Summer comes, and looking at your fur baby, you want to offer it some relief from the heat. You think of giving it a cold treat but wonder what is safe for your dog.
Frozen yogurt is a popular consideration among human folk. But can your dog have some too?
Is Frozen Yogurt Good For Dogs?
Yes, dogs can comfortably eat frozen yogurt, and they love it. Besides, it is a source of many nutrients needed in a dog’s system.
Frozen yogurt is as rich in nutrients as regular yogurt. It contains vitamins and minerals like Calcium and Cobalamin, Proteins, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin C. The above help keep the dog’s bones and teeth in good shape.
Protein helps every dog’s cell build its structures and maintain its functions. It also aids the dog’s metabolism.
Fro-yo is popular for its live and active cultures, which serve as probiotics for your pet.
Active bacteria like Bifidobacteria and Lactobacillus aid digestion and ease bowel movement in your furry friend.
Each fro-yo pack’s exact nutritional content value varies from brand to brand.
Nevertheless, frozen yogurt should be given to dogs in moderation.
What Are The Discouraging Factors?
Here are some of the downsides to dogs having yogurt:
Some Dogs Are Lactose Intolerant
Frozen yogurt is a dairy product; most dogs are known to be allergic to dairy products. Their digestive system is not so effective in processing the lactose content found in milk and its products.
The fermenting process in making frozen yogurt lessens the amount of lactose but does not eradicate the risk. If your dog is trying out fro-yo for the first time, try feeding them small amounts, and observe how their system reacts and any behavioral changes. Check for any unusual impacts on your dog, like bloating, constipation and gas, vomiting, diarrhea, and itching/excessive scratching.
After a considerable amount of observation and none of the above occurs, you can be sure fro-yo is a good treat choice for your canine.
To avoid the risk of your dog not being tolerant to lactose, buy a special dog fro-yo from the pet store. This way, one can be confident of the safety of the fro-yo before feeding it to their dog. Alternatively, one may buy plain yogurt and put it in their freezer for the same cooling effect.
Too Much Sugar Content
Most frozen yogurts contain sugar to make them tastier for human buds. In small amounts, sugar is not harmful to your dog’s health. Too much of it, however, can lead to dental issues and diabetes
Some frozen yogurt may contain Xylitol, an artificial sweetener used in the place of sugar. Xylitol is poisonous to dogs. It poses the threat of low blood sugar levels and liver failure. These conditions can become life-threatening in a very short period.
You should thoroughly examine the ingredients when choosing frozen yogurt for your pup. Consider things like flavor. For instance, it is wise not to go for chocolate, macadamia, vanilla or coffee fro-yo because they are poisonous to your canine friend.
You may consider safe flavors like mango, caramel, and strawberry.
Puppies And Frozen Yogurt
A dog parent may be excited to share tantalizing frozen yogurt with their young dog, but this is not as wise or innocent as the thought.
Little dogs are still growing, and their systems are not fully developed, making their stomach sensitive. They might fail to digest the lactose and lots of sugar contained in fro-yo.
If you are curious whether your pup can have frozen yogurt, introduce it in very small amounts and watch it carefully for reactions. Even better, consult your vet.
Shop-Bought Frozen Yogurt
It is not entirely safe for your pup, considering it is packed with more sugar than your dog ever needs in its daily diet. Dog bodies are designed not to need sugar and artificial sweeteners at all. Dogs consume fruits, but the natural sugars therein do not harm them.
Too much added sugar heightens the chances of a dog becoming obese. Obesity, in turn, leads to your dog becoming diabetic or having increased blood sugar levels.
Moreover, if a dog owner does not provide adequate insulin, they put the dog at risk of high blood sugar, which could damage other organs, such as the kidneys, the heart, and the eyes.
Too much sugar can also cause dental decay.
Homemade Frozen Yogurt
This version of fro-yo is safer, healthier, and could be made tastier for your dog. You will need slices of frozen fruit safe for dogs to make it more delicious, and plain yogurt, which is better if low in fats.
Mix the two in a food processor and blend the mixture. Freeze it. Anytime you need to feed the yogurt to your dog, take out the amount you need, thaw for a few minutes and serve.
The Right Quantity Of Frozen Yogurt To Feed Your Dog
For a small dog, 1 or 2 teaspoons are enough to play the role of coolant and nutritional purposes. For a large dog, 3 to 4 teaspoons are okay to add to their serving.
If your dog has the yogurt for the first time, only give it one teaspoon as you observe its reaction over the next 48 hours. If it behaves well and shows no signs of gastrointestinal upset, you may add more teaspoons to the serving.
It would be best if you only fed your dog frozen yogurt once or twice a week to keep their weight and health in check.
Frozen Yogurt Versus Ice Cream
The health benefits of fro-yo make it the best alternative to ice cream for your dog and yourself. Ice cream causes gas, bloating, and other issues brought about by your dog’s inability to process and digest dairy products comfortably.
Also, ice cream, as opposed to fro-yo, is loaded with lots of sugar that may lead to risky health conditions such as obesity and diabetes.
Most often than not, ice cream contains Xylitol, the most common artificial substitute for sugar. It is used as an additive to boost taste but is very toxic to dogs.
It is, therefore, wise to keep off ice cream when considering delicious and cold treats for your dog on a hot day.
Frozen yogurt is a healthy and safe summer treat for your dog, but moderation is key. It is only safe in small amounts.
Avoid, by all means, feeding your pup anything with Xylitol, artificial sweeteners, chocolate or vanilla extracts.
The best treat is the one you make at home, whereby you can ascertain only safe ingredients are used. Alternatively, you may purchase frozen dog treats at the local store.
As with every other treat or food, if you are not so certain as to whether or not to feed your dog frozen yogurt, make sure to contact your trusted veterinarian and seek their advice. They are better positioned to provide the best information on fro-yo safety to your dog, depending on the ingredient composition and your dog’s size, age, and medical background.