Can dogs eat Parsnips?

Updated 29 May 2024
Read time: 6 mins
article author
Written by Corinne Homer
article author
Reviewed by Dr. Linda Simon
Team Vet

Yes - dogs can eat parsnips. Parsnips are full of nutrients to benefit a dog, and when served in the right way can be a tasty snack for a peckish pooch.

If you’re serving up a roast dinner at home and wondering whether your dog can get a chopped slice of parsnip or two, read on for the lowdown on whether dogs can eat parsnips.

Are parsnips good for dogs?

Sure they are - parsnips have a bunch of vitamins and nutrients to benefit dogs, just as they do humans. The key is to serve it in the correct way, avoiding roasting them in butter or oils so that your dog doesn’t suffer any tummy trouble. 

What are the health benefits?

Parsnips are full of health benefits for dogs; let’s unpack just some of the nutrients packed into each bite of these root veggies… 

Good source of dietary fibre, which supports digestion, healthy bowel function and firms up poops. 

Vitamins C, E, K, essential for immunity and wound healing, healthy skin, bones and blood. 

Folate (vitamin B9) plays a vital role in cell division and DNA synthesis.

Low calorie, so excellent as part of a nutritious diet to maintain healthy weight.

Full of antioxidants which fight off free radicals and infections in the body.

Can puppies eat parsnips?

Yes - puppies can eat parsnips but it’s best if they’re cooked first, as the raw flesh of parsnips is a bit too tough for their developing teeth. Also be sure the parsnip is plain, without salt or added flavourings. Perhaps mash the parsnip, or at least cut into tiny pieces. 

When is parsnip unsafe for dogs?

Parsnip is generally pretty safe snack for a pooch, but could be deemed unsafe in the following situations: 


  • Though not technically unsafe, uncooked parsnip is very firm, and can be much tougher to eat and digest than when gently cooked. If you feed a dog uncooked parsnip, maybe chop it into bite-sized pieces for easier chewing and swallowing.
  • When smothered in seasonings, spices or oils, parsnips can be unsafe for dogs, as salt, butter etc. can irritate their stomach and make digestion difficult. 

Can dogs be allergic to parsnips?

Yes, dogs can be allergic to anything, so it’s important to introduce it gradually into your dog’s diet if they’ve not eaten it before. Be aware of the following signs of an allergic reaction. If you see any, stop feeding them parsnip and if symptoms persist, get them to a vet. 


  • Reddening, rashes or itchiness of the skin
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhoea 
  • Difficulty breathing, wheezing
  • Bloating, pain in stomach 
  • Lethargy, change in behaviour

Can parsnips make dogs sick?

Parsnips are generally a safe food for dogs, though they can make them sick in certain situations. 

  • Don’t feed your pooch only parsnip, or replace their regular food with just parsnip. In these cases, they could develop a stomach upset or digestive problems. 
  • Too much raw parsnip will be harder for your dog to digest than if it were cooked and plain. 
  • Parsnip covered in seasonings and spices or drenched in sauces, butter or oils will be more likely to upset your dog’s tummy and make them sick than plain, cooked parsnip. 
  • If your pooch has a parsnip allergy (see above) this might make them sick when they eat some.


How to safely give parsnips to your dog?

The safest way to feed this delicious root veggie to your dog is to make sure the parsnip is fresh and washed. Gently cook the parsnip (by boiling or oven-roasting, for instance), then offer it up to your dog plain, chopped or mashed. Don’t add any salt, butter or other seasonings. 

If you want to feed parsnips to your dog raw, be sure they’re chopped into pieces with the touch end removed, and be aware that raw parsnips might be harder for them to digest. 

How much is safe to give your dog?

The correct serving size for your pooch will depend on their breed, size and age, but be aware that parsnips should be a side, to be fed alongside their regular food. Never replace your dog’s regular food with only parsnip - it should be part of a varied, well-balanced diet made up of lots of veggies and proteins. 


What kinds of parsnips can dogs eat?

Let’s go into the types of parsnips pooches can enjoy and get the maximum health benefits from…

Can dogs eat raw parsnips?

Dogs can eat parsnip raw with relatively no issues, however it’s harder for them to digest raw food and as raw parsnip flesh is quite hard, it’ll be a more pleasant experience for them if the parsnips were gently cooked. 


Can dogs eat boiled parsnips?

Yes - they’re a healthy veggie for dogs packed with vitamins and fibre. As parsnips are easier for a dog to eat when they’re gently cooked, boiling parsnips are a brilliant way to serve them. Once they’re slightly soft, you can either mash them or serve them chopped (without salt or seasonings).  

Can dogs eat honey roasted parsnips?

No, honey-roasted parsnips from your plate shouldn’t be slipped to your dog. Though honey is generally deemed healthy for humans, it adds a lot of extra sugar and calories to a dog’s diet, so isn’t recommended. It’s just fine to feed your dog roasted parsnips so long as they’re not coated in oil, salt or seasonings, but honey-roasted may cause issues with their digestion and end up being calorific.


Parsnips are a delicious source of dietary fibre for dogs, as well as vitamins and minerals. Though they can be served raw, it’s better to serve them mildly cooked (oven-roasted or boiled, for example) to make them easier for a dog to munch on and digest. Don’t add any seasonings or flavourings such as salt, spices, butter or honey.

What other foods can dogs safely eat?

If you like the sound of parsnips for your dog but are considering alternatives, why not try the following:? 

Carrots are a great, cheap veggie for dogs to munch on either raw or cooked. When served whole and raw, they can be beneficial for dogs’ teeth. 

Pumpkin is full of fibre, vitamins and minerals - and dogs think it tastes great too!

Courgette is another great source of dietary fibre which is gently digestible and also boosts a dog’s hydration levels due to its high water content.

Calming dental stick for dogs if you’re looking for something firm, such as parsnip, that a dog will enjoy chewing.

To get your dog into healthy dog treats and nutritious food, try our specially formulated range of grain-free dog food, made with whole, natural ingredients to benefit their body and mind. 

Never miss a treat!

Subscribe to our newsletter and get blog articles amongst other treats delivered to your inbox


close button