Dogs can be very nosy and curious creatures. They like to try new things when available, especially when related to food. Being part of your life, they get to snatch something from the table from time to time. Sometimes, Around meal times, owners tend to give their dog a bit of what they are cooking as a treat, like cheese or omelet, without knowing its effects on the dog’s health.
Cheese is one of the so frequently used food, which makes it more accessible to pets like dogs. if you were a good owner and you love your best friend that much, you must have wondered if CAN DOGS EAT CHEESE Or basically any type of food that we, humans, can eat?
Despite the fact that our food is super healthy, when It’s well prepared of course, we cannot determine whether it has the same benefits for our pets at home or not.
In case you faced the same situation, where you gave your dog such type of food, we strongly advise you to read the article “CAN dog EAT CHEESE?” To find out the different qualities of cheese as important food, its benefits as well as its disadvantages if any, and the different available solutions to avoid any health problems.
Now, CAN DOGS EAT CHEESE … LET’S FIND OUT!
1. Cheese, what is it!?
Throughout time, cheese has been and still is, one of the essential sources of nutrition, for humans as well as some pets.
Cheese is derived from milk, so it contains a lot of fats and proteins. It comes in different forms and colors depending on the type of cheese itself. We can find soft and hard cheese, in terms of consistency, and these latter compose of other types, namely: cheddar, Gouda, cream, mozzarella, and low-fat cheese or so-called cottage cheese.
so what are the factors that determine whether can dogs eat cheese or not
BASIC COMPONENT OF CHEESE :
Generally, Fats are the dominant component in cheese. The portion of fats differs from one type of cheese to another. For example, cottage cheese fats are around 0.5-34 %, whereas in cream cheese fats are around 40-65%. The fats provided by cheese are highly complex because it contains several different fatty acids, if not hundreds. One regular slice of 100 g of cheese contains the following:
Trans fat 1.18 g Protein 24 g
Carbs 1.3 g Fiber 0 g
Fat 33.8 g Saturated 19.37 g
Omega-3 0.14 g Omega-6 0.82 g
Sugar 0.3 g water 37 %
Monounsaturated 8.43 g Polyunsaturated 1.43 g
Carbohydrates are also an important content to be considered, its major element is LACTOSE, which refers to milk sugar. During production, LACTOSE is broken down into GLUCOSE and GALACTOSE, however, these two components are not available in all types of cheese, they are only available in fresh cheese such as cream and cottage cheese.
VITAMINS IN CHEESE :
Cheese is a great source of vitamins and minerals. It is the second richest source of CALCIUM after milk. Vitamin A, K2, B, riboflavin, B12, and sodium are also vitamins provided by cheese, which makes it the richest dietary source in the western diet. Cheese also contains a lot of minerals like phosphorus and selenium that are commonly found in processed food.
After all these helpful insights, we still do not know exactly whether can dogs eat cheese? Or not! So keep reading to find out the answer in the next part.
2. CAN DOG EAT CHEESE?
Dog owners have been trending this assumption that since milk was the only source of food for dogs since they were little puppies then why can’t we give them cheese which is derived from milk anyway?! Here is something to bear in mind before you answer. The milk of the puppies’ mother is totally different from the one provided by cows or goats; for it has different grades of the above-mentioned fats and proteins.
Even though cheese is different from milk, they contain almost the same ingredients that make them go hand in hand. Well, can dogs eat cheese? YES, they can BUT with conditions.
Dairy products, like cheese, can cause health problems if consumed a lot. Veterinarians noticed that when the dog eats too much cheese symptoms like vomiting, gas, or even diarrhea are occurring repeatedly.
3. WHEN SHOULDN’T YOU GIVE YOUR DOG CHEESE?
just like humans, dogs and other pets can have allergies to different types of food. Some dogs appear to have an allergy to cheese or milk, and this allergy can be figured out by taking your dog to the veterinarian to do some blood tests to confirm or dis-confirm this latter.
Another reason that forbids you from giving your dog cheese is in cases of pancreatitis, in other words, you need to check if your dog is having fats in the blood. If not you can give your dog cheese but with moderated amounts to avoid any health problems.
Also, certain dogs cannot digest the milk sugar that is LACTOSE very well. The portions of LACTOSE in cheese are not very high so it cannot cause serious problems such as stomach upset, however, small dogs or little puppies it can show symptoms like vomiting. Such cases, where the dog is having digestion problems because of cheese, require immediate action and appropriate treatment.
4. HOW SHOULD YOU FEED YOUR DOG CHEESE?
Dogs can eat cheese but not any type of cheese and not any amount of it. This source of food can provide so many benefits for your dog, yet with moderation. Veterinarians recommend cottage cheese due to its nutrition value of the high level of calcium and the low calories that provide a balance, approximately 55 calories in a quarter cup given. Cream cheese is also okay for dogs depending on the other ingredients and flavors added to like garlic or anion which can make a huge difference for your dog’s health, harmful side effects.
As far as cheddar cheese is concerned, what really matters is the age of that cheese, the aged cheddar contains a low percentage of LACTOSE so that makes it a good option for your dog. While Feta and Mozzarella possess higher amounts of LACTOSE and fats, so avoid any large portions. Now, what suits your dog the best, especially the dogs having allergies to lactose, is the Goat cheese; it has the lowest level of milk sugar which makes it the healthiest choice ever for your dog.
5. WHAT & HOW MUCH CHEESE SHOULD YOU FEED YOUR DOG?
For big dogs, the amount of cheese is between 50-100 g per week, which makes it 10 g per day maximum. It is up to the dog owner if s/he wants to give cheese every day or divide the portions to be given each two or three days. Now, for puppies and small dogs, the required amount of cheese is around 40-55 g per week, how much cheese is given during the week is up to the owner to divide it, as long as they are equal to each other. Remember, cottage, cream, and goat cheese are the best option for your dog’s health given in moderation.
6. CHEESE’S BENEFITS OVER DOGS’ HEALTH
Cheese, when is added to the diet regularly, can help in the following:
- Strengthen the bone and teeth structure through time, and it also works as an anti-age / cancer because of the calcium and vitamin A.
- Develop the functions of the nervous system through vitamin B 12.
- Gain healthy weight through the proteins provided, of course when it is consumed in moderation.
- It is delicious and completes the nutrition value needed for the daily meal.
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