Can Dogs Have Sour Cream – Is It Fully Safe For Your Dog?

We all love to smother our fries, mashed potatoes, and even oatmeal with sour cream. Heck, some people might even put it on their pie!

But can dogs consume this dairy product without any issues? Can dogs have sour cream or is it full of dangerous toxins that could make them very sick?

Let’s explore the ins and outs of feeding your pup this tasty condiment and see what the verdict is.

Are you ready to learn more? Excellent! Let’s dive in!

Can Dogs Have Sour Cream? Learn if Sour Cream Is Safe for Your Dog

As a pet parent, you are probably always on the lookout for anything that could potentially harm your furry friend.

And with good reason! Dogs are notoriously curious creatures and will often put just about anything in their mouths – regardless of whether or not it is safe for them to consume.

This can obviously lead to some pretty serious consequences if your pup ingests something that is poisonous to them.

So, it’s no wonder that you might be wondering – can dogs have sour cream?

The answer is…yes, but in moderation.

It also depends on a few factors, such as the type of sour cream, the ingredients, and whether or not your dog is lactose intolerant.

It also has no real nutritional benefits for your pup, so there’s really no need to go overboard and give them a ton of it.

Are there any nutritional benefits? Let’s take a closer look.

Nutritional Value of Sour Cream for Dogs

#1 – Lot of Saturated (Unhealthy) Fat

Sour cream is full of saturated fat. In fact, about 50% of the calories in sour cream come from fat.

And we all know that too much saturated fat can lead to some pretty serious health problems in both humans and dogs – including obesity, heart disease, and pancreatitis.

So, if you do decide to give your pup some sour cream, make sure to do so in moderation and keep an eye on their weight.

#2 – Lots of Calories (Especially for Small Dogs)

A single tablespoon of sour cream contains about 32 calories.

sour cream on a small white bowl with spoon

While this might not seem like a lot, it can quickly add up – especially if you have a small dog.

For example, a 10-pound dog would only need to consume about 6 tablespoons of sour cream to reach its daily calorie limit.

And we all know what happens when dogs consume too many calories – weight gain!

#3 – Additives With No Nutritional Benefits

While some brands of sour cream add in artificial flavors, colors, and sweeteners, others don’t.

However, even the brands that don’t add any extras still typically use thickeners – such as carrageenan – which have no real nutritional benefits.

So, if you do decide to give your pup some sour cream, make sure to check the label and choose a brand that doesn’t have any additives.

#4 – Lactose

If your pup is lactose intolerant, then they definitely shouldn’t have any sour cream.

Lactose intolerance in dogs occurs when they lack the enzymes needed to break down lactose – which is a type of sugar found in milk and other dairy products.

This can lead to some pretty serious gastrointestinal issues, such as vomiting, diarrhea, and bloating.

So, if you’re not sure whether or not your pup is lactose intolerant, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and avoid giving them any sour cream.

4 Potential Health Risks of Feeding Your Dog Sour Cream

Now that we know a little bit more about the nutritional value of sour cream, let’s take a look at some of the potential health risks associated with feeding it to your pup.

#1 – Weight Gain Due to High-Fat Content

While a little bit of sour cream is not going to cause your pup to instantly pack on the pounds, feeding them too much of it on a regular basis can lead to weight gain.

This is because sour cream is high in fat – even the low-fat varieties contain around 10% fat.

If your pup is already overweight, or if they are prone to weight gain, then it’s best to avoid feeding them sour cream altogether.

#2 – Lactose Intolerance (Gas, Diarrhea, Vomiting)

Just like some people are intolerant to lactose, some dogs can also have a hard time digesting it.

If your dog is intolerant to lactose, it may experience gas, diarrhea, and/or vomiting after eating sour cream.

If you think your pup may be lactose intolerant, it’s best to talk to your vet before feeding them sour cream (or any other dairy products).

#3 – Gastrointestinal Discomfort

Even if your pup isn’t intolerant to lactose, too much sour cream can still lead to gastrointestinal discomfort.

dog eating on green bowl

Symptoms of this include diarrhea, vomiting, and/or abdominal pain.

If you notice any of these after your dog has eaten sour cream, it’s best to give them some plain yogurt (which contains live and active cultures that can help settle their stomach) or see a vet.

#4 – Artificial Sweetener Poisoning (Xylitol Poisoning)

If the sour cream you’re feeding your dog contains xylitol (an artificial sweetener), it could lead to xylitol poisoning.

Xylitol is poisonous to dogs and can cause a sudden drop in blood sugar levels, leading to weakness, loss of coordination, and vomiting. In severe cases, it can even cause seizures and death.

Can Your Dog Eat Treats With Sour Cream? 

The answer to this question is a bit tricky because it depends on the treat.

For example, if the only ingredient in the treat is sour cream, then it’s best to avoid giving it to your pup.

However, if the treat also contains other ingredients – such as flour, eggs, and sugar – then it’s probably fine for them to have a small piece.

Just keep in mind that these types of treats are high in calories and should only be given to your dog in moderation.

Healthy Alternatives to Sour Cream for Dogs

If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to sour cream for your pup, there are a few options you can choose from.

Some good alternatives include:

  • Lite or organic sour cream

This is a good option if you want to give your pup some sour cream, but you’re worried about the fat and calorie content.

Just make sure to check the label and choose a brand that doesn’t have any additives.

  • Plain yogurt 

This is a good option if your pup is lactose intolerant or if you’re looking for probiotic-rich food.

Choose a brand that doesn’t have any artificial sweeteners or flavors.

  • Kefir

This is a fermented milk product that contains live and active cultures.

It’s a good option for dogs who are lactose intolerant because the fermentation process breaks down most of the lactose.

  • Peanut butter

You can use this as a dipping sauce for your pup’s favorite kibble or mix it into their food.

Just make sure to use a brand (or make your own) that doesn’t have any added sugar or salt.

  • Doggy ice cream

This is a good option if you’re looking for a special treat for your pup.

small black dog eating vanilla ice cream cone

There are many brands that make doggy ice cream, or you can even make your own at home.

Just be sure to avoid any flavors that contain chocolate, artificial sweeteners, or other ingredients that are toxic to dogs.

How Much Sour Cream Can a Dog Eat?

There is no definitive answer to this question because it depends on the size of your dog and its overall health. However, it’s generally safe to give your dog a very small amount of sour cream as a treat with another food.

What Sour Cream Is Good for Dogs?

Sour cream that contains no additives, preservatives, or xylitol is generally safe for dogs to eat in moderation. It can be a source of protein and fat, but because it is high in lactose, it may cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs.

Can Dogs Eat Sour Cream With Onion Chips?

No, dogs should not eat sour cream with onion chips. Onion is toxic to dogs and can cause anemia and gastrointestinal upset. This combination is also very high in fat and salt, which could be harmful to your dog.

Conclusion

Sour cream is generally safe for dogs to eat in moderation, but it’s best to avoid giving them too much.

If you’re concerned about the fat and calorie content, you can choose a low-fat or fat-free sour cream.

If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to sour cream for your pup, there are a few options you can choose from, such as plain yogurt, kefir, or peanut butter.

Just make sure to avoid any flavors that contain chocolate, artificial sweeteners, or other ingredients that are toxic to dogs.

Do you occasionally feed your dog treats with sour cream?

Photo of author

Lovelia Horn

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