My Dog Ate Silica Beads

Think about any non-edible item and you can be sure a dog out there has tried it at least once.

We cannot stop their endless curiosity, especially when it comes to food packaging like silica gel.

These little packages aren’t present only in clothes or shoe boxes, but also in food jars and pizza crusts.

If your dog ate silica gel, first of all, know that the white/transparent silica gel beads are non-toxic and won’t harm your dog in small amounts.

Nonetheless, look out for symptoms of discomfort, but if your dog acts and eats normally in the following hours, they should be fine.

What happens if a dog eats silica beads?

My Dog Ate Silica Beads.  Should I Be Concerned?

Silica gel beads probably won’t cause serious problems other than minor digestive upset. For instance, your dog might be slightly sluggish or not have much of an appetite after munching on the beads. Diarrhea and vomiting are a possibility, too. If your dog has symptoms, contact your veterinarian to see if further treatment is advised.

If your dog ate desiccant like silica beads, the beads themselves aren’t as much of a problem. What the beads were packaged with could be cause for concern, though. Those little packets of beads are often found in bottles of medication. The silica could absorb some of the medication. So if your pup has gotten into silica beads from a pharmaceutical product, contact your veterinarian just to be on the safe side.

Help!  My Dog Ate Silica Gel

Silica gel most frequently appears in tiny packets — about 1″x1″ or slightly larger. Silica is a desiccant — it absorbs moisture to keep items from deteriorating. You’ll usually find the little crystal packages nestled in shoeboxes, bags, or included with electronics.

Canines will eat just about anything left lying around. If you leave a stray silica packet within the puppy’s reach, he may chew on it and make a snack out of the little pellets. Silica is something that can have some toxicity to dogs but doesn’t usually cause serious health problems.

Fortunately, if your dog is affected, the gel shouldn’t cause any long-term harm. If your beloved pet samples some silica, your best course of action is to keep an eye on her. If you notice any symptoms, you can contact your vet to find out what your next steps, if any, should be.

Ingesting the small amount contained within a shoebox or clothing pocket may not cause any problems at all. Your dog may have some digestive issues like stomach upset and possibly even vomiting and diarrhea. If you’re concerned about the symptoms, it’s not a bad idea to contact your veterinarian just to get a professional’s opinion on what to do. If you can’t reach your vet, you can call the Pet Poison Helpline.

If, however, your dog consumes a large amount of silica, there may be more cause for concern. While your dog may not require any treatment, it’s never a bad idea to consult someone with some expertise in this area. And making the call can give you peace of mind.

While silica beads are inert and nontoxic, your pup may experience mild gastrointestinal upset after ingestion. The main complication is the packet, not the beads. The packet can cause intestinal blockage, especially in smaller dogs. A package from inside a medicine bottles may have absorbed some medication, which may be toxic. If your dog ingests silica bead packets, monitor him for signs of intestinal obstruction. These include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy and loss of appetite. Consult your veterinarian if any of these symptoms occur after ingestion.

Deborah Lundin is a professional writer with more than 20 years of experience in the medical field and as a small business owner. She studied medical science and sociology at Northern Illinois University. Her passions and interests include fitness, health, healthy eating, children and pets.

While these little packets of silica gel beads are labeled not for consumption, they are actually harmless if eaten. Their purpose is to absorb moisture, keeping the products theyre packaged with fresh. Because of their labeling, many people assume they are toxic. Silica gel bead ingestion is among the top 10 reasons for calls to the Pet Poison Helpline.

Whether in a bag of beef jerky or a bottle of vitamins, you have probably seen the little white moisture-absorbing packets filled with silica beads inside. On the outside of most packages, the label reads not to consume the contents. Luckily, if your pooch consumes them, those silica beads are unlikely to cause him trouble.


Are silica beads toxic?

Is Silica Gel Toxic? Silica gel is non-toxic but it is a choking hazard for young children. However, in some rare instances, manufacturers coat silica gel in cobalt chloride, a toxic compound. Eating cobalt chloride-coated silica gel will likely cause nausea and vomiting.

Is silica OK for dogs?

Silica gel is not thought to be toxic, but it can cause an obstruction if ingested by a small dog.