Yogurt for Dogs

by Naomi Millburn
Unfortunately, dog yogurt isn't a fixture on supermarket shelves.

Unfortunately, dog yogurt isn't a fixture on supermarket shelves.

Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

If your precious doggie appears to have a hankering for the yogurt you enjoy, be happy that the plain stuff isn't toxic to canines -- but be sure you just serve Poochie unflavored yogurt. And remember that some dogs respond much better to lactose than others.

Lactose

The majority of adult canines are not able to properly and adequately digest lactose, which is a milk sugar. Lactose is an important component of not only milk but all dairy products, including yogurt, cheese, butter and many others. In large amounts, lactose is definitely not recommended for canine consumption, as it could trigger uncomfortable stomach upset and diarrhea distress.

Lactose in Yogurt

Plain yogurt is not toxic to dogs. Since yogurt is a fermented dairy product, its lactose content luckily is significantly lower than that of fresh dairy products like ice cream and milk. For that reason, it may not upset your little one's tummy if you'll feed it sparingly only. If you notice even the slightest sign that your dog isn't reacting well to yogurt, stop feeding it to him. Also, keep in mind that moderation is key. Think a bite or two of yogurt rather than a whole cup.

Changes in Diet

Although yogurt is generally totally safe to feed to dogs in very small amounts, it is important to remember that any changes to a pet's diet may lead to digestive upset including diarrhea. If your poor pet experiences watery stools after eating even a tiny amount of yogurt, the shock to his usually consistent diet may be to blame.

Other Special Treats

Since yogurt may not be the greatest choice for every single doggie out there, consider lactose-free options. If you're unsure about whether or not a certain food may be appropriate for your doggie to eat, consult your veterinarian first. The ASPCA advocates a variety of "doggie-friendly" people foods, including seedless apple slices, zucchini, green beans, cucumber, bread, bananas and plain baked potatoes.

Photo Credits

  • Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images

About the Author

Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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