Can dogs eat liquorice? A pro clears it up!

Liquorice or liquoricethe root extract of liquorice, is very popular as a candy in many forms and with different flavors, especially in the north!

So it’s clear that we dog owners are asking ourselves whether our dogs are allowed to eat liquorice? After all, we love sharing what we like best with them – and they love it too!

Nevertheless, our furry friends are far from allowed to eat everything that we like to treat ourselves to. If Licorice for your dog In this article you will find out whether it is okay or not at all.

In a nutshell: Can my dog ​​eat liquorice?

No, your dog must not eat liquorice! Licorice contains both sugar and lots of salt. Both can be life-threatening for dogs! If your dog eats licorice, it can cause fatal salt poisoning. This is a great danger, especially for puppies and small dogs!

If your dog accidentally eats licorice, the first signs of salt poisoning will be loss of appetite, nausea, and diarrhea. In this case, you should contact a veterinarian immediately!

What’s in liquorice?

For the production of liquorice you need next to licorice roots also Gelatine, pectin, agar-agar, fennel oil, starch, sugar syrup, sal ammoniac and other flavors.

The extracts of the liquorice root are thickened together with the other ingredients and then pressed into the usual liquorice molds.

A simple look at the ingredients reveals that liquorice is an absolute NO-GO for dogs!

Reading tip: Be sure to read our article on “Can Dogs Eat Gummy Bears?”

What happens if my dog ​​ate liquorice?

You already know that you shouldn’t give your dog liquorice to eat. But with our little four-legged vacuum cleaners, it sometimes happens that they suck up something that wasn’t intended for them!

So if your dog accidentally ate liquorice, what happens now depends on the amount eaten.

With a small amount of liquorice your dog will probably “only” get diarrhea and stomachache. These symptoms usually subside quickly. Keep an eye on your dog!

With a larger amount of liquorice things get more dangerous, because this can lead to the following complaints:

  • Imbalances in water-electrolyte balance
  • acidosis and poisoning
  • blood pressure problems
  • water retention
  • kidney failure
  • Muscle weakness to muscle breakdown
  • cardiac arrhythmias


If your dog has consumed large amounts of liquorice, you should not hesitate and contact a veterinarian immediately! In the worst case, eating liquorice and other sweets can mean the death of your pet!

Reading tip: Do you have a dog and suspect he ate gum? Learn more about the possible consequences and what you should do now by reading our dog ate gum article.

Beware, quite salty!

The high salt content of liquorice is particularly harmful to your dog. Besides the danger of a fast dehydrationsalt poisoning manifests itself in the following ways:

  • Fever
  • Diarrhea
  • weakness
  • nervousness
  • muscle tremors
  • seizures
  • restlessness
  • Increased respiratory rate
  • tachycardia and cardiac arrhythmias

It is actually superfluous to mention that this is not something to be trifled with, but because it is so important, here again explicitly:

A large amount of salt and/or can kill your dog!

Prevention – Don’t give liquorice a chance!

To keep your dog safe, there is one simple rule you should follow:

Always keep sweets out of your dog’s reach!

C’est ca!

Licorice with xylitol – GO or NO?

Super hip and trendy are sweets made with the sweetener xylitol (birch sugar) instead of sugar. Xylitol is often found in «sugar-free» licorice.

Licorice, even with sugar, is very dangerous for your dog. However, if they contain xylitol and your dog uses them, it can quickly mean the end for him.

Xylitol is harmless for us humans. In dogs, the birch sugar leads to a excessive secretion of insulin and consequently one life-threatening drop in blood sugar levels.

Even a very small amount of xylitol can be deadly!

Reading tip: Want to learn more about sorbitol for dogs? Then be sure to check out our article on this topic, “Sorbitol for dogs: THIS is what you should definitely consider“.

Can dogs grate liquorice?

Of course! In any case, if you understand the sentence in its actual meaning: flattering us in a striking way is probably the supreme discipline of our dogs – of course they are allowed to do that!

But dogs are also allowed to eat without rasping nibble on liquorice. More precisely, the licorice root and therefore the main component of liquorice – just without all the other fuss!

Licorice root is very healthy for dogs when fed conscientiously! Nevertheless, they are not a main component in our dogs’ diet.

The most important thing about the question “Can dogs eat liquorice?”

No, dogs are not allowed to eat liquorice!

The only thing that’s safe for dogs about licorice is the licorice root they’re made from. Almost all other ingredients such as agar-agar, pectin, sugar syrup or ammonium chloride are harmful to life-threatening for dogs!

Therefore, you must always keep licorice and other sweets out of reach of your dog’s snout.

The licorice root in itself is for dogs harmless and even healthy. Instead of liquorice, you should be more specific with that Real liquorice occupy. That’s allowed in the dog from time to time!

Are you unsure or do you still have questions about the topic? “Can dogs eat liquorice”? Then just write us a comment under this article.