Can Dogs Eat Coconut Ice Cream? (6 Harmful Ingredients)

There’s nothing better than sharing a nice cold treat with your dog on a hot summer day.

Dogs love going outside, so they won’t let the sweltering sun stop them. While this spirit is adorable, it means the responsibility of keeping the dog cool lies with the owners.

You’ll probably get coconut ice cream if you love coconuts and want to buy a sweet treat to cool off in the hot weather. And you’re probably used to your dog coming up to you and whining for a bite.

Most dog parents will let their fluffer have a bite of coconut ice cream, but is that even safe?

Can dogs eat coconut ice cream?

Can Dogs Eat Coconut Ice Cream

Your dog can eat coconut ice cream if it contains ingredients that are not toxic for dogs.

Whether or not a dog can have coconut ice cream is a massive debate; some vets claim they shouldn’t, while others believe there’s no problem with a dog having a cool treat.

Certain conditions like lactose intolerance, brain freezes, and particular negative reactions to coconut make it difficult to give a dog coconut ice cream freely. However, if you prepare it at home, there’s nothing wrong with a few licks of coconut ice cream.

We have much to discuss, as you can tell, so let’s dive right into it.

Can Dogs Eat Coconut Ice Cream?

Dogs can have coconut ice cream if it contains dog-friendly ingredients.

You see, neither ice cream nor coconut is toxic for dogs, but it might not be the best treat for them if they contain particular additives like sugar. Not all ingredients of coconut ice cream are safe for a dog’s consumption, so you can’t risk letting your doggo have a big scoop.

Some dogs are lactose intolerant, so ice cream may cause stomach problems. Additionally, your dog might even get sick from coconut, which isn’t toxic but might trigger an upset stomach anyway.

You’ll have to prepare dog-friendly coconut ice cream to give your pupper some. However, up to a few licks is enough if you’re serving coconut ice cream bought from a vendor or a store.

For the most part, letting your dog have an occasional lick or two of coconut ice cream in moderation won’t cause any harm.

However, frequently letting your dog have coconut ice cream or eating more than a couple of bites of coconut ice cream can be harmful.

Why Shouldn’t Dogs Have Coconut Ice Cream?

We’ll need to break down the ingredients in coconut ice cream to understand why it isn’t the safest option for a dog.

But first, let’s take a look at its nutritional value:

Nutritional ComponentValue Per One Cup (104 grams)Daily Value %
Total Fat
Saturated fats Polyunsaturated fats Monounsaturated fats
15 grams
12 grams 0.2 gram 0.6 gram
Total CarbohydratesDietary Fiber Sugars36 grams2 grams 28 grams12%8%
Protein3.3 grams
Cholesterol0 milligram0%
MineralsSodium Potassium Iron Calcium 8.9 milligrams 146 milligram   0%4%32% 0.9%
VitaminsVitamin A Vitamin C  0% 1.1%

Harmful Nutrients

Coconut ice cream has many beneficial nutrients, but some just aren’t what your dog needs. These nutrients aren’t only unnecessary for a dog but can be toxic in high quantities:

●    Too Much Sugar


A cup of coconut ice cream contains 28 grams of sugar, which is too much for a dog.

Dogs can’t digest sugar too well, so eating more than the suggested amount will make them sick. Overeating sugar will give dogs nausea, stomach aches, diarrhea, and vomiting.

●    High Potassium Levels

Dogs need potassium to maintain muscle and nerve function, but taking too much can cause hyperkalemia, a condition in which the high potassium concentration interferes with the heart’s functioning.

The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO) recommends 0.6% potassium in dry matter for a dog.

A cup of coconut ice cream contains 146 milligrams of potassium with a daily value of 4%, which is too much for a dog.

Potentially Harmful Ingredients

Store-bought coconut ice cream contains non-fat milk, sugar, vanilla, coconut, corn syrup, cornstarch, preservatives like Potassium Sorbate, citric acid, xylitol, salt, and other ingredients.

