Let’s get right to the point and answer the question right off the bat. Then I can go into detail about what makes salad greens good or bad for dogs and some other issues concerning the topic.
The short answer is that yes, dogs can eat salad greens like green mix and any other kind for that matter. This is because these greens are healthy and won’t contain something that could be harmful to the pet.
Although salad greens are completely safe for your dog, you must make sure that they don’t contain garlic leaves, onions, onion leaves, or anything similar. You will have to remove them from the salad greens before you can actually give them to your dog.
Garlic, onions, and plants from their family usually cause intense gastric issues for most dogs. Out of them, onions are the worst, being so toxic for dogs that even a small amount might be a big hit on their health.
Some recent studies have shown that garlic leaves are also pretty bad for dogs and this is why I highly recommend you remove these too from any food you’re planning to give to your dog.
If you insist on feeding your dog with some vegetables, then why not go for kale instead? it is considerably lower in goitrogens and oxalates and is better for your pet’s health.
If you’re only looking for the same treat ideas, then go for broccoli stems and carrots, both very nutritious, healthy, and safe.
You might not know this, but carrots are actually cousins of lettuce, coming from the same big family, called the Apiaceae family.
Most salad greens, like lettuce, green mix, and even spinach, are very gentle to the digestive tract of animals because they are very tender.
The only thing that can go wrong when you feed your dog salad greens or other leafy vegetables, is that the pet would eat more than its stomach could handle, which would make its stomach upset.
This is easily preventable. All you will have to do to make sure you prevent any stomach issues is to give your dog only small amounts of leafy plants and other salad greens.
If your dog has never eaten salad greens before, or at least not under your supervision, then you should try to give them just tiny bits at first, to see how well it works for their stomach, and then just add more if everything is OK.
If your dog has eaten any of the leafy vegetables in the past and there were no issues, then you can give them salad greens as well.
The leaves of salad like lettuce, or any other kind for that matter, are actually high in both antioxidants and water.
The salad will also help to strengthen your dog’s blood vessels due to the folate and vitamin K found inside the plants.
That being said, there are a few ingredients that, if found in your dog’s salad, might actually be harmful to the pet.
A great example is the radish leaves, which are known to contain some traces of thiabendazole, a substance that is very bad for dogs. When ingested in considerable quantities, this substance can lead to some very nasty side effects or even death.
Raw spinach might also turn out to be bad when given in excessive amounts to your dog because it contains a considerable amount of iron, more than your dog would actually need.
If you were to feed your dog with too much iceberg lettuce, on the other hand, the considerable content of aucubin would lead to your dog suffering from diarrhea. I`m talking here about huge amounts of plants. Remember that in general, salad greens along with most of the common leafy greens, are considered low risk for pets and their health, especially if they are cooked properly.
Yes, puppies can eat salad greens also, both as treats or as parts of their balanced diet. But if you need some ideas for treats, then you should go instead for broccoli or carrot sticks, because they will be considerably better.
The same risks should be taken into account when feeding your pet salad greens like lettuce or different types of green mixes. They are so delicate and tender, that when eaten in a considerable amount can lead to an upset stomach for your pup.
So, to wrap it up: can a dog eat salad greens? As I said time and time again in this article, yes, a dog can eat salad greens as long as in moderate amounts and as long as you remove any garlic or onion from the mix. Of course, if you ever have a choice, go for broccoli stems or carrots instead, because they are a healthier alternative for treats for dogs.