Can Dogs Eat Cheese? – Oh, cheese. It’s creamy, gooey, and it goes well with everything. While your dog doesn’t ask you for an oozing grilled cheese sandwich, they have surely spent plenty of time staring at you longingly as you eat something cheesy.
Are you guilty of slipping your dog a few cubes of cheese under the table? Not to worry; you aren’t causing any harm.
Is Cheese Safe for Dogs to Eat?
Yes, cheese is okay for dogs to eat–on occasion. There’s nothing in normal cheese that’s dangerous to dogs. Cheese is filled with minerals and vitamins. The essential fatty acids are good for their skin and coat. Research shows that fatty acids are good for inflammation and fighting allergies.
If your vet has decided your dog needs additional fatty acids in his diet, cheese is not the best way to go. Your vet can advise you on the best ways to administer these fatty acids. The amount of cheese a dog would have to eat to get a good amount of fatty acids would definitely give them diarrhea.
A copious amount of cheese would give your dog some digestive upset. If they happen to get into a block of cheese and consume most of it, you’ll have to be prepared for the ensuing GI upset, which could be quite explosive.
Cheese Can Trigger Lactose Allergies in Dogs:
Like humans, dogs can be lactose intolerant. Unfortunately, you won’t know that your dog has lactose intolerance until they eat dairy. Some dogs will react with just a few bites while others need significantly more dairy to show any symptoms.
Symptoms include bloating, nausea, diarrhea, gas, and abdominal discomfort. Lactose intolerant dogs actually lack an enzyme that properly digests the sugars found in dairy. Cheese most often causes constipation instead of diarrhea in these dogs.
You shouldn’t give your dog cheese if they’re already overweight or have had a weight problem in the past. Cheese has enough fat in it that it can quickly bring up a dog’s weight if it’s given frequently. Cheese is best suited to dogs who are already at a healthy weight and lead an active lifestyle.
Can dogs Eat Cheese?
Most dogs can safely eat cheese in controlled quantities. However, dogs with lactose intolerance and pre-existing health conditions like pancreatitis mustn’t eat since it can trigger mild to severe stomach problems.
Let’s admit it; cheese is one of the best foods to exist on the planet. Cheese adds a lot of flavor to dishes and makes a great snack on its own.
Cheese is a great snack for us, but many pet owners are asking:
Can dogs eat cheese?
Fortunately for you and your pupper, many dogs can eat cheese. Cheese is not toxic to dogs and makes for a great snack.
Can Dogs Eat Cheese? not all dogs should eat cheese; some dogs cannot process cheese and will get sick if they eat it. Always consult your vet before serving anything to your dog.
Your dog can have cheese in moderation as long as the vet approves.
Although cheese is a safe snack for a dog, it comes with some precautions.
Cheese and dogs require a little more detail, so let’s dive deeper.
Can Dogs Eat Cheese?
Yes, your doggo can have cheese.
Cheese is a great snack for dogs; many dog parents even use this snack to motivate puppies during training. For the most part, you can safely let your dog have a few happy cheese bites.
But feeding cheese to a dog has a catch. You see, cheese is a pretty common dog treat, but it isn’t the safest for all dogs.
Dogs are allergic to a lot of food that we hoomans can happily eat, so it’s not the best idea to give cheese to your dog solely because you’re eating it.
Not all dogs are allergic to cheese or have lactose intolerance, but yours could be. Some signs tell you whether or not your dog is lactose intolerant, but we’ll get to that in a minute.
Additionally, dogs with particular health problems can’t digest cheese as efficiently as healthy dogs.
Although giving cheese to your dog won’t do much harm most of the time, serving anything without the vet’s recommendation can risk your dog’s health.
You must consult the vet and test your dog for allergies before serving it cheese.
However, if your dog has no allergies or health problems, feel free to serve a dollop of cheese!
Do Dogs Like Cheese?
You don’t even need to be a dog parent to know how much dogs love food.
Dogs are not picky eaters, which means they’ll gobble up anything in sight. Whether it’s a ball, a sock, or a piece of food, dogs don’t mind one bit about what they’re eating.
Many dog parents serve cheese as an occasional snack, but do the dogs like it? Turns out, they do.
