What happens if a dog eats a little bit of toothpaste? Let’s Explore

Why Is Human Toothpaste Bad For Dogs?

Firstly, it depends on what exactly your dog has eaten! If your dog has swallowed the plastic tube or cap, these cannot be digested and may act as irritating foreign objects in the gut. This may lead to bowel obstruction and other major consequences if not dealt with promptly. Foreign objects may cause vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and pain.

Secondly, toothpaste itself is designed to be used regularly in quite small amounts – hence the advice for people to use a pea-sized amount on the toothbrush and not to swallow much, if any, of it. Dogs are obviously smaller than people and may accidentally swallow quite a lot more than their human owners- I’ve yet to meet a dog that has been taught to ‘spit’! Modern toothpaste is really good for your teeth and highly recommended, but can be toxic in large quantities.

What happens if a dog eats a little bit of toothpaste?

What Should I Do If My Dog Has Eaten Toothpaste?

  • Prevent any further toothpaste from being eaten. It is important to ensure that if your dog is still eating or trying to eat further toothpaste or objects, you prevent this from happening by shutting them away and cleaning up the offending items!
  • It is useful to note the information listed below. Knowing these facts will help you and your veterinarian make the best treatment decision moving forwards.
  • What has your dog eaten? Toothpaste alone or the tube or cap or box?
  • How much toothpaste has your dog eaten? What is the total size of the tube?
  • When did your dog eat it (roughly)?
  • What ingredients does the toothpaste contain? If you have the packaging or the tube with this information, try and save it.
  • Contact your veterinarian. It is vital to get veterinary advice as soon as possible to ensure the best outcome for your dog. If your vet isn’t open, call the Pet Poison Helpline or the nearest open veterinary clinic, which may be an emergency service.
  • Follow your veterinarian’s advice. This may be to come down to the clinic for an assessment and treatment, or your veterinarian may be happy to monitor the situation at home under close supervision.
  • Fluoride

    Human toothpaste usually contains fluoride (sodium fluoride or stannous/tin fluoride) – a safe product that is added to drinking water for humans and is greatly beneficial to dental health in small, regular quantities. Very large quantities can have toxic effects – for example, if a small dog ate a whole tube of toothpaste.

    The fatal toxic dose is reported to be around 5mg per kilogram bodyweight in dogs, but anything over 1mg per kilogram bodyweight may produce symptoms. A typical 3.5-ounce tube of Sensodyne or Colgate toothpaste tube will contain enough fluoride to be dangerous in any dog less than about 35 pounds).

    Fluoride toxicity in dogs usually causes severe vomiting and diarrhea, excess dribbling with saliva, restlessness, sweating, loss of appetite, weakness, stiffness, rapid breathing, and rapid heart rate. The reason for this is damage to the guts, liver, kidneys, and lungs. At worst, this can lead to seizures and death.

    My Dog Ate Toothpaste – What Should I Do?

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    “My dog has perfect oral hygiene. He brushes his teeth daily. I love him so much. We both even share the same toothpaste.” While it may seem like an absolutely harmless, rather adorable habit, toothpaste meant for humans could prove fatal for your pet. Maintaining your pooch’s oral hygiene is great. But NEVER use the same toothpaste as yours.[/et_pb_text][et_pb_code admin_label=”Social Sharing Code” _builder_version=”3.12″ saved_tabs=”all” global_module=”3531″][rrssb buttons=”facebook, twitter, whatsapp, gplus, pinterest, linkedin, email”][/et_pb_code][et_pb_text admin_label=”Body” text_orientation=”justified” use_border_color=”off” background_position=”top_left” background_repeat=”repeat” background_size=”initial” _builder_version=”3.12″ module_id=”bodytext”]

    Toothpastes contain a substance called Xylitol. It’s what gives the sweet taste to your toothpaste. While it’s completely safe and arguably healthy for hoomans, it’s absolutely toxic for dogs. Xylitol is almost 100 times more toxic than chocolate for dogs. Xylitol toxicity can occur at a dosage of 100 mg per kg of body weight. A typical toothpaste may contain 5 – 35% xylitol by volume. Hence, a standard 100 gm toothpaste tube is enough to make your dog very sick.