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Vet fires back over ‘no ice water for dogs’ blog post

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — It’s an article that’s going viral across the web and terrifying pet owners.

The blog post, NO ICE WATER FOR DOGS… PLEASE READ ASAP, discusses one dog’s near deadly encounter.

You’ve probably had the story show up in your Facebook timeline or an email from a friend, so WXMI talked to a local vet to see how true the post really is.

“On the Internet circulating right now is a story that seems very legitimate of a dog developing bloat after consuming ice cubes and water,” Dr. Randall Carpenter, DMV of Family Friends Veterinary Hospital said.

It’s the story of a dog who almost dies after his owner gives him ice water, claiming the cold water caused the dog to bloat.

Carpenter says bloats are life-threatening situations that actually flips the stomach while enlarging it.

He says he has seen the viral post scaring dog owners since 2007, and it just recently made a comeback on social media.

“If the dog is overheated and dehydrated, and desperate for fluids and they consume huge, huge amounts of ice cubes or water all at one time, it could create a situation where the dog could bloat,” Carpenter said.

But that’s true for large amounts of any temperature water, he added.

He says just consuming cold water or ice cubes in moderation will not cause bloat, saying ice cubes and water when the weather is hot is a good thing.

Though the article seems very real, even scientific enough to scare the most educated pet owner, the findings behind it are simply false.

“Ice cubes and cold water are fine for pets as long as it’s done with some common sense,” Carpenter said.


  • Eric

    Again like the vet says, a little common sense. My dogs love ice cubes but I don’t give them more than two or three.

  • Christine Maxfield

    Dr Carpenter went to school for a long time to get that degree–it’s DVM, NOT DMV. He didn’t stand in line at the Dept of Motor Vehicles for that degree. Please correct.

    • Anonymous

      Actually, it might have taken him longer if he did stand in line at the DMV! But yes, he deserves the correct title.

  • Christopher Jackson

    Yeah… the problem is not the Ice or the water… The problem happens when you *deprive* the dog of water, then give them a lot of it all at once! Unlike a human, the dog is not educated enough to drink a little, then give themselves time to absorb that water into their systems before drinking some more. They drink too much too quickly and *that* is what causes, “Bloat”… The true moral is, “Be a responsible pet owner! Make sure that your dog has water when they *want* it, rather than overindulging them when they *need* it!” The same rule applies for your children or for yourself!!! Keep hydrated and thereby avoid the impulse to binge on water! If you are thirsty, now, then you should be taking a sip of water, *NOW*! Don’t wait until you are, “dying of thirst”, and then gulp down a quart or more at once! That will cause problems for you… Don’t make your dog wait until they are, “dying of thirst”, and then give them more water than they can easily or safely drink! That binge drinking of water is what causes bloat.

  • Jeremy

    Basic chemistry tells us that H2O in solid form actually takes up more space than in liquid form. Therebye, a dog consuming ice would feel full faster. The. When the ice melts, there should be less bloating as less volume is taken up.

  • Rubs

    Neither veterinarians nor anyone else has all the answers regarding bloat. There are some mysteries and lots of contradictory information about it. I had a dog die from it and I’ve known other dogs who’ve died from it. It’s a fast and deadly killer that comes with no warning. All dog owners should educate themselves about it. A dog with bloat can often be saved with quick action by a vet but the owner needs to know what to look for. Everyone please do your homework and save your dog’s life!

  • Anonymous


  • Anonymous

    I am in Florida right now and the temp has been over 90 degrees for 3 weeks. My air conditioner is not up to the task right now. My house regularly gets to 88 to 90 degrees during the afternoon. When I first gave my dog water with ice cubes in it, he would not touch it. It was new to him. Now he loves it. He still does not eat the ice and does not drink excessive amounts. Dogs cool by panting getting into a cooler environment like jumping into water, or internally with cool water. He does not gorge on the ice and it seems to make him feel better. He also lays in front of the fan I have to cool me. I gave it to him and bought another for me. If your dog is hot and needs to cool down, give him cool water or put ice in his. I LOVE MY DOG!!!!!

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