Dogs are adorable, aren’t they? Not only do they provide us with companionship and unconditional love, but they’re also a ton of fun to play with, and they can be oh-so-entertaining!
Part of what makes them so funny sometimes is how they do act so silly around the house. Unfortunately, these furry companions will try to eat just about anything, either by mistaking it for food or just out of sheer curiosity.
If you think your dog ate soap, immediately take the soap away from them, flush their mouth out with water and contact your veterinarian. They may suggest monitoring them for the next few hours, or they may recommend bringing them to the clinic right away if they exhibit any abnormal behavior.
Point Blank: Is Bar Soap Dangerous for My Dog?
No — most bar soaps are formulated from non-toxic ingredients which won’t severely sicken your dog.
He may feel pretty rotten after eating a bar, and it may cause his body to start purging from both ends, but it’s unlikely that he’ll need veterinary attention unless he eats a ton of soap or has other medical conditions.
Still, you should always call your vet or the Pet Poison Helpline and solicit their advice anytime your dog eats something that isn’t obviously safe.
It’s also important to note that soaps containing essential oils may sicken your pet, as some of these plant-based derivatives are very dangerous to dogs.
Do not induce vomiting unless you are specifically instructed to do so by a veterinary professional. Not only is this probably unnecessary in the case of soap, but it can be dangerous to make a dog throw up in some situations (this is a good general rule of thumb to remember any time your dog swallows anything that may be dangerous).
There is a chance that a large piece of soap could get stuck in his esophagus or block his intestines, but this isn’t terribly likely to happen. Plus, soap is slippery, which will increase the chances of it sliding free before serious problems occur.
It is also theoretically possible for your dog to smear some of the soap in his eyes. This probably won’t cause much more than minor redness and irritation, but you’ll want to flush them out with plenty of water and watch him closely. He’ll probably start feeling better in no time, but if he doesn’t, call your vet and follow his or her advice.
Don’t have easy access to a vet? You may want to consider getting help from JustAnswer — a service that provides instant virtual-chat access to a certified vet online.
You can discuss the issue with them, and even share video or photos if need be. The online vet can help you determine what your next steps should be.
While talking with your own vet — who understands the ins and outs of your dog’s history — is probably ideal, JustAnswer is a good backup option.
Will Eating Soap Hurt a Dog?
This will depend on the type of soap and how much your dog ate. If your dog ate a little bit of a natural soap bar – without lye or any other toxic ingredients – then symptoms could range from no symptoms at all, to being off their food, drooling more than usual, vomiting, diarrhea, and a tummy ache.
If your dog ate a soap bar with lye, then they may show symptoms caused by the alkaline properties of the lye. The severity of these symptoms will depend on:
Symptoms could include drooling, pawing at their face, vomiting, and tummy ache. This is because alkaline substances have a corrosive effect.
If your dog ate a soap bar containing essential oils, then the severity of symptoms will depend on the same factors, as well as which essential oil is present. For example, tea tree oil can cause vomiting, drooling, hypothermia (low body temperature), a wobbly gait, and depression. Pine oil is often used in soaps for its antibacterial properties. If enough is ingested, it can cause irritation of your dog’s digestive tract; leading to lots of saliva, vomiting (with or without blood), a wobbly gait, weakness, and can potentially damage their liver and kidneys.
Can Eating Soap Kill My Dog?
No, no, no rest assured that eating bar soaps will not kill dogs. Thankfully, our silly furkids here are much stronger than they look, usually.
The soap that the dog ate will make his or her tummy upset for quite a while as it passes through their system. It might even get bad enough to cause vomiting or purging as the dog’s body tries to get it out of its system completely.
As long as this doesn’t happen beyond 24 hours, then the dog should be fine.
If, however, symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea do persist even after a whole day, then you’ll want to make sure your vet has a chance to examine your dog.
As a worst-case scenario, any large chunks of soap that your dog might have swallowed could cause some kind of an intestinal blockage. This is highly unlikely, of course, so try not to worry too much.
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