Can Dogs Eat Tiramisu?

Can you name two Italian desserts without mentioning tiramisù? For years, this creamy dessert has captured not just the hearts of Italians but Americans and other borders it has crossed.

Just the way English argue about soccer and Americans argue about football, that is how foods and desserts like tiramisu are argued about in Italy, with numerous religions claiming to have been the originators—such a prestigious dessert, but can dogs eat tiramisu? Here is what you need to know.

What is tiramisù?

While tiramisu has made such a lasting impression, it is normal for you to mistake it for having existed for hundreds of years, but tiramisu is a relatively new recipe that made its novel appearance in 1981.

Tiramisu is simply translated as “pick me up.” Its name provides insights into what the dessert could do. It could reinvigorate you after a tiring day of work, and it boasts aphrodisiac properties.

There are numerous versions of tiramisu, with each taking a twist of preference, but a typical tiramisu dessert consists of sugar, eggs, coffee, ladyfingers, and cocoa powder for dusting the dessert after it has been made.

Can dogs eat tiramisu?

Dogs should not eat tiramisu as it can be harmful to their health. Tiramisu dessert contains coffee, which has lots of caffeine and can lead to an elevated heart rate or high blood pressure in dogs.

Also, tiramisu dessert is dusted with cocoa powder, which contains theobromine, which can be toxic to dogs if they consume between 100 and 500 mg/kg, according to the NCBI, and more caffeine in addition to what the coffee offers, making it a high-risk treat to offer a dog.

Unfortunately, there is no way you could make a dog-friendly tiramisu as there are no safe substitutes for the major ingredients. Even decaffeinated coffee still contains trace amounts of caffeine.

Ingredients in Tiramisu and How They Could Impact a Dog


Dogs can have a little mascarpone cheese, and that’s all. A typical adult dog cannot handle much lactose, as their lactase enzyme, which enables them to digest their mother’s milk, depletes as they outgrow their puppyhood, which is why dairy products can only be consumed in moderation.

Cocoa powder

Tiramisu is a layered dessert where the ladyfingers are soaked in coffee and then layered with mascarpone before another ladyfinger layer and mascarpone, after which it is dusted with cocoa powder.

According to the USDA nutrient database, there are over 2634 mg of theobromine in each 100 grams of cocoa powder. The cocoa powder dusting may contain as much theobromine that could cause toxicity in dogs, depending on their size, which is why you shouldn’t let them have some tiramisu.


Oh, that gracious sip of espresso in the morning is addictive and refreshing, but when it comes to dogs, it could mean problems. When dogs consume coffee in tiramisu, even if not in the amounts that could cause caffeine toxicity, you should note that the caffeine can make your dog hyper and that pent-up energy could lead to destruction. This is the same reason why we advise against giving dogs energy drinks like Prime Energy, which could lead to all these caffeine-related anomalies.


There are forms of sugar found in every dog food, but these sugars are natural sugars from sources like fruits, which are generally safe for dogs. However, the processed sugar used in tiramisu is not safe for dogs if consumed regularly. Processed sugar can lead to weight gain, diabetes, and periodontal diseases.

Rum or coffee liqueur

Tiramisu recipes that use rum and coffee liqueur, like Kahlua, are quite addictive; they heighten the intensity of the dessert, but they are not safe for dogs because of the alcohol content. Alcohol is not safe for dogs as they cannot metabolize alcohol, and symptoms like lethargy and low blood temperature can be fatal, as can respiratory depression.

What would happen if my dog ate tiramisu?

Usually, a little tiramisu is incapable of hurting your dog. In a situation where your dog clears the leftovers or eats a spoon, they won’t experience any form of toxicity, but when you make tiramisu a constant treat for your dog, they would likely consume a significant amount that could trigger toxicity.

When we advise against giving your dog treats like deep-fried lumpia, or tiramisu, it is not because they would outright kill your dog or cause problems, but because you could get carried away and start feeding them significant amounts. Your dog can have little of everything except grapes.

What desserts can you feed your dog?

Tiramisu is not the safest of treats to hand out to your pooch, so we have provided other fun desserts that you could enjoy with your pooch.

Creme brulee

Creme brulee is a decadent dessert crafted with a custard base and usually garnished with a caramelized top and chocolate shavings, which are not good for dogs. However, we have crafted a dog-safe creme brulee recipe you’ll love making for your dog.

Frosty paws

Frosty Paws is a dog-safe ice cream that all dogs love to have. It is refreshing and a great treat to offer your pooch after a tiring walk. It was made with ingredients that are safe for dogs and nutrients that are generally beneficial for dogs.

Can dogs have tiramisu? Final thoughts

Dogs can have a little tiramisu, but we don’t recommend it. Tiramisu contains ingredients that could be toxic to dogs in significant amounts. You’re better off giving your pooch a pumpkin puree or popsicles.

Josh Krul

Hi, I am Josh, an avid dog lover who has spent 15 years with my lovely buddies. Lingonpets is a platform to share my experiences.

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