Emergency poison treatment for dogs
There is nothing as frightening as having your dog accidentally come into contact with some type of poisonous substance. As with humans or any animal, dogs may eat poisonous items, inhale poisonous gases or vapors or get poisons on their skin or hair. Like humans, there are general emergencies procedures that dog owners should know to be able to treat their pet should they suspect poison. It is important to have a few general supplies on hand, but most of what you will need is likely to already be in your house.
If you believe that your dog has eaten something poisonous, the first step is to find out what it was and then call your vet or an emergency treatment center that has information on poisons. If the poison was caustic you do not want to do anything that might cause further damage, so make sure the dog has not eaten anything that will cause a burn. If he or she has, get them to a vet immediately, do not induce vomiting or give them any food or drink unless specifically instructed to do so by the vet or poison control center. Typically the vet will recommend a dilute lemon juice or vinegar and water solution to attempt to neutralize the chemical until you can get the dog to the clinic or animal hospital. Do not give any human medications to a dog as they can have severe reactions to “people medicines”. Always bring the label form the item, whenever possible, to the vet with the dog.
If the substance is not caustic, it is important to try to get the dog to get the poison out of his or her system. The easiest way is to induce vomiting, which can be done through the oral administration of hydrogen peroxide. Be sure to only use the 3% hydrogen peroxide mixture and give about 1 teaspoon or 5ccs or 5mls per 10 pounds of dog’s body weight. Use an oral syringe if possible and squirt the hydrogen peroxide to the back of the mouth over the top of the tongue. If you don’t have a syringe, a turkey based can be used. Don’t give more than the recommended dosage as hydrogen peroxide can also cause complications. The dog will typically vomit within a few minutes. If the dog is not swallowing, is comatose or is having difficulty in breathing or standing don’t administer hydrogen peroxide unless under the direct supervision of your vet. Immediately get the dog to your vet after they have vomited.
If your dog has touched something poisonous the best option is usually to wash the area with warm, soapy water using baby shampoo or specialized dog shampoo. For tar or paint on the coat first apply a generous amount of Vaseline or petroleum jelly to remove as much of the substance as possible. The coat may need to be clipped or even shaved to completely remove the substance if the Vaseline doesn’t do the trick. Follow with a soapy wash with warm but not hot water, followed by a thorough rinse with clear, warm water.