Many pet owners probably aren’t aware of how honey has helped dogs with all sorts of issues including allergies, infections, kennel cough, digestion, wounds including burns, hot spots and pressure sores.

A few things that make honey so special is that it is naturally high in enzymes, high in antioxidants and flavonoids, and it kills anti-resistant bacteria including MRSA.

Here you’ll find the best type of honey to use, based upon your dog’s specific problem. It also gives clear directions on how to use it for your old friend.

THE QUALITY OF THE HONEY MATTERS: Tests show that most supermarket grade “A” processed honey is diluted with cheap products such as high fructose corn syrup, been heated and quickly cooled giving it a smoother look inside the bottle.  What this means is, it is useless as far as any benefits go.  In order for your dog to receive any benefits from honey, it MUST be either local, fresh honey or Manuka.

*Avoid feeding diabetic dogs and dogs with cancer honey without first discussing with your holistic veterinarian.

1. Using Honey for Your Dog’s Allergies

Like us, many dogs too suffer from environmental allergies. Spring, summer and fall can trigger these sensitivities in dogs with symptoms such as rubbing the face, licking feet and thighs and scratching.

However, it’s important to make sure that you’re not confusing what you think are environmental allergies and your dog’s real problem is a food allergy (or both).  To learn more about food allergies, click here.

Follow the guidelines below for using honey for a dog with allergies:

  • What type of honey to use: Make sure your purchase local raw, unfiltered honey, or better yet, purchase local raw wild flower honey.  The wild flower honey will give your dog the best results because it covers so many different plants and flowers. This can often be purchased from bee farms.  Avoid Manuka honey when using for allergies since you need a local, raw honey.
  • Directions: 1 Tablespoon of raw wildflower local honey twice daily for large dogs such as labs. Use this as a guide and adjust according to the size of your dog. You must do this daily or the allergy symptoms will reappear.

2. Using Honey as A Wound Dressing for Burns, Infections, Hot Spots & Pressure Sores for Dogs

  • What type of honey to use: The best honey to use for burns, infections and pressure sores is pure Manuka Honey.  Clinical trials show that applying honey as a wound dressing eliminates bacterial infections, reduces inflammation, swelling and pain, and increases the growth of new skin.  It seals and keeps the area moist (including skin grafts) while protecting from sticking to bandages.
  • Directions for burns:  Trim the hair around the burn.  You’ll want to wash the burned area with vinegar and apply a thick coat of honey every 10 minutes until the pain decreases. Apply a LIGHT bandage over the area. Don’t allow your dog to lick or bother the area. A Elizabethan collar might be necessary for awhile.
  • Directions for pressure sores: Trim the hair around the area.  Gently blot to clean the wound. You can apply the honey directly by very gently placing a little honey over the wound with a clean spatula. Cover with a non-stick pad and wrap with gauze (not too tight).  You can also apply the honey directly to the non-stick pad and then wrap with gauze to keep in place.
  • Directions for hot spots: You MUST trim or shave the hair surrounding the hot spot until you can see healthy skin .  If not, all the bacteria, pus and infection become trapped within the hair.  It’s also critical that you clean the area before applying the honey.  You can use Povidone Iodine that most pharmacy’s or even supermarkets carry.  Dilute a little of the Povidone Iodine with water to an ice tea color.  Then use soft gauze to gently blot and clean the hot spot. Do this a minimum of twice daily. Apply a light layer of Manuka honey to your dog’s hot spot. Do the process of cleaning and applying the Manuka honey a minimum of twice daily.  If the hot spot grows instead of getting smaller, seek veterinary care immediately.

Precaution: When using honey as a wound dressing, it’s very important to use Manuka Honey  in liquid form, which means it should be soft and pour easily. Do not use crystallized honey on a burn or open wound! The crystals are sharp and can cause even more pain to your dog’s open wound.

How to soften crystallized or hard honey: Place the jar in a pot of very hot water (don’t microwave) until it can easily be poured.  Cool before placing on your pet.

3. Honey for Kennel Cough

  • What type of honey to use: Manuka honey is needed for dogs with symptoms of Kennel Cough.
  • Directions: Feed 1/2 up to 1 teaspoon depending on your dog’s weight.  Administer 4 times daily.

4. Honey for Your Dog’s Digestion

  • What type of honey to use: Again, Manuka honey works best for digestive issues.
  • Directions: Large dogs 1 tablespoon a day, medium dogs 2 teaspoons a day, small dogs 1 teaspoon a day.

5. Honey May Boost Your Old Dog’s Energy Level

Honey is a natural source of carbohydrates which increases energy.

  • What type of honey to use: You can use either Manuka or a local honey when it comes to boosting energy.
  • Directions: Large dogs 1 tablespoon a day, medium dogs 2 teaspoons a day, small dogs 1 teaspoon a day.

