The Powerful Benefits of Seaweed Polysaccharides for Dogs

A curious black dog explores a shallow pool on a rocky shoreline, surrounded by abundant golden-brown seaweed under the clear blue sky, suggesting a natural connection between dogs and the marine environment. 


Seaweed is fast becoming known as a true superfood for humans, dogs and many other animals. There are thousands of different seaweed varieties around the world; many of them contain an abundance of nutrients and compounds that can have transformative affects on the health and wellbeing of our dogs. Vitamins, minerals, proteins, fibre can all be found in seaweed, but another lesser known, but really important compounds found in seaweed are polysaccharides. Keep reading to learn more about pollysaccharides in seaweed and how they can help to boost the health and longevitiy of your dog.  


  • Pollysaccharides are known as complex carbohydrates and are found in plants, including marine plants (seaweed) 

  • Pollysaccharides play a vital role in living organisms, serving as energy storage molecules, structural components, and even playing a role in cell recognition and signaling

  • Pollysaccharides can provide essential health benefits for both human and canine health

  • Seaweed is one type of plant that is very rich in polysaccharides  

  • Seaweed and the pollysaccharides that it contain, has the potential to boost the immune system, improve skin condition, along with a whole host of other benefits

What are Pollysaccharides

A molecular illustration of polysaccharides, showcasing a complex lattice of interconnected spheres in warm amber tones, symbolizing the intricate structure of these essential carbohydrates against a soft, glowing background.

Polysaccharides are complex carbohydrates that play a vital role in living organisms, serving as energy storage molecules, structural components, and even playing a role in cell recognition and signaling. Polysaccharides can vary in size, structure, and function, and they are classified into different types based on their specific constituents and the bonds that link them. Some of the more common examples of polysaccharides include starch, cellulose, glycogen, and chitin.

Seaweeds, also known as macroalgae, are aquatic plants that thrive in marine environments. They encompass a diverse group of organisms, including green, red, and brown seaweed varieties, each of which contains unique polysaccharides that contribute to their structural integrity and functional properties. However, the pollysaccharides found in seaweed, for example, fucoidans, laminarans, and ulvans can offer fantastic health benefits for dogs, including improved digestion and gut health, boosted immune system, support for healthy skin and coat, and regulation of thyroid function.

Improved digestion and gut health  

Seaweed polysaccharides are vitally important when it comes to improving digestion and gut health in dogs. These beneficial compounds act as prebiotics, supporting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut microbiome. By promoting a healthy balance of gut microbes, seaweed can help reduce issues like diarrhea and dysbiosis while improving overall digestive function.

Dental health 

Polysaccharides found in certain types of seaweed can potentially contribute to dental health in dogs. Certain brown seaweeds, that contain alginates, have been studied for their potential benefits in oral health. The research suggests that the alginates can bind to dental plaque and oral bacteria, helping to prevent their attachment to the teeth. This may lead to reduced plaque formation and a decreased risk of dental issues like tartar buildup and gum disease. Additionally, seaweed-derived polysaccharides may also have anti-inflammatory properties that could be beneficial for maintaining healthy gums and reducing the risk of oral infections.

A promotional banner for CANIDENT, featuring a white background with a blue seaweed pattern. The product name 'CANIDENT' is displayed prominently on the left, alongside a silhouette of a dog. To the right, there's an image of the CANIDENT product container with a smiling dog on the label. Bullet points highlight the benefits of the product: Reduce tartar, Improve gum health, Freshen breath.

Boosts the immune system  

Seaweed supplementation can be a good way to boost your dog's immune system. The polysaccharides found in seaweed have been shown to have antimicrobial properties, inhibiting the growth of pathogenic bacteria that can make your dog sick. By supporting a healthy immune system, seaweed helps to protect against common illnesses and infections. Additionally, the antioxidant activity of seaweed extracts can help prevent oxidative stress and its associated health condition

Skin and coat

Polysaccharides from seaweed have shown anti-inflammatory properties. Inflammation in the skin can lead to various skin issues in dogs, such as itching, redness, and irritation. By reducing inflammation, these polysaccharides can help alleviate discomfort and promote healthier skin. Seaweed-derived polysaccharides can also possess antioxidant properties, which help neutralize harmful free radicals in the body. Oxidative stress can contribute to skin and coat issues in dogs, so antioxidants can play a role in maintaining healthy skin and

Different pollysaccharides in brown red and green seaweed 

Below is a table explaining which pollysaccharies are founds in different seaweed types and the potential health benefits of these pollysaccharides for dogs.  

A triptych image showcasing vibrant underwater seaweed varieties in their natural habitat. On the left, bright green seaweed representing green seaweed varieties. The middle image displays crimson red seaweed, symbolizing red seaweed types. On the right, a cluster of brown seaweed with textured bladders is depicted, indicating brown seaweed species.

