Can Dogs Eat Yogurt?

December 17, 2021 - 3 min read

The humble yogurt is one of Britain's favourite foods – for humans. But what about dogs? Do they like the taste and is it safe for them?

The answer is yes! Dogs can eat yogurt.

What Kind of Yogurt Is Good for Dogs?

The healthiest yogurts for dogs are those containing live bacteria called probiotics. Probiotic yogurts are safe for dogs and humans alike, and can help with the health of your gut.

Usually, the yogurt packaging will tell you if it contains live cultures. Look at the ingredients label for "cultures" or "live bacteria Streptococcus thermophilus and Lactobacillus bulgaricus are other names to look out for.

Probiotics can boost your dog's immunity, help their body absorb nutrients, and help fight yeast infections, which may cause skin and ear problems in dogs. Yogurts are also packed with calcium and protein.

You can give your dog plain, low fat, full fat, naturally flavored, and frozen yogurts. But make sure you avoid artificial flavors and sweeteners, particularly Xylitol. Xylitol is toxic for dogs and can be extremely dangerous, even in small quantities.

Check the ingredients carefully. There may be more sweeteners in yogurts than you'd expect.

Don't give your dog yogurt if you know they're lactose intolerant. If you're not sure, speak to your vet about having your pet tested.

Can I Give My Dog Yogurt Every Day?

Yogurt can be a daily treat for your dog. But according to Jan Dempsey, senior nutritionist at pet food manufacturer Purina, you should aim for the 10% treat rule. That means that yogurt, along with your dog's other treats, should make up no more than 10% of your dog's calorie intake each day.

But this creates a problem, according to Purina: If you follow the 10% rule, your pet may not receive enough probiotic to be of much health benefit.

So if you’re eager to provide probiotics regularly, don’t rely on yogurt alone. Talk to your vet, who may suggest probiotic supplements or offer specific dietary advice.

You might also want to learn more about alternative diets.

Is Frozen Yogurt Safe for Dogs?

Yes, but we're not talking about the dessert. You can feed your dog literal frozen yogurt: Try buying a probiotic yogurt and freezing it at home. That other type of frozen yogurt — the kind that's similar to ice cream — is usually full of sugar that can lead to obesity. Or worse, it can be full of toxic artificial sweeteners like xylitol.

Can Dogs Have Greek Yogurt?

Yes, they can. Greek yogurt contains probiotics and is healthy and safe for dogs.

It’s generally thicker than other yogurts because the production process removes whey. So if your dog turns its nose up at it, this may be the reason.

Is Coconut Yogurt Safe for Dogs to Eat?

Opinions are divided on whether coconut products are safe for dogs.

The American Kennel Club states that coconut oil contains anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral components, and is good for your dog in small quantities — though too much can cause diarrhea.

Coconut oil can be found in the milk and flesh of coconuts. These are ingredients that you may find in coconut yogurt.

However, both the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and the Royal Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA) in New South Wales, Australia, state that coconut oil can cause diarrhea and stomach upset, and that coconut water contains potassium, which can also lead to health problems.

We would recommend that you speak to your vet before giving your dog coconut yogurt.

Irina Wells
Content Marketing Executive

Irina is a former content marketing executive for ManyPets. She has contributed to a number of personal finance sites, including Loot Financial Services and Claro Money.