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Food & Diet

Can My Dog Drink Milk?

At A Glance

Humans include milk in their daily diet intake for its various benefits. Milk appears seemingly harmless since it's packed with nutrients. But excess milk consumption by dogs can lead to many health issues. Read on to know if milk is safe for dogs.

Last Updated on: Feb 03, 2022

Milk is the primary source of calcium for most Americans. It is used to prepare tea, coffee, smoothies, desserts, ice creams, etc. Since milk has always been known as a dairy product that is healthy, dog parents might ask, can my dog drink milk?

Let’s find out.

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Can My Dog Drink Milk?

Dogs don’t process fat as easily as people do. Your pet can have low-fat milk without the extra sugar. Avoid any artificially flavored milk, especially chocolate.

Milk isn’t toxic or harmful to dogs if given in very small quantities. However, exceptions exist. Dogs could face numerous health issues if there is an excess in milk consumption.

While most dogs can consume goat’s milk or cow’s milk, some might be lactose intolerant or allergic. A lactose-intolerant dog will pass bad gas or stool after drinking milk.

It is essential to check with your vet before you begin giving your dog milk.

Is Milk Safe for Dogs? 

Does it hurt dogs to drink milk? As long as you serve a couple of teaspoons, there shouldn’t be any issues.

You might want to hold off on giving your dog a whole bowl because it could produce unpleasant responses, including vomiting and diarrhea.

Milk contains high-fat content and natural sugar. That’s why your dog can’t have a lot. Excess dietary fat could cause pancreatitis and obesity. Typically, dogs can exhibit gastrointestinal upsets within 12 hours of eating or drinking milk products.

The best option is to feed your dog dairy products with lower sugar such as yogurt and cheese. 

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What Happens if Your Dog Drinks Milk?

Without the abundance of the lactase enzyme that breaks down milk sugar, dogs can face a hard time digesting it. The lactose present in milk will go through their gastrointestinal tracts and into the colons undigested.

Milk ingestion causes gastrointestinal upset, which results in vomiting and diarrhea.

Consequently, undigested sugar will pull water into the colon, resulting in diarrhea. Bacteria fermentation in the colon might cause discomfort and flatulence.

bottle of milk

Can Dogs Become Lactose Intolerant?

For many dogs, dairy products are a major source of food intolerance. It’s no wonder many dogs are lactose intolerant.

Although some lactose-intolerant dogs have difficulty drinking milk, they can handle dairy products such as plain yogurt and cheese, which are much easier to digest compared to milk.

Dogs can have different levels of lactose intolerance.

While some might exhibit mild symptoms, other cases might be more severe.

Common symptoms include gas, loose stools, and abdominal pain.

You might not discover your dog is lactose intolerant until you feed it milk. If your dog has had a lot of milk, it is not easy to determine whether it’s lactose intolerant or not.

strawberry treat

Safe Milk Based Recipes for Dog

Strawberry Yogurt Treats

Yogurt offers a great probiotic addition to your dog’s diet. Also, yogurt is a great way of boosting calcium, protein, and folic acid. Nonfat, unsweetened yogurt offers a low-calorie treat that’s beneficial to dogs suffering from constipation.

This recipe will take you 11 minutes to prepare and will yield 20 balls.

Peanut Butter Banana Ice Cream

Whether it’s summer or you just want to spoil your dog, this recipe is perfect. Peanut butter has various health benefits for dogs.

The prep time of this treat is 5 minutes and it gets ready in 4 hours.

an image of a dog

Frequently Asked Questions

What Kind of Milk is Best For Dogs?

Goat milk is the most digestible because of the small-sized molecules. It is typically more hypoallergenic with better toleration than cow’s milk.

Warm or Cold Milk for Dogs

This will probably depend on the weather. As it gets cooler, your pup might crave something warm. Most pet owners warm their dog’s milk because it enhances the taste and is more appealing.

Can Puppies Drink Milk that Humans Drink?

Regardless of the information you have, there aren’t any actual benefits of giving human milk to a dog. Your dog might be intolerant and won’t be able to digest any of the nutrients.

While drinking isn’t fatal, it’s dangerous and could cause adverse reactions for your pet.

Can Dogs Drink Lactose-free Milk?

No. Is milk good for dogs when they are sick? Even for vitamin deficient or chronically ill dogs, vets will mostly recommend a hydration solution over lactose-free milk.

Can Dogs Drink Almond Milk? 

Almond milk comes from processed almonds, which are safe for consumption in moderation. However, some almond milk is sweetened with extra sugar, which isn’t good for dogs. So it is best avoided.

peanut butter ice cream

Like most dog owners, you might claim, my dog loves milk. However, moderation is key if you want to avoid serious conditions such as pancreatitis.

If you are still wondering whether your dog can drink milk, it can, but in small quantities. We hope this article has cleared all your doubts about feeding milk to your dog.

Check out Can Dogs Eat Avocado?



Meet Paul, a devoted dog dad to the delightful French Bulldog, Cofi. With a flair for humor and a deep understanding of Frenchie quirks, Paul brings a lighthearted touch to his writings. His relatable stories and practical insights are a blend of laughter and valuable advice and resonate with fellow dog owners.

Through his words, Paul aims to celebrate the joys and challenges of being a dedicated pet parent, reminding you that life is simply better with a four-legged, snorting sidekick by your side.