Your dog, who’s normally the picture of good health, has just eaten baking soda. Obviously, you know that any human who eats baking soda is going to experience some pretty unpleasant symptoms. But what about your dog? Does he need to see a vet? And will you have to do anything special for him in the meantime?
Call your veterinarian.
Contact your veterinarian. Ideally, you’ll be able to call your vet straight away if you think that your dog has eaten baking soda. If this is not possible, contact the nearest emergency vet immediately. If you can’t reach any of these numbers, call the ASPCA’s Animal Poison Control Center at 888-426-4435 or visit their website (www.aspca.org) for more details on what to do in an emergency situation involving animals and poisonings.
Keep an eye on your pet’s condition until you can get them to a veterinarian!
Watch for signs of toxicosis.
If you think your dog has eaten baking soda, watch for the following signs of toxicosis:
- Lethargy or weakness
- Rapid breathing and heart rate (tachycardia) with an increased respiratory rate
If you notice any of these symptoms in your dog, take him to a vet as soon as possible. A vet will likely want to run tests to determine whether your pet has been poisoned by baking soda and may recommend a stomach-pumping procedure if it’s been several hours since he last ate anything.
Look for clinical signs of baking soda toxicity.
Look for clinical signs of baking soda toxicity. If your dog has eaten a large amount of baking soda, he may show signs of poisoning after 15 minutes to 12 hours. These include vomiting and diarrhea, increased thirst and urination, lethargy (tiredness), weakness or inability to stand up, abdominal pain and seizures.
Take him to the veterinarian immediately if you see any of these symptoms.
Monitor hydration status.
To check for dehydration, lift your dog’s skin at the back of their neck. If it feels taut and does not snap back into place when lifted, there may be dehydration.
If you suspect your dog is dehydrated, or if you want to be prepared in case it happens, add a pinch of baking soda to his food along with plenty of water. This will help replenish any fluids that were lost through vomiting or diarrhea.
Now that we’ve covered what to do if your dog eats baking soda and how to treat them for dehydration, let’s look at what makes this substance so dangerous in the first place!
Have your vet check serum electrolyte levels.
The first step, if your dog shows any signs at all of kidney failure or electrolyte imbalances, is to have them checked by a vet. The most important electrolyte for dogs is sodium; potassium, chloride and bicarbonate are also important but less so. Your vet will be able to check for abnormal levels of these electrolytes in the blood using blood tests called serum electrolytes and can adjust them with supplements if necessary.
Make sure the baking soda has fully passed through Fido’s GI tract.
If he vomits shortly after eating it (which should happen within an hour), then this isn’t really a problem. However, if he becomes lethargic or starts showing signs of gastrointestinal distress–such as vomiting more than once—it could still be possible for some of the baking soda to have been absorbed into his body before passing through his system. In this case, there’s a chance that your pup may need treatment for toxicosis caused by sodium bicarbonate ingestion:
Baking soda is not good for your dog. It can cause diarrhea and vomiting, which resolve on their own without veterinary treatment. Baking soda can also cause a potassium imbalance, sodium imbalance and calcium imbalance in dogs. This means that if your dog eats baking soda he could experience weakness, muscle twitches or seizures. If you suspect your pet has ingested an excessive amount of baking powder, contact your veterinarian immediately as this may require treatment with intravenous fluids and other medications to resolve the condition.