If cheese could dress, what would it wear? If cheese could speak, what would it say?
For a pepper jack cheese, it would wear a Mexican wrestling mask and say, “Ole!” — inviting you for a much memorable dining experience through its spicy kick.
Apart from the kinds of cheeses brought by European countries, here comes Pepper Jack Cheese — a variant arising from the land of Mexico — now invading our cuisines.
This type of cheese is commonly used for making tacos, enchiladas, and burritos. However, it is also perfect for omelets, sandwiches, and pasta dishes, giving a spicy touch to our food.
With all this stuff in mind, can we share pepper jack cheese with our dogs? Can dogs savor the same delectable taste that we also experience? These questions are just starters.
Let’s try to answer our questions by understanding the nature of pepper jack cheese, its suitability for your dog’s diet, and how to prepare it best and safe for your dogs!
What is Pepper Jack Cheese?
Pepper Jack Cheese is Monterey Jack’s variety that has been seasoned with peppers and spices.
It is a semi-soft, mild-flavored cheese that melts well and works great in most applications where you want the added flavor of pepper or spice without too much heat.
Unlike an ordinary cheese, its texture has a good number of holes and no rind.
It is pale in color with a slightly yellowish tinge, giving it its characteristic spicy flavor that we all love to taste on our favorite foods – whether they are Mexican dishes or grilled cheeses.
Additionally, typical dishes that have pepper jack cheese are grilled cheese sandwiches, quesadillas, and nachos.
Food family of Pepper Jack Cheese
Pepper Jack Cheese belongs to the food family of cheese. Cheese is produced by coagulating milk, resulting in a solid material that consists mainly of water and protein with fat from butterfat in the milk.
Other family members include buttermilk and yogurt, made by fermenting cream or whole milk with these bacteria cultures.
Cheese can then be produced from either normal pasteurized skimmed or whole cow’s milk or from the by-products of butter and whey.
It belongs to the family Lactic Acid Bacteria, which includes lactic acid bacteria like lactobacillus bulgaricus, streptococcus thermophilus, etc.
They are responsible for the fermentation of lactose (milk sugar) in milk to lactic acid, which is responsible for cheese’s tart flavor.
Can dogs eat Pepper Jack Cheese?
Pepper Jack Cheese contains no toxins for your dogs. That’s why it is an appropriate cheese for dogs.
Your dog can eat pepper Jack Cheese as long as it has been pasteurized, which means that the bacteria which produce lactic acid have been killed by heat treatment during the production of Pepper Jack Cheese.
So there should be no risk to your pets’ health if they ingest milk-based products like this one.
However, remember that they should eat it in moderation. This cheese is high enough in fat and protein to be included as a treat rather than a staple of your dog’s diet – significantly because many dogs can suffer from lactose intolerance if given large amounts over time.
If you’re interested in feeding pepper Jack Cheese to your pet regularly, we prepared the best ways to feed your dogs with Pepper Jack Cheese:
Best Ways to Feed your Dogs with Pepper Jack Cheese
Pair pepper jack cheese with kibble
Pepper Jack Cheese is a strong-flavored cheese, so your dog might not be interested in it at first if you feed him on its own.
But when paired with kibble, he will gradually get used to Pepper Jack Cheese’s taste and learn to enjoy it. In this way, you may also increase your dog’s appetite for Pepper Jack Cheese.
It is recommended to feed smaller dogs with half a teaspoon of cheese and larger breeds — about one tablespoon or more, depending on their size.
Mix pepper jack cheese in canned food
Canned foods are soft, so it will be easier for your pet to eat them together with the cheese if you mix them.
Remember to feed your dog with an equal amount of pepper Jack Cheese and canned food. Otherwise, the cheese will be too rich for him.
Give smaller dogs half a teaspoon or more depending on their size, larger breeds – about one tablespoon or more if necessary.
Start by serving small bite-sized pieces first.
If you want to check your dog’s first impression in eating this food, offer him a bite-sized piece of Pepper Jack Cheese first.
If he sniffs it and walks away, try offering another larger size next time until you find the perfect one for your dog’s taste preference.
