Local vet says despite viral warning, ice not a problem for dogs



Posted on June 20, 2014 at 10:20 PM

Tania Dall / Eyewitness News
Email: tdall@wwltv.com | Twitter: @taniadall

NEW ORLEANS -  A viral post is making the rounds on social media websites terrifying pet owners about the dangers of feeding ice to their dogs.

The claim is that it could be fatal, especially in the dead of summer. Eyewitness News turned to a local expert for answers.

You may have seen the post on social media sites or heard the rumor from a friend, feeding your dog ice or throwing those frozen cubes in their water bowl could be deadly.

The terrifying tale is linked to an article that is making the viral rounds called: "no ice water for dogs please read asap."

It describes a pet owner's experience where a dog allegedly nearly died after being given ice water. The article claims the cold water caused the dog to bloat.

"I actually saw it on Facebook," said Chris Emig.

So could ice really hurt your beloved four-legged friend? Dr. Markey at Canal Street Veterinary Hospital says absolutely not.

"Total myth. There's nothing wrong with giving your pets a little bit of ice when its hot outside," said Markey. However, she says heat exhaustion and not enough fresh water in the summer, definitely can.

"If your pets don't seem to want to drink as much as normal. You can sneak extra water in with their food or you can try a fountain," said Markey.

Other warnings signs that the heat is getting to your furry friends.

"Exhaustion, they're not themselves," she said. "They're not eating. Sometimes we get burned paw pads," said Markey.

"He's tiny and black. And he's kinda figuring out when he's overheated. But I pretty much throw him in the pool a lot," said Mid-City resident Cheryl Hoehn spending the day with her pooch at City Park.

For pet owners who feed their dogs ice water without a second thought, there was a sense of relief knowing that a viral rumor is just that.

"I heard that it wasn't good but I also hear they recanted the story and that its safe now," said Emig.