An owner holding ice cream out to their dog.

Can Dogs Eat Ice Cream?

I know, I know… There are a lot of movies that show that classical scene of a person sharing their ice cream with their beloved dog, and they live happily ever after. And they always seem so happy and so beautiful on the screen that you probably wished you could do exactly the same thing with your dog. But is it ok to reproduce this scene in real life? In other words, can dogs eat ice cream?

Dogs can eat ice cream, but they definitely shouldn’t. Although ice cream is not fatal to dogs, it can cause harmful gastrointestinal effects such as gas, bloating, vomiting, and diarrhea. So, the best thing to do for your furry friend is to avoid giving it ice cream at all. Also, contact your vet if you notice the above signs or suspect your dog has ingested ice cream.

What Is Ice Cream Made Of?

Most ice cream is composed of a mixture of water, air, milk (milk fat and milk serum), sugar/sweetener, flavors, and some other smaller ingredients such as stabilizers, emulsifiers, and food colors. There are also desserts similar to ice creams, such as gelato, which has more milk fat, and sorbet, which has no dairy.

Can Dogs Eat Ice Cream?

A dog with a toy ice cream cone in its mouth.
Thankfully, that’s fake ice cream!

Although dogs can eat ice cream, ingestion is not recommended. Dogs don’t have the same ability to process milk as humans do, so it can be really uncomfortable when they digest ice cream. Besides, most ice creams have sugar or sweeteners in their composition, which also can be really deleterious for the organism and can cause gastrointestinal sensitivity.

So, although ice cream ingestion is not lethal to dogs, it is not recommended at all. Avoid giving ice cream to your dog and use alternative treats instead that are safe for them. Dog treats are always a good choice, for example.

What Should I Do If My Dog Eats Ice Cream?

If your dog has accidentally licked that scoop of ice cream that fell on the floor, just make sure you keep a close eye on it. If the amount was small, maybe your dog will not experience any discomfort. But if your pet is sensitive or if it ate a huge amount of ice cream, it can have symptoms such as bloating, abdominal pain, gas, vomiting, and diarrhea. 

If you notice any of these signs, don’t hesitate to call your vet or take your furry friend to the nearest veterinary center. Or, if it makes you feel better, you can also call your vet even without noticing symptoms. Just remember to never medicate your dog without veterinary guidance and always seek professional help when you are in doubt.

Is There Any Dog-Friendly Ice Cream That I Can Make?

If you got sad about discovering that eating ice cream is not the best thing for your dog, I have great information for you: you can make your own dog-friendly ice cream! By choosing and mixing the right ingredients (that are safe for your dog), you can produce amazing ice cream to offer your furry friend. Below are two recipes you can use.

Keep in mind, while dairy is okay for dogs, lactose can cause digestive issues for dogs, especially those that are lactose intolerant. Try finding dairy-free options that are safe for dogs to ingest (and there are some kinds of milk that are okay too). We always recommend talking with your veterinarian prior to making any changes to your dog’s diet, no matter how small.

Strawberry And Banana

First up are the ingredients.


10 strawberries, one medium banana, and one cup of plain natural yogurt.


The instructions are really easy to follow: just mash the strawberries and the banana really well and then mix everything with the yogurt. Once it is all well combined, take your mixture to the freezer and keep it there for a minimum of four hours.

This ice cream lasts up to eight weeks in the freezer, and your best friend is going to love it!

Peanut Butter And Banana

Here are the ingredients for this dish.


One medium banana, one cup of plain natural yogurt, and two tablespoons of peanut butter (make sure it does not contain xylitol, and also make sure your dog isn’t allergic to peanuts).


The instructions for this ice cream are even easier than for the last one: you just need to blend all the ingredients in the blender until is all mixed. Once everything is well combined, just take to the freezer for a minimum of four hours.

This ice cream lasts up to six months in the freezer, and your furry friend will love it!

Conclusion: Can Dogs Eat Ice Cream?

Although the movie scene of a person sharing ice cream with their beloved four-legged best friend seems perfect, it may not be the best scenario for your dog. Ice cream can make your furry friend really uncomfortable and painful, so the best thing you can do is to avoid it altogether. Instead, you can always try to do a dog-friendly ice cream to give your best friend and watch them enjoy something that will not cause any harm.

So, have you ever shared an ice cream with your dog? Have you ever tried any of these dog-friendly recipes? Tell us in the comments below!

Thamiris da Rocha
Thamiris da Rocha
Thamiris has been passionate about animals for as long as she can remember. When she was a little kid, she used to ask her parents to stop the car at every corner to try to rescue a dog from the streets and take it home. Years went by and that passion became a graduation in Veterinary Medicine, which she completed in 2019 at Sao Paulo State University (UNESP), the best Vet School in Brazil. Now she is more than happy to share her knowledge with people and help them have more information and a better relationship with these amazing and special souls.