Oat milk can be good for dogs. It’s a lactose-free dairy alternative for humans that dogs also can enjoy, but in moderation.
Oat milk without additives has fewer calories, fat, and protein per serving than regular whole milk and can be nutritious treat for your dog. Start slowly, though, and check with your vet first if your dog has any health conditions like diabetes or special needs.
Oat Milk for Dogs
Diana Laverdure-Dunetz, a vegan canine nutritionist in Florida, recommends serving your dog homemade oat milk made from only two ingredients: organic, certified gluten-free oats and water.
That means the best oat milk for your dog is homemade. Commercial oat milk products may contain ingredients that are unsafe or unhealthy for dogs, like added sugars, preservatives, flavors, oils, and thickeners. Recipes are abundant online, and it’s a fairly simple process.
“Oat milk contains a type of soluble fiber called beta-glucans, which offers many health benefits, including stimulating the immune system, protecting against infectious diseases, fighting cancer, and helping stabilize blood sugar levels. Soluble fiber also offers a variety of gastrointestinal benefits, including controlling large bowel diarrhea and promoting a healthy gut microbiome. Oats also contain antioxidant compounds that protect cells from oxidation and are a good source of many vitamins and minerals.”
Problems With Oat Milk for Dogs
Obviously, dogs with a food intolerance to oats should not have oat milk. Laverdure-Dunetz also says oat milk should never be given to puppies because they should rely on their mother’s milk. Also, since oat milk contains fiber, too much may cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs.
Susan Blake Davis, a California-based pet nutritionist adds that some dogs may have difficulty digesting plant-based milk alternatives and have gastrointestinal upset, although this reaction could be due to the grain content, vegetables oils, or gums added to commercial oat milk.
How to Serve
Davis says the sweet taste and texture of oat milk may make it useful for administering liquid supplements or medication. Used like this and, depending upon the size of the dog, a 1/2 teaspoon to 1 tablespoon might work.
Laverdure-Dunetz says there are no studies on upper safety limits of oat milk for dogs, but oat milk should be viewed as a treat, so should not comprise more than 10 percent of your dog’s daily calories.
Fun with Oat Milk for Dogs
You can integrate homemade oat milk into your dog’s diet by creating a dog-friendly smoothie with oat milk, kale, and blueberries, or freeze it in ice cube trays for a delicious hot-weather treat. You can even substitute it for cow’s milk in your dog’s favorite home-baked treats or whip up a batch of fluffy oat milk “puppy pancakes.”