Toxic Chemicals and Common Household Items

household cleaners

Most homes include potentially harmful chemicals and caustic substances for dogs. Adult people are well aware of the dangers of coming into touch with the most hazardous compounds. Dog owners, like parents, must safeguard their canines from home pollutants, just as they must protect their children.

Keep a close eye on the things you use in your yard and house. Switch to goods that are recognized to be pet-friendly. If chemicals are consumed, breathed, or come into touch with skin, they can be dangerous to dogs. Chemicals can enter the circulation and harm the major organs in some situations. Although certain substances are deemed harmless for humans, they can cause harm to dogs.

If you use chemicals in your yard, make sure your dog does not have access to it until it is dry (and make sure that the chemical it is safe once dry). The same goes for carpet cleaners and other cleaning products used in areas where your dog may wander. When spraying chemicals into the air or onto surfaces, keep your dog in mind.

Household Substances Toxic to Dogs

Certain substances commonly found in and around the home can pose a high toxicity risk to dogs.

  • Antifreeze: Ethylene glycol is a . Sadly, this is a common poison in dogs. Antifreeze tastes good to dogs, but even very small amounts are highly toxic. Symptoms of ethylene glycol poisoning appear rapidly and can quickly lead to death.
  • Battery acid: This very dangerous chemical can irritate, ulcerate, or even eat through the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract.
  • Bleach: This chemical is caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. In addition, the fumes are potentially harmful, especially in closed spaces.
  • Drain cleaner: This is also caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. The fumes can be harmful, especially if the area is not well-ventilated.
  • Drugs and medications: Prescription, over-the-counter, and illicit/recreational drugs can be very harmful to dogs. The toxic effects depend on the type of drug and quantity ingested. In some cases, toxicity can easily cause death.
  • Fertilizer: Depending on the type, some fertilizers can irritate the skin and feet if your dog comes into contact with it, especially before it is dry. It can also be harmful if ingested.
  • Glue: Many types of glue are dangerous, causing poisoning, skin and mucous membrane irritation, and gastrointestinal obstruction. Gorilla Glue is perhaps one of the worst, often causing gastrointestinal obstruction.
  • Herbicides: Like fertilizer, herbicides can cause irritation to your dog's feet and skin if he walks through it, especially if it's still wet. If ingested, your dog could experience toxic effects.
  • Household cleaners and detergents: Depending on the chemical, these can be dangerous if ingested, inhaled, or if they come into contact with the skin.
  • Kerosene: This is caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. The fumes are potentially harmful.
  • Motor oil: Some people may have heard of motor oil being used as a "home remedy" for mange, but this is absolutely untrue! Never, ever put motor oil on your dog. It is very harmful to the skin and dangerous if ingested. Motor oil can easily kill a dog.
  • Mulch containing cocoa bean shells: This type of mulch is a tasty yet dangerous snack for dogs. The toxic effects are the same as chocolate poisoning.
  • Nail polish/nail polish remover (acetone): This is caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. The fumes are potentially harmful. Also, nail polish can become glued to the hair.
  • Paint, varnish, lacquers, sealants, stains: All of these are caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. The fumes are potentially harmful. Some of these may also dry on fur and can be difficult to remove.
  • Paint thinners and paintbrush cleaners (mineral spirits, turpentine, etc.): All of these are caustic to the skin, mucous membranes, and gastrointestinal tract. The fumes are potentially harmful.
  • Pesticides: When wet, many types of pesticides can irritate the skin, mucous membranes, and GI tract. Some are still harmful when dry.
  • Rat Poison: Sadly, is a common poison in dogs. Rat poison is extremely toxic if ingested. NEVER use rat poison in or around your home.
  • Salts (specifically rock salt/sidewalk salt) and other De-icers: These can irritate the skin and feet of dogs. They are also potentially harmful if ingested.

This is not an exhaustive list of home poisons. Keep in mind that any object in or near your home might endanger your dog.

Keep your dog away from areas where liquid chemicals have been recently sprayed. Many are safe once dry, but find out which ones are safe and only use those.

Before you buy and use anything, find out how safe it is. Make an effort to utilize as many pet-friendly items as possible. Keep harmful materials out of reach of your dog, and keep in mind that some dogs will be destructive to get access to banned locations.

What To Do If Your Dog Is Poisoned

You must respond quickly if your dog has been exposed to a poison. Immediately contact your veterinarian. Wait for symptoms to show before acting!

Unless told otherwise by a veterinarian, NEVER cause vomiting. Caustic compounds can be considerably more damaging when they return to the surface.

Keep a list of vital phone numbers in a conspicuous, easily accessible position in case of toxic exposure. Make sure any pet sitters or other visitors to your house are aware of where the list is kept.

  1. Your primary veterinarian
  2. One or more nearby 24-hour veterinary emergency clinics
  3. ASPCA Poison Control: (888) 426-4435 (fee applies; Home Again subscribers can call 888-HomeAgain to get free support from an ASPCA veterinarian)
  4. Pet Poison Hotline: 855-764-7661 (fee applies)
  5. An emergency contact number for you and your dog's co-owner (if applicable).
If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your pet, know the pet's health history, and can make the best recommendations for your pet.


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