I adore those TikTok videos of dogs running out to the ice cream van to get their own 99, and Billy the labrador used to do the very same thing. The beautiful black lab would head to work with his owner Marie Jones each day, and they would regularly enjoy an ice cream together on their lunch break from the nearby vendor. That was until Marie completed a nutrition degree and realised that human ice cream wasn’t the best treat for four-pawed friends – so she decided to design her own.
Marie knew that iced treats were great for cooling dogs down in summer, and managed to perfect her own healthy recipe with Billy’s help. They got a second dog, Margot, the assistant taste-tester, who confirmed the product certainly had legs. Dragon’s Den’s Deborah Meaden agreed, and in 2012, Billy and Margot Iced Treats went into full production.
We tried three of their four dairy-free frozen treat flavours – their fourth flavour, Coconut Creme, is very newly launched and we couldn’t get our paws on it just yet. The Billy and Margot flavours we bought were: Strawberry and Apple, Honey and Banana and Apple, Banana and Carrot.
The cooling treats are made with real fruit and superfoods, as well as coconut oil which promotes healthy skin and coat. We really love the size of the Billy and Margot tubs, which have been specifically designed to cater to all breeds – big and small. Their tub is the optimum diameter to cater to flat-faced dogs like pugs, frenchies and bulldogs, as well as pooches with longer snoots like whippets and greyhounds.
Marie also recognised that whilst some owners prefer to hold the tub to control how their dog eats their treat, some dogs prefer to take matters into their own paws. The Billy and Margot iced treat tubs are 100% edible, made with cardboard designed to disintegrate in the gut if swallowed, as well as being printed with non-toxic vegetarian ink. I wouldn’t advise them munching on the packaging, but it definitely gives some peace of mind if they do happen to ingest some.
When lifting the lid on a tub of Billy and Margot ice cream, it looks good enough to grab a spoon and dig in yourself – and looking at the ingredient list, you probably could! Grain and dairy-free, they also include a range of fruits, coconut oil, flaxseed oil and aloe vera, and are packed with vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. We’ve struggled to find any feeding guidelines online, but we think that for our medium dogs (18-22kg) sharing one tub is more than enough of a treat. You can feed them from the tub, portion it out into bowls, or spread onto Lickimats for added enrichment!
Billy and Margot say that the lid can be placed back on, and the product re-frozen at any time, which makes the iced treats pawfect for outdoor training in summer. They suggest a ‘click and lick’ technique which would see dogs complete a command, and be rewarded with a lick of ice cream. This bonding also encourages a stronger relationship with you pooch, with some one-to-one interaction that’s not often afforded with treats that don’t touch the sides.
Phoebe and Frank loved the size of the tubs because they could fit their whole snoots in – they could even share the tub at the same time! The iced treat has a softer consistency to others we’ve tried previously, with a creamier texture, which we also enjoyed. They both made light work of the iced treats, which really helped to cool them down in the hot weather.