While most of these ingredients are safe in moderation, some are highly concerning. Let’s take a look:

●    Xylitol

The ice creams you buy from the supermarket contain xylitol, a natural sweetener.

Although we can safely eat xylitol, it is extremely toxic to dogs. Even a little can trigger the pancreas to release insulin, causing low blood sugar, which can be deadly if not immediately treated.

●    Potassium Sorbate

Potassium Sorbate is a common preservative added to many canned and frozen products. Many consider potassium sorbate safe for dogs in limited quantities.

However, Potassium Sorbate has some side effects, including irritation to the respiratory tract; although it may not necessarily harm a dog, it might still be a cause of concern.

●    Coconut


Coconut is not toxic to dogs but contains some nutrients that aren’t too safe for a dog.

Coconut contains medium-chain triglycerides, lab-made fats extracted from coconut oil that are beneficial for us but harmful for our puppers. These fats can trigger bloating and various symptoms of an upset stomach in dogs.

Your dog can safely have coconut in moderation but eating more than the recommended quantity can cause severe stomach problems.

●    Citric Acid

Citric Acid

Some ice cream companies add citric acid to their ice creams. Although citric acid is safe for us, it is very toxic for our puppers.

The toxicity of citric acid is also why dogs shouldn’t have citrus fruits without the vet’s consultation.

●    Cornstarch/Cornflour 

Can Dogs Eat Coconut Ice Cream? (6 Harmful Ingredients)

You might find cornstarch/cornflour in some store-bought ice creams. Both cornstarch and cornflour are harmful to dogs, so it is best to keep your distance.

●    Milk


Many dogs are lactose intolerant or lose the ability to digest milk at a young age, so feeding dairy products to your dog isn’t the best idea.

A dog with lactose intolerance will experience nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, gas, and stomach pain if it drinks milk or eats dairy products.

However, your dog can safely have lactose-free milk without additives.

Can Dogs Safely Eat Ice Cream?

If dogs can’t have coconut ice cream because of particular additives, surely they could eat regular ice cream?

You might have seen many dog parents letting their dogs have a lick of ice cream in the park. While occasional cold streets are safe for your dog, they might be harmful in excess.

Regular ice cream contains many ingredients that may harm a dog, including milk, xylitol, sugar, and potassium sorbate, so it’s only safe in moderation.

Additionally, flavored ice cream contains chemical additives and flavorings that can harm a dog’s digestive system and make it very sick. Hence, most flavored treats like chocolate and strawberry ice creams aren’t great treat choices for a dog.

Your dog can have regular vanilla or flavored ice cream in moderation, but overeating either can trigger diarrhea and vomiting.

And that’s not the only concern; eating ice cream or any cold treat might trigger brain freeze in dogs, leading to a pounding headache.

You can serve homemade ice cream made from dog-safe ingredients if you want your dog to eat ice cream.

Is Coconut Milk Ice Cream Safe for Dogs?

Mostly, coconut ice cream isn’t the safest treat for a dog because it contains sugar and certain preservatives that aren’t safe for dogs.

Doggo parents who know their dogs can only have coconut ice cream in moderation will ask if the rules are the same for coconut milk ice cream.

Unfortunately, coconut milk ice cream isn’t the safest option, either. Coconut milk contains extracted oils that can trigger diarrhea and an upset stomach in dogs.

The nutritional value of coconut milk ice cream is the same as coconut ice cream, which we already know contains some nutrients harmful to a dog.

However, coconut milk ice cream is more harmful than regular coconut ice cream because of the concentration of extracted oils in coconut milk.

Serving a little bit of coconut ice cream instead of coconut milk ice cream is better.

What Do Dogs Gain from Eating Coconut Ice Cream?

Why do some doggo owners want to serve coconut ice cream to their dogs if the treat is only safe in moderation?

Although coconut ice cream contains potentially unsafe nutrients, some are quite beneficial for dogs. Many owners will let their dogs have an occasional bite or two of coconut ice cream to benefit from the nutrients and get a nice cool treat.

