Thymus, commonly known as thyme is a genus name for many flowering herbs and shrubs totaling to over 350 in number with medicinal, culinary as well as ornamental value.
In cooking, you can use fresh and dried leaves alone or together with other herbs and spices, including lavender, basil, oregano, mint, rosemary, sage, marjoram, savory, and so on. You will find it used in soups, meats, stews, especially in Italian, Spanish, Persians, and Turkish cuisines.
The Thymus vulgaris is the most popular species. It is also known as garden, common, English, summer, winter, French thyme. Other equally important cultivars include wild or creeping, caraway, lemon, orange, woolly, and the wild or mother of thyme.
Thyme is safe for dogs. These animals can eat fresh and dried leaves of this herb in moderation. They stand to benefit from its antioxidants, antiseptic, and antimicrobial properties besides the various nutrients it has.
For chopped fresh leaves, add about a half a teaspoon for small dogs and a teaspoon to their favorite foods.
On the other hand, if you have dried leaves which are often ground, take a small pinch and sprinkle it on their food. A tincture cooled strong thyme tea will also work well.
Additionally, you can use this herb in preparing their favorite treat or in homemade foods. Use only a small amount, as already stated.
Thyme for dogs benefits
Some of the benefits of thyme to dogs include the following:
- It has nutrients, including vitamin A, C, K, manganese, iron, and calcium, as well as antioxidants, to help fight free radicals.
- Thymol, one of the compounds it has, which is an “excellent antiseptic for the mouth and throat; useful for fighting gingivitis in dogs,” notes Whole Dog Journal.
- It has antimicrobial properties hence can fight fungal, viral, and bacterial pathogens. It can help reduce oral bad breath, fight coughs, and other infections
- It will help in parasite expulsion, especially parasite like hookworms. Consult your vet before using it for this purpose.
- It has antispasmodic and carminative properties, making it suitable for digestion, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and indigestion.
- This herb will easy asthma symptoms such as bronchial spasms as well as easy other respiratory problem symptoms.
- Finally, it can help with urinary tract infection as well as urinary incontinence since it is a mild astringent tonic.
In some of the above uses, talk to your vet to help you come with the right amount to give your canine friend.
Finally, to confirm its safety and benefits, some canine foods have it as one of its ingredients. For instance, the following have listed this herb as one of their ingredients.
- Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free, Natural Dry
- Solid Gold Natural Treats Grain Free Superfoods Chewy
- Wishbone Graze Grain Free and Gluten Free Dry
- Smack Pet Food Organic Raw Dehydrated Dog Food Grain-Free, Gluten-Free, Raw Food for Dogs
Thyme essential oil
Its essential oil has mainly thymol that has antiseptic properties and commonly used in mouthwashes, especially Listerine. Other compounds present include p-cymene, borneol, myrcene, and linalool.
Thyme essential oil is not recommended for use on dogs. It joins others such as cloves, garlic, hyssop, camphor, mustard, juniper, cassia, among others that are not safe. Avoid them.
Thymus, including the lemon and creeping thyme, is safe for dogs but should be given in small amounts. It joins other safe herbs like rosemary, sage, and many others.