About the Author: Emma loves to have dogs as her pets and with so much knowledge about dogs, she started MyPetDoggie.com to share it with other dog lovers and parents. She is a Pet Specialist and Pet Behavior Analyst, who studied at the University of South Dakota.
You might be looking for an easy way to keep your dog cool in a hot blazing summer. You may want him to go for a swim, get cozy in a cold spot, or have some cold snacks, but you notice your dog is more inclined towards one food (not actually) and that happens to be ice cubes.
5 Likely Reasons Behind Why Do Dogs Like Ice Cubes?
I have gathered five good reasons why do dogs like ice cubes so much. These five reasons will help you to rationalize your dog’s liking for ice cubes.
Perfect Snack For Blazing Summer
No matter how hot it is, there is no stopping dogs from playing in the summer. Like human bodies, a dog’s temperature can easily shoot up in the hot sun. Some dogs find ice cubes to be a perfect treat for a hot summer. It helps to cool down the temperature of their body. Normally, a dog’s body temperature lies between 101.0 to 102.5 F (38.3-39.2). Dog’s bodies warm up quickly as they do not sweat.
Dogs tend to keep their body cool by playing or resting in the shade or consuming lots of fluids, but some dogs are inclined more towards frozen treats. Try to give your dog as many chilled treats as possible. It is considered one of the best ways to keep your dog cool down. It will help to fulfill your dog’s daily water intake.
Remember, ice cubes are not a substitute for water. Make sure you have an extra bottle of water with you and provide shade to your dog whenever you are out in the hot summer.
Can Fulfill The Desire To Chew
For many dogs, chewing is a fun game. It is deeply rooted in dog’s nature and is normal for dogs of any age. Whether it is domestic or wild, you will find your dog chewing consciously or unconsciously on someone’s shoes, household objects, or anything easily accessible. That’s why dogs like chewing ice as it is easily available and it is a fun activity. It also helps to reduce your dog’s anxiety and calms him down.
Sometimes chewing can be harmful for dogs. They can hurt their teeth. Though, all dogs are in danger of damaging their teeth while chewing ice, look out for older and overweight dogs as they have more weak teeth.
Satisfactory Thirst Quencher
Dogs need more water as compared to their human buddy. It is observed that some breeds are negatively affected in summer thus they require more water than other breeds. Dogs have different ways to cool off. Unlike humans, dogs do not sweat, they pant. Their body is built to preserve, not to release the heat. That’s why they get dehydrated easily. So, they often find difficulty during hot weather.
Like for humans, ice cubes are the best thirst quencher for dogs. On average, dogs need approximately one ounce ( ⅛ cups ) per pound of water to hydrate and be active. Some dogs just prefer to take water in ice cube form rather than scooping water from a bowl. So, Ice cubes are useful to meet their water intake and help your dog to cool down their body temperature.
Exploratory and Entertaining Activity
Chewing on ice can be an entertaining pastime for dogs. Like cats, dogs do love to go on an investigation and explore their surroundings. Typically, dogs depend on their sense of smell while discovering new places or people around them. Dogs love to sniff here and there on the road and while doing so, they are gathering all sorts of information and thus making sense of their surroundings.
They explore things with their months as well. This type of behavior is very common in younger animals. Dogs may lick and taste ice to discover their surroundings. He may not be interested in how ice cubes taste, as dogs have fewer taste buds as compared to humans. Dogs need a routine packed with physical and mental stimulation. Your dog might be licking because he wants to explore more of his environment. That can be one of the reasons why your dog likes to chew ice cubes.
Dogs do love to have a daily treat from their human champion. According to a behavioral scientist, giving treats to your dog is one of the best ways to lead and mentor your dog’s behavior. Make sure that the treat is safe, healthy, and has enjoyable ingredients for your dog. It should also give physical and mental stimulation to your dog.
