There’s a scary rumor going around about giving ice cubes to canines. Can it really be dangerous to provide some to a dog or a puppy? A few ice cubes can certainly hydrate but safety is a top concern.
The summer heat is no joke so you want a suitable cool down solution for your dog. It’s sensible to give your best buddy some sort of iced treat when it’s hot outside. You’re on the right track with ice cubes but what’s the drawback, if any?
Let’s address all the concerns about giving ice cubes to dogs. Also, what are the best ways to serve them and are there any good alternates?
Can I Give My Dog Ice Cubes? Answer: Yes, but make sure they aren’t deep frozen (sticky) & crush them up first
Just take steps to prevent them from sticking to your dog’s tongue! Crushing the cubes also eliminates a potential choking hazard.
The only other cautionary tip would be to avoid giving puppies any. Some claim that dogs can experience adverse reactions to ice cubes such as vomiting and bloating. On the other hand, most experts say it’s fine and they even recommend it. As long as you ensure that your four-legged friend doesn’t choke, ice cubes are fine.
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Every Dog is Different
With so many different breeds and sizes, there’s no real way to know in advance how well your dog will tolerate ice cubes. Start out small by giving your dog just one. See how they like it by closely observing them.
If you think about packs of wild dogs, sometimes all that’s available to drink is icy water from very cold lakes and streams. In the winter, they may even consume snow for hydration. In that sense, it’s easy to understand that most dogs can handle either ice cold water or some ice cubes now and then.
However, a young puppy may not be mature enough, their teeth included, to deal with the intense harness and concentrated coldness of ice.
Some Tooth Concerns
Unfortunately, most dogs won’t just lap at an ice cube. Instead, they’ll try to get it in their mouth and chomp it up like regular chow. This can lead to broken teeth if you give them too many or if they are too hard. That’s why crushed ice is best. In any case, it’s all about moderation. You don’t want them expecting an ice cube each time you open the freezer. Ration their ice cube consumption so that it remains a treat and not something they get all the time.
A few ice cubes here and there can actually help to keep their teeth clean!
Choking Concern & Solution
Be aware that full size ice cubes can sometimes present a temporary choking hazard. This is especially true for smaller breeds and puppies. Most of the time such a mishap is not a big deal because they’ll either cough it back up or it’ll melt before becoming a serious issue. In any case, consider crushing up the ice before giving it to a best buddy so they can’t possibly experience such a scenario.
In the Water Bowl
Putting a few ice cubes in your dog’s water dish is actually a great way to keep their water supply cool during the summer months. This is also true if you live in a hot or dry climate, or after your dog has greatly exerted themselves. In this sense, ice cubes can indirectly cause your dog to drink more water. They’ll be better hydrated as a result!
Conclusion on Ice Cubes
Ice cubes, when given to a pet dog, can be very useful in the summertime. Staying hydrated, especially when it’s hot outside, using some ice cubes is reasonable and healthy. The viral ice cube rumor claiming they’re dangerous for dogs is an exaggeration. Just avoid serving up extremely cold ice cubes because they can stick to your dog’s tongue which can be unpleasant. Besides that, crushed ice is best to remove the potential for choking. Stay cool!