Lactose-intolerant dogs should not be given dairy products like cheese and yogurt.
Dairy products like cheese are a staple in our diet. We relish having a delicious cheese toast in our morning breakfast. However, can it be given to dogs, since our furry friends find it difficult to handle dairy products? The following DogAppy article elaborates more on the safety aspect of feeding cheese to dogs:
Can Cheese be Given to Dogs?
There is no harm in feeding cheese to your dog, provided it is given in the right amount. Dogs enjoy eating cheese, so you won't face any difficulty feeding it. Cheese contains a great deal of calcium, the bone-building mineral. Also, it contains vitamin D that helps facilitate absorption of calcium in the body. Moreover, it is also a good source of proteins; however, that doesn't mean it can be a substitute for proteins obtained from animal sources. You can grate a small amount of cheese and combine it with dog food.
- Cheese should not be an integral part of your dog's diet. It is not something that should be given on a daily basis as it can cause digestion problems in dogs. But, occasional feeding, in moderation, is absolutely fine.
- For small-sized dogs, you may give 1 teaspoon of cottage cheese, while for medium- and large-sized dogs, you may give 1 to 2 tablespoons of cottage cheese respectively.
- Although occasionally feeding cheese isn't a concern, make sure it is given in limited amounts. This dairy product, when fed excessively, is notorious for causing digestion problems that lead to gas, diarrhea, and bloating.
- If you allow your pet to gobble a big slab of cheese, don't expect any health benefits, instead nature will take its course as your pet will soon suffer from an episode of diarrhea.
- In some cases, overfeeding cheese has been linked to constipation in dogs. In short, a stomach upset is a given if you overfeed cheese to your pet.
- Cheese is high in fat, so overfeeding can actually lead to serious medical conditions like pancreatitis that is typically marked by inflammation of the pancreas.
- Although high in nutrition, one cannot forget that cheese is high in fat. So, you need to buy low-fat or fat-free versions, which means opting for cottage cheese that has long been an integral part of a healthy diet. Cottage cheese contains significantly less amount of fat than regular cheese.
- Moreover, cottage cheese has a soft consistency, which makes it easier to mix with dog food. Also, since it is low in fat, your pet will not face any difficulty digesting it.
- However, cottage cheese also contains a great deal of salt, which can cause health problems in dogs. So, choose no-salt-added cottage cheese as it contains very little amount of sodium per serving. The phrase 'no salt added' is usually mentioned on the label of the product, which enables you to identify the low salt version of cottage cheese.
- Cottage cheese with new flavor additions are available in the market. But prefer the plain variety, since your pet may not be accustomed to having food with strong flavors. Also, garlic- and onion-flavored cheese can actually be dangerous to dog health. So, it is best to feed plain non-fat cottage cheese.
- Another alternative is to feed fat-free cheddar cheese. As dogs love cheese, you can cut the cheddar into small cubes and use it as a part of a dog training treat.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a veterinarian.