Have you ever witnessed your dog drooling over your cup of yogurt? It’s almost impossible to say no to those puppy eyes. But the question is “Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?” As much as you want to feed some fresh yogurt to your dog, it’s important to know whether or not it is safe for your pup. Well, don’t worry. We’re here to clear your doubt.
So, Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?
Simply put, yes, your dog can eat yogurt. But, just because it’s safe for your pup to eat yogurt doesn’t mean that it’s the best choice for every dog. Moreover, there are various selections of yogurt; some of which might contain artificial sweeteners that can be fatal to your dog. Your pooch can enjoy yogurt but there are quite a few things you should know before feeding them some. Here’s all you need to know before sharing some yogurt with your furry companion.
Is Yogurt Good for Dogs?
Yogurt is made from milk cultured with live bacteria. It is a loved dairy product for its soothing taste and nutritional benefits. Yogurt is high in calcium and protein and along with the probiotics present in it, yogurt is also good for the digestive system. These probiotics or live bacteria can improve your pup’s digestive health, meaning that yogurt is good for dogs. However, there are a lot of different kinds of yogurt you can find on the dairy aisles.
So, which yogurt should you feed your dog? If you’re intent on feeding some yogurt to your dog, we recommend you feed them plain yogurt, free of added sweeteners. It is better to feed them yogurt with lots of live bacteria, such as plain, Greek-style yogurt, as this yogurt has lower levels of lactose compared to regular yogurt.
But if your dog is lactose-intolerant then it’s a whole different matter. Dairy products contain lactose- a large sugar molecule made up of glucose and galactose. It requires an enzyme called lactase to break down. Puppies usually have the enzyme in abundance, but as the pup grows up and is introduced to human food, they produce lesser lactase. As they produce much less lactase than the amount required to break down the lactose in the dairy product, it can be hard for them to digest the dairy products.
So, it might be a good idea not to introduce your dog to yogurt if they’re lactose-intolerant. But if you are keen on feeding them some, then try giving them some yogurt with low lactose levels.
Check the nutritional value of the yogurt pack before buying it. Make sure the yogurt doesn’t contain Xylitol. Xylitol is an artificial sweetener, that is extremely toxic to dogs. Also check the lactose value to determine which yogurt has the lowest lactose, so that your dog can eat the yogurt without any problems.
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Symptoms of Lactose-intolerance
If a lactose intolerant dog had some yogurt, you can see the following symptoms:
- Loose stools
- Intestinal Pain
If they show any of the aforementioned symptoms, then check in with your vet as soon as possible. Furthermore, you should always be concerned about the fat content of any dairy product. Feeding your dog with too much fat-rich food products can lead to intestinal upset, and pancreatitis, a life-threatening health condition.
Are There Any Benefits of Feeding Yogurt to My Dog?
Probiotics play an important part in keeping both you and your dog’s immune system strong and healthy. When it comes to humans, yogurt is a great solution for humans. But what about dogs? For dogs, yogurt isn’t much reliable as a source of probiotics.
First, let’s talk about the advantages of probiotics. Following are some benefits of probiotics:
- Protects the body against viruses, bacteria, and fungi.
- Increases production of digestive enzymes.
- Support brain functions.
- Prevent dental diseases.
- Helps fight against toxins, heavy metals, and allergens.
So, how do I add probiotics to my dog’s diet? You could try giving Fido a probiotic supplement. Look for a supplement that:
- Contains more than one strain of bacteria.
- Has a minimum of 20 billion colony forming units.
A soil-based probiotic is recommended. As soil-based probiotics are more resilient than regular probiotics, they create a protective shell around themselves while traveling in your dog’s gut. This means the probiotics will survive until your dog needs them. You could try consulting your vet for a good probiotic supplement meant for your dog.
You can buy a suitable probiotic supplement by clicking here.
How Much Yogurt Can My Dog Eat?
The amount of yogurt your dog can eat without facing any health problems depends on the yogurt and your dog’s size, weight, daily calorie intake, and underlying health issues. You should feed your dog yogurt, no more than ten percent of the calorie they eat every day. Give them only a tablespoon for the first time and if they don’t show any adverse reactions, you could add another tablespoon of yogurt the next time.
But if your dog is lactose-intolerant, then you should consult your vet before giving him/her any yogurt. As it can lead to diarrhea and loose stools.
Also, check the nutritional information stated on the product label before you feed them yogurt. The nutritional value of yogurt for dogs varies considerably based on the type of yogurt you’re feeding them and the size of your dog’s body. You should never give your pooch too much of any food (human or canine).
Also, check out Can Dogs Eat Cheese?
How Can I Introduce My Dog to Yogurt?
Your dog might have a fruit that they love eating. You could try adding that fruit to the yogurt. For example, you could add strawberries, and blueberries to the yogurt. You can also add vegetables such as carrots, kale, and pumpkins to your dog’s yogurt.
Make sure to cut the additions into small bite-sized pieces before adding them to the yogurt. You could also puree, or steam the additional products before coating them with yogurt. Freezing your pup’s favorite yogurt-fruit combo might also be a good idea for an interesting and tasty treat.
Yes, your dog can eat yogurt as long as you feed them some in moderation. Make sure to check the ingredients thoroughly before buying and give them only a little yogurt at the beginning. Too much yogurt can cause serious health problems like diarrhea and pancreatitis, so only serve yogurt as an occasional treat. Yogurt isn’t necessary for their daily diet, but dogs need probiotics in their diet, so you could try giving them a probiotic supplement instead, after consulting your vet.
Thank you for reading the article.
Now that you know how you can safely add yogurt to your dog’s diet, explore other yogurt-related dog articles that you might be interested in.
Have you ever given yogurt to your dog? What was their reaction? Did they like it? We would love to hear from you. Please share with our community by leaving a comment below!