Yogurt has become a favorite of a lot of people. It is versatile, from ice cream to mid-afternoon snacks and even sauces for chicken or pork. But is it safe for your dog? And what about greek yogurt?
Well, the answer to this question is why not!? Yes, you can give your dog yogurt. You have to keep in mind; this depends on the type of yogurt you feed them. But can they eat greek yogurt? Of course, as long as it is unflavored and does not have any kind of sweeteners, you can feed your dog a little bit of greek yogurt.
We have to make sure our dogs’ immune systems stay in great shape. One way is to give some probiotics, and yogurt is an excellent source of these friendly bacteria. If you are still curious about your dog and yogurt, keep reading.
Why Is Yogurt Good For Your Dog?
Depending on the type of yogurt, it can be healthy for our dogs. It can boost digestive health, bone, and muscle. It can also help to clear up yeast infections on the skin and ears.
Yogurt is rich in probiotics, calcium, and a good source of protein. These properties make yogurt a good treat for dogs.
Even though there is a better way for your dog to get probiotics, yogurt is a good source; this can help your dog’s digestive system.
Yogurt can help to promote folic acid, which is essential for pregnant doggies.
It helps to maintain the natural balance of the internal bacteria culture found as part of the native intestinal flora.
Benefits For Dogs With Diarrhea
Dogs have a pretty good amount of bacteria in their bodies. Some of these bacterias help the dog to break down and digest the food the canine eats. One of the reasons your dog might have diarrhea is that the balance of good bacterias is off, causing your dog not to digest the food properly.
The probiotics in the yogurt might help your dog’s digestive system to maintain a good balance of good bacteria. It could help when your vet prescribes your dog antibiotics to help the diarrhea recovery process.
Antibiotics kill most of the bacteria that come in contact with it, including good bacteria. The yogurt’s probiotics have an essential role in replacing the good bacteria your pup lacks due to the medication.
|Top||Blue Buffalo Health Bars Natural Crunchy Dog Treats Biscuits||Learn More|
|Top||NUTRO Mini Bites Natural Dog Treats Berry & Yogurt Flavor, 8 oz. Bag||Learn More|
|Top||Fruitables Greek Yogurt Dog Treats | Healthy Treats for Dogs||Learn More|
|Top||Milk-Bone MaroSnacks Dog Treats for Dogs of All Sizes, 40 Ounces||Learn More|
|Top||Rachael Ray Nutrish Burger Bites Real Meat Dog Treats||Learn More|
When choosing a yogurt for a dog with diarrhea, it is safer to go with greek yogurt, fat-free. Greek yogurt has a significant amount of healthy bacteria and has some properties that can help fight infections.
Probiotics For Dogs
A healthy dog should maintain a good balance in his digestive system. Still, factors like stress, illness, or malnutrition can mess that up; this is where probiotic supplements come in handy.
Probiotics have some excellent benefits for dogs. Some of them are:
- Support the immune system.
- Affect mood and emotions.
- Improved diarrhea.
- Prevent anxiety.
- Reduce Stress.
- Improve food allergies.
Best Probiotics For Your Dog
- Foods rich in probiotics. These foods should be suitable for dog consumption—things like yogurt and Kefir are good options.
- Dog food with probiotics. You can buy your dog specialty food with probiotics added. It would be best if you also thought about getting prebiotics to feed the good bacteria.
- Probiotic treats. As there is dog food with probiotics, there are soft treats that contain probiotics. These treats might be an easy way to get your dog to consume a good dose of them. When choosing this option, be careful as some of these treats do not have live bacteria and could contain additives and artificial preservatives.
- Pills. You can also find some probiotic capsules available. You can hide it in wet food or treats.
- Powder. You can find powdered probiotics available; also, some live probiotics come in individual pockets. This presentation is harder to give to your dog.
How Much Greek Yogurt Can I Give My Dog?
It is OK for you to give your dog a little greek, plain, and lactose-free yogurt from time to time. But you have to keep in mind not giving your dog more than 10% of your dog’s daily calorie intake.
For us to know the correct amount of yogurt, there are several factors to keep in mind:
- Daily calorie intake
- Activity level
- Any underlying health issues.
Here we give you some help to know the correct quantity for your dog if you want to measure it. Remember, it is better to check with your vet, as they have a better understanding of your dog’s health.
- For small dogs, one tablespoon per day is good.
- For large dogs, you can try two or three tablespoons per day.
A few recommendations for serving your dog a little bit of yogurt are:
- Share a few licks when you are preparing your breakfast or having a midday or mid-afternoon snack.
- You can put a small serving of greek yogurt on top of your dog’s food.
- If your dog is taking antibiotics, you can give him or her a spoonful of greek yogurt a few hours before the medicine.
- For flavored yogurt, use plain or Greek yogurt, and you can add fresh fruits like blueberries and strawberries.
- You can add ice and make your dog a smoothie.
- Make little yogurt ice cubes and give them to your dog as a treat.
It is preferable if you start by giving your four-paw buddy small amounts, increase it little by little. While doing so, you must keep an eye on your dog for any digestive issues, such as gas or diarrhea.
Greek Vs. Regular Yogurt
The two most evident differences are texture and flavor. Greek yogurt is thicker than the regular one, and its taste is more naturally tart when compared to plain unsweetened regular yogurt.
In the making of greek yogurt, whey is removed from it (whey is the remaining liquid after the milk is curdled and strained), but regular yogurt maintains its whey. This process is what makes the difference in texture and flavor.