Ice cubes can be a great treat for dogs. So, licking and chewing an ice cube is one of the best ways to provide your dog with a healthy stimulation to stay healthy. Make sure your dog is inclined toward that treat while choosing a snack for him.
Are Ice Cubes Dangerous For Dogs?
Normally, ice cubes are fine for your dog. Chewing an ice cube is one of the best ways to cool down your dog while he’s out having an outdoor adventure.
But, it is important to consider that chewing ice cubes can harm your dog’s teeth and gums. So, try to give crushed ice cubes instead of big rock-solid cubes. It is recommended to pay special attention to older dogs as with age their teeth become weaker. However, chewing ice cubes doesn’t pose life-threatening risks.
So, always be watchful and supervise your dog whenever giving ice cubes, especially to certain breeds and older dogs. This way you can act soon if you fear your dog is at the risk of choking on cubes. If you believe that your dogs love chewing and licking ice cubes, combine them with healthy ingredients to make a delicious treat for your four-legged friend.
Remember, not all dogs are the same. They have different likings and dislikings. Some may like texture and chilly ice cubes while some may avoid it. So, don’t force your dog to eat an ice cube.
Can Ice Cubes Help Prevent Dogs Overheating?
Like humans, dogs don’t sweat, they pant. Their body is covered with a layer of thick fur that makes it difficult for heat to escape from their bodies. That’s why their body can overheat easily during summer. Chewing or licking ice can be helpful to cool down your dog’s temperature., but it should not be considered as a permanent subtitle. In case your dog is overheated, firstly, try to cool down your dog’s body with a wet towel and then it is better to give them a bowl filled with ice. The best is to contact your vet.
Can I Give Dogs Ice Cubes For Dehydration?
You may have a strong urge to feed your dog with a bowl filled with ice cubes during hot summers to cool them down and keep him hydrated. It is recommended by vets to feed your dogs with ice cubes in case your dog has a habit of taking so much water in one quick sip. This can lead to vomiting which in turn can dehydrate your dog even more. However, it is best to give ice cubes if your dog is not indicating serious symptoms of dehydration.
Remember, it is common for dogs to get dehydrated, but it can pose a serious risk that requires urgent medical attention. The best is to give your dogs smaller chunks of ice or even mix it with water to help prevent the dehydration of your best friend.
Can I use Ice Cubes If My Dog Has Heatstroke?
Ice cubes can be helpful to bring your dog’s temperature. However, in case your dog is suffering from heatstroke, ice cubes are a good option to rely on. So, in case your dog is suffering from heatstroke, it best is to avoid giving him ice cubes as it may lead to organ failure.
Cool down your dog slowly and carefully. Firstly, keep a keen eye on his body temperature and try to lower his body temperature. Vets don’t recommend using ice cubes if your dog is having a heatstroke. To start with, lay your dog on a cold surface and wet his back and belly with normal-temperature water. A fan and air conditioner can help to cool down the temperature. Avoid giving your dog ice cubes as it will shut your dog’s body from functioning.
Remember, don’t take a heat stroke lightly as it is a very serious concern that can risk your dog’s life. Visit the vet in case your dog is still showing any possible signs of heatstroke.
Will Ice Cubes Hurt My Dog’s Teeth?
Chewing an ice cube can damage your dog’s teeth especially if he chews a cube of hard ice with an already injured tooth. Dogs use an ample amount of energy to chew something hard which causes root exposure leading to intensive pain and discomfort. To avoid such pain, the best is to give your dog a fair amount of soft and small ice cubes
Ice cubes can also hurt your dog’s teeth in case he is sensitive to cold. Like humans, your dog’s teeth can be sensitive to cold and can cause significant pain from chewing ice. Typically, it is more common in older dogs as older teeth have a more unpleasant reaction towards icy treats. The best is to avoid ice cubes and consult a vet in case your dog has sensitive teeth. Luckily, most dogs favor licking ice which is not harmful to your dog’s dental health.