Dogs love cheese and are happy to steal a bite or two when their owners aren’t looking. Luckily for them, cheese isn’t toxic and makes for a great snack!
Since all owners want to know what’s going on inside their doggo’s minds, let’s take a look at a couple of reasons why your dog likes cheese:
● The Flavor
Every type of cheese has a particular flavor. Although dogs have fewer taste buds than we do, they can sense the slight change in flavor with each cheese, so they are always happy to get a bite.
● The Texture
Some dogs prefer the soft texture of the cheese and like to nibble on it. Based on the type of cheese you’re serving to your dog; the texture might be the tastiest experience for your pupper.
Cheese isn’t only a tasty snack; it’s also very fulfilling.
Don’t Spoil Your Dog Rotten
Dogs go nuts for cheese. They’re notorious for turning up their nose at their normal diet if they keep getting table scraps. This is especially true for dogs who get cheese regularly.
Eventually, they will come to expect the cheese and refuse to eat their daily diet or forego healthier treat options you offer. If your dog is on a daily medication long-term, then you should switch up what you use to get them to take their pill, so they don’t come to expect cheese regularly.
Cheese quickly fills the stomach and serves as an excellent snack for hangry puppies.
● Nutritional Benefits | Can Dogs Eat Cheese
Cheese offers a few nutritional benefits and boosts a dog’s energy.
Your dog might like munching on cheese because it gives it more energy to play and have fun.
Cheese is Great to Hide Medications
Some dogs might need an extra tasty snack to encourage them to eat a prescription diet or some type of medication. While they’re all too eager to eat that nondescript wad of trash at the park, your dog might refuse any type of medication you try to trick them into eating.
Cheese is a great way to hide any pills you’re trying to get down your dog. Just put the pill in the middle of the cheese and ball it up around the pill and most dogs will suck it right down.
If you’re trying to entice your dog to eat a new diet or they’re recovering from an illness and their appetite isn’t quite back yet, you can safely add cottage cheese to their feed to entice them to eat it.
A few tablespoons mixed into the food is all you need to get them to at least taste their new food and convince them to eat a full meal.
Dogs Snacking on Cheese: Is It Healthy for Them?
Can dogs eat cheese? Sure, but is it a healthy snack?
It is a good thing you’re thinking about this since many owners mistake unhealthy foods as safe for their dogs. Luckily for you, cheese isn’t one of these foods.
Cheese offers a couple of benefits, but we’ll need to take a look at its nutritional value to understand them:
Cheese: What’s In It?
According to Nutritionix, in 100 grams of cheese, there are:
|Nutritional Components||Nutritional Value|
|Total Fat Saturated Fat Trans Fat Polyunsaturated Fat Monounsaturated Fat||33 grams 19 grams 0.9 grams 1.4 grams 9.2 grams|
|Total Carbs Fiber Sugar||3.1 grams 0 grams 0.5 grams|
|Minerals Calcium Iron Potassium Sodium||1.45 grams 721 milligrams 0.7 milligrams 76 milligrams 653 milligrams|
|Vitamins Vitamin A Vitamin C||1002 IU 0 milligrams|
So you see, cheese contains many minerals and beneficial nutrients, making it a suitable snack for dogs.
Why Feed Cheese to Your Dog?
Dog owners who haven’t yet fed cheese to their dogs will ask:
Why should we give cheese to dogs?
Here is why cheese makes a great snack for dogs:
● Great Protein Count
Dogs need a diet with protein, and cheese makes for a great nutritional snack.
● Low Sugar
Dogs can’t process too much sugar, and overeating sweet treats can be dangerous for them. Luckily, cheese does not contain much sugar and is a healthy dog snack.
● Increases Immunity
Dogs need vitamins to grow. Cheese contains vitamin A, which increases immunity.
● Improves Cell Function
Vitamin A boosts cell function, aids body development, and is a great supplement for fetal development.
● Reduces Inflammation and Counters Aging
Cheese contains trace amounts of Vitamin C, which reduces inflammation and aging.
● Strengthens Bones
Vitamin C and Calcium improve and strengthen bone density.
● Maintains Muscle and Nerve Functions
Cheese contains potassium, which serves as an excellent aid to muscle and nerve functions.
