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Are you wondering if it’s okay to give your dog some milk?
Whether drinking it is healthy, even for people, is subject to endless debate. Putting that aside, let’s start with an undeniable fact:
Puppies begin consuming their mothers’ milk shortly after birth. It is obviously a key part of the nurturing process!
When milk becomes questionable is when owners provide it later in life.
Despite being nutritious i.e. high protein, vitamins and minerals, many dogs are lactose intolerant.
That’s right. The fact is canines lack the necessary enzyme to break down this type of sugar.
Dogs Usually Should Not Be Drinking Milk
While some animals handle dairy with ease, you can’t know how your buddy will react until symptoms surface.
Poor absorption is likely which means giving your dog milk could cause all sorts of digestive issues.
Special Dairy Replacements
There are certainly scenarios where milk, or more specifically a replacement product, can be of benefit.
For example, Esbilac’s Powder Milk Replacer can help out a vulnerable puppy.
The product is designed for nursing canines. It provides easily digestible vital nutrients and can even be used for adult dogs recovering from illness or surgery.
So, yes, milk-like formulas can make sense and most vets would agree.
More Milk-Related Problems
Lactose intolerance can cause vomiting and diarrhea among other gastrointestinal problems.
It may manifest in the form of gas. Expect to hear rumbling sounds when your dog is gassy. Fido may even refuse their food until the situation clears up.
Make no mistake about it:
Milk can cause some problems.
Keep things simple by providing your dog with plenty of fresh water. By contrast, water won’t complicate matters but it will ensure a well-hydrated hound!
Common Sense K9 Advice
To be fair, consuming a bit of milk isn’t too concerning for most dogs. It’s not dangerous.
In fact, it may even be fairly well-tolerated. That, however, doesn’t mean you should be sharing milk!
Vets typically advise against any form of dairy unless there is a good reason. Even then, it is often a milk replacement.
Different Dairy Decisions
There are lots of dairy products these days. Let’s touch on a few…
Soy milk is best avoided. Though it may not be obvious, your dog may not be able to digest it.
Unfortunately, skim milk is not much better.
Yogurt may be easier on your dog’s stomach. It’s more digestible.
But what is the reason for feeding dairy foods?
Lactose-free milk is another alternative. Lower lactose levels generally increases a likelihood that a milk-based food will be better tolerated.
Watch this quick yet informative video:
The Bottom Line
It is generally a bad idea to give your dog milk of any kind.
Introducing dairy doesn’t make much sense considering the likelihood of bowel irregularity and other digestive problems.
Milk often does not agree with even a mildly lactose intolerant pet dog.
Besides most canines don’t need milk once the mother’s finished lactating.