Is Yogurt Good for Dogs
Yogurt is a tasty snack for people to enjoy. You may have caught your dog looking longingly at you while you enjoy some yogurt and wondered if they can have a taste.
Most dogs can safely eat yogurt, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they should. Yogurt is not toxic to dogs but it does contain lactose.
Many dogs are lactose-sensitive or lactose intolerant, meaning they have trouble digesting lactose-containing products like milk and yogurt. However, some will tolerate a small amount of yogurt just fine.
Health Benefits of Yogurt for Dogs
For dogs who tolerate lactose, there are some health benefits of yogurt. It is high in calcium and protein for stronger bones. It can also act as a probiotic which helps ease the digestive system.
If you give your dog yogurt, make sure it is plain Greek yogurt and doesn't have any added sweeteners. Xylitol is a common additive to yogurt and it's toxic to dogs. Flavored yogurts are also not a good option for dogs.
In general, small dogs can have about a spoonful of yogurt every now and then as a treat. Larger dogs can have one to three spoonfuls per serving.
Risks of Yogurt for Dogs
The main risk of giving yogurt to your dog is that they will have some digestive upset. Lactose can cause diarrhea, gas, and vomiting for dogs. Yogurt is also high in fat, so if you are feeding it as a regular treat, your dog may be getting too much fat in their diet to maintain a healthy weight.
Additionally, lots of yogurts have additives like Xylitol that are not dog-friendly. It’s best to start with a small amount to first see if your dog tolerates it.
It’s always important to discuss additions to your dog’s diet with your vet before making any changes.