Dogs are people, too. Well, you know what we mean. Just as you love a special treat when you’re out and about, so does your dog. Starbucks – always savvy – developed a treat that’s just for dogs. It’s on their “secret menu.” It’s the Puppuccino. What is a Starbucks Puppuccino? Is it good for your dog? What does it cost? What’s in it? Keep reading, dog lovers.
The Puppuccino is dog-friendly whipped cream. It’s served in an espresso cup or sample-size cold beverage container (the “pup cup”). If you’re at a Starbucks drive-thru window with your dog just ask for the Puppuccino by name or you can ask for a cup of whipped cream. The Puppuccino is very popular and Starbucks is happy to give dogs a treat.
From what we found online, the ingredients in a Puppuccino are: cream, mono and diglycerides, and carrageenan. The Puppuccino contains no caffeine of any kind. It’s not a coffee product. There is no added fruit or other ingredients.
The Puppuccino is not one of Starbucks’ standard menu items so they don’t publish nutritional information about it. However, you can guesstimate the nutrition https://www.superfoodly.com/starbucks-puppuccino/ based on some of their other drinks.
(Smaller figures are for small servings; larger figures are for bigger servings. Baristas generally give bigger servings to bigger dogs.)
- 120-240 calories
- 12-24g of fat, of which 7-14g are saturated
- 4-8g of carbs
- 3-6g of sugar
- 1-2g of protein
- 10-20mg of sodium
- 40-80mg of cholesterol
Carageenan is always a controversial ingredient. Made from seaweed, it’s been used for centuries as a thickener in foods. It’s used today in many dairy products and other foods. There are reports that it can cause digestive inflammation but it is widely used in human food products.
Mono and diglycerides are hydrogenated oil to improve the texture and stability of whipped cream.
Many Starbucks also add vanilla syrup to the whipped cream. The amount can vary. This can greatly increase the sugar in this treat. The Starbucks vanilla sugar contains Sugar, Water, Natural Flavors, Preservative: Potassium Sorbate (E202), Citric Acid (E330), Color: Caramel (E150d).
If the vanilla syrup alarms you, you might be able to request a Puppuccino made without the syrup.
No one is going to claim that Puppuccinos are the healthiest treats for dogs but dogs love them. They aren’t as unhealthy for dogs as you might be led to believe by some of the dire comments online.
Don’t expect Puppuccinos to provide a lot of vitamins or minerals although the whipped cream is a source of calcium.
Many people worry about giving their dogs dairy but the fact is that whipped cream, especially heavy cream, is very low in lactose. From the information we found, whipped cream made from heavy cream with 30 percent fat contains 3.3 grams of lactose. If it’s made from whipping cream with 10 percent fat, it may have 4.05 grams of lactose. Either way, this amount of lactose is usually too low to be a problem for most dogs, even if your dog is lactose-intolerant. This means that most dogs can eat a Puppuccino without having any digestive problems due to lactose-intolerance.
Of course, if your dog manages to somehow eat 10 Puppuccinos in a day, he likely will have a tummy ache. But anyone who overeats can have some problems.
Can Dogs Have Puppuccinos?
Yes. Puppuccinos from Starbucks were created for dogs.
There are some dogs who should not have Puppuccinos. If your dog is diabetic, overweight or obese, or has other health issues which might be affected by lots of sugar and/or fat, you should not let your dog have a Puppuccino unless you discuss it with your veterinarian.
The whipped cream in Puppuccinos can also contain a lot of sugar if there is added syrup. This can lead to oral health problems and dental disease. If your dog does have a Puppuccino, make sure to brush his teeth afterwards. Have your veterinarian check your dog’s teeth on a regular basis.
If you are worried about some of the contents of the Starbucks Puppuccino, remember that you can always make your own whipped cream at home. It’s not hard to do and you can control the ingredients – and eliminate the sugar/syrup, carrageenan, some of the fat, and anything else you don’t like. Your dog will still love it.
You can even buy dairy-free whipped cream if you are concerned about dairy for your dog.
How Many Puppuccinos Can You Give Your Dog?
Puppuccinos are usually free at Starbucks (though there are a few reports that some Starbucks charge a small fee for them). You generally have to order a beverage for yourself, however. Even so, it’s best not to over-indulge your dog with too many Puppuccinos.
Puppuccinos don’t contain much in the way of vitamins or minerals but they do contain fat, calories, and sugar (the amount can vary). Just one Puppuccino should be plenty for any dog in one day.
Not all Starbucks have Puppuccinos but you can ask at the drive-thru window.
Officially, Starbucks has a “No Dogs” policy inside their stores with the exception of Service Animals. That’s why Puppuccinos are usually ordered at the drive-thru window. You can also ask for one on your Mobile App when you order your own drink.
Remember to tip your barista when you pick up that Puppuccino.
How Often Can You Give Your Dog Puppuccinos?
It’s best not to over-do the Puppuccinos. With the calories, fat, and sugar, they should remain an occasional treat. If your dog begins to gain weight, that would be a signal that your dog is eating too many fattening treats without enough exercise. Diarrhea or other digestive problems could also be a sign that Puppuccinos are not agreeing with your dog.
As long as your dog stays at a healthy weight you could probably let him have a Puppuccino once per week. Talk to your veterinarian for more specific advice – especially if your dog has any health issues.
Puppuccinos at Starbucks are a treat that most dogs love. They are not the healthiest snack for dogs since they contain sugar, fat, and plenty of calories but humans don’t always eat the healthiest snacks either. The biggest myth about Puppuccinos is that dogs shouldn’t eat them because of lactose-intolerance. In fact, whipped cream has very little lactose. Most dogs can eat Puppuccinos without any problems with lactose. However, if your dog is diabetic, overweight, obese, or has health problems related to fat, consult your veterinarian before letting him have a Puppuccino.