Can Dogs Eat Coleslaw? Everything You Should Know

Unlike humans, dogs do not need variety in their food. Dogs should constantly be fed with nutritious pet feed in a balanced proportion. However, as a dog owner, it is obvious to share your meals and offer human food with your furry friend as a treat occasionally.

While many people’s food is safe for dogs to consume, some are highly vulnerable and even fatal if consumed. Before you let your dog consume human food, make sure you know what’s healthy for him and what will make your buddy unwell.

This article will guide you through feeding your dog with one of the human food, Coleslaw. So, let’s dive into its main components and discover if dogs can eat coleslaw or not.

Can Dogs Eat Coleslaw?

Sadly, it’s a no. Although it is not harmful if your dog consumes it accidentally, you should not feed it frequently on purpose. It does not supply any nutritional value to your canine companion.

Besides, it can also lead your dog to suffer from gastrointestinal upset and other serious health issues.

What is Coleslaw?

Coleslaw comes from the Dutch word koolsla, meaning ‘cabbage salad.’ It is alternatively known as cole slaw or just slaw.

Basically, it is a salad consisting of raw cabbage and other vegetables with a condiment, either mayonnaise or vinaigrette. People also use buttermilk and mustard as a substitute for mayonnaise.

Coleslaw is believed to be consumed in its most basic form since the mid-eighteenth century. In recent years, it has been served worldwide with different variations in the recipe.

Image of Coleslaw.

In the United States, it often goes along with hamburgers, hot dogs, and sandwiches. Similarly, it is served as a side dish with pizza in Sweden and cooked with chopped pepper and ham in Italy.

It is also majorly consumed in other parts of the world like Germany, Poland, Russia, the United Kingdom, etc.

Why is Coleslaw bad for dogs?

Well, it’s the ingredients that make the whole dish inappropriate for dogs.

The primary components of coleslaw are cabbage and mayonnaise. A small amount of cabbage is ok for dogs, but excess cabbage can cause serious stomach problems for your furry friends. Likewise, mayonnaise is rich in fat content. Excess intake of mayonnaise can increase the risk of pancreatitis and diabetes in dogs.

In addition, other elements of coleslaw unfavorable for dogs are:-

  • Onions
  • Salt
  • Sugar
  • Cream
  • Unnatural preservatives

Health Problems caused by Coleslaw

In general, consuming a small amount of coleslaw is not harmful to your dog. However, if you actively feed it, it can make your canine companion sick.

Below are the severe health complications caused by the intake of coleslaw:-

  • Problems of indigestion caused by cabbage
  • Anemia due to intake of onion
  • Excess salt can cause dehydration and high blood pressure
  • Sugar causes cavities, obesity, and diabetics
  • Diarrhea and vomiting due to indigestion

Best Alternative to Coleslaw

In place of coleslaw, there are various alternatives that your dog can consume safely. Dogs can have salad, but it should contain the ingredient safe for the dogs.

Some of the healthy fruits and vegetables to make a healthy salad for your fur baby are:-

  • Apples: provides fiber and fewer calories
  • Bananas: an excellent source of potassium
  • Blueberries: rich in antioxidants
  • Cucumber: very low calorie and a high source of water
  • Carrots: low-calories snack
  • Watermelons: supplies vitamins and potassium
Image of dog eating banana
Dog eating banana

Apart from fruits and vegetables, you can incorporate boiled eggs and chicken into the salad. These foods are healthy and do not contain any elements dangerous to your dog’s health. The best way is to feed a moderate amount to avoid the risk of gastrointestinal issues.


To conclude, coleslaw is a dish with many possible hazards to your dog’s overall wellbeing. As a conscious pet owner, it is better to remove it from your dog’s diet menu.

Your dog may be likely to have it, but it’s not a good choice as none of the above components are harmless for your furry friend.

We hope you get the necessary guidance on the side effect of coleslaw and decide whether dogs can eat coleslaw or not.

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