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Can Dogs Taste Soy Milk?
Dairy-free milk alternatives have been on the rise in the US for the last few years, with almond, oat, and soy milk popping up all over the place. You may have been wondering if soy milk and soy milk based foods are healthy and safe for your dog to eat as well.
Soy products and soy milk are generally safe for your dog to eat in moderation. Soy is actually found in many dog foods as a source of plant-based protein.
However, just because soy is non-toxic to dogs, doesn't mean that it comes without its risks and drawbacks. We will explore the goods and bads of soy and soy milk for dogs below.
Signs of a Dog Liking Soy Milk
If your dog does not have an allergy or intolerance to soy, they can have soy milk and soy products without too much concern. If your dog likes soy milk and other soy products, like soy yogurt or tofu, you will be able to tell your dog likes them because he or she will eat them without any hesitation.
After they finish licking the soy milk or soy product, they may bark or whine for more, drool, paw at you, or stare at you with eager eyes as if they are waiting to get more. Some dogs may decide to pace around in front of you, run in circles around you or in front of you, or if you have a polite and calm dog, they may just sit in front of you, patiently waiting for more.
However, you may find your dog is not a fan of soy milk and that is ok too! If they don't like soy milk, they will take a lick and completely ignore the rest of the soy milk and walk away. Perhaps they will sit in front of you in order to get a treat they actually like.
Some dogs will also snarl, growl, or expose their teeth to the food to show they do not like the soy milk you are giving them - we call it the "ugly face!"
History of Dogs and Soy Milk
The earliest evidence we have of soy milk dates all the way back to 222-20 AD in China, where soy and soy milk images were carved into stone walls. The relic was of a kitchen where soy milk and tofu were being produced. Furthermore, we see the first written word of soy milk in 1,500 in China in the poem "Od to Tofu" by Su Ping.
Further down the road, a reference to soy milk made an appearance in Europe around 1665 by Domingo Fernandez de Navarrete. He was a missionary who was living in Vietnam at the time. During these early times, soy milk was solely made for producing tofu for eating. However, by 1886, notes were made that the Chinese drank warm soy milk as part of their breakfast. Soy milk eventually made its way to the United States were it began to gain even more popularity. The US began to mass-produce soy milk in commercial form around 1917.
Although dogs may have consumed soy from time to time, dogs got their main source of protein and nutrients from fresh and raw meats and fish. Dogs would either hunt on their own for food or they would be given meat scraps and bones leftover from humans after meals.
Science Behind Dogs and Soy Milk
There are some health benefits and drawbacks to giving your dog soy milk and other soy products. Although dogs can have soy milk (it is non-toxic and is often included in dog food and dog treats), there is some controversy surrounding soy and soy milk.
Soybeans contain a lot of protein and can replace some of the meat in your dog's diet if you are seeking some plant-based protein alternatives. They also have essential amino acids, which are highly beneficial for your dog's overall health.
However, soy milk can also pose some issues, especially with other soy products that are used as a cheap filler in dog food and treats. Soy is often GMO, mass-produced from China in unregulated fields, and sprayed with highly toxic pesticides like Round-up in both China and the United States. This is very unhealthy and bad for your dog.
If the soy milk you feed your dog is not organic or non-GMO, you are most definitely feeding your dog a concoction of chemicals that can increase their liklihood of developing cancer and chronic diseases.
Training Dogs to Like Soy Milk
If you are going to give your dog soy milk, always make sure you have a full understanding of the benefits and the drawbacks of soy milk and soy products for animals and dogs. Speak to your vet about it if you have any questions or additional concerns about soy milk and products.
If you decide to give your dog soy milk from time to time, always make sure you are buying organic and non-GMO forms of soy milk. This will ensure you are getting non-GMO produced soy milk, which will avoid the consumption of pesticides, herbicides, Round-up, and GMO soybeans.
You also must look for soy milk brands that are not flavored, don't contain any added sugar, and use as little other fillers, chemicals, and other ingredients as possible. Most brands are filled with sugars, artificial sweeteners, and thickeners like carrageenan. These ingredients have no nutritional benefits and will only do harm to your dog's body. The extra sugar adds unnecessary fructose and calories to your dog's diet, which will make then gain weight.
Soy milk should only be given to your dog in very small quantities and only on occasion. It is not something you will want to give them on a daily basis. Add soy milk to homemade treats in place of water or other liquids. You can also freeze some in an ice cube tray and give them the cool treat to chew on in the hot summer months!
By a Samoyed lover Kayla Costanzo
Published: 06/01/2018, edited: 04/06/2020
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