Can Dogs Eat Cheese?
Whether you’re grabbing a cheese stick as a quick snack or you’re preparing a charcuterie board filled with delicious cheeses, chances are your furry friend is watching. You may wonder, can dogs eat cheese? The short answer is yes.
A small piece of cheese here and there isn’t going to hurt your dog, plus it doesn’t have some benefits. However, it also comes with some risks, so be mindful of those. As always, reach out to your dog’s veterinarian before trying any new foods with your pooch.
Health benefits of feeding dogs cheese
Cheese is good for many things, such as being used as training treats or as a quick snack to hide medication in. But it’s also nutritional for your pooch, too. Cheese contains vitamins and minerals, such as:
- Fatty acids
- Vitamins A and B-complex
This human food is non-toxic to dogs, but that still means it should be fed in moderation. Too much cheese can make your dog sick.
Health concerns of feeding dogs cheese
First, cheese is high in fat. If your four-legged friend is overweight or has a history of pancreatitis, then cheese is one food you might want to stay away from. If your doggo isn’t overweight and eats too much cheese, it’ll be easy for them to keep on the extra pounds, thus causing them to be overweight.
Some cheeses are also high in salt content. While your dog should have enough fresh, clean water to drink at all times, sometimes the salt content is too much. Your doggo could end up with sodium poisoning. Call your vet right away if you happen to notice symptoms such as:
- Loss of appetite
- Extreme thirst
- Kidney problems
Lactose intolerance in dogs
Finally, one other concern is that cheese is a dairy. Like humans, some dogs can be lactose intolerant. Cheese doesn’t contain much lactose compared to milk, but it can still upset your dog’s digestive system.
When giving your dog cheese, do so in small quantities and only once in a while. For the first time, monitor your pooch carefully. They may be lactose intolerant. If you notice they have an upset stomach or any negative bathroom changes, call your vet.
Safe cheeses for your dog
Before giving any cheese to your dog, let’s talk about which types are safe for your pup to consume. Be sure to check the label on the cheese to ensure that it doesn’t have any added ingredients that are toxic to dogs. For example, some cheeses have garlic, onions, or chives in them.
Types of cheese that are bad for dogs
Blue cheese and other “moldy” cheeses aren’t good for your pup to eat. The mold within the cheese produces Roquefortine C, which is a mycotoxin that’s toxic to dogs. A little maybe okay if your dog accidentally snags a small bite, but if you notice vomiting, diarrhea, or seizures in your pup, then call your veterinarian right away.
Types of cheese that are good for dogs
Common cheeses typically found in homes, such as soft cheeses like string cheese, mozzarella, and young cheddar, are safe for dogs to consume. These types are typically high in fat, though, so moderation is key.
Cottage cheese has plenty of benefits for dogs. For example, protein, calcium, vitamins, and probiotics are healthy for your pooch to eat. Cottage cheese also comes in low-fat and low-sodium, so be sure to pick that certain one from the grocery store.
Cream cheese is high in calories, so it should be given to your pup in minimal quantities and only in moderation. Also, it needs to be plain – no flavors or added ingredients such as garlic or onions – and low-fat. Otherwise, cream cheese is fatty.
How to safely feed your dog cheese
You can add cheese to your dog’s diet in a few different ways. It can be used as an occasional treat when you’re trying to hide medication for your pup to consume, or you can use it as a training treat in small moderation.
Alternatively, you can sprinkle a little bit of cheese on their food as a topper. As long as you don’t give your dog dairy every single day and it’s only in small amounts, your pooch will certainly love it.
If you want to add cheese to your dog’s diet in another way, try these homemade recipes listed below.
Can dogs eat cheese? Yes!
While dairy might not be the best option to give your pooch all the time, cheese is a great snack for your pup once in a while. It can be fed to your doggo in many different ways, and they’ll surely love this tasty treat.
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Can dogs eat cheese? Yes!