health and Wellbeing

Radishes seem to be a bit of an underrated vegetable, or one that divides the dinner table.

Can dogs eat radishes?

Most crunchy veggies, like carrots, seem to make satisfying and nutritious snacks for our furry friends so you might wonder if dogs can eat radishes too, and whether these spicy little roots are safe and healthy for our furry friends to munch.

CAN DOGS EAT RADISHES?

Yes, dogs can eat radishes. These crisp root vegetables aren’t toxic to your canine companion and are perfectly safe to use as a healthy, crunchy snack or meal topper.

The problem is, just because your dog can eat radishes, doesn’t always mean they will. Most dogs don’t discriminate between what they eat, but some might be put off by the peppery, spicy taste of radish. Other pups might love them though! Whether or not your dog eats radishes and enjoys them will come down to their own personal taste!

It doesn’t matter whether the radishes are served raw or cooked either, your dog can eat raw radishes and cooked radishes as long as they are served plain and fed in moderation.

Like many vegetables, radishes are safe for dogs to eat and they are low in calories, sugar, and fat so they can make a great filling snack or topper to bulk up meals and help to satisfy your pooch’s hungry belly without them piling on the pounds.

However, you can have too much of a good thing, because radishes are chock full of fibre. A little bit of fibre is great for Fido’s gut, but too much can give them a tummy ache. You will need to moderate how much radish your dog eats even though it’s healthy in order to prevent your pooch from suffering from stomach cramps, gas, and loose stools.

CAN DOGS EAT DAIKON RADISHES?

A daikon radish, also known as the white radish or winter radish, is another crunchy root vegetable often tossed in salads and soups. Dogs can eat daikon radishes, and these nourishing veggies are perfectly safe for your pooch to snack on. Again, whether or not your dog enjoys them will depend on their personal taste, but some dogs do seem to enjoy chomping their way through this crisp, juicy radish.

Even if your pup loves daikon radishes, don’t toss them a whole one to munch. It might seem like a healthy, crunchy chew to keep them occupied, and a suitable replacement for a bone, but eating a whole radish is a surefire way to give your dog GI upset and diarrhoea.

Just like with radishes, you’ll need to moderate how much your pooch eats to keep their gut happy.

CAN DOGS EAT HORSERADISH?

Despite the name, a horseradish is not actually a kind of radish at all. They’re from the same family of plants, but they’re not closely related. (It’s a bit like comparing a dog and a wolf!)

Technically a dog can eat horseradish because it isn’t considered toxic, but I wouldn’t feed it to Fido. Horseradishes are quite pungent and spicy, which means that most dogs do not find it appetising at all. They also are quite likely to cause gastrointestinal upset.

Horseradish sauce is a no-no for dogs, not least because the hot horseradish is likely to upset your dog’s stomach, and they won’t like the taste anyway. Horseradish sauce also contains loads of other ingredients, including mustard flour which is made from mustard seeds, which is considered toxic to dogs. Most sauces also contain nondescript “flavourings” which isn’t helpful for us hound-lovers, since we can’t tell if that means there’s a potentially toxic spice in there!

So to stay on the safe side, don’t feed your dog horseradish or horseradish sauce.

ARE RADISHES GOOD FOR DOGS?

A radish could be considered “good” for dogs because these crunchy veggies don’t contain anything that can be “bad” for dogs, like fat, extra salt, added sugar, or artificial nasties. They’re a natural and nutritious whole food with nothing processed or added.

Radishes are pretty healthy to snack on whether you’re a human or hound. They are low in sugar, salt, calories, and fat, but they do contain some nutrients and goodness. Radishes provide fibre, vitamin C, and potassium, and other minerals like copper, manganese, and phosphorous.

However, radishes aren’t as nutritious as some other fruits and vegetables, like peppers. But they are still very healthy, and can add some variety to your dog’s snacks and dinners.

Radishes are most rich in vitamin C, and while this is certainly good to include in your dog’s diet, they don’t need to eat a lot because their body can actually make its own vitamin C!

Radishes also contain fibre which is always good for your dog’s gut health and it helps them to feel fuller for longer, which is why a radish could make a satisfyingly crunchy snack to fill a pup’s tummy whilst cutting back on calories.

All in all, radish is a pretty healthy food you can include in your dog’s diet without any worries. Provided your pooch likes the taste, that is!

ARE RADISHES TOXIC TO DOGS?

No, radishes are not considered toxic to dogs regardless of whether they are raw or cooked. In fact, even the greenery and leaves on the top of a radish are perfectly edible too for both humans and hounds!

Although radishes are not toxic, they can sometimes make your pooch sick. Eating too much radish can irritate your dog’s stomach and cause mild gastrointestinal upset which could result in stomach aches, gas, loose stools and diarrhoea, and potentially vomiting.

HOW MANY RADISHES CAN A DOG EAT?

There are no rules about how many radishes a dog can safely eat, but moderation is key. If you’ve got a tiny dog like a Chihuahua, I’d say stick to feeding them a few slices at most. A big dog can probably eat a whole radish without worries.

Just remember to cut up the radish before feeding it to your fur baby, because they might try to swallow it whole and could choke on it.

The best way to feed your dog radish is to slice it up and offer them a piece at a time, making sure they like the taste and monitoring them for any signs of a sore belly or sickness. If they show any signs of discomfort or illness, stop feeding them radish and make a note of how much they had. Then the next time you offer them radish, you know how much is too much.

RECAP: CAN DOGS HAVE RADISHES?

Yes, dogs can eat radishes. They’re perfectly safe for Fido to munch. These crunchy vegetables can make a healthy snack or topping to a dog’s dinner to provide a few natural nutrients whilst helping your dog to feel fuller for longer without adding loads of extra calories into their diet.

If you want, you can put some on top of their Pure dinner to add a little extra crunch. Pure is complete and balanced and already packed with various fruits and veggies, so the extra nutrients from radishes won't be needed, but extra nutrients are never a bad thing!

Dr Andrew Miller BVSc MRCVS

Written by: Dr Andrew Miller MRCVS

Andy graduated from Bristol University in 2010 and sees nutrition as a foundation for our pet's wellbeing and takes a common-sense approach. We are what we eat, and it shouldn't be any different for our pets.