Dogs and Natto: A Japanese Affair

As a pet owner, you might have witnessed moments when you are enjoying natto dinner, and your cute dog keeps wagging its tail beside you. You instantly know that your dog wants what you’re eating, but you aren’t sure if feeding natto to your dog is a good idea.

You look no further and search it up – can dogs eat natto?

Can dogs eat natto?

Yes, dogs can eat natto but in small quantities and not very often. The probiotics and nutrients present in natto exceed the hazards of regular soybeans. This makes natto is a healthy food option.

Natto is a traditional Japanese dish made with fermented soybeans. The soybeans are left for at least a week in a bacteria called Bacillus subtilis.

In the past, soybeans were left in rice straws where the said bacteria grow naturally. Japanese eat natto for breakfast with rice and a variety of sauces

All that being said, natto is an acquired taste.

What does that mean?

It means that if you haven’t tried natto at a young age, the chances are that you won’t like it as an adult either. We can vouch for the same logic for dogs too.

Natto has a slimy, sticky texture with a pungent owner. Anyone who hasn’t tried it might be grossed. If you feed natto to your dog right out of the blue, don’t be surprised if they instantly reject it.

Instead, you must be patient and efficient about it so that your dog can eat natto just like any other meal.

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Health benefits of natto for dogs

Generally, soybeans are not the best thing to feed your dog. But natto is different. The fermentation process results in a package of healthy nutrients hidden inside the natto. Following are some of the benefits of natto that your dog can get:

  • The probiotics formed as a result of fermentation help dogs in easy digestion. It ensures that the gut stays healthy and that no food is left undigested.
  • Vitamins B6 boost the immune system of the body and reduces overall mood.
  • Reduces stress and depression in senior dogs
  • The presence of folate is beneficial for pregnant dogs and puppies. It ensures normal and speedy cell growth.
  • Balanced levels of pantothenic acid ensure a good appetite in dogs. The deficiency of this acid may also result in abnormal urinary excretion.
  • Nattokinase helps regulate cholesterol levels and blood pressure in a dog’s body.

When is natto unhealthy for dogs?

Like any other edible, overconsumption can compromise your dog’s health. Natto is no different. No matter the health benefits, it is your responsibility as a pet owner to feed in moderation.

Natto can cause serious health issues if your dog eats it in a large quantity. The fermented soybeans may cause alcohol poisoning in your dog. The symptoms of that happening are as follows:

  • Lethargy
  • Drooling
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Inability to walk properly
  • Low blood pressure
  • Low body temperature
  • Heavy, struggled breathing.

If you see any of the above signs in your dog after they’ve eaten natto, rush to a vet immediately.

In case your dog has eaten more natto than it should, but you see nothing out of the ordinary, keep a close watch over your dog. Give them plenty of water and skip a few meals until you’re absolutely sure about their health.

Before you start feeding your dog natto, make sure that they are not allergic to soybean.

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Your vet will know better or run a quick test. If your dog is allergic, the natto chapter is forever closed for your dog.

3 ways to feed natto to dogs

Your dog can eat natto right out of the bowl as a meal. If your dogs like it, they’ll lick the whole thing clean. Don’t force it on them if they refuse to eat it.

You can also mix a protein like a boiled chicken with natto. Rice is another great option that goes well with natto.

Blend some natto in a blender, and you will get a fine paste. This paste is usually called miso, but you’ll avoid adding salt and other spices to it, unlike miso. Why? Because dogs must never consume salt and spices.

Related FAQs to natto and dogs!

Is natto healthy for dogs?

Natto is healthy for your dog if given in small quantities and not very often.

Do dogs like natto?

Natto is an acquired taste for dogs. Dogs generally favor the fermented and umami flavor of natto. However, not all dogs like natto.

Can dogs eat soybean?

Yes, dogs can eat soybeans but only in small quantities. Ensure that your dog is not allergic to soy before feeding it to them.

Concluding my thoughts on can dogs eat natto!

Dogs can eat whatever you feed them. If they like a taste of something, they’ll eat it without thinking twice. But they don’t know what is healthy for them and what may cause serious health problems. Whether it is natto or any other edible, you must always act responsibly and make sure that you never overfeed your dog with anything.

A balanced diet is the key to a healthy and happy dog.

Photo of author

Immad Amir

Immad has a black Labrador who is his first child. With no prior experience of how to take care of his pooch, Immad started researching about what dogs love to eat. This blog is a journal of all the research Immad has done regarding a pet's diet.
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