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Still screamin' about ice cream

April 23, 2007 - Amy Jo Hanna-Eckenrode

I received the following post from one of my blog readers about feeding dogs ice cream:

Concerned: “Not sure if anyone on here is aware that ice cream is not healthy for dogs. Just checking.”

I was not trying to advocate feeding ice cream to your pet and ironically was going to devote a bit of space to discuss whether you should feed your pets this cool treat.

Ice cream remains a debatable food item. Some people and veterinarians (not that veterinarians aren’t people) will tell you ice cream (or any dairy product) is not good for your dog, cat, etc. Others will say the opposite.

Here’s the scoop.

Like some humans, dogs and cats lack the enzyme, “lactase”, that is needed to break down (help with the digestion of) lactose, the sugar found in milk. Humans have varying levels of lactase, some more tolerant than others; however the high level of lactose in cow’s milk can overpower a dog or cat’s ability to digest it properly often causing them to throw up or get a case of ‘the runs’.

Interestingly enough, according to the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association “this does not mean that milk is unhealthy for dogs and cats. On the contrary, in pets that are able to tolerate it, milk can be an excellent source of protein and calcium.”

As always, it never hurts to discuss this and all issues you might have regarding your furbabies with your veterinarian.

If you happen to be in Chicago or Wisconsin with your pet, you can treat him/her to “
Polar Pups” (formerly called Chilly Dawg), a new ice cream for dogs in sundae form. The creator wanted to give her dog the best stuff to eat, without having to worry about dairy products, preservatives, chemicals, or animal fats. Flavors include Barkin' Apple, Berry Bite, Puppy Nutter, and Beggin’ Banana. Ingredient sample; unsalted soy milk, banana puree, dehydrated banana slices.

**Update: Special thanks to "irishbrenna02" post!: Jesse would LOVE Purina's Frosty Paws that Wal-Mart is the freezer with people ice cream. Our dogs Rocker (black lab) & Buddy (jack russell mix) LOVE them and they're full of protein just for doggies.

As always the NO-NO LIST of people foods poisonous to dogs remains:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Chocolate
- Coffee
- Grapes & raisins
- Moldy or spoiled food
- Onions, garlic & chives
- Poultry bones
- Salt & salty foods
- Tomato leaves, stems & unripe fruit
- Yeast dough

To find out more:

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