Can’t eat or drink dairy? That’s no biggie, thanks to the rise in popularity of plant-based alternatives.
And when it comes to milk, those who can’t tolerate lactose have an option to gulp down a cup of lactose-free milk (thing almond milk) instead.
Dog owners, on the one hand, might be wondering: Can dogs have almond milk? Can puppies drink almond milk? Is almond milk safe for them?
Milk indeed accounts for most food intolerance in the doggie realm. Your dogs’ bodies are simply not made to digest cow’s milk (although there are a few exceptions). And so, you might think that giving them almond milk wouldn’t hurt.
Unfortunately, this isn’t entirely true. Keep in mind that many of the foods humans eat and drink are dangerous and even toxic to dogs. If you want to know if almond milk is part of the long list, search no more because we got it all covered here.
Dog Food Guide, after all, loves getting their noses into the nitty-gritty details of dog food, not to mention “people” food and its effects on your pet dog’s health.
What You Need To Know About Almond Milk
Plant-based milk is everywhere. However, you’ll find lactose-free almond milk filling up the shelves and cupboards. Apart from people with lactose sensitivities, this is also the milk of choice of vegans and health buffs alike.
Almond milk is made from almonds. Plain almond nuts are grounded down, mixed with water, and strained. The result is a nutty and creamy mixture.
However, not all almond milk is made equal. Some come with an extra helping of sugar to give it a sweet taste, while some are more diluted than others. Other brands are enriched with vitamins and minerals.
When it comes to its nutritional profile, nothing beats your mother’s milk. And since this is plant-based, you can’t expect this to contain as much protein as cow’s milk.
However, unlike dairy milk and whole almonds, which are high in calories, almond milk significantly contains lower calories and higher Vitamin E content.
Can Dogs Have Almond Milk?
Almonds are not a natural part of a dog’s diet. In fact, feeding your dog almond nuts is not recommended since this comes with a handful of risks. But, how about almond milk?
The short answer is IT DEPENDS – it depends on your pet dog’s overall health as well as the type of almond milk and the amount of milk you plan to give your dog.
Occasionally, giving your dog a small amount of almond milk is okay as long they’re in tip-top shape. If they’re not healthy, then you’d have to think twice.
Can You Use Almond Milk To Wean Puppies?
If you have puppies, perhaps you’re wondering if your puppy can be weaned using almond milk. The answer is NO. Just let them have their mom’s milk. This way, they’re getting all the nutrients they need.
For orphaned puppies, giving them commercial puppy milk replacers is your best bet. Milk from cows, goats, and plant-based types is best kept out of your puppies’ reach.
Possible Benefits Of Almond Milk To Dogs
Almonds may be high in nutrients, but most of the nutrients are removed when making almond milk. Despite this, almond milk is still safe for dogs to consume though it’s not the healthiest type of milk for your pet dogs.
In case your pup had some, you don’t have to worry too much. Dogs consuming almond milk can still get a few benefits whenever they slurp some from your bowl. Wondering what they are? Check out below.
It’s Loaded With Vitamin E
A cup of store-bought almond milk contains around 110% DV of vitamin E. Vitamin E is a powerful antioxidant that can help strengthen your dog’s defenses against oxidative cell damage. Lack of vitamin E can lead to poor eyes and muscles.
It’s Rich In Calcium
What’s milk without calcium, right? Surprisingly, almond milk contains more calcium than cow’s milk, with the former having 37% DV calcium content and the latter with only 23% DV.
Like humans, calcium can help keep pet dogs’ bones, nails, and teeth strong and their coats shiny. Apart from that, the added calcium in your dog’s diet can also help boost your dogs’ nervous system.
Why Your Pet Dog Should Not Drink Almond Milk
Yes, almond milk is not dangerous or toxic to dogs, and feeding your dog almond milk comes with a few rewards.
However, like any other foods out there (whether it’s healthy or not), health problems may arise later on in their life if it is given to them the wrong way.
And since no dog lover would want to shorten their dogs’ already-limited time on earth, make sure to keep a mental note of all the possible risks of almond milk to dogs.
It Can Cause Digestive Issues
Since dogs lack the enzyme to digest almonds, your dog can get diarrhea or an upset stomach after having too much almond milk.
Some Have High Sugar Content
Almond milk may not be high in calories, but some can contain a lot of sugar. Feeding your dog sweetened almond milk should be crossed out from your list.
Why? Too much sugar, after all, can cause various health problems, including diabetes, obesity, and tooth decay.
It Can Contain Harmful Ingredients
Some almond milk brands contain chocolate that is deadly to dogs. Ingesting small quantities can already result in diarrhea, vomiting, excessive urination, and restlessness.
If worst comes to worst, it can also cause muscle tremors and heart failure, all of which will require immediate veterinary care.
Possible Presence Of Xylitol
Equally sweet as sugar, artificial sweeteners like xylitol are alright for humans. It’s different for dogs, though. Xylitol is a substance that’s toxic to dogs.
Feeding your dog products that contain xylitol may lead to vomiting, lethargy, incoordination, staggering, and seizures.
If your dog somehow chows down on something with artificial sweeteners, make sure to watch out for these symptoms since this often requires veterinary help.
Tips On How To Feed Dogs Almond Milk
Okay, almond milk is safe but feeding this to your dog comes with risks. Therefore, it is vital to provide your dog the right type and amount of almond milk to ensure a risk-free slurping.
To avoid any emergency visits to the vet, just follow these tips, and you’re good to go:
A Small Amount Is Enough
You don’t have to give your pet dog a full cup of almond milk. Small quantities are enough to make your dog’s tail wag with delight.
Always Check The Ingredients
It’s always a good idea to check the ingredients. Remember that there are a lot of foods that your dog can’t tolerate, chocolates included.
Choose Plain, Unsweetened Almond Milk Over The Sweetened Variants
Unsweetened almond milk is always a better option. Apart from the lack of sugar (which both you and your dog don’t need), it also leaves out the artificial sweetener in the mix, including xylitol.
Almonds are best kept away from your dog since it’s high in calories and fat. Almond milk, on the other hand, is alright.
If your dog gets its paws on your leftover almond milk, don’t worry. Almond milk is safe for dogs as long as it’s given in moderation. Just make sure to search for plain, unsweetened almond milk the next time you go shopping.
Now, if you’re still having second thoughts, it won’t hurt to ask your vet. After all, seeking veterinary advice should always be on your to-do list if it concerns the health of your dog.
Also, almond milk isn’t really part of your dog’s regular diet and does not offer many benefits. Therefore, giving this to your dog won’t help them at all.
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