Can Dogs Drink Cold Water?
The question may seem mundane until you take it to the internet. Then you will find the wild west of haunting stories where pets die from drinking cold water. One story in particular from the blog Wendt Worth Corgis, gained plenty of attention when in 2010 a story was written about a corgi drinking ice water, bloating, then nearly dying. The story has been shared all over social media, among friends, and pet websites warning dog owners to never give your dog cold water, let alone ice water.
At first, the news seems strange. Cold water can cause my dog to bloat? But then again, grapes have been proven toxic to our dogs, so should you take the chance? Who should you trust? Can you give your dog cold water?
Answer: Yes! The story about a corgi nearly dying from cold water is an internet myth. While the dog may have gone to the vet and needed surgery from bloating it was likely caused by drinking the water too fast rather than the water simply being cold.
Don’t take our word for it? Sources like ABC news and Snopes have all fact check this crazy legend to find it is not true. From what we know, cold water does not make dogs bloat but that does not mean there are not precautions we should take when giving our furry friend some cold water on a hot day.
Water is essential for your dogs, but the difference between cold water and room temperature water may not make a noticeable difference. Sure cold water can help cool your dog down a bit faster on a hot day, but the health benefits end there.
However, water for your dog has a never-ending list of health benefits! Here are just a few:
- Helps skin maintain elasticity
- Promotes lubricated joints
- Cleans out a dog’s system
- Promotes a healthy digestion of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats
- Helps bring essential nutrients to your pups cells
- Promotes healthy organs and nervous system
- Assists with nose, eyes, lungs, and mouth moisture
- Assists with regulating the body temperature
Surely there are plenty of ways your dog is going to benefit from drinking water, but there are a few important things you should consider before pouring Fido a big bowl of cold water.
Things To Consider
Earlier in this article, we talked about a poor pup that was rushed into surgery due to bloating. While the vet claimed it was from ice water, this could not be farther from the truth. The dogs bloating was most likely due to Gastric Dilatation Volvulus, or GDV. GDV is when deep-chested dogs stomach becomes filled with air. This stretches the stomach and they begin to bloat. This is not your average everyday bloat either, it may flip or twist their stomach, sometimes to the point of needing surgery.
Some pets that are more likely to develop GDV due to their body shape include German Shepherds, Great Danes, Saint Bernards, Irish Setters, Old English Sheepdogs, and Mastiffs.
Since this rumor has taken on a life of its own, it has been thoroughly investigated. ABC News reached out to the medical director of the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center, Dr. Tina Wismer, to discover the truth. Dr. Wismer’s response:
“This is not true. Dogs do not bloat from drinking ice water on hot days… They can be given as treats or put in the water bowl. Some behaviorists even recommend freezing toys or treats in ice for dogs to chew on.”
Drinking cold water is not the concern, but drinking water too fast and bloating is. If you have a dog you fear may be at risk for GDV, consider these few factors that may contribute to bloating. The chances of bloating increase when your pet is fed one meal per day, if your pet eats rapidly, have a family history of bloating, has dry food that has been moistened, eats from an elevated feeder, or food with high contents of animal fat. One way to fight the rapid eating is by purchasing a slow eater bowl. This is a bowl specifically designed to slow your pet’s eating down as he munches by making it more challenging to get at the food.
If you find your pet is overheating try cooling your dog down by placing a few ice packets under their armpits and on their head. If you find your pet is experiencing heat stroke, visit a local vet immediately. Sure, give your pet some water but do not waste any time trying to get your dog to drink.
Sometimes you can find the strangest information on the internet. This can be a bit scary especially when it comes to the health of our pets. Whenever you come across information that may appear a bit off, be sure to do your due diligence and double check the information with trusted sources.
When it gets a bit toasty in your area, feel free to give your pet some cold water. Just be sure to make sure they drink slowly.