As you can see, honey offers some amazing benefits for dogs.  If you need to search out raw local honey for your dog’s allergies, this page may help.

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Showing 108 comments
  • Larry
    Reply

    My 14 year old Chihuahua had dental surgery last year in July, 2 -3 weeks later he started coughing a lot. I took him back to the vet for check up and was told he had a collapsed Trachea? I mentioned I had read several articles about dogs developing a collapsed Trachea from dental surgery, but she didn’t touch on the subject. My dog had NEVER coughed before the procedure! I refused to put him on steroids and other pills that would just make him sleepy and out of it!!! Will wildflower honey really help with my dogs cough? I’ve also purchased some Chinese herbal products made for the collasped trachea but its very expensive. Any advice would be appreciated.

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Larry:

      I’m sorry to hear about your little guy. Thanks so much for sharing your story about how dental surgery caused your him to develop a collapsed trachea.

      I would definitely try the honey, lemon warm water syrup to see if it works for him. It can’t hurt. I would definitely look into colloidal silver as well. We use it for a dog with Laryngeal Paralysis and it really has helped.

      I hope this helps Larry!

      Janie

    • Sharon corden
      Reply

      My 15 month old cockapoo went in for a minor op last week to have 2 puppy teeth removed and 2 days later nearly died from this. He had a collapsed trachea and developed Aspirational Pneumonia and was hospitalised for 5 days . Luckily he has pulled through but we feel devastated as the poor little thing may have problems when he gets older. We picked him up yesterday and a few people mentioned about manuka Honey which I went and purchased but he doesn’t like it. Any suggestions on how to get him to take it would be appreciated.

  • vanessa
    Reply

    My 11 month old has ate something or multiple somethings that are causing her not to eat or drink anything. we took her to the vet and had xrays and 3 bags of fluid and xrays again they are thinking she should be able to pass whatever she ate but they want us to keep bringing her in for fluids $$$ My mom told be to give her honey and i found your sight. how much do you recommend for digestion to help get things moving? i have been able to syring feed her water and food and she has kept it down not i just need to get it out the other end. If no change i will take her back tomorrow.

    • janie
      Reply

      Did they do x-rays for an obstruction Vanessa?

      Janie

  • Thomas Hall
    Reply

    Hi There, you site is very interesting on how to treat dogs using Manuka Honey, my Labradoddle was resently diagnosed with Laryngeal paralysis the vet prescribed a course of Prednicare Steroids 5mg daily is this treatment effective?
    I have read the side effects that these steroids can course, as of yet I have not used them instead I went and brought a jar of Manuka honey 20+ this morning and gave her a tablespoonful to see how she goes, she did collapse in the street about two months ago I thought she was dead I pulled her up by her harness and shook her luckily she came round. I read on your web information that you treat dogs with this decease with Colloidal Silver is this treatment effective?
    also what about giving my natural goats milk or goats yogurt which contains natural steroid? I await your reply thank you Tom

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Tom:

      Sorry for the delay. I’m also sorry to hear about your old girl’s LP. Not sure if you seen our article on LP, but you can view it here.

      I actually have a dog that comes to visit with me often (a chocolate lab) and she too has LP. The Manuka Honey isn’t going to hurt, but I’m not sure how much it will really help. My recommendations are as follows and what we do for Boo who is doing great.

      Provide Accupuncture once weekly for 5 weeks and then taper down to whatever your holistic vet (if you don’t have a holistic vet, please find one) recommends. Feed a home made diet or a partial home made that could include a good food such as Dr. Harveys or The Honest Kitchen and include meat, eggs and low sugar, low carb veggies.

      Talk to your holistic vet about the Chinese herb called ER Chen Tang which helps Boo, or you can purchase it online. Here’s a link so that you can review it.

      However, I DO HIGHLY RECOMMEND spraying her throat with Colloidal Silver on a daily basis. We do this for Boo and have seen great results. Whatever you do, PLEASE INCLUDE THE ACUPUNCTURE BECAUSE IT HELPS TREMENDOUSLY! All of the above should be done.

      I hope this helps you Thomas.

      Janie
      YourOldDog.com

  • Martha Rivera
    Reply

    Hello…. my 13 year old 4 pound Yorkie was diagnosed with collapsed trechea…. it attackes him more at night specially after drinking water! He gets up atleast 4 times at night to drink water then he starts gagging coughing and choking!!! It is also attaching him early mornings too! What king of honey should I give him? How many times a day??? Please reply, feeling desperate…… Martha Rivera

  • conishkee
    Reply

    Hi. My Maltese Mix, Mon-Cheri, whom I acquired 2 weeks ago, was born on 3/21/2017 and, when I got her, she weighed 2 lbs. 9 ozs. I immediately noticed that she had a tendency to scratch around her bottom and neck areas a lot. She also has a tendency to lick her front paws several times throughout the day. I contacted her vet who told me they would check things out for [possible] fleas on her next appointment when she is to receive her second set of shots, which is 6/2/2017. As indicated above, you can imagine how small she is, and so I was wondering whether raw honey would work for her. These vets charge an arm and a leg, so if I could try to remedy the situation for her at home, I’d like to know if I should go that route and, if so, how much honey and when would I administer it to my furbaby pup? Additionally, there are so many people on various sites out there giving advice on this subject matter where it has been indicated that the honey be diluted and then squirted into the mouth. I’m overwhelmed and at a loss as to which way to go. Please advise. Thank you.