Ice cubes are a safer option to chew as compared to other objects they chew on. It is recommended to give crushed ice as it can melt faster. Bigger and harder ice cubes can cause harm to your dog’s teeth and gums or can potentially cause tooth fracture
Can My Dog Choke On An Ice Cube?
There are not many reported cases of dogs choking on ice, but it doesn’t mean you can be careless. It is recommended to give your dog smaller chunks of ice cubes. There are lesser chances of choking with smaller and softer ice as larger and harder ice cubes can get stuck in a dog’s throat making it difficult to breathe. Remember, to supervise him while he chews on ice.
Look out for any medical condition your dog might have as it might be hard for him to chew and consume food if he has any dental problems or issues with the nervous system or respiratory system. If your dog shows any of these symptoms, check it with your vet before giving him an icy treat.
Can Ice Cubes Cause Bloat?
Ice cubes don’t cause dog bloat, drinking large amounts of water can cause it. Whenever your dog is overheated he may drink plenty of water in one quick sip. This swift intake of water can lead to gas in your dog’s stomach which in turn can cause bloating.
Don’t leave your dog on his own unless you are confident that he won’t gulp in one big sip. Chewing or licking ice cubes can prevent your dog from consuming too much water at once thus preventing the chances of bloating
Other Ways To Cool Your Dog Off
During hot summers, your dog is at greater risk of heatstroke. Make sure to keep them cool and safe in shades. Though, there are a few ways to cool your dog off.
Provide Plenty Of Water
Keeping your dog hydrated should be your foremost priority during hot summers. Provide him with plenty of water. Make sure to give your dog ample chances to drink fresh and clean cold water. The best is to place different bowls of water in various corners of your home, even in the garden. Mix water with ice cubes to give your dog more cooling effect.
During summers, especially when the temperature is above 20 Celsius, it is wise to restrict your dog’s physical activities outdoors. Even for many dogs, temperatures lower than 20 Celsius can affect them. Like humans, dogs want their resting time. So, make sure to provide them with enough space and stay away from over-exercising your furry friend.
If your dog is uneasy or tired, try indulging him with some exciting games. Games that challenge their mind or even having a session of stay and sit commands will help with your dog’s mental stimulation without disturbing the temperature of your dog.
Wading pool or paddling pool is one of the best ways to cool down your dog during summer. Make sure to purchase a pool that is dog-friendly and could last the entire summer season even more. Try to put a wading pool in some shady spot on your lawn to provide more relaxing pleasure. Positioning your wading pool in a shadowy spot can cool down your dog’s temperature more easily.
Fill the pool with normal-temperature water and add his favorite toys. Make sure the water is not too cold. Some dogs come running just at the sight of a pool filled with water and their favorite toys while some dogs need some support to take the first step. Dampening your dog’s fur is another helpful way to cool your dog off. Give your dog a quick bath before he masks a run out of the pool.
Use Cooling Mats and Pads
Your dog might want to go to some cooled corner of the house when he feels hot. There are several different cooling mats available. These cooling mats are handy in case your house doesn’t have any cold spots or is located in a warm zone. To make the best of the cooling mats, try to put mats in the refrigerator to give your dog more cooling effect.
In case you can’t find any cooling pads or mats, use a bottle with cold water, wrap it in a towel, and put it on the belly and neck of your dog. It is an inexpensive option compared to cooling mats.
Cooling Vest and Bandanas
Investing in cooling vests, collars, and bandanas is the best way to cool down your pet when having an outdoor adventure during summer. Make sure bandanas are made up of comfortable fabrics. It helps to cool off when heat evaporates water from the body. This type of cooling system can be quite expensive, but it can be helpful for dogs that require physical exercise during summer.
Frozen treats or ice treats are another way to cool your dog down. Treats such as ice popsicles, ice pop molds, or frozen veggies are easy, inexpensive, and can be made without much effort. Remember, don’t overindulge your dog in such treats, and give them in a suitable shape and size.
