My Dog Ate Shampoo What Should I Do?

By Julie •  Updated: 01/22/21 •  3 min read
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Most of us pet parents use shampoo on a regular basis. And it can happen that our dogs come into the bathroom when we’re washing our hair. If they find some shampoo or suds on the floor, some dogs may even eat the shampoo! Well, that’s not the worst thing they could eat!

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But is human shampoo toxic to dogs? Can human shampoo make dogs sick?

Shampoo Ingredients Can Make a Dog Sick

There’s something called detergent poisoning that can happen to dogs who eat shampoo. Most of the ingredients are not poisonous; however, there are some that can make dogs sick. These include anionic or nonionic surfactants, which are ingredients that make shampoo foam up.

If a dog eats only a little bit of shampoo, these ingredients may cause some digestive issues. In most cases, the dog will be OK. However, he can develop detergent poisoning after eating a large amount of shampoo.

Symptoms of detergent poisoning can include:

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If you know or suspect your dog has eaten a large amount of shampoo, then it’s a good idea to call the vet right away.

Treatment of Detergent Poisoning in Dogs

Note: do not induce vomiting unless this is recommended by your vet.

When you get to the vet’s office, they will perform a physical exam of your dog, as well as running lab work. Treatment will depend on the type of symptoms your dog is having, as well as on the severity of the symptoms.

Treatment may involve giving your dog an IV in order to rehydrate him if he’s had a lot of vomiting and diarrhea. The vet may also give medications to your dog through the IV, which may include gastroprotectants and antibiotics, which work to protect your dog’s digestive system.

Your fur baby may need to stay in the hospital one or more days if his symptoms were very severe. In that case, the vet will monitor your dog for any other symptoms and treat any that may develop.

In most cases, dogs that have ingested a large amount of shampoo have a very good chance of a full recovery. That’s especially the case if they’ve received prompt medical treatment.

For this reason, it’s always a good idea to keep all detergents including shampoos out of your dog’s reach. And if you happen to spill some shampoo, then clean it up quickly before your dog has a chance to snarf it up.

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Julie

Julie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina, Wilmington, where she studied Animal science. Though contrary to the opinion of her parents she was meant to study pharmacy, but she was in love with animals especially cats. Julie currently works in an animal research institute (NGO) in California and loves spending quality time with her little cat. She has the passion for making research about animals, how they survive, their way of life among others and publishes it. Julie is also happily married with two kids.

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