    • Jody
      Reply

      Hello Coinshkee…..I was searching various sites for dosage of honey for puppies with kennel cough and came across your post. It appears 1 teaspoon for small dogs 1x day is sufficient, being your dog is so small maybe 1/2 teaspoon per day. It appears from all I have read it’s not going to hurt a dog if you give it a little too much as it is easily digested. If you are really concerned you could contact a homeopathic vet and they could give you a recommendation. What I really wanted to tell you is I do rescue and have worked with many dogs over the last 20+ years that have allergies that present themselves as licking paws, tummy, rear end, scratching ears, chronic ear infections, rashes on tummy, pustules between toes, on tummy, on rear, etc., and the cause is a weakened immune system which isn’t allowing the food they eat to property break down in their body. It all starts in the gut. Many traditional vets won’t recognize this is an issue because they are not taught this in their schooling like homeopathic vets. Honey is a great supplement to add and will help but it doesn’t get to the root of the issue and it’s not a cure. Feed either a raw diet of which their are many or a high quality kibble and soft food that is grain FREE, key being grain FREE. Many dogs also have issues with chicken and lamb, no rhyme or reason they just do. There are many great choices now from specialized stores that carry good quality food, treats, etc., even Petco and PetSmart carry these foods. You can get a grain FREE with duck, or bison or boar, or you can go with the grain FREE chicken and see how your dog does, if she/he gets better (give it 30 days) then it was the grains, if not better than change to duck, bison or boar, anything but chicken and lamb. Also, it’s important to make sure your dog’s immune system is strong so I highly suggest you choose a good product that will get it built back up and keep it strong which will also prevent illness, etc. I personally use homeopathic products from PetWellBeing.com and Nzymes.com with great success, even my traditional vets are impressed. Also, make sure you change up any treats you feed your dog to grain FREE and maybe chicken/lamb free. Hope this helps with the scratching issue. I try to educate people as often as I can because most vets won’t discuss it with you and what you don’t know you don’t know.

  • Julie F.
    Reply

    I have an 8 month old puppy that was bitten or stung by something and one side of his face swelled up, we brought him inside due to the heat and suspected it may have been a snake or spider bite.A few days before the swelling began I pulled a tick out of his ear but also saw a water moccasin in our yard. After we brought him he began scratching.He did it so much he opened up the swollen area on his head. There was a lot of blood along with a horrible smell we suspected to be venom of some sort or perhaps infection.But the swelling did go down significantly after this. I began wrapping bandages around his head to keep it covered and watch for signs of infection in case it became serious enough to take him to the vet. My husband and I were both in the medical field for many years so we knew the basics on what to look for. Unfortunately, my puppy did not want to keep the bandages on. I made a temporary Ecollar to put on to keep the bandages on and to keep him from scratching. We took him into the vet two days later because he took the collar, bandages, skin and all off. This left a very large open wound on his head and the side of his face. The vet gave him antibiotics,betadine, pain medicine and an E-Collar. He is doing well but still having an issue of keeping the bandages on, even with the collar. The wound is scanning over nicely and new skin is growing. But now, one of his brothers has swelling on one side of his head that started 2 days ago. We pulled a tick off his eyelid the day before the swelling started.
    My question is how can I give the the honey? Topically? If so, how? Orally? If so, how much? They both weigh around 70lbs. Thank you!

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Julie:

      I’m sorry to hear about your puppy and his brother. This might be a little late, but nonetheless, I’ll share it anyway.

      I would use the same instructions I give in the article for hot spots and use the MANUKA honey by applying a thin layer 3 times daily. You might also want to consider using Ledum 200Csince they both had ticks on them. I would give every 3 hrs for the first day giving it, then twice daily for a week, then twice weekly for a month, then once weekly for one month. This should help with any lyme issues if you do it right away.

