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Can Dogs Eat Cheese? High Reward Treat or Big No No?

High reward treat or big no no? If you’ve ever wondered if your dog can have cheese then this in-depth guide to can dogs have cheese will answer all your questions!

Black dog in front of cheese.

Almost all dogs love cheese. And some of them will gobble up as much of that creamy delicious food as they get their paws on!

As responsible pet parents, we’re well aware that not all human foods are good for dogs. In fact, some of the foods we consider healthy could be harmful to our pets. Cherry and chocolates are good examples. They’re both off-limits for dogs.

If you’re wondering now: Can dogs eat cheese? The answer is yes, they can. But there are a few important points to consider. 

When Is Cheese Good for Dogs?

In general, cheese is beneficial for your dog. And like all good things, it should be consumed in moderation. Here’s how your dog would get the most benefit from cheese.

Cheddar cheese on a wooden board.

Cheese Is a Nutritious Food

An ounce of cheese, which is a small bite, contains around 8 grams of protein, in addition to calcium, potassium, magnesium, iron, vitamin B6, and vitamin D. This is a stellar nutritional profile, and so, giving a dog some of this food has its merits.

It Can Help in Dog Training

Dogs often respond nicely to encouragement and reward. Especially if it comes in the form of a delicious treat. It’s not surprising then that many dog trainers use cheese as a treat.

It’s a Good Way to Give Medication

Giving a pet any medication is a challenging task. That’s why some creativity is needed, and one of the tricks both vets and pet owners use is stuffing a piece of cheese with the dog’s pills.

When Is Cheese Bad for Dogs?

It’s hard to imagine that a food that’s tasty, nutritious, and readily available could have a downside. However, in certain cases, it does.

A plater of varying cheeses.

If It Is Too Fatty

In addition to the increase in weight, there are several other serious diseases associated with a high-fat diet. Pancreatitis is among the health issues that some dogs could suffer from.

If a Dog Can’t Tolerate it

Dogs usually take dairy foods nicely, but some of them seem to have some difficulty processing cheese. If a dog has lactose intolerance, then cheese and dairy should be scratched off its menu.

If It Contains Harmful Ingredients

Dogs shouldn’t ingest onions, chives, garlic, and a bunch of other herbs. That’s why flavored cheeses with spices and added herbs need to be kept away from pets.

Are Some Types of Cheese Better Than Others?

There are two main considerations here:

  1. You don’t want to give your dog too much fat.
  2. Cheese that is easy on the dog’s stomach is much better than one that’s hard to digest. 

Bearing in mind these two important points, the best types of cheese to use as treats or meal supplements are the following:

  • Cottage cheese: It contains a small amount of salt. Also, its fat content is moderate and in some types even low.
  • Mozzarella cheese: It doesn’t contain too much fat. They can also have mozzarella string cheese.
  • Goat Cheese: It’s a soft cheese with little amounts of lactose. So it’s mostly easy to digest. 
A dog looking at cheese on a tray.

In Conclusion

Cheese is generally safe for dogs, except if the dog is intolerant to dairy products or if it contains additives that could pose a health risk to a canine.

It could be used as a treat to aid in dog training or as a food supplement, considering all the nutrients it contains. It packs plenty of calories though, so moderation is good. 

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