Let’s take a look at what good coconut ice cream can bring your dog:

●    Boosts Immunity

Coconut ice cream contains antioxidants that boost immunity and help your pupper fight germs and viruses.

●    Strengthens Bone Density

Coconut ice cream contains potassium and trace amounts of calcium. Both these minerals strengthen and protect your dog’s bones in controlled quantities.

●    Shines Fur and Coat


Coconut oil in coconut milk protects your dog’s fur and gives its coat a nice sheen.

●    Boosts Growth and Provides Energy

Coconut oil contains a lot of fat, boosting growth and giving your dog the energy to run around and play all day.

Who Let the Dogs Out (of Eating Ice Cream)?

Can all dogs eat coconut ice cream? Unfortunately, not all dogs can handle the lactose in ice cream, so you can’t risk serving it without consulting the vet.

Every dog parent must consider these health concerns before serving coconut or any other flavored ice cream to their fluffers:

●    Lactose Intolerance

Many household pets, including dogs, lose the ability to digest lactose as they age. Some dogs are even born lactose intolerant.

Eating ice cream or other dairy products can be troublesome for lactose-intolerant dogs because it can trigger nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and severe stomach aches.

●    Unwanted Weight Gain

Weight Gain

Ice cream contains a lot of fats.

Although vets encourage fats in a dog’s diet, overconsuming can trigger health problems.

A diet with excess fat might push a dog towards obesity, fueling severe health problems, including heart disease.

Additionally, dogs with weight over the medically recommended one might get sicker from eating ice cream because their bodies might not be able to process the sugar and carbs coming their way.

●    Negative Reactions to Ingredients

Lactose-intolerant dogs will experience severe allergic reactions after eating ice cream.

Dogs can’t digest sugar properly, so if they frequently consume it, they won’t be able to handle the intake and will vomit profusely. Overeating might trigger strong reactions in the body that can flare other health conditions.

●    Toxic Flavoring

Not all ice cream flavors are safe for dogs; flavors like chocolate are highly toxic to dogs and risk their lives.

Eating even a little chocolate ice cream will make your pupper sick. Although coconut isn’t toxic to dogs, eating coconut ice cream may cause gastric problems.

●    Brain Freeze

Vets don’t recommend letting your dog have a big scoop of ice cream in one go because eating something cold can trigger a brain freeze.

A dog with brain freeze will experience forehead pain, tingling, loss of appetite, and a sudden behavior change.

Dog-safe Coconut Ice Cream

You can always make coconut ice cream at home for your dog. It is better to serve homemade coconut ice cream to your dog because you control what ingredients you put in there.

Follow this recipe to make dog-safe coconut ice cream at home:

●    Ingredients

  • 1 cup banana
  • 1 tablespoon dog-safe peanut butter (optional)
  • Half a cup of unsweetened yogurt
  • ¼ cup fresh coconut
  • ¼ cup raw honey

●    Directions

  • Blend all ingredients until fully combined
  • Transfer the blended mixture to a freezing tray
  • Freeze until well set
  • Scoop out a little and serve occasionally

How to Safely Serve Coconut Ice Cream to Dogs

Before serving coconut or any ice cream to your dog, you must keep some precautions in mind to prevent harm.

Here are a few tips you can follow so your dog can safely eat coconut ice cream:

●    Serve Cool, Not Cold

Your dog could get a brain freeze from the cold treat. It is best to serve ice cream after letting it sit out on the kitchen counter for a few minutes to reduce the temperature.

●    Serve Moderately

Never serve more than a few bites of ice cream at a time. Dogs love to gobble up anything in sight, so they won’t hesitate to swallow an entire scoop.

Always serve up to 1-2 tablespoons at a time, so your doggo doesn’t get too sick.

●    Occasional Treats

Serve ice cream as an occasional treat for your pupper; serving once or twice a month is safe for your dog.

Do not overfeed ice cream to your dog since it could cause an upset stomach and trigger allergic reactions.

●    Pick Out the Right Ingredients

Choose dog-friendly ingredients if you plan on making the ice cream at home.

Do not choose toxic ingredients for dogs, i.e., chocolate, sugar, etc.

