Almond milk has surged in popularity as a milk alternative and ingredient. You will find it in many households! As a result, there has been a surge in dogs and puppies accidentally consuming almond milk.
So what happens if your dog slurps some almond milk from your coffee or cereal?
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A Brave New World (of milk substitutes)
Most of us are looking for dairy substitutes, and almond milk has become the go-to for many. It is commonly available, affordable, and has a popular nutty taste.
But what happens if a dog gets to some almond milk?
Take, for example, when I am having breakfast and set my bowl down and fetch something. For the small period, I am gone, my dog can lick the almond milk that I was having. The almond milk might have some more ingredients that may or may not be harmful to my dog.
The uncertainty of this is what makes me freak out. Therefore, this article discusses whether dogs or even puppies can ingest almond milk or not:
So can dogs drink almond milk?
Unsweetened almond milk is generally considered safe for dogs. The ingredient list should consist of just water and almonds. It is okay to consume in moderation – and even forms part of many dog treat recipes.
HOWEVER, If there are any artificial sweeteners – consider it unsafe or even dangerous for dogs. See the ASPCA guideline on the poisonous Xylitol and other sweeteners.
If there are preservatives and flavors – it is probably best to avoid giving your dog that type of almond milk.
What are the Ingredients of Almond milk
Almond milk is often high in calories and is not suggested for regular intake for dogs. You should check the ingredients on the package to make sure that the liquid does not contain Xylitol.
Xylitol is an additive in almond milk that is very toxic to dogs. Even a small amount puts your dog at the risk of having liver failure, low blood sugar, also known as hypoglycemia or even death.
A moderate amount of almond milk is okay for your dog. Almond consists of essential vitamins that are essential for your dog’s health. Almond has high vitamin B3, which aids in keeping the dog’s skin and fur healthy.
This is why unsweetened pure almond mild is sometimes used in DIY dog treats and snacks.
People like these health benefits of almond milk for their dogs
It also helps maintain the eyes and the liver. Almond milk also contains high vitamin E levels, which benefits in removing unsafe free radicals from your dog’s body and thus increases your dog’s immune system.
Calcium is also another mineral present in almond milk, and it keeps the dog’s joints and bones healthy. Other minerals that help to strengthen bones are magnesium and phosphorus.
However, one must keep in mind that not all kinds of almond milk are recommended for dog consumption.
Almonds are not poisonous to dogs, so there shouldn’t be an issue as long as there are no raisins, chocolate, and artificial sweeteners like Xylitol are the harmful ones.
Those types of almond milk that contain ingredients such as sugar, Xylitol, and artificial sugars are poisonous for dogs. The smallest quantities of Xylitol have got the potential to kill your dog. Beware!
If your dog consumes almond milk with Xylitol as an ingredient, you may notice that it can have symptoms like fatigue, vomiting, weakness, and even seizures.
Therefore, if you wondered, “can dogs drink almond milk?” then the answer is yes, but in moderate amounts and ONLY if unsweetened with no flavoring.
Nutritional value – which almond milk brands to buy
Every manufacturer who produces almond milk lists different minerals, fat content, sweeteners, fiber, calories, and concentration of almonds. Therefore, no specific rules are set for almond milk.
Make sure that before you buy the correct type of milk for your dog. It is recommended to purchase basic almond milkcontaining a concentration of more than ten percent of almonds.
Alone, almonds provide a lot of nutrients. One serve of almonds consists of 37 percent of Vitamin E, 14 grams of fat, 20 percent of magnesium, 3.5 grams of fiber, and manganese mineral of 32 percent of the RDI.
Also, almonds are a good source of antioxidants that shield your dog against oxidative trauma that typically harms molecules present in your dog’s cells and also create irritation.
As it is full of antioxidants, some think that it has a role in treating dogs that suffer from arthritis. Many arthritic conditions occurred from having inflammation, and increased inflammation will make the problem even worse.
Consulting with your Vet professional before modifying a diet (even holistically) is recommended. Small dogs (like Maltipoo’s) need particular care when picking the right puppy food.
The brown layer of almond skin contains these antioxidants in a very high concentration and is a natural remedy for many severe and communal illnesses.
Almond milk in humans is used in the regulation of blood sugar and the prevention of diabetes. Almond reduces the increase in insulin and glucose levels after meals have been had.
What to do if a dog drinks almond milk?
Step one is don’t panic – and step two is simple. Reach for the ingredients list!
