Some time ago there was information going around Facebook and other internet sites: the post claimed that it is unsafe to give ice water to dogs, citing that doing so will cause bloat. We know there are many worried pet owners out there, so we wanted to de-bunk this myth!
What is bloat? Bloat is when a dog’s stomach becomes so enlarged that it actually flips. This issue is life-threatening, and Drs. Liebe, Eatock, Fisher, Baker and Broberg have all dealt with cases of bloat over the years. Larger breed dogs are generally the most susceptible to incidences of bloat.
Bloat can be caused by a dog eating or drinking too fast, regardless of the temperature of the food or water that they’re ingesting. (If your dog is a fast eater, check out the food puzzles that are available to slow them down.) If your dog tends to gulp water you can also try one of these bowls which are designed to slow them down while eating. Available for purchase through the clinic.
Giving your dog moderate amounts of ice water is NOT a recognized cause of bloat in the veterinary community. The Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts, one of the leading hospitals in the US, posted this on their Facebook yesterday:
“I’d be more concerned with dehydration in the summer,” Dr. Lambert from QVVH noted, when asked about the ice water rumor. “It is important to make sure that dogs stay adequately hydrated during the hot summer months. Playing with ice cubes or having ice water is a great way to make sure they’re getting the hydration they need.”
Moral of the story: Everything in moderation. Using common sense and allowing your dog reasonable amounts of water – whether it’s room temperature or ice water – is more beneficial, than harmful to their health.
Please be sure to share this story with any of your friends who are worried about ice water to let them know the truth!