The simple fact of the matter is that cream cheese without any additives is not toxic for puppies, and to some extent is even healthy for them, so yes, your dog can eat cream cheese. However, it depends more on a dog’s tolerance and choice when it comes to eating cream cheese. Despite this, it is better to give cream cheese to your dog in considerably low quantities.
If you own a canine friend, you may have had them begging you around for cream cheese, making you wonder if it’s even safe for them or not. Cream cheese indeed is a richly nutritious food to eat, but could be dangerous for your dog in some situations, so you must take into consideration the problems that may be related to cream cheese as a food item for your pet.
It is always better to be cautious at the right time, rather than regretting your choices at the end. And before we go deep into other life lessons like this one, here are some concerns regarding cream cheese that you should know before giving in to the cuteness that is your pup’s big round eyes and a tail-wagging with excitement- and feeding cream cheese to them.
Some issues to consider before you let your dog have cream cheese:
The high fat content of cream cheese:
Cream cheese, even if it is considered a low fat option for your breakfast table, usually contains very high amounts of fats.
If your puppy is obese, and needs to lose weight, then feeding them cream cheese will make the weight loss almost impossible.
Moreover, some dogs may have developed pancreatitis over time, which is a disease which hinders the digestion of food materials, especially fats.
Dogs with pancreatitis must not be given cream cheese to eat, as it could worsen their condition because cream cheese is a dairy product consisting mainly of complex fats.
Other than that however, you are pretty safe if your dog is bored of its usual breakfast and wants a lil’ cream cheese too!
The sky high level of salts:
Certain brands add salts to their cream cheese just for the purpose of adding some extra flavor to it, and while it may please your human taste buds, the salty cream cheese is not really safe for dogs to eat.
Eating too much salty cream cheese can possibly lead to sodium poisoning in dogs, and consequences of such a condition could be fatal for your pet.
Even though the salts can be diluted when dogs drink water, it is always better to take necessary precautions to save your dear pets from such problems.
The symptoms of sodium poisoning may include watery diarrhea, loss of appetite, extreme thirst, lack of energy, and several kidney problems.
If your dog shows any of the aforementioned signs, you better hurry and take them to a professional vet for check-up.
Considering the problems related to cream cheese with salts, it is better if you don’t let your dog eat it, as we know prevention is always better than cure.
And keep in mind, an excess of everything is bad.
Some common concerns:
Is cream cheese toxic for your dog?
Well, the simple answer is ‘no’, but that is only when there are no additives in the cheese, that could be toxic to your dog.
Some manufacturers make cream cheese of different flavors, and if by chance the cheese you buy contains garlic, onion and/or chives in its ingredients, you are doomed, because all these ingredients are toxic for dogs.
So, whenever you give cheese to your canine, read the list of its ingredients first, so that you may not unintentionally feed your pet with something that is toxic for them.
In the long run, cream cheese with toxic additives may even cause the death of your pup, hence, be careful with your choice of cream cheese.
Is your dog lactose tolerant?
It is possible for a dog to be lactose intolerant.
Dogs that are lactose intolerant are usually unable to digest food items that contain lactose, such as cream cheese.
The symptoms for lactose intolerance include a range of stomach and digestion problems.
If your dog is lactose intolerant, cut the cream cheese out of their diet. However, if they really cannot live without cheese, give them goat cheese or plain, low fat cream cheese only.
If you don’t yet know if your pet can tolerate lactose or not, try giving them a small amount of cream cheese, and keep a check on them for next 24 hours. If you notice anything unusual or signs of disturbed stomach, take them to a vet for examination, they could be lactose intolerant.
If nothing abnormal happens, just go for giving them cream cheese, it may really be safe and healthy for them.
What type of cream cheese could be the best choice for your dog?
The most suitable and safe option for you to give your dog is plain, low fat cream cheese.
Choosing plain cheese rather than flavored e.g. garlic or onion flavored cheese will remove the threat of toxicity that some ingredients could cause in your dog.
Also, low fat cream cheese contains comparatively less calories and fats than normal, full fat cheese, hence it will be less likely to cause extreme obesity in your dog.
How much cream cheese should your dog eat?
Honestly, cream cheese is not a necessity for a dog’s diet, it is only a luxury. A puppy cheat meal, or we may say so. Hence, teach your dog that they can only get the cream cheese occasionally, and as a treat. It would be for the benefit of your pet only, as too much cream cheese may lead to problems such as obesity, pancreatitis, and disturbed digestive system.
Moreover, cream cheese is an expensive food item, and you may not be able to afford it if your dog develops a habit of eating it often. So, give your dog cream cheese, as it has benefits too, but only in small amounts and at specific times.
What is the suitable way of feeding your dog cream cheese?
Feeding your doggy cream cheese as it is, is fine, but you can also add small amounts of cream cheese in other food items, such as dog food.
Many owners like to top the cakes for their doggy’s birthday with cream cheese, it could be a great treat for you pup too.
Moreover, many people cover the medicines in cream cheese lest their dogs refuse to take medicines in their original form.
That way the canines happily consume the medicines. However, this method may spoil your pet a little bit, as they may in future refuse to take medicines without the coating of cream cheese, or worse than that, they cause trouble to get cheese even when it is not a time for their medications.
What is an alternative for cream cheese?
Cream cheese often contains a lot of fats and is mostly very expensive, so cottage cheese may be a better option for you to feed your dog.
Cottage cheese is lighter, healthier and usually less expensive as compared to cream cheese.
It could also provide an extra bunch of proteins for a dog recovering from some tissue or bone injuries.
What are the benefits of cream cheese for dogs?
Cream cheese as we know it, is a food item that is enriched with various beneficial nutrients, which aid the development of all living matter. It contains proteins, calcium, essential fatty acids, and complex vitamins A and B.
Protein and calcium are a crucial requirement for healthy tissues and stronger bones, and cream cheese could fulfill all of your dog’s requirement for these nutrients.
Vitamin A and B may help maintain for you puppy, sharp vision and healthy body cells respectively.
Now that you have gone through the pros, cons, and precautions for feeding your dog with cream cheese, you must acknowledge that cream cheese is not usually toxic for your pet, but could have negative effects due to a dog’s sensitivity towards it.
A dog will only eat cream cheese if it likes it, and if it doesn’t they will wash away all your efforts to feed them cream cheese.
Although cream cheese is safe for dogs, it should not be given to a dog as a replacement of another meal. You should only let your dog eat cream cheese in small quantities, as too much of it may lead to obesity and dental problems.
However, if your dog has pancreatitis or is lactose intolerant, it is better that you avoid filling them up with cream cheese.