      Janie

  • Faith stecker
    Reply

    I would be so so appreciative of any help.. I have not been able to find a holistic vet or any help,when I saw your website and your responses to people who need your help. I saw your answer about nodode Ledum. Do you know if that nosode would help a dog who was exposed or bitten probably 3 years ago, but is asymptomatic.
    I have his urine tested and try to follow the most natural care to keep him heathy and a strong immune system. I tested his antigen levels 2 weeks ago, after being told Lyme positive dogs even if not showing any symptoms should be given a month of antibiotics,although his antigen level was elevated, his immune response was high… Could you give me your opinion as I am concerned..I want to keep him healthy, but wonder if it’s the right decision to treat him at this point.
    Any help would be appreciated.
    Thank you in advance,
    FM Sfecker

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Faith:

      I would follow the instructions below since your dog was bitten years ago:

      #1: Start with Ledum palustre 200C: Give every 3 hours for the first day, then twice daily for a week. Then twice weekly for a month and finally once per week for another month.

      If it was a recent bite (within a few weeks), the above protocol can be very effective. Again, in your dog’s case, I would follow all 3 steps:

      #2: Aurum arsenicum 200, twice daily for one week and in the same manner as Ledum. Aurum arsenicum is a capital choice for when a poisonous infection arises, and this is one of those times.

      #3: For older tick bites, it is vital to take all precautions because illness has most likely set in, the remedy made from the Lyme tick is called either Borrellia 30 or simply Lyme Nosode 30. You can find it online. It is used right along with the previous remedies.

      I hope this helps.

      Janie

  • Mary A
    Reply

    can manuka help healing a spay wound. ” 2 weeks on and a small 2cm section keeps weeping slightly and a tiny amount of blood (only overnight when dog in bed – fine during the day). Been checked by vets twice now and told to keep it clean. I clean it 3 times a day with boiled water and salt, a scab forms during the day but it always weeps a little over night -doesn’t seem to be healing. Should I give orally as well as topically – heard it is a good antibiotic too – my dog is small around 6.4kg / 14lbs. appreciate your advise (thought about putting a couple of ster strips on to hold it together when shes in bed)

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Mary:

      I’m sorry to hear about your little girl. I would definitely try the manuka honey for healing by using a thin layer 3 times daily.

      I would also pay close attention to her at night. Her sleeping surface could be irritating it, or she may be licking it at night. If she’s licking it at night, I would cover it with a thin layer of clean gauze, AFTER cleaning it at night. I would leave the gauze off during the day when she’s with you.

      I hope this helps.

      Janie

  • Mary A
    Reply

    Janie, thank you for your reply. I do cover the wound at night to stop her licking and she sleeps with a buster collar on. I think it may be the way she lies (likes to curl up) thats putting a little pressure on it. I am going to put a couple of steri strips on to hold it. I appreciate you taking the time to reply.

    • janie
      Reply

      My pleasure Mary!

  • Catherine
    Reply

    My 8 year old Yorkshire Terrier has had an upset tummy for 2 days. He starved himself the first day and seemed improved the second day. However this morning he is again eating grass and throwing up and his bowels are very slack.
    He is also very lethargic.
    I read that a teaspoonful of honey would help. Is this correct?

  • R. Moore
    Reply

    I have a Standard Poodle that has had cronic severe ear infections for 10 years. He had the problem before I got him. I have had him to the vet numerous times and have tried several different vets. None of the vets have been able to heal him. The vet that has worked with him the longest says that it is most likely an allergic reaction to something, to what she doesn’t know. I have tried several different kinds of grain free foods, but no improvement. At times his ears smell really bad, there is a dark brown discahrge and his ears will bleed sometimes when I am cleaning them. He scratches and shakes his head often.

    Do you think that local honey would help him? If so, what kind of honey and how should I administer the honey? Should it be oral or topical? I would REALLY appreciate any helpful ideas that I can try on this poor guy. Thank you
    Roxy

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Roxy:

      Are you willing to change his diet and include a few supplements for him? What do you currently feed him and does he receive any supplements?

      Do you vaccinate and use chemical flea and tick products on him? If so, when was the last time?

      Janie

  • Roxy Moore
    Reply

    Hi Janie,

    He is currently on a grain FREE dog food, usually salmom. He is not on any supplements at the moment. He does get his vaccinations , usually about 3 years apart. I have tried flea drops, as well as oral flea medications, he is currently on Bravecto every 3 months. There have been times when he has gone without any type of flea medications.

    Roxy

  • Betty Bradford
    Reply

    My little Kinsler has recently been diagnosed with stage 3 kidney failure and will not eat. Would putting honey on his food help him to eat?

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Betty:

      He needs more than honey. Are you willing to cook for him and add a few supplements to his diet?

      Janie

  • Betty Bradford
    Reply

    Yes. I’ve been doing purée baby food(chicken,turkey)also k/d food from the Vet and giving with a syringe just to get something in his stomach. It’s a struggle but worth it. What do you suggest ?

    • janie
      Reply

      Hi Betty:

      I’m tied up at the moment, but I’ll respond to you later via email okay.

      Janie

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