The Food and Drug Administration has ruled that it is safe for a dog to lick the bottom of a bowl of ice cream, a popular ice cream topping.
The FDA said in a release that it had approved the ice cream “as an edible food item” and not “as food for human consumption.”
The FDA’s announcement comes as the Food and Consumer Products Safety Commission, which is charged with overseeing food safety, has announced a new initiative that would make ice cream more accessible to pets.
A new rule requires that dogs must be under six months of age and can only be served ice cream with their owner present.
The agency’s announcement was made during a panel at the World Economic Forum on Monday in Davos, Switzerland, where the FDA has also launched a program to encourage manufacturers to offer more ice cream flavors.
In September, the FDA said that it was reopening the market for ice cream products that have been tested for food safety by a third party.
The FDA said it is moving forward with a new policy, which will now require ice cream manufacturers to follow a set of safety standards and “refer to their products as ‘food.'”
The agency also said it was creating a Food Safety Working Group to recommend additional regulations.
“We recognize that a number of factors make ice creams particularly susceptible to foodborne illnesses and are committed to ensuring that the public health and safety of pets is always our top priority,” the agency said in its statement.
The company that makes the ice creamer, Blue Ice, has not yet commented on the FDA announcement.