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Do Dogs Like Cold Water, Or Is Room Temperature Water Better?

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By Nicole Cosgrove

Beagle dog drinking clear water

Setting out a bowl of water for your dog is probably second nature at this point. However, many dog owners don’t think twice about the type of water they put out for their dogs. After all, dogs will drink just about any water when thirsty.

Even though dogs will drink most water, you might be wondering if your furry best friend has a preference based on temperature. After all, many humans prefer cool water—why not dogs?

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Dogs Like Cool Water!

Believe it or not, dogs are like us in that they love cool water. According to a study conducted by the University of New England, dogs have a significant preference for cool drinking water. The study defined cool drinking water as being around 15 degrees Celsius or 59 degrees Fahrenheit.

The exact temperature that the dog prefers depends on individual preferences. Dogs with a lower core body temperature tend to prefer slightly warmer water than those with warmer core body temperature. Even so, nearly all dogs preferred cool water over warm or lukewarm water.

Dog drinking water from water bowl
Image Credit: 584652, Pixabay

Water With No Ice, Please

Even though dogs like cool water, most do not like ice water. This is an important distinction between the water you drink and the water that dogs drink. In fact, it’s a bad idea to put ice inside your dog’s water, even if your dog loves it cold.

In comparison to us, dogs have highly-sensitive mouths. As you likely know, your dog experiences the world with its mouth. If your dog stumbles upon something new, they will likely smell, lick, and potentially pick it up with its mouth. Because of this, dogs naturally have more sensitive mouths than humans.

Due to the sensitivity of a dog’s mouth, they do not typically like ice. More so, ice damages your dog’s teeth since it will try to eat the ice. What this means is that it’s a great idea to provide your dog with cool water, but leave the ice for yourself. Your dog will certainly appreciate it.

Will Dogs Drink Room Temperature Water?

Even though dogs prefer cool water, they will drink just about any water if they’re thirsty. Dogs have evolved to not be as picky as humans. If they’re super thirsty, they will drink cool, lukewarm, and even warm water if necessary.

So, you don’t need to panic if you’ve been gone for the day and the once cold water is now lukewarm. Your dog will certainly drink the water when they are thirsty. However, it’s still a good idea to change out the water whenever you get home so that it is cool and fresh.

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person giving water to the dog
Image Credit: Zivica Kerkez, Shutterstock

What Water Is Best For Dogs?

Clean, filtered water is best for dogs. If you drink the water, the water is likely safe for your dog as well. As a rule of thumb, give your pet the same water that you drink. Whether you drink out of a tap or drink filtered water exclusively, think of that as being the best for your dog.

If your dog has special health considerations, talk to your veterinarian. Additionally, pay attention to your dog’s drinking habits. Some dogs are pickier than others. If your dog does not seem to like the tap water, you might need to start giving them filtered water instead.

In most cases, clean, filtered water is great for most dogs. If you give your dog the same water that you drink, they will likely be happy, healthy, and, most importantly, hydrated.

RelatedWhy Is My Dog’s Poop Watery? Should I Worry?

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Final Thoughts

Just like us, dogs like cold water more than room temperature or warm water. However, do not add ice cubes to your dog’s bowl. Ice cubes will make the water too cold. Instead, select cool, fresh, and clean drinking water for your dog. If the water turns warm, that’s fine. Just refill the bowl whenever you notice the temperature change.


Featured Image Credit: ALEX_UGALEK, Shutterstock

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