As a dairy product, sour cream has a controversial reputation among dog owners. One group believes that dairy products should never end up in the dog’s bowl; while others swear by the many positive benefits of sour cream when fed regularly to dogs.
In this article, however, we would like to highlight the possible advantages and disadvantages when dogs eat sour cream.
Can dogs eat sour cream?
Well, yes and no. Dogs are allowed to eat sour cream – provided they can tolerate it (i.e., you are sure they are not lactose intolerant).
As dogs produce the digestive enzyme lactase in small quantities, they normally do not tolerate the milk sugar in many dairy products. However, sour cream, cottage cheese, and cream cheese have better results in our furry pals than pure cow’s milk.
But sour cream usually presents a different problem: it contains a LOT of fat. This can quickly lead to diarrhea. In addition, sour cream is only suitable in small amounts for four-legged friends who are NOT overweight. When feeding this to pets, pick a product with a slightly lower fat content. 80% sour cream is not advisable.
If your dog can tolerate dairy products, then a little sour cream wouldn’t hurt. Just remember not to exceed 3 percent of the amount of feed. That means about a spoonful every now and then.
Ingredients in sour cream that are good for the dog
Sour cream is made from cream mixed with lactic acid culture. These can have a positive effect on the intestinal flora. Sour cream is usually at least 20% fat, but can also contain up to 80% fat.
Benefits of sour cream
Got a constipated pet? Then you can trust the milk sugar and high-fat content of sour cream to save the day. But should the problem persist for more than a day, it’s time to consult your vet and stop with the home remedies. Whether it’s constipation or diarrhea, better to be safe than sorry.
Disadvantages of sour cream for dogs
High-fat content in any food is normally not advisable for animals as it can cause problems, like diarrhea. However, some dogs eat sour cream, especially if they are thin and/or underweight. Again, give only a spoonful. Be sure to complement it with a healthy diet.
Is sour cream poisonous for dogs?
No, sour cream is not toxic to dogs. Though it’s not the healthiest of foods for our furry companions either. Should you find your four-legged friend licking empty sour cream cups, don’t worry. Nothing will happen (most of the time). But if it can’t tolerate it, it will either vomit it or have a mild case of diarrhea. Do observe for persistent symptoms. For any adverse reactions, be sure to contact your vet immediately.
Which dairy products are similar to sour cream?
Butter, cheese, and creme fraiche all have high-fat content. Treat them like sour cream and only give on occasion. Avoid these totally if you have lactose-intolerant pets. They may contain less milk sugar, but they’re still dairy, after all. When feeding your furry pals, pay close attention to the fat content in foods. As much as possible, choose products that are low in fat.
Sour cream should be okay when given as a snack, assuming that you didn’t give additional treats that day, or you don’t include oils and fatty foods in your dog’s meals. For the most part, you won’t know how your dog will react to this ingredient – until after you’ve fed it.
Does dog food contain sour cream?
It’s highly unlikely to find sour cream in commercial dog food. It’s more probable to find cheese, yogurt, or skyr (thick, creamy Icelandic yogurt). Buttermilk and low-fat quark are dairy products that are increasingly found in dog food.
Don’t be afraid to let dogs eat sour cream! If they can handle it, it’s a fun, creamy snack to have on hand.