Can I Give My Dog Ice Cubes?

Can I give my dog ice cubes?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.

We take it a step further with an organic frozen treat for our dogs.

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!

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Maria July, 2015

I have a year old Yellow Lab pup and he absolutely loves ice cubes. My fridge has one of those ice and water dispensers. Whenever I make some ice water or get ice for my drink, he runs over and looks at me expectantly. I always give him a few. Sometimes I get a big cup of ice cubes and alternate between him and myself.

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Sandra July, 2015

I have 2 Cocker Spaniels. The 9 year old could care less about ice cubes. But, the 4 year old loves them. We limit him to 2 or 3 at a time. He chews them up and is so excited about it. He’s never choked or broke a tooth.

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Chris June, 2015

My Standard Poodle loves ice cubes but he usually drops them after a bit of licking. If he’s overheated and swallows an ice cube, he will vomit.

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Monica June, 2015

My daughter and son-in-law complain every time I give their German Shepherd an ice cube. She loves them and I don’t give it to her every time. I have to have cold drinks of water so I’m always putting more ice in my drinks. Sometimes one gets away from me and falls to the floor. If I don’t get to it in time, Becca will eat it. I don’t want to argue with them but they are so wrong.

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George April, 2015

I own Belgian and Dutch Shepherds. After a hard work out, I always add ice cubes to their water bowl. They drink more water because they try to grab the ice while drinking. The end result is that it cuts their cool down time in half. Normally it takes them 30-35 minutes to cool down, but when I add ice, they are cooled down enough. After 15 minutes they breathe with a closed mouth. I never gave them ice as a puppy, and they were not introduced to ice until they turned a year old.

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