Is Cheese As Good As It Sounds?
Can dogs eat cheese? Yes.
But is cheese the healthiest snack for dogs? Not really.
Allow me to explain.
Cheese is a really great snack for your dog, in moderation. Overeating cheese will trigger stomach problems in dogs because while it contains many beneficial nutrients, some are not the best for dogs.
Let’s take a look at the risks of cheese for dogs:
● Too Much Sodium is Dangerous for Dogs
The nutritional value table tells us that 100 grams of cheese contain 653 milligrams of sodium, which is too much for a dog to handle.
Dogs cannot eat salt because it disrupts their body functions and can cause severe health issues. Overeating salt can trigger vomiting, muscle tremors, diarrhea, and even seizures.
Cheese is a good snack for your dog, but overeating can increase sodium levels in your dog’s body.
● High Cholesterol Triggers Health Problems
100 grams of cheese contains 99 milligrams of cholesterol, which is too much for a dog.
Having cholesterol greater than 300 mg/dL causes hyperlipidemia in dogs. This condition increases the risk of heart disease and clots due to the high amount of cholesterol in the body.
● Fat is Not Always a Dog’s Best Friend
A dog’s routine diet contains fats and proteins with a few other nutrients here and there, but not many dog parents know that fat can be dangerous.
Cheese contains 30-35 grams of fat, which isn’t concerning unless your dog overeats it. Overeating fats can put your dog at risk for several health conditions.
Can All Dogs Have A Cheesy Bite?
Most of the time, feeding cheese to a dog won’t be too dangerous, especially if you’re careful about the quantity served. However, there are certain scenarios where you must not feed cheese to a dog:
● Dogs with Lactose Intolerance
Not all dogs are lactose intolerant, but there are a lot of dogs that are.
Serving cheese to a lactose-intolerant dog will trigger mild to severe health problems, including diarrhea, vomiting, gastrointestinal problems, and severe allergic reactions.
Your dog might be lactose intolerant if it has a history of throwing up after eating dairy products. If you can’t tell whether or not your dog is allergic to cheese, you can request an allergy test from the vet.
● Dogs with Health Problems
Cheese contains a lot of fat, which might be dangerous for dogs with particular health problems.
Dogs with pre-existing conditions like diabetes, obesity, pancreatitis, or gastrointestinal problems will get severely sick from eating a little bit of cheese.
➔ Diabetic Dogs
While fat isn’t directly a cause of trouble for dogs, the number of calories it contains is.
Eating a high-calorie diet will increase your dog’s chances of getting sick and can put it at risk for health problems.
➔ Obese Dogs
Dogs with a higher body weight than medically acceptable for their age and height will have difficulty digesting cheese.
Cheese can also put overweight dogs at risk for cardiac issues because it increases blood cholesterol levels.
➔ Dogs with Pancreatitis
Pancreatitis is an inflammatory condition of the pancreas.
The pancreas is a vital organ responsible for aiding digestion by producing and releasing enzymes that can break down food, so it can’t function properly when inflamed.
Since inflammation prevents the pancreas from releasing enzymes crucial in the breakdown of food, your dog will find it difficult to digest food.
However, cheese contains a few heavy nutrients (fat and carbs), so a dog with pancreatitis won’t only be unable to digest cheese but also get severely sick from eating it.
➔ Dogs with Gastrointestinal Problems
Dogs with a history of gastrointestinal problems must not have cheese since they won’t be able to digest it properly and can get sick.
Vets won’t stop you from serving cheese to your dog unless your pupper has a history of intolerance to the snack.
However, most vets advise against overfeeding cheese to your dog since it can be dangerous.
Most vets recommend serving cheese once or twice a month to be safe.
Four things to keep in mind while serving Cheese to a Dog!
How do you ensure you’re correctly serving cheese to your dog?
You must keep a few things in mind when serving cheese to your dog: the frequency, quantity, and type of cheese and your dog’s health.
How often should you feed cheese to a dog?
Most vets advise against feeding cheese more than twice a month since your dog might not be able to handle it.
However, dogs’ tolerance for a particular food varies, so you must consult the vet before serving cheese.
Serving more than the required quantity of cheese can be dangerous for dogs, even if you’re only serving once a month.
