Are you a dog owner wondering whether your furry friend can indulge in condensed milk? The question “can dogs have condensed milk” is a common one, and the answer is not straightforward. While dogs can technically consume condensed milk, it is not recommended due to its high sugar content, which can lead to various health issues. In this article, we’ll explore the potential risks and benefits of feeding your dog condensed milk and provide some healthier alternatives.
Personal Experience Using Condensed Milk
This topic is quite hard for me to cover because I still feel pretty bad about the mistake I made a few years ago when one of our pups was a baby. For some reason, I didn’t think there was a difference between condensed and evaporated milk. That was until our pup started getting really sick.
After taking her to the vet, we realized what it was – the condensed milk. The vet told us that dogs can’t have condensed milk because it’s too sweet for them. While our pup was okay after getting through diarrhea and vomiting, we felt horrible. That mistake was never repeated. Now, I want to share the information as much as possible to help dog owners and their pups avoid the turmoil.
The Differences Between Condensed Milk and Evaporated Milk
Many people interchange condensed milk and evaporated milk. They are not the same and when considering each one for your pup, it’s important to know the difference.
|Sweetened milk with sugar added and most of the water removed
|Unsweetened milk with most of the water removed
|Thick, syrupy texture
|Thin, pourable consistency
|High sugar content due to added sugar
|No added sugar
|Longer shelf life due to high sugar content
|Shorter shelf life
|Commonly used in desserts and baking
|Used in soups, sauces, and coffee
|High in calories and sugar
|Low in calories and sugar
Condensed milk is regular cow’s milk without water. After the water has been removed, manufacturers add sugar. Condensed milk that has no sugar in it is called evaporated milk.
The main use of condensed milk is in desserts due to its sweetness.
Many dog owners confused evaporated milk with sweetened condensed milk. Evaporated milk is regular cow’s milk that’s been unsweetened. Since the main issue with sweetened condensed milk is that it is high in sugar, evaporated milk (full fat) is the best choice in feeding puppy milk when mother’s milk is not available.
For more information, watch this video:
What Happens When Dogs Have Condensed Milk
Condensed milk is not toxic to dogs – it’s just not healthy.
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), dogs should not eat sweetened condensed milk because it contains high amounts of sugar and fat which can lead to obesity and other health problems.
Equate it to drinking something high in sugar, like Starbucks Frappuccino. Once and a while, it’s okay, but regularly, it could lead to issues.
Immediate Consequences of Dogs Drinking Condensed Milk
The most common result of a dog drinking condensed milk is diarrhea. Since the stomach and intestines are not accustomed to so much sugar, it can cause irritation.
Diarrhea or soft stool in dogs isn’t always an emergency. It may subside quickly if a lot wasn’t consumed.
However, if diarrhea or soft stool continues, it’s important to reach out to your veterinarian because dehydration can be life-threatening to a dog or puppy.
Lactose Intolerance in Dogs
Dogs, like humans, can suffer from an intolerance to the enzyme lactase. Signs of a dog suffering from lactose intolerance are:
- Lack of Appetite
- Weight Loss
- Uncontrollable Bowels
Stomach cramps may occur but can be hard to identify. Lethargic or clingy behavior may signal cramps are also happening.
The above symptoms are often noticed 30 minutes to two hours after consumption of dairy products.
Milk for Newborn Puppies
Puppy formula or puppy milk is the gold standard when mother’s milk isn’t available. However, many pet parents use other types of milk for dam milk replacers.
Evaporated milk can be offered to puppies who are 3-4 weeks old. Newborn puppies often start to wean from the dam’s milk around that age, but it can take as long as 7-8 weeks to fully transition.
Goat’s milk is another option for puppies who don’t have dam’s milk. However, it’s high in lactose, which can be a serious problem for lactose-intolerant puppies.
While almond milk isn’t a dairy product, dogs don’t digest nuts well. It’s also important to realize almonds are high in fat. The fat in almond milk can cause weight gain and pancreatitis in some canines.
Many dog foods contain soy, so soy milk isn’t harmful to pups of any age. It may even be beneficial for dogs with urinary incontinence due to proteins called isoflavones, which veterinarians recommend for it. Despite this, soy milk should not be a replacement for a main source of nutrition as it lacks essential nutrients.
Again, a puppy milk replacer is better than offering dairy products or human foods (such as normal cow’s milk, ice cream, or plain yogurt) as it’s fortified with essential nutrients, minerals, and vitamins.
Oat milk is a plant-based non-dairy product. It is safe in small amounts, but digestion issues can occur over time or if consumed in large quantities.
Puppies may consume oat milk as a lactose substitute when weaning. It can also be given to dogs who require additional calories.
Coconut is highly beneficial to dogs for many reasons:
- Softer Coat
- Shinier Coat
- Relieve Skin Irritation
Dogs should consume coconut milk in moderation, as the oils in it can cause gastrointestinal issues, such as diarrhea.
Raw milk is another option for dogs, but not humans. Raw milk is unpasteurized, so it could have harmful bacteria in it that could make humans sick. The benefits of raw milk for dogs are the nutrients, minerals, and vitamins that were not cooked out during the pasteurization process and the mighty amino acids in the milk.
Can Dogs Have Condensed Milk? Yes, but…
Human foods are for humans. Dog foods, including milk, are for dogs. While a little bit of regular milk may not hurt your pup, it’s not the best form of nutrition. Before a puppy can eat solid food, it’s a good idea to use a product specifically made for dogs rather than normal cow’s milk or another type of milk like coconut milk.
Remember: Happy Dogs ~ Happy Owners
Additional Reading: Can Dogs Have Milk?