Brown Seaweeds





Potential health benefits for dogs

Dental care

Digestive health

Weight management

Immune Support

Joint Health

Digestive Aid

Immune support

Digestive health



Red Seaweeds




Potential health benefits for dogs

Digestive Aid

Joint Support

Dental Health

Digestive Health

Joint Support

Skin Health


Green Seaweeds




Potential health benefits for dogs

Joint Health

Digestive Aid

Coat Condition

Immune support

Digestive health




The increasing recognition of seaweed as a potent superfood for various species, including dogs, underscores its remarkable health benefits. Polysaccharides, complex carbohydrates present in seaweed, play a big roles in land and aquatic plants, encompassing energy storage, structural integrity, and even cellular communication. These essential compounds are also pivotal in human and canine health, with seaweed emerging as a rich source of these polysaccharides.

Seaweeds, comprise of three general groups, brown, green and red contain unique polysaccharides like fucoidans, laminarans, and ulvans that can be difficult for dogs to consume if they are not incorporating seaweed into their diet. The significance of these compounds in enhancing canine well-being cannot be overstated. Seaweed-derived polysaccharides can contribute to optimal digestion and gut health by serving as prebiotics, fostering a balanced gut microbiome and mitigating issues like diarrhea and dysbiosis. Additionally, the immune-boosting attributes of these polysaccharides, manifested through antimicrobial properties and antioxidant activity, can fortify a dog's defenses against illnesses and oxidative stress-related ailments.

Furthermore, seaweed's impact can also extend to dermatological health. Polysaccharides from seaweed exhibit anti-inflammatory properties that alleviate skin discomfort arising from inflammation. The antioxidants within these compounds counteract harmful free radicals, reinforcing skin and coat health. The diverse array of polysaccharides found in different seaweed types, such as alginates, fucoidans, laminarans, agar, carrageenan, and ulvans mean that incorporating seaweed into your dog's diet can have transformative affects on their health, wellbeing and longevity.

Two adorable dogs, a white fluffy one on the left and a golden curly-haired one on the right, are sitting on a wooden surface with a navy blue backdrop. Between them are three cylindrical containers of dog supplements, labeled 'OCULUS,' 'StoolRite,' and 'CANIDENT,' each featuring an image of a dog on the labels, suggesting these are products aimed at enhancing the well-being of pets.


1. What are polysaccharides, and why are they important for dogs?

Polysaccharides are complex carbohydrates that serve as energy storage, structural components, and even play a role in cell recognition and signaling in living organisms. For dogs, these compounds are essential for optimal health, supporting processes like digestion, immune function, and skin health.

2. How does seaweed contribute to a dog's health?

Seaweed, known as a superfood, contains various polysaccharides like fucoidans, laminarans, and ulvans. These compounds offer a range of benefits such as improved digestion and gut health through their prebiotic effects, boosted immune system with their antimicrobial properties, and better skin condition due to their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant attributes. 

3. How do seaweed polysaccharides support digestive health in dogs?

Seaweed polysaccharides act as prebiotics, fostering the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. This helps in maintaining a healthy gut microbiome balance, reducing issues like diarrhea and improving overall digestion. Additionally, these compounds can contribute to better oral health by reducing plaque formation and bad breath.

4. Can seaweed supplementation enhance a dog's immune system?

Yes, seaweed supplementation can enhance a dog's immune system. The polysaccharides found in seaweed, especially fucoidans and ulvans, possess antimicrobial properties that inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria. By supporting a robust immune system, seaweed helps protect dogs from common illnesses and infections while also offering antioxidant activity to counter oxidative stress.

5. How do seaweed polysaccharides contribute to skin and coat health?

Polysaccharides from seaweed exhibit anti-inflammatory properties that can alleviate skin issues like itching, redness, and irritation. Additionally, their antioxidant properties help neutralize harmful free radicals, contributing to healthier skin and coat. This can lead to improved overall skin health in dogs.

6. Which types of seaweed contain specific polysaccharides, and what benefits do they offer to dogs?

Different types of seaweed contain distinct polysaccharides. Brown seaweeds contain alginates, fucoidans, and laminarans, offering benefits such as dental care, immune support, joint health, and digestion aid. Red seaweeds feature agar and carrageenan, supporting digestive health, joint function, and skin health. Green seaweeds contain ulvans and laminarans, contributing to joint health, digestive aid, coat condition, and immune support.

7. Is seaweed safe for my dog to eat?

Yes, in moderation. Seaweed can provide numerous health benefits for dogs but should be given in controlled amounts to avoid potential digestive issues. Seaweed supplements should also be purchased from reputable manufacturers.