A dog with an unsure expression looking at peppermint, indicating caution for dog consumption.

Can Dogs Eat Peppermint?

In moderation, peppermint itself is generally safe for dogs to eat. However, not all forms of peppermint are safe. Fresh peppermint leaves can be a nice breath freshener for your pup, but peppermint oil and candies may pose risks due to high concentrations and added ingredients like xylitol, which is toxic to dogs.

A photo of Stefan Stumpfl, the co-author of this article.

By Stefan Stumpfl, in collaboration with Dr. Ali Raza.

Updated on Jul 1, 2024

Did You Know?

Peppermint can sometimes be found in dog-safe dental chews to help freshen breath, but always check for added ingredients that could be harmful.




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Feeding Frequency


Allergic Risk


Benefits and Risks of Peppermint?

Peppermint has soothing properties that can aid in digestion and freshen your dog's breath. But here's the kicker: essential oils and candies with peppermint can be harmful. Peppermint oil is too concentrated and can lead to severe upset stomachs or even more serious health issues. Candies often contain xylitol, a sweetener that is extremely toxic to dogs, causing rapid insulin release, hypoglycemia, and even liver failure.

What Forms of Peppermint Are Safe / Unsafe?


  • Fresh peppermint leaves (in moderate quantities)


  • Peppermint essential oils
  • Peppermint candies (especially those containing xylitol)
  • Peppermint-flavored processed products

Other Products Containing Peppermint?

Watch out for these sneaky peppermint intruders in your home:

  • Mint candies: Often contain xylitol and artificial sweeteners.
  • Flavored toothpaste: Human toothpaste can contain ingredients harmful to dogs.
  • Chewing gum: Many gums include xylitol, posing a serious threat.

How to Feed Peppermint to Your Dog?

If you're thinking about introducing peppermint into your dog's diet, keep it simple and safe. Offer small amounts of fresh peppermint leaves chopped up and mixed into their food. Alternatively, you can steep the leaves in water for a mild tea that your dog can sip โ€“ just make sure itโ€™s cooled down!

What If Your Dog Reacts Badly to Peppermint?

If your dog shows signs of a negative reaction, such as vomiting, diarrhea, or lethargy, contact your vet immediately. Quick action can prevent more serious complications.

Safer Alternatives to Peppermint

If you're looking for ways to freshen your dog's breath or aid digestion, consider these alternatives:

  • Parsley: Safe and helps freshen breath.
  • Carrots: Great for dental health and digestion.
  • Cucumbers: Low in calories and hydrating.


While fresh peppermint leaves can be a refreshing treat for your dog, not all peppermint-related products are safe. Always be cautious and consult with your vet before introducing new foods. Your furry friendโ€™s health is worth the extra step!