Overeating cheese at a time can put your dog at risk for stomach problems.
It is best to serve up to a tablespoon or two, or half a slice of cheese to your dog.
3) Type of Cheese
The type of cheese you serve to your dog is extremely important since the nutritional value of particular components varies across cheese types.
Some cheeses contain more fat and cholesterol and are not the best dog snack.
Other cheeses contain fewer carbs and fats, so you can feed them more generously.
We will be discussing dog-safe cheese types in a bit.
4) Your Dog’s Health, Age, and Weight
Smaller and older dogs won’t be able to digest cheese as quickly as bigger and younger dogs.
Similarly, healthy dogs will be able to eat cheese more frequently than dogs with a complicated medical history.
Cheeses to Avoid Feeding Your Dog
It’s best to avoid feeding your dog fancy cheeses. Some cheese has been made with additional ingredients like onions and garlic, both of which are toxic to dogs. Try to stick to cheddar cheese to avoid inadvertently giving your dog something that could make them sick.
If you want to give your dog cheese, that’s absolutely fine. You should just make sure you’re using moderation and careful discretion in when they’re getting it and how much they’re getting. Remember that moderation is just as necessary in a dog’s diet as it is in yours!
Dog-friendly Cheeses : Can Dogs Eat Cheese?
Now that you know the basics of dogs and cheese, let’s get down to business:
Are all cheeses dog-safe? Short Answer! No.
Some cheeses are more dangerous for a dog, so you must be careful when serving cheese.
Let’s find out more:
1. American Cheese
Most American cheeses are loaded with salt (sodium), which is very dangerous for your dog.
You must not feed American cheese to your dog.
2. Blue Cheese
Blue cheeses contain Roquefortine C, a substance that triggers diarrhea, stomach ache, vomiting, and even seizures in dogs, so you must not serve blue cheeses to dogs.
3. Brie Cheese
You must not serve brie cheese to your dog because it has high levels of saturated fat, which can trigger pancreatitis in dogs.
4. Cheddar Cheese
Yes, you can serve cheddar cheese to your dog because it is a low-fat and low-calorie cheese.
However, you must not go overboard with the serving and try to feed it in moderation.
5. Colby Jack Cheese
Serving Colby Jack cheese to a dog is tricky; some vets recommend staying away, while others don’t mind a few servings.
Colby Jack cheese is not toxic to dogs but is not the best snack. You may serve Colby Jack cheese in moderation to your dog.
6. Cottage Cheese
Yes, your dog can eat cottage cheese.
Cottage cheese contains many healthy nutrients and is low in sodium and fat, so your dog should be fine with a few munches.
7. Cream Cheese
You can serve cream cheese to the dog as long as it is plain and in moderation.
Most cream cheeses contain preservatives and additives, which may be unhealthy for dogs, so you can’t feed your dog any cream cheese you find.
However, if you’re making cream cheese at home and buying it from a reliable source and know that it contains no flavorings or additives, you may serve it in moderation to your dog.
8. Edam Cheese
Your dog can eat unflavored Edam cheese because it is low-fat and low-calorie.
9. Feta Cheese
Feta is rich in fat, so it is not safe for dogs to eat.
10. Flavored Cheese
Serving flavored cheese to your dog is not a good idea since salt, onions, garlic, and many other herbs are highly toxic for dogs.
11. Goat Cheese
Goat cheese is another one of the few kinds of cheese that contain saturated fat and can trigger pancreatitis.
12. Gouda Cheese
Gouda is low-fat, low-sodium, and a low-lactose cheese, so it’s safe for your dog.
13. Moldy Cheese
Here’s the thing; many dog parents will cut off the moldy part of a cheese and feed the cleaner part to their dog. But that’s highly dangerous!
Moldy foods like moldy cheese contain mycotoxins, toxic compounds which can trigger seizures and tremors.
Chances of mycotoxins in the rest of the apparently clean cheeses are still high even after you remove the moldy part, so you must not serve moldy cheese to your dog or yourself.
14. Mozzarella Cheese
Who doesn’t love mozzarella? The oozing, stretchy cheese is a popular choice for many snacks, and luckily for you, it’s quite safe for dogs.
