Common household poisons for dogs

Many substances are lurking in your home that are poisonous to your dog. While you’re probably familiar with the more common ones, there are other dangers you might not be aware of.

Read on to find out what these substances are, why they’re harmful and practical tips to help avoid poisoning incidents. We’ll also guide you through the steps to take if your dog consumes something poisonous and the key symptoms to watch out for.

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Which foods are poisonous to your dog?

Some foods that you enjoy and would consider healthy or safe can pose a risk to your dog. Here are some common foods that are dangerous for your dog:

Remember, even small amounts of these foods can affect your dog. If your dog accidentally consumes any toxic food, contact your vet immediately for guidance and monitor your dog closely.

Which cleaning products are poisonous to your dog?

It's crucial to store cleaning products securely in locked cabinets or high shelves away from your dog. Additionally, monitor your dog during and after cleaning to prevent accidental ingestion from licking freshly cleaned surfaces. Here are a few examples of cleaning products that can be highly toxic if ingested:

What medications, including over-the-counter drugs, are dangerous for your dog?

While medications are designed to help humans, they can be toxic for your dog if ingested. Here are some examples of common household medications that can be toxic:

  • Ibuprofen, paracetamol, naproxen, and aspirin can cause stomach ulcers, kidney damage, and liver problems in dogs.  
  • Antidepressants can affect dogs and symptoms may include lethargy, vomiting, tremors, seizures, and changes in heart rate. 
  • Benzodiazepines like alprazolam (Xanax), diazepam (Valium), and lorazepam (Ativan) can lead to sedation, weakness, lack of coordination, and a reduced heart rate.
  • ADHD medications, and amphetamine-based drugs, are stimulants that can cause elevated heart rate, increased body temperature, tremors, and seizures in dogs. 

All medication should be securely stored somewhere that is inaccessible to your dog. If you suspect your dog has ingested any medication, contact your vet immediately. 

What houseplants and flowers are dangerous for your dog?

You might be surprised by how many common houseplants and flowers are toxic to your dog. Here are a few commonly found house plants and flowers that you should be aware of: 

In addition to the list above, there are lots of other plants and flowers that can be toxic to your dog. It's always a good idea to research the specific plants and flowers you have at home to ensure they’re safe for your dog.

What to do if your dog is poisoned

If you suspect your dog has swallowed something poisonous, take immediate action and follow these steps: 

  1. Stay calm: Remaining calm helps you make good decisions and will keep your dog relaxed too.  
  2. Contact your vet or emergency out-of-hours vet: It’s extremely helpful for your vet if you can provide an idea of when and how much of the toxic substance your dog ate and the packaging if you have it.
  3. Follow the instructions given by your vet: Your vet will advise whether you should treat your dog at home or bring them to the clinic. Treatment for poisoning usually involves your vet giving your dog an 'emetic' to make them sick, followed by activated charcoal to absorb any remaining toxins. In severe cases, your dog may spend the night at your vet on a drip to flush the system of any remaining toxins. You should never try and make your dog vomit yourself, as this can cause more harm if not done correctly. Your vet may provide you with a dedicated ‘poison line’ to call for advice in these situations.  

If you’re a guide dog owner and have a non-urgent query please contact our Guide Line, and we will be happy to help with any queries or concerns. If your guide dog has ingested something poisonous, always contact your vet immediately for emergency help and then let us know via Guide Line or the out of hours number on 0345 143 021.