Wondering, do dogs eat cheese? Is it good to give your pup feta cheese as a snack? Or what’ll happen if your dog ate feta cheese? Or what to do if your pup overeats it? Wonder no more! I’ve got you covered. Find all of your answers right here.
The most controversial question asked by pet owners is, can we feed our dog feta cheese? The simplest answer is “NO”. Although it isn’t poisonous but has nearly a similar kind of effect in lactose intolerant dogs, as it can cause:
- High blood pressure
- Organ damage
- Salt poisoning
Most people think that feta cheese will provide their fur buddy the same flavor & nutrients just like humans. But that’s incorrect, high fat & lactose content in feta cheese can negatively affect your pet’s health.
I always stand by the fact that proper dog food is the best option for your dog compared to special canine snacks. I do understand that pet parents wish to treat their buddies with something tasty when their pups are doing their best.
But before offering feta cheese to your tailed friend here are some important things you need to know about it.
What Is Feta Cheese?
If you don’t know feta cheese components let me just simply state it. Compared to other types of cheeses, feta cheese is softer. The key ingredient is sheep milk or a combination of both sheep and goat milk.
Its tangy taste can be mild to sharp depending on how much time it’s aged in brine.
What Happens If Dog Eats Feta Cheese?
Technically feta cheese is not harmful to dogs. Dogs with “higher lactose tolerance” are able to bear the dairy products too. Your dog might find this treat delicious.
I have gathered information on feta cheese from different pet owners and vets. Which made me realize it isn’t good for dogs due to a variety of reasons.
Lactose (a sugar found in milk) present in feta cheese or any other cheese isn’t good for dogs. Generally, dogs are lactose intolerant, except for a few breeds (having higher lactose tolerance). They aren’t able to digest lactose.
Feta cheese is bad, although have lesser lactose content but is still high for a few breeds. The undigested lactose will upset their stomach. Your dog is lactose intolerant if it shows the following signs after eating feta cheese or any other dairy product.
- Vomiting & diarrhea
You’d stop feeding cheese and consult with a vet.
High-fat content is another drawback of feta cheese. According to most vets and experts, the fat content of a dog’s diet shouldn’t exceed “10-15%”. Feeding them feta cheese with high-fat content will make them obese and prone to other medical complications like:
- Heart diseases
- Breathing problems, etc.
High Salt Content- Risk of Salt Poisoning
The 3rd main problem with feta cheese is its high salt content. Too much salt in the feta cheese compared to a regular diet can put your pup at risk of salt poisoning.
Signs & Symptoms
According to experts, you should look for the following signs to see, whether your dog is suffering from salt poisoning.
- Loss of appetite
- Dogs becoming very thirsty
- More urination
- Lack of coordination
- Muscle & body weakness
- High temperature
- Tremors & seizures
All these symptoms can ultimately lead to death.
What to Do If Dog Overeat Feta Cheese?
A small quantity isn’t lethal. But if your fur baby has accidentally overate, it’ll make the situation worse. If your pet is usually eating feta cheese, then it’s not a problem. However, lactose intolerant dogs can show the above-mentioned signs and symptoms. You have to take a vet’s appointment for a checkup before the situation gets worse.
But if the symptoms are mild & your dog is cal. You can try following home remedies before going to a vet.
- Offer your partner lots of water as his mouth will be dried out & will be thirsty after eating cheese.
- Try to calm your pet
- Induce vomiting in your pet by using hydrogen peroxide
- Call the vet for some professional advice to help your buddy before you get to the vet
If the condition becomes severe, diarrhea & vomiting can lead to lead to lethargy.
Can Dogs Eat a Little Feta Cheese?
Feta cheese is full of nutrients like calcium & protein although not good for your pet’s health. It is best to be cautious, you can offer your partner a tiny amount of feta cheese if you’ve to. Avoid overeating as it’ll lead to severe problems.
Types of Cheeses Good for Dogs
Although you shouldn’t feed your dog cheese every day but offering them a chunk of cheese once after two weeks will not harm. The calcium content of the cheese is beneficial for the dog’s teeth and bones.
As per my experience, you can offer other types of cheeses which are less harmful to your fur buddy.
Cream cheese is dog-friendly if it’s free of onions, garlic & other toxic ingredients. Your dog can have small chunks of cream cheese after a specific period.
Dogs, that are lactose tolerant can have a small quantity of cottage cheese. Higher proteins and lower fat give it an edge over other cheeses. You can fulfill your pet’s protein deficiency through it. Another benefit is that it also relieves diarrhea.
Swiss Cheese, Cheddar Cheese & Parmesan Cheese
All these cheeses are low on lactose & you can feed your pet moderate amounts of them.
The sodium and fat content of Mozzarella cheese is low. For lactose-tolerant dogs, you can use it as an occasional treat. But if your dog is lactose intolerant it will be difficult for him to digest the high lactose content of mozzarella. So be cautious with this one.
This cheese is not recommended for little dogs. But if you’ve got a bigger dog and want it to gain some weight string cheese is the best option.
Feed your pet string cheese in tiny amounts as its caloric value is very high and you don’t want your buddy to gain weight quickly.
Types of Cheeses Harmful for Dogs
There is also a long list of unhealthy cheeses, which can be lethal for your pet. So don’t offer any random cheese to your pet to avoid serious consequences.
Following is the list of must-avoided cheeses irrespective of the fact how much your pet is lactose tolerant.
Avoid flavored cheeses as these usually retain one or more ingredients that are toxic to dogs. before giving any cheese to your dog, cross-check all the ingredients to confirm, whether the cheese is safe or not. For instance:
- Some cream cheeses and Havarti cheese contain onion, avocadoes, garlic, & other toxic ingredients
- Some cheeses contain preservatives and artificial additives which can harm your dog.
Blue Cheese or Any Other French Cheese
Never ever try blue cheese or any other French cheese because these contain:
- Too much sodium
- High fat-content
- Produce toxins, fetal to dogs
Goat, Sheep Cheese & Brie
Feta & goat cheese has the same ingredients as feta cheese so these fall in the same category. Avoid goat & brie cheese for similar reasons.
I hope this article has cleared all your doubts about “can dogs eat feta cheese” & other kinds of cheeses. Cheese is safe if given in small amounts. But overeating can cause serious complexities due to high lactose content in them. You can provide a good type of cheese in a minimum amount either by:
- Dissolving in food or
- Giving them directly
You can also give them cheese-flavored treats, and make sure they don’t have real cheese, dairy products, or toxic ingredients.
Always Consult your vet before taking any step.
Has your dog eaten feta cheese? What was the reaction? Please share your experience with feta cheese in the comment section. Also, share this article with other dog lovers. Best of luck!