Can Dogs Eat Cream Cheese? 

By Coty Perry

You can feed your dog small portions of plain cream cheese as long as you know they’re not sensitive to dairy. It is perfectly safe but be entirely sure the cream cheese doesn’t contain added ingredients like garlic or onions. Those are toxic to dogs. 

Whenever we sit down to eat and our dog joins us nearby, the thought always crosses our mind. Can I give my dog some of what I’m having? 

If you whip yourself up a quick bagel with cream cheese, you might wonder “can dogs have cream cheese”? 

The last thing you want to do is make your dog sick by giving them something they shouldn’t eat but how can we be entirely sure? Dogs love cheese right? What about cream cheese? This guide will help you determine whether or not it’s safe for your pup to have some cream cheese. 

Is Cream Cheese Good For Dogs?

Most of us see cream cheese as a delicious but somewhat unhealthy food because of the high calories and excess fat. That said, cream cheese does contain a lot of protein which is great for your dog. 

Health Benefits (Is Cream cheese safe for dogs?)

The good news is, cream cheese is entirely safe to give to your dog in small portions. It contains protein, calcium, vitamins, and essential fatty acids that are all important for your dog’s health. 

That said, it’s not a natural food that contains a lot of ingredients your dogs would find in their normal diet so you don’t want to give them too much cream cheese. 

Health Risks of eating Cream Cheese for dogs

While offering a little spoon of cream cheese won’t do much harm, it’s still important to remember that cream cheese contains a lot of fat and lactose is not always the easiest on your dog’s stomach. 

One of the biggest culprits of digestive problems in dogs is lactose. Because of that it’s highly recommended that you only give your dog a very small amount of cream cheese the right time around. This will allow you to pay attention and see how it impacts their body. If everything seems alright, you can give them a little more next time. 

Mind the calories

Also, remember that cream cheese contains a lot of calories with as much as six grams of saturated fat per serving. This type of food will cause your dog to gain weight if you give it to them too frequently. 

Pay attention to added ingredients such as chives, onions, garlic, and other herbs. Garlic and onion can be extremely poisonous to dogs so you need to be careful. Even if you think the brand does not contain these ingredients, check anyway. 

It’s recommended that you only feed your dog low-fat, plain cream cheese so you don’t have to worry as much.

Is Philadelphia Cream Cheese Okay For Dogs? 

It’s important to pay attention to the ingredients in all cream cheese regardless of the brand. There isn’t anything different about Philadelphia brand cream cheese compared to a generic store brand. 

Where you can find yourself in trouble is if you don’t pay attention to added ingredients. Also keep in mind that many cream cheeses have a high amount of sugar and they taste very sweet.

You can give your pup Philadelphia cream cheese but only in small quantities and don’t get them in the habit of expecting it every time you have a bagel. 

Can My Puppy Have Philadelphia Cream Cheese? 

The same rules apply for puppies but you want to be extra careful when they’re young because you may be unaware of food sensitivities

Introduce puppies slowly

If your puppy is very young you will want to introduce them to something like cream cheese, very slowly. Give them a dab of it and gradually increase over time until you’re sure they are not sensitive to lactose. 

What Will Cream Cheese Do To Dogs? 

Let’s talk about a scenario. Your dog accidentally steals a bagel off the table and it’s covered in cream cheese. There’s about 4-5 tablespoons of cream cheese between the bagel and you’re concerned about their health. 

The first thing to pay attention to is the type of cream cheese. Is it plain? Some examples of cream cheese that could send your dog to the emergency room are:

  • Garlic and Herb
  • Onion
  • Blueberry 

All of these ingredients are toxic and if consumed in small amounts won’t be too harmful, multiple spoonfuls could lead to vomiting and diarrhea. Pay close attention to your pup and see if they’re experiencing any negative side effects. If they are, contact your vet immediately. 

How Much Cream Cheese Can a Dog Eat?

As little as possible

There is no safe or unsafe amount of cream cheese. The best motto is to give them “as little as possible.” This means, only ever give your pet cream cheese as an occasional treat, do not incorporate it into meals, make it a meal replacement, and avoid situations where they may accidentally consume too much. 

Is a spoonful of cream cheese bad a few times a month hurt them? No, but a spoonful every day could lead to obesity and changes in dietary habits. 

Remember, giving dogs things that they’re not meant to eat will change the way they look and think about food. They’ll start to expect things to taste sweeter and richer and when their everyday kibble doesn’t taste like that, they could start to turn their nose to it. 

Can I Give my dog cream cheese frosting? 

Be wary of the sugar content

The same rules apply as does for regular cream cheese. Cream cheese frosting will contain a ton of sugar so it should only be given to them on very rare occasions. 

Of course, it’s a very unhealthy thing to give your dog but there aren’t any ingredients in the frosting that would make your dog sick as long as you only give them a little. Next time your pup’s birthday rolls around, consider dabbing a little cream cheese frosting on their nose! 

Is it okay to feed dogs cream cheese if it’s low fat? 

Yes dogs can eat low fat cream cheese as an occasional treat

Low fat cheeses are a better alternative to whole fat but it should still not be treated as a supplement for real dog food. There are no good reasons to incorporate this into your dog’s diet and it should only ever be treated as an occasional snack or reward. 

Is Cottage Cheese a Better Alternative to Cream Cheese?

Yes it’s better

Cottage cheese is a much better alternative to cream cheese for lactose intolerant dogs. The big “if” here is the lactose intolerant issue. Some dogs are better equipped to handle it than others. If your dog has an issue with dairy then it won’t matter what kind of cheese you give them, all kinds will cause issues like vomiting and diarrhea. 

Give Cottage cheese in moderation

That said, cottage cheese contains a lot of protein and since it’s a fermented cheese, it doesn’t contain as much lactose as other dairy products. Keep in mind that, like cream cheese, cottage cheese is very rich and could alter your dog’s taste so it should only be given in small quantities on rare occasions. 

Can I Use Cream Cheese to Give My Dog Medicine? 

Most dogs love cheese even if cheese doesn’t love them so it’s a great way to hide pills (this is often called the cream cheese trick). Since cream cheese is so thick and rich, it’s nearly impossible for your pup to suspect the medicine in the middle.

Just remember that this should only be done on rare occasions and only if you are certain that your dog is not allergic to dairy. 

Is Blue Cheese Safe For Dogs? 

Avoid blue cheese

Blue cheese contains something called “stilton” which is a part of the fungus used to produce the cheese. This ingredient is toxic to dogs and if they consume it they can experience diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and seizures. 

You should never give your dog blue cheese and if they’ve consumed a large quantity, you’ll want to contact your vet right away. 

Final verdict: Can Dogs eat cream cheese?

Can dogs eat cream cheese? Yes they can. Can dogs eat a lot of cream cheese? No they can’t. Face it, cream cheese is delicious but that doesn’t mean that our canine companions should have any. 

If your pup loves dairy and can handle it, a little cream cheese every now and again won’t hurt them. We just recommend you don’t get into a normal routine of giving it to your dog and be sure that they’re not allergic to dairy before giving it to them. 

Photo of author
Coty Perry
Coty is a self-proclaimed cat whisperer and animal lover. Growing up his mom ran a dog training business out of his childhood home so you can say it was complete chaos 24/7. Today, when he comes home after a long day of writing about animals, he’s greeted by his two loving cats Marley and Cozmo.