Replace milk with unsweetened yogurt and try to add dog-safe fruits.

●    Read the Label

Carefully read the label of the ice cream you’re buying.

You’ll find many ice creams made with ingredients unhealthy for dogs.

●    Buy Dog-Safe Ice Cream

You can always shop for dog-safe ice creams if your pupper wants a nice little treat.

Yum Yum is a popular company producing dog-safe frozen treats and frozen yogurt.

Puppy Scoops is another brand that produces dog-safe ice cream.

Dog-Safe Alternatives for Coconut Ice Cream

You can always look for dog-safe alternatives to coconut ice cream.

●    Frozen Broth

You can freeze the chicken broth and serve it as a cold treat to your dog.

Boil chicken in water without adding any seasoning. Strain the chicken and freeze the broth into a tray.

●    Peanut Butter and Berry Delight

You can make a nice cold treat from dog-safe peanut butter (without xylitol), bananas, and dog-safe fruit like blueberries and mangoes.

Blend all ingredients together and transfer them into a freezing tray.

Serve when cooled.

●    Dog-safe Sherbet

Blend seedless chunks of watermelon and unsweetened yogurt. Freeze in an icing tray and serve when cooled.

Conclusion | Can dogs eat coconut ice cream?

Can dogs eat coconut ice cream safely?

Many dog parents won’t mind letting their fluffers eat coconut ice cream, but little do they know it can actually be harmful.

Coconut ice cream is only safe for your dog if all ingredients are dog-safe. Most ice creams you buy from the supermarket contain harmful additives and flavorings that can trigger diarrhea, vomiting, and various symptoms of an upset stomach.

A few bites of coconut ice cream once a month isn’t harmful to a dog, but serving frequently or excessively can make them sick.

You can always make coconut ice cream yourself or get dog-safe treat alternatives if you want your dog to have a cool treat.

●    What to Do If Your Dog Ate Coconut Ice Cream?

There’s no need to worry if your dog has a lick or two of coconut ice cream.

However, you should keep an eye out for any symptoms of an upset stomach if your dog is lactose intolerant.

Contact the vet and monitor your dog’s behavior and symptoms.

●    What’s The Best Ice Cream For Dogs?

Ice creams contain harmful ingredients for dogs, like sugar, chocolate, milk, additives, and preservatives.

Some brands sell dog-safe ice cream.

You can get the frozen yogurt treat by Yum Yum or the ice cream by Puppy Scoops for your dog.

It is best to serve unflavored ice cream without xylitol to dogs.

Avoid flavored ice creams, especially chocolate, since it is toxic for dogs.

The safest option is to serve a frozen yogurt treat containing dog-safe berries without any added sugar to your dog.

●    How Much Coconut Ice Cream Can a Dog Eat?

It is best to serve up to half a scoop of coconut ice cream to your dog to prevent brain freeze and an upset stomach.

●    Is Coconut Cream Poisonous for Dogs?

Coconut cream isn’t poisonous or toxic for dogs, but it is also not the safest treat.

Eating small amounts of coconut cream won’t do much harm, but you should try avoiding serving it to your dog.

Coconut cream contains coconut oils with medium-chain triglycerides; consuming these can trigger an upset stomach in dogs.

●    Can My Dog Eat a Coconut Popsicle?

Your dog can eat a coconut popsicle if it contains dog-safe ingredients.

Let your dog have up to a tablespoon of coconut popsicle if it contains dog unsafe ingredients.

It is best to make a dog-safe popsicle at home instead of serving it from a vendor.

●    Is Coconut Safe for Dogs?

Coconut isn’t toxic to dogs, but it is best to serve in limited quantities.

Many dog treats and dog care products have coconut, but the fruit contains medium-chain triglycerides, fats that can be harmful to dogs in excess.

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Jackob Evans

Hi, I’m Jacob. I’ve been a professional blogger for over six years, and in that time, I’ve written countless blogs that have helped millions of people worldwide. A DVM by profession, I have treated and cured thousands of dogs, if not millions.