Skim milk is milk that has had all the fat content removed, this means that it is very low in both calories and fat. So, you might be thinking that feeding skim milk to dogs because of the low-fat content might be a good idea. However, this is not the case, and answering ‘Can dogs drink skim milk?’ can be a little difficult and confusing. To clear this up we will take a look at the reasons why skim milk should not be consumed by dogs and the potential health issues that arise from drinking it.
Milk For Dogs
First of all, milk itself has no nutritional importance to adult dogs, and they do not require it in order to survive or remain healthy. In fact, dogs do not need any kind of milk product, and the only reason why some owners choose to add skimmed milk into their dog’s diet is that it is a low-fat food that does not have the added calories of other types of milk products. Puppies generally can drink their mother’s milk, any other kinds of milk like cow milk or goat milk, and/or a certified milk replacement formula without any concern, but you should consider feeding any milk to adult dogs.
This is because an enzyme named lactase is required to break down the sugar in the milk known as lactose. Puppies produce this enzyme in abundance to break down and digest the lactose in their mother’s milk. However, once the puppy is weaned, he/she starts to produce less amount of this enzyme. Adult dogs, on the other hand, produce little to no lactase which means that adult dogs have a harder time digesting the milk or dairy product. This condition is known as lactose intolerance.
So, it’s best for dogs to avoid consuming milk or any dairy product if they are lactose intolerant. And while dogs with lactose intolerance that drink milk won’t face any life-threatening problems, they could still come down with a few unpleasant symptoms. For example, the dog may experience a loss of appetite, vomiting, nausea, bloating, as well as watery diarrhea. These symptoms can be easily treated at home, but if they persist for a few days, you should take your dog to see a vet.
Skim Milk For Dogs – The Truth!
So, can dogs drink skim milk? While it is true that skim milk has lower fat and calorie content compared to whole milk, the lactose content of skim milk is similar to whole milk. This means that dogs with lactose intolerance shouldn’t drink skim milk. But dogs that aren’t lactose intolerant can drink skim milk, but only in small amounts and occasionally. In short, you should avoid giving skim milk to your pet. In fact, riboflavin, vitamin B12 & D, phosphorus, and calcium among others in skimmed milk can prove beneficial to a dogs’ health if drank in moderation.
So, whether or not your dog can eat skim milk depends on your dog. If your pooch is lactose intolerant don’t let them drink any amount of skim milk. If not, your dog can drink small amounts of skim milk. Just make sure you feed the milk in moderation and only as an occasional treat. The same rule applies to any other products that may include skim milk like cream, yogurt, or cheese. If you’re still unsure about feeding skim milk to your pooch consult with your vet to find out if it’s ok.
For more information on dairy products for dogs, check similar articles here.
How often do you feed skim milk to your dog? Or is your dog lactose intolerant? We would love to hear from you. Please share with our community in the comment section below.