Healthy Dog Diets: Foods that Reduce Inflammation

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Chronic inflammation, which is internal inflammation that persists and serves no healing purpose, is linked to many health issues including obesity, heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. The inflammation that occurs after an injury is the body’s natural response to the trauma. Its purpose it to flood the injury site with nourishment and kick start the healing process. Chronic inflammation serves no such purpose and is detrimental to overall health. There are many factors that can lead to chronic inflammation including lack of exercise, stress, and poor diet.


Inflammation is harmful to the health of dogs just as it is to humans. One of the keys to keeping a dog’s inflammation at bay is a healthy and varied diet. There are an assortment of spices and foods that can be a first line of defense against chronic inflammation. Some of the more commonly used foods in commercial pet food recipes are listed below.

fight inflammation

Dog Food Ingredients that are Anti-inflammatory

Spices that combat inflammation

Herbs and spices contain an assortment of vitamins and minerals, and can be a great way to prevent chronic inflammation. Some of the more powerful anti-inflammatory spices include:

  • Cloves
  • Ginger
  • Rosemary
  • Turmeric
  • Paprika


Besides being anti-inflammatory, these spices can improve the taste of the food. Furthermore, spices can act as natural preservatives, and can extend the freshness of dog food and eliminate the need for artificial (and potentially harmful) preservatives.
If your dog’s food does not contain these spices, consider sprinkling some in their dish when you are feeding.


Food that combat inflammation

There are several foods that have anti-inflammatory properties, any of which are commonly found in dog food recipes.

  • Animal-based omega 3 fatty acids, like those found in fatty fish
  • Berries, especially blueberries, and many other fruits like papaya and cherries.
  • Leafy greens and vegetables, including kale, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, squash, pumpkin, bell peppers, sweet potato.


These foods are great additions to any dog food recipe. Besides being anti-inflammatory, they provide a natural source of sweetness and flavor, which is much better than added sugars or other “natural flavors”. Fruits and vegetables are also the preferred way to add color to dog food, and are a much better alternative than the artificial colors that are often found in the lower quality foods.


Further Reading

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  1. we tried it with salmon oil once, but although Easy loves fish he refused to eat his lunch… maybe it’s better to buy it as pills and to cover it with farmers cheese?
    easy rider recently posted…easyblog TRAINING TUESDAYMy Profile

  2. Might be an idea to sprinkle some extra on Katie’s food for her arthritis issues. She is doing better, but we try anything which might help even more.
    Emma recently posted…Cinco de Mayo With Señor FrogMy Profile

  3. We’ve been sprinkling the organic turmeric on the pups’ meals ever since reading about its plethora of benefits in one of your fantastic health articles! The veggie & herb pre-mix we’ve been using lately on our journey to a homemade dog diet contains cranberries, which make for a nice, red touch to the pups’ food 😉
    Barbara Rivers recently posted…May Pet Events ~ Pet Cancer Awareness, Pet Week, Dog Bite Prevention Week and many more!My Profile

  4. I should start adding this stuff to my dogs food. So true this is a better way to add color instead of dye.
    Sand spring Chesapeakes recently posted…Training With FriendsMy Profile

  5. Psh. I’m looking to sprinkle these things on my own food. 😉 But bell peppers? Everything I read says they’re a nightshade, which cause inflammation. Are you sure?
    Flea recently posted…A Clean Dog Bone from JonesMy Profile

  6. I keep seeing the health benefits of Turmeric in so many articles, I really should consider adding it to Haley’s diet.
    Elaine recently posted…6 Simple Ways to Build Trust With Your DogMy Profile

  7. Love the idea of adding turmeric and cloves. Did not know about ginger though I use it for digestive issues for myself so it makes good sense! I see a new batch of handmade treats in Sam’s future! 😉
    Monika recently posted…Wake up callMy Profile

  8. Great post. A balanced diet is important for our dogs as well as us.
    Earl Lover recently posted…Spaghetti For Sheepdogs – Thanks Dakota!My Profile

  9. Great post! My human takes turmeric regularly to help combat some autoimmune issues – I had no idea that it was good for us canines, too! Thank you for sharing!
    Daisy The French Bulldog recently posted…Tasty Tuesday: Chicken “Meatloaf”My Profile

  10. Great post and I’m smiling because many of what you’ve listed are in their daily diet #makesmehappy Still want to try sprinkling a little Turmeric a few times a week. Thanks so much for just being you!
    Groovy Goldendoodles recently posted…PETS IN WEDDINGSMy Profile

  11. Interesting! Thanks for this!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!
    Jenna,Mark “HuskyCrazed” Drady recently posted…Personalized Clocks From Clocks GaloreMy Profile

  12. Great information….I’m always looking for the best things to add to the dogs’ diets to help with their joint issues. They already get some of these, but there are some new things on here I didn’t know about.
    Jan K recently posted…Health Updates & A Little HousekeepingMy Profile

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