I don’t know if your dog is anything like Jem, but she is absolutely OBSESSED with ice cubes! If she hears the ice maker running as someone is filling their glass, she wakes up from a dead sleep and high-tails it over to the fridge to beg for a cube. If you are sitting in the living room drinking from a cup with ice, forget about it! She will stare at you with those big brown eyes and even resort to pawing at your cup to persuade you to feed her habit.
She’s even managed to learn how to use her (thumb-less) paws to grab onto the glass and pull it towards herself. I can’t believe how much strength she’ll put behind her efforts!
Living in Florida, sometimes it can feel like the hot, humid summer will never end. At times the heat is so intense that our dogs don’t want to spend time outside except to mind their 1’s and 2’s. I hate to see them cooped up inside all day, so I wanted to create a fun activity for them that would allow them to enjoy the heat. Plus, anything new and fun is exciting for them!
Doggy Iceberg Toy
Creating a doggy iceberg toy is simple, easy, and can be done again and again!
Homemade icebergs are so much fun to make, and watching the anticipation in the dogs’ eyes while I made it cracked me up! Before they even knew what I was doing they were already thrilled!
Step 1: Find Your Bowl and Toys
Find a sturdy freezer-safe bowl or dish of your liking, and add a few toys or treats to the bottom of the bowl. Stay away from biscuit or cracker type treats, because these will get soggy and disintegrate before your dog has the chance to get to them. I used my homemade organic dehydrated sweet potato treats because they’re sturdy and tough. Plus the dogs are obsessed with them!
Step 2: Fill With Water & Freeze
Fill the bowl with as much water as you’d like. If you fill it to the top, you could already be done with this project after a few hours of freezing! Or you can decide to freeze it in layers. As I’m sure you’ve already guessed, I’m taking the more time-consuming layered approach!
Step 3: Freeze, Layer, Repeat
Add a thin layer of peanut butter to the top of this layer and return it to the freezer for another 15-30 minutes. This step is completely optional, and remember to check the label on your peanut butter because some brands include an ingredient that is poisonous to dogs!
Keep adding layers of treats and water until you get the size of the iceberg that you want. If I didn’t have homemade sweet potato treats on hand, I was considering adding a couple of the doggy “super foods” to give them a healthy boost!
Once you have all of your layers completed, freeze the whole iceberg for at least 2 hours to make sure it’s firm. I froze mine over night because we got a thunderstorm and couldn’t play until the next day.
Step 4: Play!
Now you’re ready to introduce this new, fun treat to your dog! To unlock the block of ice from the bowl, simply set it on the counter for 5-10 minutes. It will loosen up enough for you to pop it right out of the container. If you’re lucky like I was, your iceberg will easily loosen without any effort. I didn’t have to set mine out to thaw – it came right out! Maybe the trick to that is letting it freeze overnight.
If you’re going to play indoors, place the iceberg inside a big, open container so as it melts the water doesn’t get all over the floor. If you’re paying outside like us, simply set it down in the grass or on a tray and play!
If your dog seems confused by the new, odd creation just dab a little bit of peanut butter on the iceberg to get the licking started. Once your dog gets the hang of it, she’ll be hooked! Laci and Jem didn’t require any enticing before they dug in – they were instantly obsessed! We had to move our party into the porch because the mosquitos loved the iceberg just as much as the pups! Ouch!
Laci and Jem would get a little jealous of each other and trade on and off who got a turn. I have to say I was impressed at how well they shared!
I don’t think Jem could believe her luck – all of her favorite things combined into one HUGE package!
This treat is not only a fun, easy way to keep your dog cool during the hot summer months, but it’s also a great brain-teaser to keep your dog’s mind sharp and exercised! If you worry that your dog does’t drink enough water, this is also a great way to trick her into ingesting more water without even knowing it. Next time I would probably make mine about half this size. The dogs’ tongues got tired part-way through, and as bad as it killed them to take a break, they didn’t have a choice but to call it quits!