Dogs may have difficulty with milk digestion due to lactose intolerance, explains Dr. Shadi Ireifej, co-founder and Chief Medical Officer of VetTriage, a company that provides tele-vet health sessions with a veterinarian. Most adult dogs can’t digest milk well after they’re weaned since they don’t produce much lactase, the enzyme for digesting dairy.
“Dairy products can result in flatulence, bloating, constipation, diarrhea or vomiting for your dog,” says Dr. Ireifej. Not exactly the happy outcome you’d want for your pooch.
What’s more, ice cream’s sugar content is high (along with its fat content) and if your dog gets too much, it can mean restlessness overactivity and a “sugar high” the same way young kids can get hyped up after eating too much candy. Plus, eating ice cream leads to weight gain, something else your dog doesn’t need: extra pounds to schlump around.
Diet-friendly ice cream won’t work either. Low-calorie or sugar-free varieties may contain Xylitol, a sweetener that replaces real sugar but is toxic to dogs. The ingredients list may refer to it as birch sugar.🐶🍦🍨
Finally, ice cream flavors and toppings could also be problematic. Think rum raisin—two foods your pup can’t have—or any variety of chocolate—a total no-no since dogs cannot process the ingredients in chocolate. Plus theobromine and caffeine could be included, which can be dangerous or fatal. Flavors that contain add-ins like pecans, pralines, and toffee crunch are a cause for concern too. No, no, and no!