Us humans love our dipping sauces. They spice up our lives and give that extra zing to our regular, boring food. Snacks like nachos ask for a nice bowl of sour cream over an exciting football match. Your life may seem perfect, but then you remember your puppy sitting beside you, waiting for you to feed some nachos with it. Suddenly, a question pops up in your mind – can dogs eat sour cream?
Can dogs eat sour cream?
Yes, dogs can eat sour cream in controlled quantities. It does not specifically have a lot of healthy nutrients, but it is not toxic for dogs either. It won’t hurt your dog, but it doesn’t mean that you can go overboard.
Sour cream is a dairy product made by fermenting cream. Bacteria like B. bifidus and L. lactus are used in a heavy cream that soaks up the sugars giving a distinct sour taste to the resultant mixture. Commercially, sour cream is available in various combinations, but not all of them are safe for dogs.
Nutritional value of sour cream
One standard tablespoon of plain sour cream contains the following:
- Calories – 23
- Fat – 2.4 g
- Cholesterol – 6 mg
- Saturated fat – 1.4 g
- Trace amounts of protein, carbohydrates, calcium, and vitamin A
Benefits of sour cream for dogs
Sour cream is not a core edible – it is only used as a condiment to enhance a dish’s taste. Similarly, you can add a couple of dollops of sour cream to your dog’s regular food to give it a new texture and flavor. But does it provide any health benefits to your dog? Let’s find out.
You may think that since sour cream is derived from a dairy product, it will be a good source of calcium for your dog. Unfortunately, a single serving contains only 13 milligrams of calcium. It won’t have any significant benefit for your dog.
Sour cream also contains vitamin A and some other elements in tiny amounts. Collectively, they don’t do much unless your dog eats a lot of sour creams and that too, regularly. But sour cream is not something to be consumed in large quantities.
When is sour cream bad for dogs?
Sour cream may not have any major health benefits for your dog, but its downsides are too hard to ignore.
- Lactose intolerance is common among dogs. They cannot digest milk and dairy products very well and end up vomiting. Although sour cream has a significantly lesser amount of lactose, you should be careful if your dog is lactose intolerant. If your dog can have milk without any trouble, it can have sour cream too.
- As mentioned above, there is no particularly healthy nutrient in sour cream. But it is high in calories and fat. Your dog can eat sour cream with its regular food. Still, too much of it can gain extra pounds and other diseases related to obesity. Dogs who are already obese should avoid eating sour cream altogether.
- Even if you invest in fat-free sour cream, it is still not entirely safe for dogs to eat in huge amounts. Artificial gums and drugs like tyramine are used to reduce fat and enhance flavors in fat-free sour creams, but these can upset your dog’s digestive tract and bowel movement.
- Sour creams that come with ingredients like onion, garlic, and other spices can be toxic for dogs. Onion and garlic are extremely dangerous for dogs, and you must never feed them to your pet dog in any form and shape.
Your dog can eat sour cream, but it is not the healthiest dairy product out there. Most commercially prepared sour creams have preservatives and artificial flavors, making them somewhat bad for dogs.
Before you give up on sour cream, how about you make sour cream from scratch just for your dogs. Making cream from organic milk at home and fermenting it into sour cream is an incredible way of multiplying some nutrients of sour cream. Organic sour cream has an extra dash of omega fatty acids that are good for dogs’ skin and fur.
If nothing else works, you can move on to good old plain yogurt. Dogs love to eat yogurt with dry food. Yogurt is significantly healthier than sour cream – it has more proteins and calcium. But again, if your dog is lactose intolerant, you should give up on dairy products and look for other food options.
Can dogs eat cream cheese?
Yes, dogs can eat cream cheese in moderation. Cream cheese is high in fats and calories, which can be bad for dogs if consumed in large quantities.
Can dogs eat sour cream chips?
Dogs should avoid eating bagged chips no matter what the flavor is. They contain calories and fats in high amounts along with other harmful additives that are unhealthy for dogs.
Sour cream is a delicious thing to have at any time of the day. The tangy flavor works like a charm with dry edibles. While you might love to have sour cream with every meal of the day, you simply cannot do the same for your dog. An occasional serving of sour cream to your dog is okay. But anything more than this can harm your dog.