Can Dogs Drink Milk?

Can Dogs Drink Milk? 

Dogs are mammals, which means they need their mother’s milk when they are puppies to grow big and strong. But what about when they’re older? Can dogs drink milk? What kind of milk can they drink? Is it even good for them? 

In this guide, we’re covering everything you need to know about milk and your dog, answering your most-asked questions, and giving you recommendations for the safest ways to feed your dog a milky treat. 

Is Milk Safe for Dogs?

Yes, most of the time. All types of milk are technically safe for your dog unless they are specifically allergic to one of the ingredients, but not all milk is good for your dog. Cow milk, the most common type of milk readily available in grocery stores and at restaurants, contains lactose, and complex, difficult-to-digest proteins. While most dogs do not have allergies or food sensitivities, dairy is one of the most common food sensitivities in dogs

Because lactose can be difficult for dogs to digest, it’s not suggested that you include milk in their everyday diet, but a cube of cheese or a slurp of milk now and then won’t hurt them. 

milk and cheese

Goat milk, which we’ll cover more later, is typically the best type of milk to give to your dog since it lacks the complex proteins that make cow’s milk difficult to digest, but even that should be given sparingly, or as a dietary supplement. 

Common Types of Milk

We’ve already explained that cow’s milk is safe, but not very good for dogs, but what about the other kinds of milk? 

Before we dive into the different types of milk and whether they are safe for dogs, we have an important reminder about vegan milk alternatives: Many milk substitutes including soy milk, oat milk, coconut milk, etc., contain additional preservatives, sweeteners, and flavorings that are not good for your dog. Never give your dog flavored or sweetened milk.

Type of Milk

Where’s It From?

Common Uses

Safe for Dogs?


Drinking, creamer, cheese, ice cream, in recipes.

Yes, occasionally. 


Cheese, drinking.




Yes, in moderation. 


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, in moderation when unsweetened.


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

No. See this article for more information on dogs and nuts. 


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, very occasionally when unsweetened.


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, in moderation when unsweetened.


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, in moderation when unsweetened.


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, in moderation when unsweetened. 


Drinking, creamer, in vegan recipes.

Yes, in moderation when unsweetened.

Nutritional Value of Milk

Cow, goat, and sheep’s milk are all good sources of fat, protein, and essential vitamins, but because your dog should only be given milk products occasionally, they won’t benefit from these nutrients. 

Goat milk is sometimes included in a dog’s diet as a nutritional supplement. We like this one from Raw Paws Pet Food that is made just for dogs. 

Goat milk is slightly more digestible than cow’s milk and lower in fat than sheep milk, making it a sort of ‘happy medium’ choice. Goat milk also contains key probiotics that can help your dog’s digestion by promoting healthy gut flora. If you are interested in giving your dog goat milk, be sure to first consult with your vet. If approved by your vet, source the goat milk from a reputable pet store, or a reputable source online like The Honest Kitchen

How Much Milk Can I Give My Dog?

puppy drinks milk

Letting your dog drink pure milk isn’t a great idea, but if you do want to give them a little to moisten their food, keep it to a tablespoon or two. If you are adding goat milk to your dog’s food, follow the directions of your vet, or the instructions on the packaging of the goat’s milk you have purchased. 

Can Dogs Drink Milk? The FAQ

More questions on your mind about dogs and milk? Here are all your questions beyond “can dogs drink milk” and answers to help you make an informed decision. 

What Milk Is Best For Dogs?

Goat’s milk is widely considered the “best” milk for dogs. However, even goat’s milk should only be an occasional treat or dietary supplement, never a key source of nutrition.

If your dog doesn't like goats milk, you can try giving it in powdered form. The one from Raw Paws Pet Food also contains probiotics and enzymes.

goat milk

What Happens If A Dog Drinks Milk?

Usually, nothing! Most dogs won’t have any problems after drinking a little milk, but some may experience symptoms of lactose intolerance like a stomach ache, diarrhea, gas, and discomfort. 

Similarly, if your dog manages to drink a lot of milk (or eat too much of a puppuccino) they may have an upset stomach. If you are concerned, be sure to contact your veterinarian. 

Can Dogs Drink Milk Every Day?

No. It’s not a good idea to give your dog milk or dairy products every day. Goat’s milk may be safe for daily use in moderation, but be sure to chat with your vet about whether your dog could benefit from the probiotics. 

Can Dogs Drink Milk For Poison?

No! If your dog has ingested poison, you need to call your vet or an emergency vet immediately. Your dog needs medical attention right away, and there are no home remedies available. Milk does not work to neutralize toxins, nor is it an appropriate treatment option after a dog has come in contact with something toxic or poisonous. 

What Can Dogs Drink Besides Water?

Water is best! Water is the only thing you should give your dog for basic hydration, but there are some other liquids that can safely be given to dogs in moderation including milk (as discussed here), low-sodium chicken, beef, or pork broth, and cucumber water!

Which Is Better? Warm Or Cold Milk For Dogs?

It makes no difference whether the milk you give your dog is hot or cold. Whether your dog prefers milk warmed or cold will depend on their preference. 

Is It Good To Put Milk in Dog Food?

Sometimes. If your dog is in need of additional probiotics, your vet may recommend that you add goat’s milk to your dog’s food. Other types of milk should not be added to your dog’s food. 

Baked goods and recipes made with milk should also be given to your dog in moderation, and not as a key source of nutrition or calories. These types of foods are not unsafe for dogs, but they do not provide the key nutrients your pup needs to be healthy, and can be unhealthy when not fed in moderation. 

Can Dogs Drink Lactose-Free Milk?

In moderation. Cow’s milk with the lactose removed may still cause gastrointestinal issues for dairy intolerant dogs, but otherwise, it can be treated the same as you would regular cow’s milk; feed only occasionally as a treat. 

Can Dogs Have Milk & Cereal?

No. Cereal contains carb-heavy grains, tons of added sugars, and chemical preservatives, flavorings, and colors. None of these ingredients are good for dogs and can make them quite sick, so no milk and cereal for Fido. 

Best Ways to Give Your Dog Milk

If you’re looking for a fun way to share a dairy-licious treat with your pup, try one of these fun and creative options: 

Just venturing into the world of human food for your dog? Check out this list of vegetables dogs can safely eat, and absolutely love!

Rocky Kanaka

Rocky Kanaka is an entrepreneur, pet rescue advocate and dog dad to a rescue boxer named Flip, a blind Cane Corso called Kobe, and a terrier mix named Zoey. He's also a pet chef and owner of The Dog Bakery, which specializes in dog birthday cakes and fresh baked dog treats. His three dogs can't get enough of the dog cakes and treats!

Lorna Ladd

Lorna Paxton Ladd is a passionate dog lover and enthusiast of The Dog Bakery. She loves spoiling her 3 rescue dogs with dog cakes and jerky. A 15 year veteran in the pet industry, her aim is to educate pet parents on the best recipes, products, tips and tricks to optimize the human/canine bond. Her favorite product at The Dog Bakery are the customizable dog birthday cakes.