4 min read


Can Dogs Taste Cheese?



4 min read


Can Dogs Taste Cheese?


As humans, we are always finding different recipes to try for our meals. While we come up with great new eats, we simply put our dog's favorite wet or dry food into their bowl and call it a day. It is curious to think about what our animals think when they see or smell our food. For example, a block of cheese. 

Can they taste cheese? Do they like it? Does it actually taste the same for them as it does for us? Dogs usually scarf down pretty much anything put into their sight line, so it is truly a wonder if they even taste it at all.


Signs Your Dog Can Taste and Enjoy Cheese

Being able to tell that your dog can taste cheese is a slightly difficult thing to find out. How are we supposed to know whether or not it tastes good to them or not? When you think about it, we really don't know. Dogs are quite expressive creatures though, so if you are able to pay close attention to how they react to certain things, you may be able to pick up on their personality to know what they do or do not enjoy. 

When you do find yourself feeding them cheese, you will want to start off slowly. When it comes to dairy products, some dogs can be very intolerant towards it, and that is something you definitely do not want to deal with. Dogs do not have as many taste buds as us humans, but they are still able to taste certain things. 

One sign your dog may exhibit is excessive sniffing. Dogs' sense of smell is much better than their sense of taste, so they may be smelling it to see if they would like it. If they like how it smells, they will inhale said cheese. 

There are not many food items a dog will refuse to go after, but another way to really tell if they like cheese is if they raise their ears when you pull out some of that delicious dairy. If they hear the sound of whatever packaging it is in, they will run on over with their ears perked, which leads to our next sign. 

If a dog smells something they know they will enjoy eating, they are bound to get pretty excited about it and, sometimes, they will jump all around. If you are eating cheese, you may also notice that your furry friend may be staring at that same cheese, meaning they would definitely like a taste because they know just how great it is. 

Dogs may not be able to taste as well as us, but there are definite signs when they smell something they know they do like to eat. 

Body Language

How to tell if your dog wants to taste some cheese:

  • Staring
  • Jumping Up
  • Sniffing
  • Raise Ears

Other Signs

Some other signs your dog loves cheese are:

  • Excessive Drooling
  • Wagging His/Her Tail
  • Following You (And Your Cheese)
  • Getting Visibly Excited

The History of Dogs and Cheese


It has always been a largely debated topic on whether dogs are able to taste certain things, like cheese for instance. Over the years, scientists have studied dogs and their ability to sense different things in different ways. 

What they have found is that with dogs, they do not use their sense of taste as much as they use their sense of smell. Studies that have been done on dogs in the past show that dogs have only 1,700 taste buds, in comparison to humans having about 9,000 taste buds. 

When it comes to their noses, though, they have about 125 million sensory glands compared to a humans mere 5-10 million glands. They more-so use their sense of smell to decipher whether or not they will enjoy eating something. 

They do this with cheese as well. Different cheeses smell vastly different, so they may choose which cheese to eat based on the aroma. Many dog owners use cheese as a small treat for their canine companion and it has been shown to work very well.

The Science Behind Your Dog Loving Cheese


An interesting piece of information regarding cheese is the fact that it has slightly addictive properties. According to studies, cheese has an ingredient called casein which basically triggers parts of your brain that have to do with pain, reward, and addiction. 

This study can be applied to people who love cheese - and also to your favorite pup. After they have eaten the cheese, they will then exhibit the signs we mentioned earlier and they will always know when cheese is available to them! They will be able to smell the cheese or hear the packaging get ripped open and they will know exactly what you have.

Train Your Dog with Cheese


Okay, so, realistically there is not much to do to teach your dog how to taste cheese, but you can definitely make sure your pooch reacts well to said cheese. Ways that you can make sure they enjoy cheese is to use it as a treat for them!

You can begin using it with your pooch at a young age to reward them when they do well. That way, when they hear, smell or see the cheese they will know just what to do and to act accordingly. 

If you have used cheese for training purposes, you will want to continue using it as just a reward for training. After your dog has completed their training and they no longer need the cheese to complete the task, you can wait a little while and then start giving it to them as just a nice treat for being such a good boy or girl again.

Other ways to train your dogs to react well to cheese is to just eat some and share it with them. It can be as simple as that! If they smell it and see you eating it, chances are that they are going to react by wanting to snatch it from you. After this, when they hear you opening up that cheese wrapper, rest assured they will be right by your side waiting for a bite. 

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Safety Tips When Giving Your Dog Cheese

  1. Give them just a small amount of cheese to make sure they are not lactose intolerant.
  2. If they get any hives or start acting strangely, they may be allergic to cheese.
  3. Teach them manners so that they do not steal cheese from you (or your guests!)

By a Keeshond lover Molly Martin

Published: 02/02/2018, edited: 04/06/2020

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