Can I Give My Dog Ice Cubes?

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Can I give my dog ice cubes?There’s a scary rumor about giving ice cubes to dogs. Keeping your dog cool and hydrated is important but you want to do it right. Is providing ice cubes something that you should be doing for your dog or puppy, and are there any drawbacks? Ice cubes aren’t bad but they actually aren’t the best choice. We’ll explain.

We battle the heat by cooling off with things like ice cream, popsicles, and Slurpees but those aren’t well suited for dogs. You are on the right track with ice cubes. It’s sensible to give your dog some sort of iced treat when it’s hot outside.

Most dogs love icy cold treats. Ice cubes are generally okay but are even better if you serve it with a twist. Let’s dig a little deeper to see if there’s any reason not to serve ice cubes or if they will harm your dog in any way.

Can I Give My Dog Ice Cubes? Answer: Yes, or upgrade to an ice treat for a better K9 cool down

There is some disagreement on this one. Just don’t give puppies any ice cubes.

Some say that dogs can experience adverse reactions to ice cubes such as vomiting and bloating, but most experts say it’s fine and they even recommend it.

As long as they don’t choke, then ice cubes are usually fine but we take it a step further and combine it with an organic frozen treat.

With so many different breeds and sizes of dogs, there’s no real way to determine how your dog will handle ice cubes. There’s always the exception to the rule. We don’t recommend giving ice cubes to a puppy because their teeth and overall systems may not take well to the intense hardness and concentrated coldness of ice.

You can start your K9 off with one and see how they like it, and then monitor them afterward to see how they’re doing. Never give your dog ice cubes that are still sticky from the deep freeze. Other than that, if you see they’re fine, you’re good to go.

If you think about a wild pack of dogs, sometimes all that’s available for them to drink is very cold lakes and streams. In the winter, they may even get by with eating snow for hydration. In that sense, it’s easy to make the connection that most dogs can handle either ice cold water or some ice cubes now and then.

Tooth Concerns

Most dogs won’t just lap at an ice cube, they’ll try to get it in their mouth and chomp it up like dog food. This can lead to broken teeth if you give them too many. A few a day can actually help scrap off their teeth and keep them clean but don’t overdo it.

Like with most things it’s all about moderation. They may be expecting an ice cube each time you go into the freezer, but be sure to police their ice cube rations so that it remains a treat, and not something they get all the time.

Choking Concerns & Crushing Ice

With smaller breeds and puppies, be aware that ice cubes may present a choking hazard in addition to a tooth problem. Most of the time a dog will be fine because they’ll either cough it back up or it’ll melt before becoming a big issue. You may want to consider crushing them up before giving it to them so they don’t have to experience that.

Most owners have said that if their dog did choke on a cube they quickly recovered with no long lasting effects.

In Their Water Dish

Putting ice cubes in your dog’s water dish is a great way to keep their water cool during the summer months or if you live in a hot or dry climate, or after your dog has greatly exerted themselves. Most likely this won’t make the water ice cold, but it’ll be colder than room temperature. It might be more inviting to your dog so that they end up drinking more and staying better hydrated.

It’s always important for all dogs to drink more water when they’re active so they don’t get overheated. Staying hydrated, especially during the summer months, with some ice cubes sounds like a plan!

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{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Loretta February 9, 2015

We have a 5 month old Shih-poo. He has started running to the frig as soon as he hears the crushed ice. We are careful to give him only pieces that are melting and about the size of a Lima bean. He chews it into tiny pieces. I’ve found that this is his treat of choice and was glad to read that if we keep this ice to a treat, and not a regular thing, it will be okay for him. He understands the word “ice” already. Pretty good for his age!

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Mike November 18, 2014

My 2 year old Boston Terrier mix loves ice cubes. He comes to the fridge every time he hears the ice dispense. I always have him sit and then give him one or two. Never any ill effects.

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Ashneet August 20, 2014

I have a 1 year old Shitzu. She’s still tiny. One day I thought of giving her ice. My mom says that you shouldn’t give her ice because it can fracture their teeth but I still think we should give it sometimes in hot seasons but not regularly.

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Carole January 25, 2015

Ashneet, I have a 1 year old Miniature Schnauzer that picked up an ice cube when the ice maker dropped one on the floor. After that each time he hears us getting ice cubes, he races to get a cube. He loves this and immediately breaks the cube up, eating it. We don’t see any harm in him doing this several times a day.

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Bev August 19, 2014

We had a full blooded Rottweiler and now have a Rot/Pit Bull mix. Both of them love ice water but when they drink it they get sick and vomit. Our mixed breed loves ice cubes but I’m afraid to let him have them because they might have the same affect.

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Tabbi August 17, 2014

My Rottweiler/Shepard cross loves ice cubes and will do anything you ask of her to get them. If I give her ice cubes and her food, she’ll ignore her food and go for the ice, every time.

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Lori December 1, 2014

My 6 month old Rottweiler/Shepard mix is the same way. She has never had any ill effects. She loves her ice cubes, especially after a good run or walk outside.

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