Pet experts often debate about whether cream cheese is bad for dogs. After all, most dogs tend to be lactose intolerant so they can’t drink milk or eat regular cheese. So, can dogs eat cream cheese? The answer is yes, but only if your dog is not lactose intolerant. Cream cheese can be a very healthy treat for many dogs, but if there is an intolerance, it may lead to an upset stomach. Here are some factors to consider when thinking about cream cheese for dogs!
Should You Give Your Dog Cream Cheese?
Some dogs can easily tolerate some dairy in their diets while others will experience an upset stomach among other symptoms from even small amounts. In most cases, it is probably best to avoid giving your dog any dairy products, including cream cheese. But, it isn’t going to kill them if you decide to let them try it.
If your dog has never had any dairy food, you probably don’t know whether or not they are lactose intolerant. In this case, if you do want to try them with a bit of cream cheese, it is best to just give them a small amount.
If you don’t notice any symptoms, such as gas, bloating, vomiting, or diarrhea, it is probably safe to continue giving them cream cheese as a treat on occasion. Just don’t give them too much of it, or give it to them too often. Too much dairy in a dog’s diet can lead to serious constipation issues.
Even if you aren’t worried about the lactose, you do need to consider how the cheese is made. Cream cheese is processed, and as we all know, processed foods aren’t the best option for dogs or humans. Yes, it does contain many important nutrients, but there are better ways to get these nutrients into your dog’s diet.
How Much Cream Cheese Can Dogs Have?
In addition to lactose intolerance, dogs shouldn’t have too much cream cheese because of its high fat content. It is important to keep an eye on your dog’s weight, because obesity in dogs can lead to a whole host of health issues, particularly pancreatitis.
When discovered early, pancreatitis can be easy to treat. But, if it is not discovered in the early stages, it can require surgery, and can lead to death. Ultimately, we recommend you limit the serving to a tablespoon, and only give it to them once a week or less.
Yes, Dogs Can Have Cream Cheese in Moderation
If your dog isn’t lactose intolerant, it shouldn’t be a problem to let them have a little bit of cream cheese once in a while. Otherwise, talk to your vet, and ask about other nutrient-rich foods that you can give your dog instead that they will love, but that are going to be a lot better for them.
And if you are worried at all about giving cream cheese as a treat, avoid it all together. There are other cheeses that are safer, such as cottage cheese which has a much lower lactose content.