Skip to Content

Do Ice Cubes Cause Bloat?

Ice cubes or ice water alone don’t typically cause bloating in dogs, it’s the amount of air that they’re swallowing when drinking ice water or eating large amounts of ice cubes.

No matter how many years pass or how many advanced are made in veterinary technology, the rumor that ice cubes cause dog bloat is one rumor that just won’t die out. 

Every summer since 2007, this rumor heats up again and every time I post a photo or video of my dogs eating a frozen dog treat or grabbing an ice cube out of their water bowl, someone chimes in saying that it’s not a good idea to give dogs ice because it can cause GDV or bloat. 

I understand the concern because true GDV is a killer in every sense possible but this myth has been debunked and refuted by almost every single professional veterinarian out there. 

In regards to bloat and water, frozen or room temperature, it’s about how fast and/or how much water a dog drinks that could cause them to bloat. 

Do Ice Cubes Cause Dog Bloat?

There is no evidence that shows that ice water or ice cubes will cause a dog to bloat or experience GDV

ice cubes and dogs


Most dogs can be given ice cubes or ice-cold water in moderation and they will not have any issues.

The stomach will not cramp or bloat.

The primary cause of dog bloat is air, not ice.

The only dogs that shouldn’t be given ice or ice water are dogs that are experiencing heat stroke because it can cause their body temperature to drop too fast. 

Does this mean that dogs that drink ice water or eat ice cubes won’t bloat?

No, they can still bloat but it wouldn’t be due to the ice it would be due to them drinking the ice water too fast and swallowing a lot of air. 

brown puppy eating a large ice cube

What Is Bloat or GDV?

GDV happens when a dog’s stomach fills with gas, food, or fluid which causes it to expand.

When they are eating or drinking fast they have the potential to swallow a lot of air.

This air can cause the stomach to fill with gas and potentially flip causing a GDV (Gastric Dilatation and Volvulus). Any dog can get bloat but deep-chested breeds seem to be more prone.

If I take my dogs for a 10-mile walk on a hot day and then let them come home and drink 3 gallons of water, whether it contains ice or not, they are at risk for bloating.

It’s the amount of water and air that they are taking down not the temperature of the water they are drinking.

puppy licking an ice cube

Can Dogs Eat Ice Cubes?

Most dogs can eat ice without any problems.

In fact, I make them ice licks in the summer and they get a variety of frozen dog treats. 

Can Dogs Have Ice Water?

My dogs can have ice water.

They love ice water.

I just make sure that they don’t drink it too fast.

If you think about it, many dogs are given ice chips after they have surgery done by their veterinarian. 

This is to make sure that they can keep fluids down before they go home. 

dog drinking ice water out of ceramic bowl

Hazards of Giving Ice Cubes To Your Dog

Can there be hazards to giving a dog ice water or ice cubes?


Ice is hard and it can break a dog’s tooth, just like they can break a tooth on anything that is hard.

It’s suggested that a dog that is overheated not be given large amounts of ice or ice water because it could cause its temperature to drop too fast.

Ice, especially ice that forms outside in cold weather, can make some dogs vomit or cause diarrhea as well, so they should eat it slowly and in small amounts. 


It’s common sense.

Personally, I see no harm in giving my dogs ice cubes as long as it’s in moderation.

Pros of Giving Dogs Ice Cubes

For some dogs, adding ice chips or ice cubes can actually slow down their drinking and reduce the amount of air they swallow when drinking water. 

Ice cubes are also a good way to keep dogs hydrated in the warm summer months.

For senior dogs, softer ice chips can be another great form of hydration and help them drink more water

Disclosure I am not a veterinarian but you can read what Dr. Andy Rorak thinks about giving dogs ice water here.

If you question giving ice or ice water to your dog you should talk to your veterinarian. 

p.s. if you know someone who believes this myth please spread the word that this is indeed a myth.

We need people to understand the true facts about bloat and not confuse them more.

*This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for your continued support.


Sharing is caring!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Lisa F.

Monday 28th of May 2018

"If you lack common sense, sorry for your loss." LOL! That's the best thing I've read in a long time!

Monika & Sam

Wednesday 28th of June 2017

It's kind of like the old saying don't go outside with wet hair in the winter; you'll catch a cold. Except that viruses cause cold. Thanks for sharing another insightful post, Jen. Sending digital ice cubes for Leroy. Stay cool.

Two French Bulldogs

Tuesday 27th of June 2017

Very interesting thank you for the info Snorts Lily & Edward


Wednesday 28th of June 2017

Thank you :)

All Things Collie

Tuesday 27th of June 2017

What is your opinion on certain foods causing bloat?

I read an article, by a vet, that discussed people feeding their dogs fruits and veggies in addition to their regular kibble. The idea being its healthier for the dog to eat real food, and not just kibble. As kibble has such a wide range of quality, some experts are encouraging owners to cut back a 1/4 or 1/2 of the kibble in their pets' diets, and substitute real healthy food instead. I actually do this from time to time, adding real meat, fruits and veggies. Because only eating kibble every day your entire life seems boring and possibly could lead to problems.

But the vet suggested that fruits and veggies are digested at a different rate than kibble and meat, and that they can cause gas...which can lead to bloat. He actually suggested feeding fruits and veggies separate from kibble, at a different time of day.

There are so many experts, it's hard to know who to believe. And since bloat is now a concern for collies, I've been reading a lot of articles. (I even heard about the ice cube myth)


Wednesday 28th of June 2017

Way back in the day I believe that they said dogs that are fed kibble were more likely to bloat but that has since been debunked. Unfortunately, I've known and read about many dogs that were fed home cooked or raw diets bloating. I've never heard that about feeding veggies and fruits separate but it makes sense that they would digest at a different rate.

Callie, Shadow, and Ducky's Mom

Tuesday 27th of June 2017

Excellent, informative post, Jen!! Thanks for sharing with us!!

Shadow doesn't care one way or another about ice cubes; but Ducky? Now she is another story. Our little demon dog will stand about 6 inches away from the fridge whenever we are getting ice for our drinks, in hopes that the ice maker will do its usual act of spitting cubes all over the floor instead of in our cups. She will grab a cube and make a beeline for the carpet, and then crunch the ice into smaller pieces and leave it there. ? Crazy dog!


Wednesday 28th of June 2017

Hahaha! Ducky sounds exactly like Leroy!

All Things Collie

Tuesday 27th of June 2017

Our Scarlett loves ice cubes too. She runs off with them like she snatched a bite of steak! Lol

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Homemade Cranberry Dog Treats 20 Easy Halloween Pumpkin Carving Ideas The 4 Stages Of The Newfoundland Dog Homemade Apple Dog Treats No-Bake Pumpkin Dog Treats