For the dogs’ consumption, unsweetened almond milk is considered harmless. This is ONLY true if there are no additives. If there is artificial sweetener – it can be very toxic to your dog. Look at the ingredient list!
Xylitol (and its similar chemicals) are toxic to dogs. If you suspect your dog has consumed any sweetener – contact your emergency Veterinarian immediately for advice.
Why dogs can’t eat nuts (the reason is NOT allergy)
We avoid giving dogs nuts because they are a choking hazard. This is because dogs have a teeth structure that cannot chew almond nuts or any other nuts.
They cannot chew them into small digestible pieces like humans can and can, therefore, be choked by almond nuts.
When these almonds are incorporated into the water and mixed, they become even more digestible and become easy to drink for the dogs.
Almond milk has a perfect mixture of essential compounds your dog should have, and therefore, including almond milk in their diet will bear remarkable outcomes.
It is said to relieve constipation too. On the other end, though, if you give your dog an excessive amount of milk, your dog will have stomach problems, taking the challenge from bad to worse.
Most veterinary doctors would tell you that almond milk is not necessary for the diet – but in theory, it is fine as long as it does not contain any added sweeteners. Sweetened milk can cause other problems for your dog.
The natural sugar that is contained in almonds is enough for dogs without any additives.
When your dog suffers from diarrhea, it is NOT advisable to administer almond milk as it does not have any lactose since it is not a dairy product. Even if the lactose causes diarrhea – introducing new nutritionally complex items to the diet will likely cause more problems than it helps.
On most occasions, diarrhea is caused by undigested lactose products being passed down to the large intestines where they are stirred up by occupant bacteria.
Beware of the extra calories that almond milk provides!
Added calories are one of the most significant issues when it comes to almond milk. Among pets, obesity is a fast-rising problem.
Therefore, when you add more calories to your dog’s diet from almond milk, you are only enabling the obesity health issue.
If your dog is already overweight, then you are making the problem even worse. Ease up on snacks and consider healthy alternatives. Exercise is important for small (e.g. Cavapoo’s that love to walk) and large breeds (like Bernedoodles that love to swim and run).
The good news is; you can allow your pet to snack on almond milk in small quantities.
It is crucial to introduce milk slowly if you want to give it to your pup or dog as an occasional snack.
For instance, I gave my dog a tablespoon to test its response to it. If your dog responds to it poorly or has a stomach upset, you may consider removing almond milk from your pet’s diet.
Must dogs have milk in their diet?
Dogs can do without milk in their diet. If they are young puppies, they should only take their mother’s milk. Otherwise, they can do without any milk.
If you have a puppy and it is in its weaning stage and wants to complement it with another type of milk, any other milk type will prove insufficient.
The most frequently favored type of milk is almond and even soy milk. Both of these alternatives do not add any extra value to the health or nutrients that your puppies need.
Whatever your puppy is getting from its mother is enough, and the puppy will get all the other nutrients from consuming regular food for puppies. Look for what your puppy prefers most, whether it is dry or wet dog food. That will be enough.
Dog food comes in a variety of options. There are even specific types of food for particular breeds of dogs and puppies.
Serving almond milk – mix with kibble OR
A while back, I met a dog parent who asked me, “Can dogs drink almond milk, and when or how should I serve it?” Over time, this has become a frequently asked question.
The first part of the question has been adequately answered. The second part about when or how you should serve the almond milk has no specific time frame.
I don’t elect to serve dogs almond milk unless it is part of a specific DIY treat recipe. If I use it – I choose pure unsweetened almond milk.
I know that some dog owners mix a little almond milk with dog kibble – for the picky eater. Some dogs LOVE THE ALMOND TASTE, and it encourages them to consume their kibble.
You can mix it with dry dog food, offer it as a water substitute or mix it with yogurt. Make sure to make a mental note on how your dog likes it.
Can Dog’s Drink Almond Milk Conclusions
Virtually the whole almond milk and dog conversation boil down the following.
- Unsweetened and unflavoured almond milk is generally considered safe in moderation
- Artificial sweeteners are toxic to dogs
- There may be some minor health benefits to dogs consuming almond milk
- It is however not necessary in the diet
- Contact a Vet BEFORE changing the diet of your dog significantly to reduce risk
Given almond milk is not necessary for the diet (and the risk of using sweetened milk inadvertently – there is no real need to go out of your way to incorporate almond milk into the dog’s diet.
It is ALWAYS best to seek veterinary advice before changing a dog or puppy’s diet. Nutrition is key to overall health – and if you make a move that does not suit your dog’s health – it can result in serious complications.