What to do if your dog’s been poisoned

How to respond if your dog’s poisoned

First of all, don’t panic. It’s important to act quickly, but panicking can interfere with helping your dog.

Take samples of the poison

If possible, take 30 to 60 seconds to collect a sample of the poisonous material and the poison product container if you have it. If your dog vomits, also collect a sample of the vomit in a sealable plastic bag.

Go to the vet or call poison control

If your dog’s having seizures, is unconscious or losing consciousness, or is having difficulty breathing, take her to your local vet or emergency clinic right away. If possible, phone ahead to let them know you’re coming.

If your dog doesn’t need immediate medical attention, you can call the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center for a $60 consultation fee. The telephone number is (888) 426-4435. Be ready with the following info:

  • the breed, age, sex, and weight of your dog
  • your dog’s symptoms
  • what the poison is (if known), how much your dog ingested, and how long ago.

How to plan ahead for an emergency

Know who to call

Keep the telephone number of the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center–(888) 426-4435–as well as that of your vet, in a prominent location.

Keep a first-aid kit on hand

A good doggie first-aid kit contains:
– a fresh bottle of hydrogen peroxide, 3 percent USP (to induce vomiting)
– a turkey baster, bulb syringe or large medicine syringe (to administer peroxide)
– saline eye solution
– artificial tear gel (to lubricate eyes after flushing)
– mild grease-cutting dishwashing liquid (for bathing after skin contamination)
– forceps (to remove stingers)
– a muzzle (to keep your dog from biting you out of fear or pain)
– a can of your dog’s favorite wet food
-a carrier

Always consult a vet or the ASPCA Poison Control Center for directions on how and when to use any emergency first-aid item.

Note: If you see your dog eating material that you suspect might be toxic, get medical help, even if your dog doesn’t look sick. A poisoned animal may look normal for several hours or even days after the incident.

Adapted from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals