What Is Puppuccino at Starbucks?

Reviewed By Julie •  Updated: 11/12/21 •  6 min read
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What Is Puppuccino at Starbucks

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Do you visit Starbucks on a regular basis? If so, then you know about the coffee chain’s famous coffee! You can order just about any type of coffee, with wonderful ingredients added that you can imagine! But don’t stop there. Starbucks also serves sandwiches, cakes, and more!

In the “and more” range of their products, have you heard about Starbucks’ puppuccinos?

What is a Starbucks Puppuccino?

While Starbucks usually doesn’t allow dogs inside the shop (unless the dog is a service dog), they do have a great treat for dogs. You won’t find this doggie treat on the main menu but on Starbucks’ secret menu. This wonderful treat for dogs is called the puppuccino!

You might consider ordering one of these next time you visit Starbucks, whether you go in (and leave your dog outside) or use the drive-thru. And this special treat for dogs is not expensive—it’s free!

The puppuccino is a small espresso cup filled with whipped cream! Most dogs go crazy for this sweet, yummy treat! And don’t worry, the puppuccino doesn’t contain any coffee or other toxic ingredients to dogs. Though, sometimes the barista may add some flavorings. Just be sure these are safe and non-toxic for your fur baby.

While that’s true, is it OK for dogs to have whipped cream? Can whipped cream make a dog sick?

What is Whipped Cream?

Whipped cream is made from heavy whipping cream, sugar, and vanilla flavoring (though some recipes don’t include vanilla). The cream used for the recipe is cream that’s separated from milk. In fact, this is the same cream that can become butter. If you’ve ever tried to make whipping cream and it came out butter instead, it means the cream was whipped too long!

The cream used for this wonderful topping has a fat content of about 30% to 36%. Whipped cream has about 52 calories per serving, with 6 grams of fat.

This sweet dessert first became popular back in 16th century Italy, where it was only served to aristocrats and royalty. This delightful topping then spread to England, where it was first noted in about 1673.

Can Dogs Have Whipped Cream?

Sweet and creamy describes whipped cream. Most people (and their dogs) love this stuff! Who doesn’t love this amazing topping? Whipped cream is one of the most popular dessert toppings all around the world. It goes with just about everything, including apple pie, brownies, and more! But is it OK for your dog to have whipped cream?

In most cases, the answer is yes. However, some dogs may have a sensitive digestive tract or be lactose intolerant. If these dogs eat much whipped cream, they could become sick.

In addition, if a dog has whipped cream too often, they may also develop pancreatitis, diabetes and become obese. This is because whipped cream contains so many calories, fat, and sugar.

What is Lactose Intolerance in Dogs?

Lactose is a sugar that’s found in milk, which is broken down in the body by an enzyme called lactase. Newborn puppies (and most humans) have this enzyme so they can eat their mother’s milk. In puppies, as they are weaned, lactase production decreases. Once the puppies have been weaned, they may no longer be able to tolerate drinking their mother’s milk because they lack lactase.

Most milk produced by mammals contains lactase, including human, cow, and goat milk (these contain more lactose than canine milk). When older puppies and adult dogs eat or drink dairy products, they may develop digestive issues because they don’t produce enough lactase to digest the dairy products correctly.

Symptoms of lactose intolerance may be confused with a milk allergy; however, a dairy allergy is very different from lactose intolerance. With a milk allergy, the body is overly sensitive to a specific protein in the milk or dairy product. This causes the immune system to believe the specific protein is an invader and try to kill it off. The symptoms may appear similar to lactose intolerance and include diarrhea, vomiting, and nausea. However, there will be other symptoms that can include hives, breathing difficulties, and more.

With a dairy intolerance, the reaction is not immunological. It is simply caused by a lack of the lactase enzyme. You will not see any breathing difficulties, hives, or other signs of an allergic reaction. The symptoms are purely digestive.

Symptoms of Lactose Intolerance in Dogs

You may notice these symptoms if your dog is lactose intolerant:

The symptoms of lactose intolerance are usually not severe and don’t last longer than 12-24 hours. However, it is possible for the vomiting and diarrhea to last longer. In that case, the danger is the dog could become severely dehydrated.

So, if your dog has symptoms of lactose intolerance after eating whipped cream, then it’s best not to feed him dairy products in the future. Or only give him a couple of licks of whipped cream, but not more.

If your fur baby develops diarrhea and vomiting that last longer than 24 hours, then it’s time to call the vet. The vet may be able to prescribe some medication to help calm your dog’s digestive system. They can also provide medication that stops vomiting and diarrhea.

If your dog develops severe dehydration, he may need to stay hospitalized overnight. The vet may treat your dehydrated canine companion with IV fluids to help with rehydration.

Are Puppuccinos Safe for Dogs?

The answer is yes, in most cases. However, if you already know your dog is lactose intolerant or that he has a dairy allergy, then it’s best not to get him a puppuccino. If he really wants one, then you might try giving him a very small amount. Afterward, monitor your dog for any symptoms that may develop and take note of the symptom severity. If he seems OK with a small amount of whipped cream, then it’s OK to give him some.

Finally, we would recommend that if you have a question about giving your canine companion a puppuccino, then it’s best to ask the vet. They will have the best information and guidance since your vet is very familiar with your dog’s health.

So, there you have it! Puppuccinos are OK as a once-in-a-while treat for some dogs; however, for dogs that are lactose intolerant or allergic to dairy, then it’s probably best to find a different treat for them to enjoy!

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Julie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she studied Animal science. Though contrary to the opinion of her parents she was meant to study pharmacy, but she was in love with animals especially cats. Julie currently works in an animal research institute (NGO) in California and loves spending quality time with her little cat. She has the passion for making research about animals, how they survive, their way of life among others and publishes it. Julie is also happily married with two kids.

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