Mozzarella is a low-fat, low-sodium cheese, making it a great snack for dogs.
15. Parmesan Cheese
Parmesan contains a lot of sodium, so we don’t suggest serving it to your dog.
16. Pepper Jack Cheese
You’ll find two main variations of Pepper Jack cheese: one that’s a delicious combination of cheese and spicy peppers and contains certain additives harmful to dogs.
Whether or not your dog can eat Pepper Jack cheese depends on the dog’s tolerance for spice and the type of Pepper Jack cheese.
It is highly dangerous for your dog if you’re serving Pepper Jack cheese with additives like garlic for extra flavor.
However, if you’re serving Pepper Jack cheese without additives, it depends on whether your dog can handle the spice.
17. Provolone Cheese
Provolone cheese is rich in sodium and fat; you must not serve it to your dog, not even in moderation.
18. Red Leicester Cheese
You can safely serve Red Leicester to your dog.
19. String Cheese
Yes, your dog can eat string cheese, but there are some precautions and guidelines to keep in mind.
String cheese has a particular texture that may be a choking hazard for small dogs since it can get stuck in the throat. It’s easier for grown-up and adult dogs to eat string cheese than puppies, so you must not serve it to puppers.
However, string cheese is a great snack because it does not contain too much sodium or fats.
20. Swiss Cheese
Swiss cheese has a low lactose content, so it’s safe for dogs, but you should serve Swiss cheese to your dog in moderation.
21. Velveeta Cheese
Vets don’t recommend serving Velveeta to dogs because it contains a lot of sodium and fat.
Recap: Dog-safe and Unsafe Cheeses
Here’s a quick recap for you:
|Cheeses Your Dog Can Eat||Cheeses to Avoid|
|Cheddar Cheese||American Cheese|
|Colby Jack Cheese (in moderation)||Blue Cheese|
|Cottage Cheese||Brie Cheese|
|Cream Cheese (in moderation)||Feta Cheese|
|Edam Cheese||Flavored Cheese|
|Gouda Cheese||Goat cheese|
|Mozzarella cheese||Moldy Cheese|
|Pepper Jack cheese (in moderation)||Parmesan cheese|
|Red Leicester Cheese||Provolone Cheese|
|String Cheese||Velveeta Cheese|
What About Cheese Snacks?
Many dog owners with sick puppers at the vet are often surprised when they learn that their dog had an allergic reaction to a cheese typically considered safe.
Dogs can have mild to severe reactions to cheese products made from cheese considered safe for dogs because such products often contain other ingredients and additives that are toxic to the fluffers.
Let’s discuss common cheese snacks, and whether your dog should have them so you don’t have to worry about accidentally making your dog sick:
1. Cheese Balls
There are two main variations of cheese balls; a snack made out of cheese and cheese literally rolled up in a ball.
Most cheese ball snacks like this one are unsafe for your dog because they contain seasonings and harmful additives.
However, if you’re rolling up cheese into cheese balls, you can safely serve them to your dog as long as they don’t contain any additional flavoring and are made from dog-safe cheese.
Cheesecake is unsafe for your dog because it contains a lot of sugar and fat and can make your loyal friends very sick.
3. Cheese Crackers
Most companies will flavor their cheese crackers with salt, garlic, and onion powder, all ingredients dangerous for dogs.
However, you can let your dog have a teeny bite or two of a cheese cracker by cleaning off the spices and seasonings. It is best to avoid serving cheese crackers more than once or twice a month.
4. Cheese Pizza
You must not give your dog cheese pizza because it contains many toxic ingredients like salt, onions, and garlic in the pizza sauce.
5. Cheese Popcorn
Dogs can only eat popcorn if it contains no salt or seasoning; even then, they must eat it in moderation.
Serving cheese popcorn can make your puppy sick.
6. Cheese Puffs
Most vets recommend keeping your dog away from cheese puffs because of harmful additives.
7. Cheese Sticks
You can occasionally serve cheese sticks to your dog but must not serve any with flavoring or cheese that is not safe for your dog.
8. Doritos Nacho Cheese
We don’t recommend serving Doritos Nacho cheese to your dog as a frequent snack.
However, eating a nacho or two isn’t a cause for concern.
It would be best not to serve more than one nacho at a time and to serve only once or twice a month.
