Just about everyone appreciates eating ice cream, and on a hot summer’s day, nothing beats a delicious cone of soft serve. If you are a loving dog owner, you may be wondering if you can share the wonderful experience of eating ice cream with your pooch. A little bit probably won’t do much, but too much could hurt your dog.
As most dog owners know, dogs do just about anything to get their paws on human food. However, is it a good idea to give your dog ice cream? Is it safe to give your dog ice cream? What if the ice cream is strawberry flavored? In this article, these questions, the reasonings, and more are going to be resolved, and you can know if your dog can eat ice cream or not – strawberry or any other flavor.
Addressing the Health Concerns of Feeding Dogs Strawberry Ice Cream
Ice cream is not considered the healthiest snack for us humans. That is even more accurate when referring to dogs. The short answer of if strawberry ice cream is a healthy snack for dogs – no, it is not. While a small amount of strawberry ice cream is not necessarily enough to send your doggie to the vet, it is not recommended that it becomes a frequent treat for your furry friend. The following is a list of potential health concerns your pet may experience when consuming ice cream:
- Increased Heart Rate
- Muscle Tremors
- Increased Body Temperature
- Increased Blood Pressure
- Heart Failure
- Cardiac Arrhythmias
Dairy Consumption and Dogs Lactose Intolerance
Dogs are lactose intolerant because of the digestion trouble that happens when they eat dairy products. While as a puppy, they can handle the digesting and consumption of milk, adult dogs typically do not have the stomach for it. Due to the fact that the majority of ice creams usually contain cream or milk, an adult dog cannot cope with digesting the lactose in a dairy product such as strawberry ice cream.
As noted by the ASPCA, dogs, and dairy are not considered a good match-up, and digestive issues can become more common in dogs after they have eaten products that contain milk or cream. The reasoning behind adult dogs not being able to digest lactose is because they do not have a sufficient amount of the enzyme lactase, which assists in breaking down and digesting milk sugar (lactose).
The inability to break down and digest the dairy leads to side effects such as bloating, gas, vomiting, indigestion, and diarrhea. Generally, your pup is going to be slightly more gassy than usual; however, if you give a small breed dog or puppy enough strawberry ice cream, the reaction the dog or pup may have could be a lot more serious. It is important to note that if your dog struggles with weight issues or has diabetes, you should stay clear of strawberry ice cream and rather look to some healthy snack replacement options.
So, although your pup may love and appreciate the taste of refreshing strawberry ice cream, they definitely won’t enjoy the aftereffects. After just a couple of bites of the strawberry ice cream, your dog is going to be experiencing all the negative side effects and be leaving you to clean up the mess. Certainly not worth it.
Sugars and Artificial Sweeteners
Strawberry ice cream typically contains high levels of sugar content. These high levels of sugar are not good for your canine. When considering the option of sugar-free strawberry ice cream – It is best to stay clear of this sugarless ice cream too. This sugar-free ice cream contains an artificial sweetener called xylitol which is dangerous and is considered to be toxic for dogs.
Any ice cream with artificial sweeteners in its content is a risky option for your pooch to consume; if ingested by your canine, the xylitol can cause a rush of insulin to be released, which results in a drop in blood sugar levels. The drop in blood sugar levels results in hypoglycemia which can cause vomiting, weakness, seizures, and even liver failure.
Can You Safely Serve Ice Cream to Your Dog?
If you just cannot resist those puppy dog eyes and do give in on deciding to give your pooch some strawberry ice cream, we recommend the following tips to safely share the delicious treat with your companion:
- Fruit-flavored ice cream such as strawberry ice cream is the safest bet.
- Begin with smaller amounts of ice cream to gauge how your dog’s digestive system reacts – if you notice signs of bloating, gas, or vomiting, then your pooch is not agreeing with the lactose.
- Avoid sugar-free ice cream that contains toxic additives and artificial sweeteners like xylitol.
Different Cold Treats for Your Dog
There are plenty of other cool frozen treats to give to your dog this summer, and you can even make them yourself too. Try some of the below ideas:
- Filling an ice cube tray and freezing – chicken broth, canned pumpkin, fruit mix with low-fat yogurt, or any other healthy dog-friendly ingredients such as oats and apples.
- Pureeing bananas and peanut butter to make frozen banana peanut butter popsicles.
- Buying frozen treats sold in pet stores.
- Looking into the option of purchasing natural dog-safe ice cream from Amazon – this ice cream is made specifically for dogs and comes in a wide range of flavors so that both you and your canine can enjoy the summer’s day.
The Final Verdict
The final verdict is that strawberry ice cream is not a healthy or good option as a snack for your dog. There are numerous health concerns that come with serving and sharing your delicious soft serve with your furry friend.
Fortunately, you do not have to leave your pet completely out of the fun of a summer’s day as they are plenty of replacement options to choose from for your dog’s next frozen snack. From home-made icy treats with dog-friendly healthy ingredients to all-natural doggie-safe ice cream, these treats ensure you guys are sharing the experience together as well as boost your doggie’s health and make sure they are living a long, healthy, and happy life for years to come.