As a dog parent, you certainly want to keep your pet from harm’s way at all cost, and sometimes there just seems to be a lot of things you have to keep your dog away from.

Recently, there has been a lot of talk about Rapeseed and how much danger it poses to your dog. Several social media posts claim that Rapeseed is extremely toxic to your dog. These posts claim that rapeseed is toxic to dogs when ingested and can cause breathing issues, blindness, digestive disorders, haemolytic anaemia, and even damage to the central nervous system.

Some posts even claim that simply walking your dog through Rapeseed fields can cause skin burns, just as ingesting it is claimed to lead to poisoning and cause death in just a few moments. The posts threw many dog owners into a frenzy as they started looking out for Rapeseeds from a thousand miles away and preventing their dogs from wandering if there was even a chance of a garden with Rapeseeds around.

Some people even began debates about whether Rapeseed should be so close to humans and their pets if they are so harmful. It has been a lot to handle.

But then, are all these claims true? Is Rapeseed really dangerous to your dog?

Let’s find out.

First, what is Rapeseed?

Rapeseed, also called rape or oilseed rape is a bright yellow flower belonging to the Brassicaceae family) and cultivated because of its oil-rich seed. 

Rapeseeds, in full bloom, make beautiful fields of yellow flowers that beautify any environment it is grown in. Some people love to walk through these fields and take in their beauty. But should your dog do that? 

rapeseed canola or colza on blue sky background

Is Rapeseed really dangerous for your dog?

Veterinarians have since debunked the social media posts saying rapeseed is extremely dangerous to your dog as false. The experts say rapeseed isn’t likely to poison your dog and cause all of the issues that were amplified in the social media post.

According to these vets, most dogs who have come in contact with rapeseed had no side effects whatsoever. They also say skin reactions are extremely rare in dogs, even if they run through rapeseed.

Medical records also show that rapeseed poisoning mostly occurs in ruminants and other grazing animals that consume rapeseed over a couple of days or even weeks.

Sick dog after eating rapeseed

Does that mean rapeseeds pose no danger to your dog?

Not really. You still need to be careful. Here’s why.

Although the skin reactions to rapeseeds are extremely rare, in the very few cases when they occur, they can be severe, and you would need to see a vet to get your dog treated.

Also, some dogs might experience indigestion and mild gastrointestinal upset such as abdominal tenderness, diarrhea, and vomiting. The good thing is that they can be treated symptomatically.

Thankfully, the chances of skin reaction or gastrointestinal issues happening are rare and would only happen to one in hundreds, or even thousands of dogs.

The only chance of your pet suffering severe signs remotely close to what is being spread on social media is if they eat a huge amount of rapeseed. But what are the chances of that happening?

Your dog is highly unlikely to consume rapeseed

In reality, dogs are highly likely to consume rapeseed, and vets attest to this. Many vets say they have never even come across cases of dogs who consumed rapeseed, meaning there is an even smaller chance of your dog ingesting these seeds, which means an almost-negligible chance of poisoning.

Naturally, most dogs are unlikely to expose themselves to rapeseed long enough for it to cause any reactions to them. The few cases of dogs that suffered reactions from rapeseeds had been in the most severe conditions.

Some of these dogs were fully covered in rapeseed, even in and around the eyes and ears. It would be weird if such reactions weren’t noticed. However, the dog was treated and recovered.

So, timing and exposure levels also play a role in these things.

With all these factors, what should you do as a dog owner?

Protecting your dog is your responsibility

Taking care of your dog is your responsibility

Here are some things you can do to protect your dogs from any possible side effects from rapeseed.

  • Don’t allow your dog to get immersed in rapeseed for lengths of time, as it can increase the chances of skin reactions, just as is the case with exposure to any kind of pollen or blossom.
  • If possible, avoid taking your dog into rapeseed fields.
  • If your dog has to enter a rapeseed field, watch over them to ensure they don’t ingest any rapeseed
  • Watch out for side effects if you notice that your dog has been in a rapeseed field.
  • If your dog ingests rapeseed and shows signs of minor gastrointestinal issues, treat them for these signs.

What if your dog shows these rare reactions?

While we hope that your pet won’t be the negative exception, it helps to prepare your mind for worst-case scenarios.

If your dog shows any of the extreme signs after being in contact with rapeseed, such as skin reaction and inflammation, inflammation around the eyes, mild to severe gastrointestinal issues, signs of poisoning, and any other untoward and clinical signs, take them to see a vet immediately for an examination.

Final words about rapeseeds and your dogs

Summarily, we have been able to establish several facts. First, the viral post on social media about how rapeseeds are extremely dangerous to your dog is outrageous, overhyped, and largely untrue.

We have also established conditions within which your dog might suffer the side effects of rapeseed. However, your dog is less likely to be in such situations and conditions, especially if you keep an eye on them.

In the end, vets are more than able to take care of your pet to ensure that whatever they might experience after exposure to rapeseed or its ingestion, they’re able to be treated without any dangerous or drastic effects. 

Categories: BlogsDogs

Princess Egieya


Princess Egieya is a thriving radio presenter and newscaster with a few years of media experience and many more years penning words to life. The Mass Communication graduate from the University of Benin has a keen interest in current affairs, a knack for communicating, and a skill with words. She loves writing about everything there is to write about, just as much as learning all that there is to learn out there.


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