Use Fans and Air Conditioning
Not every home has air conditioning. What you can do is put a fan next to your dog’s bed or his resting area during summer. To give your dog a more cooling and refreshing breeze, place a bottle of cold water in front of the fan.
Spritz with Water
Spraying water on your dog’s body is an effective way to lower his body temperature. Avoid it in case he’s not comfortable. Don’t spray water directly into his face. A garden sprinkler can be used to control your dog’s body temperature.
Create a Shaded Area
A great way to cool down your dog’s temperature is to create a shaded area in your house if you don’t have any. Make a tent for your dog in a corner of your house or provide him with an umbrella. Hanging a sunshade on a dog’s shelter or kennel can be helpful to protect from the sun.
Avoid Hot Cars
Never leave your dog alone in a hot car. Cars can easily heat up during summer. In case you are planning on a weekend away with your dog, make sure you have enough water and a bowl. Open windows a little bit or use an air conditioner and breathe in as natural air as possible. Be careful if your dog shows any signs of overheating and heat stroke. In case he has any signs, park your car in a shady area and provide your dog with plenty of water. The best thing is to contact the vet as soon as possible.
Does Crushed vs.Cubed Ice Make A Difference for Dogs?
It is recommended to give your dog crushed ice instead of giving him large rock rock-solid ice cubes. Chewing on hard icy cubes can damage your dog’s teeth, especially if he is found chewing on objects.
Be careful not to give older dogs huge pieces of ice or dogs having any dental problems as they have weak teeth. Crushed ice cubes can also prevent choking. So, save yourself from a visit to your local vet and make a habit of giving small chunks of ice to your furry friend.
Can Pups That Are Teething Be Given Ice Cubes?
Ice cubes are never recommended to give to a teething puppy by vets and professional trainers. Even don’t mix it with their water. Their bodies are small and fragile; they can’t tolerate icy cubes or frozen treats. Provide him with alternatives to ice cubes such as frozen washcloths or frozen toys.
Ice Cubes Alternatives
There are some healthy and easy alternatives to ice cubes in case your dog hates ice cubes.
Dogs are fond of chilled veggies, especially frozen carrots. It is a healthy treat packed with nutrients for your dog. Make sure the carrot is peeled so the dog can easily chew it.
Frozen Fruits Chunks
Frozen fruit chunks are another healthy alternative. Make sure to give a variety of frozen fruits such as frozen apples, bananas, or even watermelons. Another delicious option for dogs is a combination of mixed berries. Add a few chilled or fresh berries into a container filled with water, freeze it, and serve it to your furry friend. It is filled with nutrients and has an amazing taste.
Chilled and frozen toys are excellent alternatives for ice cubes. Dump your dog’s favorite toys into a bucket, fill it with water, and then freeze it. This little surprise will keep your dog cool as well as fresh.
Dip the washcloth in cold water or put it in the freezer for some time. Cover your dog in it or spread it on the surface to make a cooling mat. It will give your dog a cooling effect. Remove the towel when it is completely dried up. You can also provide your dog with frozen socks.
Cooled beds can provide perfect comfortable resting spots for your dog during hot summers. It is the perfect option to keep your dog cooled and it can last long all summers
Why Do Dogs Like Ice Cubes? Well, dogs like ice for various reasons. It is the best treat as long as you are watchful of how much and when you are giving ice cubes to your furry best friend.
Remember, there is always a risk factor if your dog chews ice cubes aggressively. Avoid giving large chunks of ice to older dogs. The best is to mix ice with their water so they can also enjoy the cooling effect.
Make sure the ice cubes are made up of clean and fresh water. Train your dog not to chew ice from the water pond on snowy evenings as it may form from contaminated water.
Be watchful to give smaller chunks of ice and avoid harder ice cubes. Remember not to give ice in case your dog is having a heatstroke and visit your vet immediately.