As a dog parent, it’s normal to try other food varieties to give your pup. But can dogs eat kefir? This fermented milk will be beneficial for your dog’s health. It’s good to incorporate kefir to their diet. Although it’s always best to consult the vet before adding new food and drinks to your dog’s diet.
Kefir can be offered to dogs since it’s good for their guts. It has gut boosting probiotics, as well as vitamins and minerals. As long as you will only give it in moderation, that will be good for your canine. Just make sure your dog is not lactose intolerant to avoid health problems.
Reason Kefir is Good for Dogs
Kefir is a fermented drink that tastes sour and a bit fizzy. This beverage is made of cow, sheep or goat’s milk plus grains of kefir. This bacterial micro colony is made of different microorganisms such as Lactobacillus and Saccharomyces . The process of making it results in having its probiotic properties.
This drink is similar to yogurt drink and the process of fermentation gives it a sour taste and thick texture. It allows the healthy bacteria to live and multiply. Probiotics are good for your dog’s digestive system. Like in humans, probiotics can maintain your canine’s gut health and stay healthy.
Offering kefir to your dog will keep its breath smelling good and also give them a healthy skin. Because of a plethora of healthy bacteria in kefir, your canine may experience gas. It’s normal for dogs even if they are not lactose intolerant. Don’t worry, it’s normal for them.
If your dog is lactose intolerant, offering kefir will help to regulate the canine’s digestive health. Due to the process of fermentation, the lactose left will only be minimal. It will be good to offer even if your pup is lactose intolerant. The health bacteria will take good care of your dog’s gut health.
Health Benefits of Kefir for Dogs
Similar to yogurt or milk, kefir has the same health benefits. The good side of kefir is the lactose is not as high as other dairy products. Not all canines can tolerate lactose and giving them drinks such as milk can be bad for them. It’s safe to consume even if you have a lactose intolerant pup.
This beverage is a good source of vitamin K, calcium, and protein. These are all the nutrients needed to support your dog’s bone health. Kefir also has the B2 and B12 vitamins. These will help with the metabolism of fat, protein, and minerals.
The best thing about kefir is the probiotic content. It has yeast and around 61 strains of bacteria. This drink will help to boost the canones gut health. It will protect your pooch from infection and other harmful bacterias. Kefir will decrease the growth and development of E. Coli and Salmonella.
Offering kefir to your dog will also act as an antibiotic for them. It can promote a healthy bacteria on their stomach. Dogs may end up getting parasites, diarrhea, or even stress. Adding a small amount of kefir to your dog’s diet will help them to avoid getting sick.
How to Prepare Kefir for Dogs
Even if kefir barely has any lactose, the number of healthy bacteria on it can also end up with an upset stomach. It usually happens if it’s the first time that you will offer kefir to your dog. Although you can avoid canine nausea or diarrhea by feeding a controlled amount of kefir.
However, if your dog will be fine with the amount you’re giving it, that’s a good sign. Increasing the amount from one to two teaspoons for every 16 lbs of your dog’s weight will be good. As an example, if your dog is 16-32 lbs, you can give 1-2 teaspoons. If it’s 48-64 lbs, 2-3 teaspoons will be enough.
Increase the amount of kefir for bigger and heavier dogs. It can be offered on a daily basis and you can make it part of their diet. If your dog is sick or stressed, give kefir to your canine to give it a boost of probiotics. When using antibiotics for your dog, feed at least 2 teaspoons of kefir for added probiotics.
If you decide to try giving kefir to your dog, make sure it’s not sweetened or flavored. Add it to their usual meals everyday. Add some kefir on your dog’s toys as well or make a fruit platter with kefir. Another way is to freeze it and give it as a cold snack for your canine.
How to Make Kefir for Your Dog
You can make your own kefir so that you can offer it to your dog anytime. It’s good for their gut which must always be available. Buying it from the store may be expensive but making it yourself is surprisingly cheap. Below are the things that you will need to make a stash of kefir for your dog.
- Coffee filters/cheesecloth
- Rubber Band
- Plastic/metal strainer
- Kefir grains
- Put a cup of milk and one tablespoon of kefir grains into the jar/container. Make sure to leave a space on the top or around an inch.
- Cover the jar/container using the coffee filter or cheesecloth. Use the rubber band to keep it . Allow the mixture to sit for 24 hours. Wait until its thickened, soured, and ribbons of yellow and white begin to appear.
- Using the metal/plastic strainer, strain the mixture but make sure that there’s a jar under it to catch the kefir. Once done, seal tight and properly. Put it in the fridge to last for as long as 3 weeks.
- If you have leftover kefir grains, put them in another jar. Add milk, cover, and ferment the mixture once again. The kefir grains will reproduce and grow bigger.
Making your own kefir will ensure that your dog will always have a supply of probiotics. It will be a lot cheaper than buying all the time. So, can dogs eat kefir? That’s a big yes since it will keep their gut healthy.
Unsplash – Kefir
Unsplash – Dog drinking kefir