Both yogurts are a good source of protein, but Greek yogurt is much better. It could have nearly triple the amount of protein than the regular one; this is also a result of removing the whey from the greek yogurt. For calcium, plain yogurt is the way to go.
Other Healthy Yogurts for your Dog
We have already established that greek yogurt is suitable for your dog, but there are some other types of yogurt that your dog can digest.
One of the two yogurts your dog can eat is plain yogurt and the second one is Kefir. But you have to make sure that it has to be lactose-free and avoid any kind of sweeteners.
Is Coconut Yogurt Safe for Dogs?
There are divided opinions on whether coconut products are excellent and safe for dogs.
According to the American Kennel Club, you can give your dog coconut oil in small amounts. It contains good components for your dog; it is antibacterial, anti-viral, and antifungal. Too much coconut oil can cause your dog diarrhea.
When feeding your dog coconut yogurt, try homemade. Commercial yogurt might contain artificial flavoring and preservatives that could be harmful to your dog.
An easy way to make coconut yogurt is by mixing Greek yogurt with raw coconut. You could also use a little bit of coconut oil as dogs absorb the nutrients faster.
Another way to give your dog this delicious treat is mixing one part of Greek non-fat yogurt with natural plain coconut milk. You can freeze it to make a cold treat for summer days. Coconut has some good benefits for your dog if you use the proper amount:
- It promotes the health of the skin and coat.
- It helps to eliminate foul dog odor.
- Speeds up the healing process.
- Improves brain function.
- Promotes weight loss.
- Boost your dog’s immune system.
- Help with the treatment of diabetes in dogs.
- It improves the digestion process.
Yogurts and Ingredients You Should Avoid
- Vanilla yogurt
- Fruit yogurt
- Artificially flavored yogurt
- Light or diet yogurt
- Fatty yogurt
How to Buy Yogurt for Your Dog
Keep in mind to avoid flavored and sweetened yogurts as they might contain Xylitol, which is highly toxic for dogs. Also, avoid any regular sugar. Go for plain flavors. Dogs love these more than the others.
Also, look for yogurt with lots of live cultures.
It is better if you go for Greek yogurt, plain flavor, as it has more protein and less lactose. If your dog is lactose intolerant, this could be a good option for him.
The Downside Of Yogurts For Dogs
Even when yogurt is not toxic for dogs, it is a product made for humans. If you exceed the amount recommended for your pup, it might result in symptoms like:
- Reduced weight gain
- Itching, even excessively
- Weight loss
Some naturalists say dogs should not eat yogurt at all. Some of their arguments are as follows:
Pasteurization consists of heating the food to high temperatures to kill harmful pathogens and bacteria to make it safe for human consumption.
But this process can cause more stress to your dog’s immune system.
Also read: My Dog Ate Brownies What Should I Do?
Some Dogs Are Lactose Intolerant
The lactose in yogurt could do some severe harm to your dog. Our dogs are just like humans; not all of them have the digestive enzymes to process and digest milk.
If your dog is lactose intolerant, he might suffer some of these symptoms:
Your dog can consume a little bit of sugar, but it has to be from a safe source like honey, berries, carrots, or other fruits and vegetables.
Too much sugar can also be a problem, mainly starch or added sugars. The side effects of sugar in your dogs are, but not limited to:
- Upset stomach
- Dental problems
Sugar-free could also be dangerous as it might contain Xylitol, which is deadly to dogs; a small amount can cause hypoglycemia and liver failure.
High-fat content in yogurt could do some severe damage to your dog. It can cause your dog additional stomach distress. It can even lead to more severe conditions like pancreatitis, which is an inflammation of the pancreas; this could be fatal for your dog. Some of the signs of acute pancreatitis in dogs are:
- Severe dehydration
- Persistent vomiting
- Abdominal pain
- Severe lethargy
- Collapse and shock
For chronic pancreatitis, some signs are:
- From decreased appetite to not eating.
- Abdominal pain
There are some divided opinions on whether yogurt is good for your dog or not. But our best bet is to go and consult our vets as they have more understanding of our dogs’ health records and situation.
When getting your dog some yogurt, our best recommendation is to give your dog greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is high in protein content and lower in lactose.
Also, there are some fun ways to feed your dog with yogurt. You can add some berries, make a simple smoothie, natural raw coconut, make some iced yogurt cubes; your imagination is the limit. However, you have to keep in mind that the yogurt should be lactose-free or low in lactose, without any kind of sweeteners, and low-fat.
Other harmful ingredients for your doggo are Xylitol, chocolate, fats, and artificial flavors.
Keep an eye on your dog and try to introduce the yogurt in tiny quantities at first; this way, you can see if it has some side effects that are not good for your pup, like:
- Abdominal cramps
- Vomiting or nausea
If you see any of these side effects, get in touch with your dog’s vet to get treatment according to the symptoms.
Now that you know this, we would love to know your opinion. Would you be open to trying to give your pup some greek yogurt? Which ways did you find more appealing to give to your dog?
More like this post:
- Why Do Cats Like Boxes? The Mystery Of Boxes And Cats
- Why Do Cats Sleep So Much? Should You Be Worried?
- When Do Cats Stop Growing? When Do They Reach Full Size?
Shawn Manaher is a serial entrepreneur but when he isn’t working, he loves dogs. He’s owned different pets over the years, and always gives a part of his heart to each pet.