Feed pepper jack cheese as a snack in between meals
Snacks are fun to feed dogs with because they always get excited when they see a snack. So if you want your dog to have a healthy, nutritious and delicious treat – give your dog Pepper Jack Cheese as a between meals’ snack instead of unhealthy treats, which are full of artificial colors or flavors that can be harmful to his health.
Reasons Why Dogs Can Eat Pepper Jack Cheese
Thankfully, pepper jack cheese comes with healthy nutrients that you and your dog need. Besides having this food fed in the best ways, here are reasons why dogs can eat pepper jack cheese:
It contains Calcium, Phosphorus, and Protein.
These are essential nutrients that your dog needs to develop healthy bones. Without them, dogs will have problems with their bone density growth, leading to fractures or other diseases.
Therefore, providing pepper jack cheese in the best ways is highly recommended for your pet’s diet plan.
It has taurine
Taurine is a vital amino acid that your dog cannot produce by himself. It needs to be provided through other sources like this one because a taurine deficiency can lead to blindness, heart problems, and even death in dogs if not fixed immediately.
As you know now, Pepper Jack Cheese contains taurine, so it’s safe for dogs to eat.
It has Vitamin B12.
Vitamin B12 is used for your dog’s metabolism, nerve function, and DNA synthesis, which are all very important in maintaining his health condition.
That being said, dogs need food with high vitamin B12 in their diet plan to stay healthy both physically and mentally throughout their lives.
It has Calcium Propionate.
Calcium Propionate is a preservative that will make your dog’s food stay fresh for more extended periods.
There are many benefits to using preservatives in pet foods because they can prevent the growth of harmful bacteria and mold and prevent the spread of viruses, among other health issues.
This is why it’s essential to consider Pepper Jack Cheese as one of your dog’s nutritional needs.
Possible Concerns When Eating Pepper Jack Cheese
Feeding Pepper Jack Cheese to your dog in moderation is good. However, worst-case scenarios may transpire when you offer this food regularly.
To raise awareness, we list down some possible concerns you have to watch out for:
Make sure to check the expiration date.
Cheese is a dairy product which means it can go wrong. This food needs to be kept at a cold temperature so bacteria won’t grow and make your dog sick after eating this ingredient.
You have to watch out for cheese that has already expired or gone bad by checking its smell, color, and texture first before giving it to your dog.
It may cause bloating and diarrhea if the amount is too much for him.
Like other foods, you have to feed Pepper Jack Cheese in moderation to not give your dog a stomachache from eating this ingredient regularly or excessively.
Too much of anything can be harmful – that’s why we always say that moderation is the key to everything.
It may contain Listeria Monocytogenes.
Unfortunately, this can be a common problem found in many dairy products, including Pepper Jack Cheese.
This bacterium will make your dog sick with symptoms like vomiting and diarrhea after ingestion of contaminated food.
If you see these symptoms on your pet, it’s best to bring him immediately to the vet for a checkup.
Signs your dog is sick from eating Pepper Jack Cheese
Being ill is a broad term. That’s why you have to determine what particular illness is bothering your dog’s health to address it to your vet immediately.
Do the following symptoms persist? Here is your checklist:
You know what vomit looks like. If your dog is vomiting after eating Pepper Jack Cheese, it could be due to too much dairy intake or stomach irritation (e.g., acidity).
Regardless of the reason, you should bring him immediately to the vet because this symptom can lead to dehydration, requiring immediate attention and medication.
Like vomiting, diarrhea can also be a sign that your dog’s stomach is irritated. Suppose this symptom doesn’t go away after a day or two without any other symptoms.
In that case, it’s best to bring him to the vet as well for an examination because it could mean something else like infection from bacteria and viruses found in Pepper Jack Cheese.
Increase in water intake
This symptom is usually associated with dehydration. Dogs who can’t drink lots of water due to vomiting or diarrhea will tend to increase their fluid intake because they need it.
This only means that your dog’s body needs a lot of fluids, and you have to bring him immediately to the vet for treatment before this gets worse by causing other more severe illnesses.
What to do if your dog is sick from eating Pepper Jack Cheese?
There are three emergency responses you have to enact when your dog gets sick from eating Pepper Jack Cheese:
Bring him to the vet immediately.
