Who doesn’t love strawberry ice cream? It is a summer favorite that can be enjoyed in many ways, and your dog’s curious eyes may have you wondering if it’s a treat you can share with them. So, can dogs eat strawberry ice cream? Strawberry ice cream is not toxic for dogs, but that doesn’t mean it is something they can enjoy regularly.
A small lick or taste will likely do no harm, but it contains some ingredients that make it a bad choice for your dog and can make them sick if they consume too much. This article explains why and answers all your questions about giving your dog strawberry ice cream.
Is Strawberry Ice Cream Bad for Dogs?
Strawberry ice cream is not toxic but is unhealthy for dogs. Even for humans, strawberry ice cream should only be enjoyed as an occasional treat, and if you are a dog owner, you know that there are a lot of human foods that should stay off your dog’s plate, and strawberry ice cream is one of them.
A small lick or taste of strawberry ice cream will likely be ok, but there are a few reasons why serving it to your dog regularly or even in big servings occasionally is a bad choice.
Once dogs have been weaned, their bodies often battle to digest milk. We know that ice cream is predominantly milk and cream, which is only one of the reasons that ice cream is not suitable for them. Adult dogs suffer from various degrees of lactose intolerance, which prevents them from adequately digesting milk products.
Too much ice cream of any flavor can cause your dog to experience gastrointestinal upset, which can range from mild to severe. Gastrointestinal issues can include vomiting, diarrhea, pain, and gas.
The next issue with strawberry ice cream is the sugar content. Strawberry ice cream is loaded with sugar, which can lead to weight gain and even obesity. These health issues also, unfortunately, lead to other conditions such as diabetes.
But what about sugar-free ice cream, you may ask? Sugar is often replaced by xylitol, which is toxic to dogs, so it could be even more risky to allow your dog to eat “sugar-free” strawberry ice cream.
Furthermore, strawberry ice cream is most often made with strawberry flavoring or syrup, which is also high in sugar and other chemicals that are not suitable for dogs to ingest.
Some dogs can experience food allergies to ingredients like dairy products like strawberry ice cream. These allergies, which are a reaction to the proteins in milk products, can cause nausea and vomiting as well as red, itchy skin rashes.
Strawberry ice cream is also high in fat, which can lead to obesity and health issues such as pancreatitis.
With that said, it is safe to say that strawberry ice cream is indeed bad for dogs, and it is better left out of their diet.
Alternatives to Strawberry Ice Cream
Your dog should eat high-quality, well-balanced dog food that will provide the calcium they need; they don’t need the additional calcium from milk in ice cream. However, there are some healthy alternatives you can give your dog.
Frozen blended fruit
You can try freezing blended fresh strawberries as a healthier and safer alternative. You can also add bananas for additional flavor and creaminess. If you decide to try this treat for your dog, remember that it should only be offered occasionally, not as part of their regular diet. It is also best to consult your veterinarian before adding new food to your dog’s diet to ensure it is safe.
Ice Cream for Canines
Dog ice cream is also a thing! Thanks to the makers of Ben & Jerry’s, they have formulated a dairy-free, dog-safe ice cream. It is made using sunflower seed butter and is available in two flavors: Pontch’s Mix, which is made with pretzel swirls and peanut butter, and Rosie’s Batch, which includes pumpkin and mini cookies!
FAQS About Dogs Eating Strawberry Ice Cream
We’ll answer some of the most frequently asked questions about dogs and ice cream below.
What Should I Do If My Dog Ate Strawberry Ice Cream?
If your dog managed to lick a bit of your strawberry ice cream off the floor or the side of your bowl, there is likely no need to panic, and your dog will be fine. However, if the ice cream contains xylitol, call your vet immediately.
Suppose your dog managed to get to your bowl of strawberry ice cream before you did and enjoyed it so much that it left you nothing. In that case, you will need to monitor your dog closely for any signs of stomach issues or allergic reactions, but it is always best to call your veterinarian.
Can Dogs Eat Vegan Strawberry Ice Cream?
Vegan strawberry ice cream may be a healthier option for your dog, but it’s important to know what is in it first. Nut milks are a common dairy alternative, and some of them may be harmful to dogs, such as macadamia nut milk.
Some vegan strawberry ice cream is made with coconut milk, strawberries, and avocado, in which case, it would likely be safe for your dog to eat in small amounts.
Can Dogs Eat Vanilla Ice Cream?
Vanilla ice cream has the same risks as strawberry ice cream, and your dog shouldn’t eat it. It is still high in sugar, dairy products, and fat.
While strawberry ice cream is not toxic to dogs, the ingredients can be harmful if your dog eats it regularly or consumes your whole bowl! Strawberry ice cream is high in sugar and fat and is made from dairy products. These ingredients are better left out of your dog’s diet. Instead of serving strawberry ice cream, you can try a few healthy and safe alternatives, including Ben & Jerry’s Doggie desserts, but talk to your veterinarian first to be safe.
Featured Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock