Can dogs eat black licorice?


Quick Answer

Dogs can eat black licorice in moderation. The sugar content of candy licorice can be unhealthy for dogs, and glycyrrhizin, a chemical found in black licorice, can be harmful if consumed in large quantities.

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Full Answer

Glycyrrhizin stimulates the adrenal glands and may cause hypertension, water retention, sodium retention and low potassium levels. If your dog eats a piece or two of licorice, adverse effects are unlikely. If your dog consumes a large quantity of licorice, a trip to the veterinarian is advised. The effects of glycyrrhizin build over time, so licorice should not be a regular treat for any dog.

Glycyrrhizin is found in the root of the licorice plant. Herbal licorice can be used as an anti-inflammatory agent and is sometimes prescribed for dogs with arthritis or skin disorders.

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