DON’T PANIC! First of all, make sure your dog is poisoned.
These are the primary signs of a poisoned dog:
- Irregular heartbeat or other cardiac symptoms
- Difficulty in breathing
- Seizures or other neurological disorders
- Loss of blood
- Pale gums
- Inability to urinate
- Loss of appetite
- Loss of balance
- Swelling of tongue
- Skin rash
- Sores or Burns
- Muscle rigidity and tremor
Discovering that a beloved pet may have ingested a poisonous substance is a nightmare for every dog owner. But curious creatures like dogs like to investigate everything they come across. And this leads to countless dog poisoning incidents.
Maybe like a dog owner, you did everything to keep your pet safe and kept all potentially toxic substances tightly closed and far from your dog’s reach. But despite trying your best, if your dog gets poisoned, then what? Well, it is better to be prepared than sorry.
In this kind of emergency, you will need to follow some critical steps to increase the chances of your dog’s survival.
What To Do When You Suspect Poisoning
Step 1: If you find your pet with a potentially toxic substance, immediately remove him from the area. Consider sequestering him in another room that you know is safe.
Step 2: Observe him for a moment or two, or ask a family member to stay with him to ensure that your pet is acting and breathing relatively normally.
Step 3: Then, go back to collect a sample of the poisonous substance in a plastic bag. Gather any packaging that may have come with the substance too. If you have to take your pet to the veterinarian, this will be vital evidence.
Step 4: If your pet vomits, take a sample of this in a plastic bag. Once again, this may prove helpful in the event of a vet visit.
Even if your dog or cat feels fine and behaving normally, you’ll want to keep samples of what you believe he ingested. Sometimes, poisoning symptoms do not manifest for hours or even days after ingestion. Your pet’s normal behavior should not prevent you from taking further steps to ensure his health.
Home Remedy for Poisoned Dog
It is imperative that you not try to administer any home remedies, nor is it advisable for you to induce vomiting without a poison control center worker’s recommendation. These measures often don’t work, and sometimes they make the situation even more hazardous for your pet.
It is far better to call the
- ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center at (888) 426-4435 or
- the Pet Poison Helpline at (800) 213-6680.
Either of these helplines operates on a 24/7 basis and is staffed by pet poison experts who can help you determine how you should treat ingestion of the specific toxin involved.
Additionally, they can reliably recommend whether or not you should seek the immediate attention of your vet or a local emergency veterinarian hospital.
First Aid for Poisoned Dogs
To provide first aid, you will need to find out the means and methods that poisoned your dog.
And this is why it is essential to find out the toxic product your dog was exposed to. After collecting evidence, contact an animal poison control center or your veterinarian immediately.
Be prepared to share the following details-
- Breed, age, sex, and weight of your dog.
- If possible, describe or name the substance your dog was exposed to.
- How it was in contact with the toxic substance.
- If possible, tell how much your dog has consumed the substance.
- How long ago did the exposure occurs
- If possible, read the list of ingredients or other information given on the package of the toxic product for further reference.
The above information will help the poison control expert to advise you regarding how to treat your pet or recommend taking your animal to a local veterinary office.
However, if your pet is already exhibiting symptoms like
- Difficulty breathing
- Loss of consciousness
- partial paralysis
- Difficulty standing
- Rapid breathing, and
- Temperature variations
then forgo the call to a poison control center and directly Call your vet or local emergency hospital to inform them that you are on the way with a potentially poisoned pet.
Try to describe symptoms and whether or not you suspect poison as clearly and calmly as possible. Bring along any samples you collected and any relevant packaging.
Related Article: Toxic Food for Dogs
Follow Instructions of Vet or Poison Control Center
After sharing all the details, your veterinarian or the poison control center may advise you to do any of the following actions before you bring your dog to the vet:
Possible instruction 1: In the case of skin poisoning or chemical odor, wash your dog’s skin with soap and water, protecting their eyes, ears, mouth, and nose. For eye poisoning, flush the dog’s eyes out with clean water as soon as possible.
Possible instruction 2: In the case of consuming poisonous products, you may be asked to induce vomiting in your dog. Keep 3% hydrogen peroxide in your first-aid kit just for such a circumstance. If your dog vomits, collect it and seal it in a plastic bag as evidence.
Disclaimer: Don’t induce vomiting on your own without an expert’s advice. It isn’t always the best resource.
DO NOT induce vomiting in your dog if you see any of the following symptoms and immediately take your dog to the veterinarian:
- If your dog is poisoned by a strong acid, a cleaning product, a petroleum product, or such as bleach
- If your dog is poisoned for more than two hours
- If your dog is convulsing, semi-conscious, or unconscious.
Educate Yourself About Emergency Care
If you want to be a responsible dog owner-
- Have a talk with your veterinarian about what kinds of 24-hour emergency pet care are available in your local area.
- It’s best to know who to call or where to go in the middle of the night when the unthinkable happens.
- Program the number for animal poison control centers and local emergency vet services into your phone now so that you’ll be able to locate them in a difficult situation quickly.
- Place the name, address, and phone number of the emergency vet clinic on your refrigerator so that other family members have immediate access to it.
What Is Toxic for Dogs?
The number of poisonous household items to your dog is surprisingly many. Some common toxic Products are:
|1. Dry-Cleaning Solution|
2. Grapes and Raisins
5. Furniture Polish
7. Human Medications
8. Oven Cleaners
9. Paint Thinner and Remover
|11. Mouse and Rat Poison|
12. Silver Polish
15. Shoe Polish
Some household plants can also be dangerous for dogs. Some examples of those plants are listed below:
|1. Aloe Vera |
5. Bird of Paradise
6. Calla Lily
7. Castor Bean
8. Corn Plant
|10. Day Lily|
12. Easter Lily
13. Elephant Ears
14. English Ivy
20. Macadamia Nut
26. Tomato Plant
Note: Pets have also been known to overdose on their medications, especially the flavored varieties, to make them palatable.
Can a Dog Recover From Poisoning?
Recovering from poisoning is trickier; the poisonous substances most affect two vital organs; the liver and kidneys. The speed of recovery depends on the poison affecting them.
- So, it will be a long road to recover from poisoning.
- Keep your dog on a bland and easily digestible diet to fasten the recovery. It will give the liver and kidneys some rest and time to recuperate.
- Don’t feed your dog fats and proteins unless you want to put pressure on these two organs.
- Your vet may prescribe some minerals, antioxidant vitamins, and nutritional supplements for your dog to boost its recovery.
Prevention is Better Than Cure
A responsible dog owner should take every possible measure to protect his beloved dog from experiencing poisoning. So, if you have a dog, make your home dog-proof and keep all poisonous substances out of your dog’s reach.
But yes, dogs have a habit of getting curious about everything, leading them to poison. In that case, contact your vet for advice and guidance without any delay. Timely measures increase the chance of fully recovering from it.
I am Dana McQueen, a Veterinary Doctor who studied Veterinary Medicine at the University of Florida. For years, I have got common questions from friends and family about their pets. So, I decided to open up this website and answer all those frequently asked questions. Alongside, here I share my expert knowledge about pet care, pet health and the animal environment.