A dog is not just a simple pet. A dog is a deeply loved member of the family! To some individuals, a dog is literally like their very own child. For this reason and more, all advice must be trusted when it comes to their home comforts, lifestyle habits, and other advice.
Eventually, the topic of ice cubes will be brought up. Some animals curiously find ice cubes amusing, tasty like a treat, or the desired playtime activity. Dogs may even chase ice cubes or reaction in an amusing way to them at first.
Is it a good idea to allow a dog to be fed ice cubes? Below are eight important tips for caring owners to learn when it comes to dogs and ice cubes. Pros, cons, facts, and friendly advice is included to ensure the best decision possible.
Teething is a literal pain
Human babies even go through the uncomfortable and painful experience of teething. Puppies unfortunately cannot skip this stage in their growth. Owners will definitely notice when teething has started for their young pups!
Teething is the most dreaded inevitable stage for a growing dog. Of course, puppies are still the most adorable animal on Earth! However, the consequences of teething may result in ruined furniture, shoes, or even grumpy attitudes.
Can ice cubes help with the teething pains a puppy may suffer? The answer is yes! The very cold temperature of an ice cube and smooth texture will allow a numbing effect to occur on a puppy’s gums.
The numbing and chilling reaction will allow pleasant temporary alleviation of annoying teething symptoms. By actively managing and alleviating symptoms in a safe, smart, and healthy way owners may help prevent the destruction of other items a puppy would use for attempted teething alleviation.
Pro: Symptom Alleviation of teething, less destruction
Con: Ice cubes may drip when melting onto the floor
Hydration is essential
Obviously, a dog cannot survive simply on a diet of ice cubes! That would be ridiculous! However, a factor just as important as a nutrient-rich diet for a dog is their daily hydration needs.
Dehydrations can serve as a danger to dogs causing short term and long term damage to their bodies. Organ systems, mental abilities, and even death can result due to accidental dehydration.
This fact is especially true for hyperactive dogs, outdoor dogs, or dogs that favor longer walks or hikes.
An easy trick to help increase daily fluid intake is ice cubes. Some dogs are stubborn and will not drink water when instructed by their owners. Other dogs are picky about their water bowls and accidentally avoid drinking when their bodies clearly need it.
Symptoms like vomiting, panting, and dry nose are simple examples of some of the common signs of dehydration for the average dog. When it is difficult to temp a dog to drink water often playful introducing ice cubes can work.
If the dog is tricked into thinking the ice cubes are a fun game they may be more interested to eat them or place the ice cubes in their mouth. Hydration is essential to all living life and ice cubes are a creative way to ensure a daily quota is met.
Pro: Avoid dangerous dehydration
Con: Make sure not to slip on discarded or leftover ice cubes
Beat the heat
Every dog depending on weight, size, breed, and health status will present different biological limitations. Some dogs can withstand challenging physical boundaries while other furry friends are easily fatigued.
Boundaries are important to keep in mind when it comes to heat. Dogs who suffer from heatstroke are never the same again. Heatstroke can even lead to death. Often owners mean well and accidentally cause this emergency situation when trying to complete outdoor activities with their dogs.
Ice cubes are a great way to easily promote healthy and consistent thermoregulation with a dog. The cooling effect will help maintain safe body temperature while also making a dog happy! Obviously, ice cubes are not a magic solution and should be paired with other actions to help prevent heatstroke.
However, they are an accessible tool to help amplify the cooling effects a dog will crave to help beat the heat.
Pro: Avoid damaging heat stroke
Con: Is not the only solution to preventing heatstroke
Mental stimulation bonus
Yes, it is true that even dogs can get bored! A dog’s brain requires daily mental stimulation to encourage optimal function. Also, mental stimulation is entertaining too.
Tricks, toys, new walking paths, a variety of healthy treats, and new playmates can all enhance mental stimulation. However, all of these options take a lot of effort, time, and money. Ice cubes are a cheap, easy, and pressure-free resource.
Many dogs crave positive emotional responses and attention from their owners. So, make sure to be encouraging and communicate positive feedback when playing with a dog using ice cubes.
Eating the ice cubes, hiding the ice cubes, or teaching tricks with the ice cubes can be easily incorporated can be part of the playtime or even freezing healthy treats inside of them.
Pros: Brain health, less planning, no pressure
Cons: Not all dogs find ice cubes fun to play with
Endless fun shape options
Creative outlines, numbers, letters, iconic comic figures, and even dog paw shapes are available when it comes to ice cube trays. Society has gotten very creative in offering literally any kind of ice cube tray shape. Silicone trays for crafting are even something used to achieve harder to find figures.
Making different shaped ice cubes for a dog to enjoy will only enhance the playtime experience! Using different shaped trays can also provide an organized system to add different healthy goodies to the ice cubes.
One suggestion is mixing in veterinarian-approved liquid vitamins to help sneak in an extra immune booster when feeding dogs ice cubes. Avoid adding food coloring.
Pros: Fun, easy, healthy add on options, immunity enhancing options
Cons: May take up a little more space in the freezer
Affordable bonding opportunity
Owning a dog is the best happiness in the world! Owning a dog is also very expensive at times! Toys, vet bills and food adds up very quickly. Although dog love is priceless it is most certainly not free.
This is why it is majorly adorable and such a great relief when dogs are entertained by something cheap. What is better than cheap? The answer is free! Free items are rare to come by. Ice cubes are basically free entertainment.
This winning situation ensures both pet and owner happiness while not digging a money pit of debt. Bonding is always a valuable and cherished use of time. Why not try playing with ice cubes and seeing how it goes?
Always make sure the ice cube is not big enough to be stuck in an animal’s throat. This rule especially applies to smaller dogs or dogs with unique gastrointestinal tracts. Ice cubes melt very fast, can be coughed out, or crushed into different shapes if this is a concern.
Veterinarians also offer helpful advice and emergency contact information.
Pros: Low cost, bonding
Cons: May need to break the ice cube into smaller pieces for certain dogs
Water quality matters
Does water quality matter for dogs like it does for humans? Owners who joke about their dogs drinking out of the toilet may seriously ponder this question.
When it comes to feeding dogs ice cubes then the answer is yes. It is possible for a pet to become ill if drinking water containing toxins, microbes, or chemicals. Ensure the water used in the ice cubes is safe to prevent accidental sickness.
To be clear, do not attempt to freeze pond water or water collected from outdoors. Types of saltwater should also be avoided as saltwater will actually cause dehydration in a dog.
The best type of water to freeze will be filtered water to ensure any harmful microorganisms, sneaky bacteria, and unwanted germs are not remaining.
Pros: Preventing a costly trip to the vet due to accidental illness
Cons: Ensuring water is filtered before freezing may take a little extra time