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Can dogs eat anise? Spices for dogs

Dogs inadvertently rarely come into contact with spices such as aniseed.

But if the dog should grab the spice rack at home, it is good to know whether anise is edible for dogs or not.

Also in the raw feeding, the baking for the dog or in the animal naturopathy one deals with the use of spices like for example anise in the dog.

Anise in animal naturopathy

The fissure fruits of the anise plant are called “anise seeds” in everyday language.

These anise seeds are rich in fat and protein.

The fruits of the herbaceous aniseed plant (Pimpinella anisum) are mainly used for the included essential oils estimated.

The sweet aroma of anise oil is largely determined by what it contains Anethol certainly.

Please note that anise and star anise are different plants. Real star anise (Illicium verum) grows as an evergreen tree in the tropical regions of Asia.

Basically, both spices are used similarly and are both rich in anethole.

However, star anise also contains other substances that distinguish it from spicy anise and overall tastes a bit hotter and is therefore less palatable for dogs.

In the following text I therefore refer to the use of spicy anise (Pimpinella anisum).

Particular care is required during the Christmas season, as star anise is often used as a Christmas decoration, accessible to the dog.

Incidentally, anethole is also found in fennel and star anise, which explains the sometimes similar taste.

But there are many other chemical compounds in the oil of the aniseed seeds:

More than 20 ingredients were found in extracted anise oil, including methyleugenol and estragole, which are also found in basil, fennel and the eponymous tarragon.

Since essential oils are very volatile, anise is usually sold in the form of whole seeds, which are freshly ground up in the kitchen mortar just before use.

In animal naturopathy, even small doses of anise are considered anti-inflammatory as well as antispasmodic and expectorant.

Anise is therefore used both as a cough suppressant and for bad breath, but also for gastrointestinal complaints such as heartburn, gas, colic and cramps.

Anise is also touted as a home remedy for loss of appetite and difficulty falling asleep.

Anise has another effect on some dogs: Anise has an intoxicating effect on dogs and has a similar effect to catnip (catnip) on cats.

Anise has an intoxicating effect on dogs

Anise does not have the same effect on all dogs.

It is known from reports from animal owners that fresh aniseed has a bewitching effect on some dogs. You will then get excited and just can’t get enough of the smell of the aniseed.

The effect of aniseed on some dogs even seems to be great enough that hunting saboteurs use aniseed to distract hunters from hunting trails.

If you want to try out whether your dog is interested in the smell of anise, you can crush a few aniseed seeds and sprinkle the powder over one of the dog toys.

Similar to the use of catnip, however, I would like to point out that a physical reaction to chemical substances is not necessarily voluntary. You can’t choose whether you get drunk on alcohol.

So you should pay attention to whether the dog actually perceives this as funny or is in truth just stressed and irritated. If the dog reacts strongly, it might be better to avoid aniseed altogether.

Since it is unclear which substances in aniseed the dog to react, it cannot be ruled out that baked aniseed biscuits also have a small effect on dogs.

So it is better not to use aniseed for home-baked treats for the dog when you are working on relaxing the dog.

For this you can show the interest in anise Employment of the dog deploy.

For example, you can prepare a toy with aniseed and have your dog search for it. Even a small trail with a toy prepared with anise is a fun alternative to the usual nose work.

How much anise can a dog get?

The dog should generally only get aniseed pure or as an infusion from fresh seeds or aniseed powder.

And only in moderation.

Unfortunately, I cannot give precise information on the dosage here. How much aniseed it can get depends on the age, size and health of your dog.

In general, it is better not to add more than a small pinch of aniseed powder or 1-2 grams of aniseed seeds to the food daily, and only for a short period of time.

If you are unsure or if your dog accidentally ate aniseed, be sure to contact a veterinarian first!

In excessively high doses, aniseed can be harmful to your health and cause stomach problems and diarrhea.

Since the ingredients of anise have an effect on the central nervous system, an interaction with drugs such as sedatives cannot be ruled out in high doses.

In the event of an overdose, the ingredients of the aniseed spice have a neurotoxic effect and can lead to neurological symptoms, unconsciousness and death.

But as always: the dose makes the poison!

Use of essential oils from anise in dogs

Whole plant parts and aniseed seeds come in scented sachets in aromatherapy for dogs (no comment) and are supposed to have an appetizing effect there.

Essential oils, i.e. the oily constituents obtained from the plant seeds, are used externally in alternative veterinary medicine, often touted as a miracle cure against vermin.

As is always the case with alternative medicine, there is no scientific evidence that aniseed fragrances are effective in dogs.

The use of essential oils in dogs is to be viewed as critical overall.

Essential oils are irritating to the dog’s fine senses and can cause nausea and vomiting.

The essential oil extracted from the plant should therefore never be used undiluted in the immediate vicinity of the dog or directly on the dog.

Ingredients in anise oil such as methyl eugenol and estragole are even considered to be potentially carcinogenic.

The Federal Institute for Risk Assessment points out that no threshold value can be set for an appropriate consumption and recommends avoiding regular consumption of herbs with the ingredients they contain.

It is known that an allergic reaction to anise is possible in humans. An allergic reaction to aniseed in dogs cannot be ruled out either.

Recipes with anise for dogs

Dogs can Anise as seeds or ground in powder form to get.

But also Anistee can be given through the food, for example in the case of flatulence.

To do this, pour either a buyable bag of tea (caraway-fennel-anise) or half a teaspoon of fresh anise seeds with a cup of boiling water and allow to cool.

Anise can also be used for baking for the dog. In principle, you can add ½-1 teaspoon aniseed to the batter of any recipe for dog biscuits.

Here is an example:

Peanut butter and sweet potato dog biscuits with anise


  • 1 boiled sweet potato
    (cool, cut in half and scrape out the cooked potato mixture)
  • 2 Eggs
  • 5 teaspoons of peanut butter
  • 1 teaspoon of aniseed

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.

Now 300 grams of flour Add slowly until the dough has a good consistency to roll out.

Roll out and cut out cookies or cut into small squares with a pizza cutter.

Bake at 180 ° C with top / bottom heat for 20-30 minutes.


Dogs can eat anise.

Since anise can be harmful to health in large doses, you should limit yourself to small amounts.

The essential oil of anise should never be used undiluted on the dog.

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