9. Grilled Cheese
Dogs cannot properly digest grilled cheese, so you must keep it away from your pet.
10. Kraft Cheese
You may serve dog-safe cheeses by Kraft in moderation to your dog.
Kraft makes its cheeses from pasteurized milk, so they have low lactose and are safe for dogs.
However, some processed cheeses contain particular additives and flavorings which you might know of, so it is best to serve them in moderation.
11. Mac And Cheese
Macaroni and cheese is not a safe snack for your dog.
Recap: Cheese Snacks for Dogs
Let’s review the delicious cheese snacks and whether they are safe for your dog:
|Cheese Snacks Your Dog Can Eat||Cheese Snacks to Avoid|
|Cheese Balls (in Moderation)||Cheesecake|
|Cheese Crackers (in Moderation)||Cheese Pizza|
|Cheese Sticks (in Moderation)||Cheese Popcorn|
|Doritos Nacho Cheese (in Moderations And Very Limited Quantities)||Cheese Puffs|
|Kraft Cheese (In Moderation And in Very Limited Quantities)||Macaroni And Cheese|
Conclusion | Can dogs eat cheese?
Can dogs eat cheese? Cheese makes a great snack for dogs, but it isn’t the best idea to give any type of cheese to any dog.
You see, some dogs are lactose intolerant, cannot digest cheese, and will get sick if they eat it. Similarly, dogs with pancreatitis, gastrointestinal problems, and other complicated medical conditions won’t be able to process cheese and might get deathly sick from eating it.
However, dogs with no medical complications or records of lactose intolerance can safely snack on cheese.
Not all cheese types are safe for your dog, so you should look for the ones with low sodium, low fat, and a low lactose profile.
Most cheese snacks are unsafe for dogs because they contain particular additives that can harm your pupper.
Yet, your dog can munch on cheese if you correctly serve dog-safe types.
Always consult the vet before serving cheese to your dog.
● Is Cheese Toxic to Dogs?
Cheese is not toxic to dogs, but some cheese types can be dangerous.
Cheeses with high sodium, lactose, or fat count can be dangerous and make your dog sick.
● What Happens When A Dog Eats Cheese?
A lactose-tolerant dog will simply enjoy the cheese if it eats it.
However, dogs with lactose intolerance or medical conditions like pancreatitis will get severely sick and experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and even seizures from eating cheese.
● Can Diabetic Dogs Eat Cheese?
Vets don’t recommend serving cheese to diabetic dogs since it can increase their risk of heart disease, especially if the cheese has high cholesterol and fat content.
However, if a diabetic dog accidentally eats small quantities of cheese, it isn’t a cause for concern.
● Is Cheese Good for Puppies?
Most dog-safe cheese is a good snack for puppies; trainers even use it as a bribe for training puppies.
String cheese is the only dog-safe cheese that vets recommend keeping away from puppies since its springy texture can make it a choking hazard.
● What are Dog-safe Cheeses?
Dog-safe cheeses include Cheddar, Edam, Gouda, Red Leicester, and Mozzarella cheese.
● Is Overeating Cheese Healthy for Dogs?
Remember, excess of everything is bad. Overeating anything can make your dog sick, so we do not recommend stuffing your dog with cheese.
Although cheese is a harmless snack, it might make a dog sick when taken excessively.
● How Much Cheese is Healthy for Dogs?
Eating up to half a cheese slice at a time, or not more than 2-3 tablespoons once or twice a month, is the safest and healthiest serving for your dog.
Serving more than this recommended quantity and frequency might make your dog sick.
● What Happens If a Dog Eats Too Much Cheese?
Overeating cheese can give dogs diarrhea, stomach cramps, nausea, pain, and, worse, seizures.
● Is It Healthy for My Dog to Eat Cheese Daily?
Most vets advise against serving cheese regularly to your dog.
Daily eating of cheese can increase a dog’s blood cholesterol and sodium level, triggering health problems.
Generally, cheese is a good snack for dogs. However, dogs with lactose intolerance or pancreatitis will get sick because they can’t digest cheese. Not all cheese types and snacks are safe for dogs, so you must be careful when serving. Never serve anything to your dog without the vet’s approval.