If you see your dog being sick from eating Pepper Jack Cheese, it’s best to bring him as soon as possible.
Veterinarians have many medicines and treatments that could help prevent further illness because most cases are caused by bacteria or viruses found in dairy products like cheese.
They will prescribe some antibiotics for your dog to get rid of these harmful substances in his body.
Maintain proper hydration and nutrition
Your vet will inform you how your pet should stay healthy when sick from eating Pepper Jack Cheese.
They may recommend intravenous fluid therapy, feeding with a syringe, or force-feeding him food that has lots of protein and carbohydrates.
These things will help your dog stay strong while fighting the infection in his body caused by bacteria and viruses found in Pepper Jack Cheese.
Pay attention to symptoms.
If you want to take good care of your pet, you should know how he feels every day so you’ll be able to notice changes in his mood, behavior, and physical condition.
If you see these changes, it’s best to bring him immediately to the vet for a checkup because it could mean something else like other illnesses that are not related to eating Pepper Jack Cheese.
Avoid similar foods from this family.
Cheddar cheese is a variant of Pepper Jack Cheese. It has a very sharp flavor and is usually used in pasta, salads, and even pizza.
Fortunately, most dogs don’t have problems with ingesting Cheddar cheese which means that you can still let them eat it once in a while if your dog likes this kind of food.
Like Cheddar cheese, mozzarella is also a variant of Pepper Jack Cheese. The only difference between these two kinds of cheese is that mozzarella has more proteins and less fat which means it’s not as harmful to your dog if he eats it.
If you’re going to give him this type of food, make sure to measure the amount so he won’t overdo it.
Brie is a soft cheese that has a runny interior. It can be dangerous for your dog to eat this type of food because it contains harmful bacteria.
Even if Brie Cheese tends to have lesser fat content with lots of proteins, the fact remains that there are still some risks involved in feeding dogs this kind of dairy product, so it’s best to avoid it.
How to Make Pepper Jack Cheese Safe To Eat
Before we are about to end, we want to emphasize that actions speak louder than words. Reliable feeding always matters, and it impacts your dog’s health in the future.
So, we want to level up your dog’s eating experience by ensuring safety first. Here are ways to make pepper jack cheese safe for feeding:
Always consider the number of ingredients you are going to use.
Pepper Jack cheese is a dairy product, so there shouldn’t be any leftovers in your fridge after cooking or baking with this ingredient.
If not, freeze pepper jack cheese, and don’t forget to thaw it before feeding time. You have to do this because harmful bacteria can grow on this food if it’s already spoiled.
Always cook the pepper jack cheese properly.
When cooking or baking, make sure always to follow instructions and measure carefully according to your recipe.
Even though Pepper Jack Cheese is a dairy product, overcooking will still ruin its taste, so it’s best to keep the cooking time at its minimum.
Use Pepper Jack cheese in moderation.
We mentioned before that it’s easy for dogs to get addicted to this kind of food, so make sure you are not overdoing it when feeding your dog with pepper jack cheese.
You can use small amounts but don’t forget to mix them with other food ingredients.
Every cheese also has its identity. For example, if a pepper jack cheese could speak and dress, it would look like a Mexican wrestler saying, “Ole!” inviting you for a much memorable experience through its spicy delight!
The best part? Your dogs can savor the same delectable taste we experience from eating pepper jack cheese!
Pepper Jack Cheese is Monterey Jack’s variety that has been seasoned with peppers and spices.
This food is safe for dogs since it contains no toxic, underwent thorough pasteurization. Thankfully, this food comes with healthy nutrients that your dog needs, such as calcium and phosphorus in developing healthy bones, taurine in generating amino acids, Vitamin B12 in providing metabolism, and Calcium Propionate in shaping your dog’s good looking physique.
However, worst-case scenarios may transpire when you offer this food regularly. For example, the expiration of this food may cause sickness.
Also, this food may carry listeria monocytogenes — a contaminant that causes bloating and diarrhea.
To ensure safety first, it’s best to consider the number of ingredients to prepare when feeding pepper jack cheese, cook the food properly, and feed it in moderation.
Remember that reliable feeding always matters. So keep your walk, talk!