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Is Carrageenan Safe For Dogs?



What is Carrageenan

Carrageenan is extracted from seaweed and is often used as a thickening or emulsifying agent in foods.

What Carrageenan does in dog food

Carrageenan is often used as a gelling agent to give wet dog foods their characteristic (jelly but firm consistency). It’s sometimes used as a binder or stabilizer as well for many pet food brands. 

Why you should be aware of it in your dog’s food

  • The impact of carrageenan may not be immediate but could cause health issues long term
  • Known to cause intestinal damage, inflammation, ulcers, lesions, and other health issues
  • Carrageenan is the by-product of poligeenan

Wild Carrageenan growing in the sand on the beach

Why we’re featuring Carrageenan

Although many pet food manufacturers claim that the consumption of carrageenan is safe for your dog’s consumption, science says otherwise. Some studies show that carrageenan doesn’t metabolize in the body and may present negative side effects such as soft stool or diarrhea. 

In dogs, ulcers, lesions, and tumours could present themselves as a symptom of ingesting large amounts of carrageenan (a by-product of poligeenan). Poligeenan is the molecular form of carrageenan which is the cause of the symptoms listed above. 

While there are many pet food brands that still use carrageenan as an ingredient, there are many alternatives and carrageenan-free options available. Kabo is a fresh dog food company based in Toronto that focuses on human grade ingredients that ensure a clean bowl. 

We deliver all across Canada and being huge supporters of feeding fresh, we want our community of dogs to live healthier, happier, and longer lives! All of Kabo’s diets are formulated to AAFCO standards by our in-house veterinarians and pet health experts. The best part about Kabo’s fresh food recipes is that it’s carrageenan free! 

Still have questions about carageenan? Reach out to us and we’ll do our best to help!

Red carrageenan living on the beach on the sand
Red carrageenan living on the beach on the sand

View Sources

Caldwell, Amy. “Carrageenan in Your Dogs.” Wag, 13 Sept. 2017, Accessed 29 Dec. 2021. 

Murphy, Cher. “5 Facts about Carrageenan Every Pet Owner Should Know.” Buckhead, GA Patch, Patch, 22 Oct. 2013, 

Related, et al. “Carrageenan in Dog Food.” Pet Food Reviewer, 4 Dec. 2021, 

Tobacman, JK. “Review of Harmful Gastrointestinal Effects of Carrageenan in Animal Experiments.” Environmental Health Perspectives, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Oct. 2001,

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February 20, 2024
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