Can I Give My Dog Ensure?

Can I Give My Dog Ensure?Ensure is a liquid supplement that’s loaded up with vitamins and minerals. It’s often used to help people pack on pounds or for healing quicker after an injury. Would giving it to a dog make any sense?

Ensure contains a good amount of lactose, which many dogs are intolerant of. That said, is there any situation where giving some could be beneficial for a canine? Let’s find out.

First off, there isn’t anything dangerous for dogs in Ensure. Besides the lactose, this health product has a lot of vitamins and minerals. So, in general, it isn’t considered harmful if your pet gets hold of it.

Can I Give My Dog Ensure? Answer: Yes, but some dogs don’t agree with it

While Ensure has been formulated for human consumption, there may be times when you can give it to your dog.

Owners of older dogs are sometimes looking for ways to promote health for their dog as they age; maybe they’re struggling to maintain weight or are taking a long time to heal after an injury. Since Ensure was developed specifically for human consumption you are encouraged to ask your vet about its use. They will have their opinion but also your dog’s full medical history. There isn’t a better piece of advise.

Once your vet agrees there is no harm in offering this to your dog now and then, start with small amounts. Even though Ensure has recently been changed to include a lower lactose level, too much of it can still lead to severe diarrhea for dogs

Helping Your Dog Bulk Up

Some dogs are naturally skinny, this may be due to a nervous disorder where they shiver and shake so much their metabolisms need to burn more fuel or maybe you have a dog that refuses to drink water and you know that fruit juice or milk are not alternatives.

Start by introducing your dog to Ensure slowly, small amounts mixed will reduce the risk of diarrhea. If your dog develops diarrhea it may be worthwhile reducing the mix further or stop giving it to your dog altogether. Skinny dogs will benefit from the extra minerals and vitamins that Ensure can provide.

Lactose and Doggie Diarrhea

The main side effect that dogs will have from drinking Ensure is diarrhea caused by the lactose in the mix. While the majority of dogs are lactose intolerant, the worst side effect you can expect to see will be diarrhea. Ensure has decreased the amount of lactose in their shakes, but there’s still enough to affect most dogs.

Remember this formulation has been designed for human consumption, not for animals. If diarrhea develops make sure that they drink plenty of water to reduce the risk of dehydration. Also, at that point, stop providing Ensure.

Must Monitor the Situation

Whenever you offer your dog something designed for human consumption, monitor them for changes in their behavior or overall health. If your dog starts vomiting or gets diarrhea, it may be prudent to contact your vet. Make sure they drink plenty of water to combat dehydration.

Canines can become dehydrated very quickly. Pull the skin up between the shoulder blades as a test. If it takes a couple of seconds to go back into place, your dog could already be dehydrated and may need medical attention.

Good Shake Choice for K9s

If you have an older dog that is suffering after an accident and isn’t recovering as quickly as it should, you may want to help them along. By offering them a shake that can improve recovery but can cause other symptoms, you need to decide which the best option is.

You may feel that your dog being able to move around freely is more important than having a dog with severe diarrhea, but bear in mind that older dogs may not digest the lactose as easily as their younger counterparts and you may be doing more damage than good.

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Shannon October, 2016

Ensure is both lactose free and gluten free. Could your dog have a reaction to something else contained in Ensure? Possibly, but that risk exists anytime you give your dog any type of new food. Try the vanilla version in small amounts to start. I give it to my senior dog all the time.


Ken July, 2014

FYI: Ensure is a lactose free product.


Terence March, 2014

DogSure is a completely balanced liquid supplement that dogs need to make the most of their golden years. It is made from milk proteins (no lactose) and contains flax seed oil and Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids.


MotherSquid February, 2015

My 16 year old mixed breed is barely eating. The doctor says she’s old and suggested the unthinkable. I know dogs don’t live forever, but I cannot watch her starve. I would like to use liquid meal replacement. DogSure sounds great but it’s not sold in local pet stores, so I will use Ensure lactose-free until DogSure gets delivered. Thanks and prayers for Sam…


Eric Write March, 2015

Does DogSure work? I need some for my dog. Does this make their coat shiny? I heard Omega-3 can help create a shiny coat and help grow nails.


Allison July, 2013

No, don’t give your dog Ensure! There is a product just for mature dogs called DogSure. It is much better suited for dogs.


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