Dogs are adorable, aren’t they? Not only do they provide us with companionship and unconditional love, but they’re also a ton of fun to play with, and they can be oh-so-entertaining!
Part of what makes them so funny sometimes is how they do act so silly around the house. Unfortunately, these furry companions will try to eat just about anything, either by mistaking it for food or just out of sheer curiosity.
Most of the time, this sort of behaviour might seem harmless.
But what happens if your dog ends up eating a bar of soap?
What To Do When A Dog Eats Soap
If you ever catch your dog eating a bar of soap, the first thing you need to do is to remain calm. It’s only natural for a concerned dog parent like yourself to panic at first.
I know that if my dog ate a bar of soap, I’d totally freak out. Still, take a deep breath and keep yourself centered.
Then, be sure to grab the remaining soap and keep it away from the dog. Break it up and flush it down the toilet, or perhaps just throw it out altogether.
Remember: dogs can be pretty silly sometimes, and they might even repeat the same mistake again. So, be sure that they can’t get to the soap bar they’ve been chewing on, and also lock up any other bars of soap you might have laying around.
Don’t want them to get their paws on those, too!
Next, you’ll need to wash your dog’s mouth thoroughly using nothing but plain water. Obviously, don’t use soap to do this. That might seem like a common sense thing as you read this article, but in a panicked state, people may do this by mistake. So, keep that in mind!
Your goal here is to get that soapy taste out of the dog’s mouth completely. Also, look a little closer and be sure to check between the dog’s teeth to remove any chunks of soap that might get stuck there.
Don’t be afraid to ask someone to help you hold on to the dog while you grab a flashlight to see better.
I know this sounds like a lot of work. But on the plus side, at least your dog’s mouth will smell lovely for once!
Once you’re done washing the soap out, you might want to give your veterinarian a call to tell them your dog ate bar soap. Some dog parents might feel ashamed that they let something like this happen.
Don’t worry! This is definitely not the first time your vet has heard that a dog ate soap bar.
They’ll be able to provide you with better guidance on what to do. Depending on the situation, they might suggest that you take your dog in immediately for a checkup.
Or, if it’s after hours and the vet’s office is closed, they might just tell you to keep an eye on your dog for a few hours. If this is the case, then you must keep your dog nearby and watch out for any abnormal behaviour.
Your dog is going to be acting a little different. Still, you’ll want to keep out for dangerous signs like difficulty breathing, vomiting blood, or having diarrhea that’s bloody.
Can Eating Soap Kill My Dog?
No, no, no rest assured that eating bar soaps will not kill dogs. Thankfully, our silly furkids here are much stronger than they look, usually.
The soap that the dog ate will make his or her tummy upset for quite a while as it passes through their system. It might even get bad enough to cause vomiting or purging as the dog’s body tries to get it out of its system completely.
As long as this doesn’t happen beyond 24 hours, then the dog should be fine.
If, however, symptoms like vomiting or diarrhea do persist even after a whole day, then you’ll want to make sure your vet has a chance to examine your dog.
As a worst-case scenario, any large chunks of soap that your dog might have swallowed could cause some kind of an intestinal blockage. This is highly unlikely, of course, so try not to worry too much.
Will Eating Soap Hurt My Dog?
Well, ‘hurt’ is a strong word, but one thing’s for sure: your dog may not feel good for a while. Still, the soap you and I use isn’t like dogs soap which is harmless to them.
For starters, when a dog ate soap, it’ll feel a slight burning sensation in its throat and stomach. On top of that, eating soap may cause your dog to experience sadness, fatigue, and even a loss of appetite.
These things are very common symptoms when dogs eat soap, so monitor them but don’t panic just yet.
Suppose these symptoms last for more than a day after the dog ate bar of soap. In that case, you should take the dog for a check-up at your trusted veterinarian’s office, assuming you haven’t done that already.
Is A Bar Of Soap Toxic?
Generally, no, most bars of soap are non-toxic for dogs who ate a bar. Let’s talk about what goes into a soap bar. They’re usually made of oils and fats that react with lye.
The fats themselves could consist of animal fats (like lard or rendered beef fat) or natural ones like coconut or palm oil. Still, these aren’t the only ingredients that might cause your dog discomfort.
These days, soaps also include fragrances, preservatives, and other chemicals. These will definitely cause your dog internal discomfort if they eat a bar of soap.
Typically, that internal discomfort takes the form of irritation to the dog’s throat and digestive system. So, what your dog is probably going to feel is a burning sensation all the way from their throat through to their stomach and beyond.
Also, the thing about soap is that it creates lots of bubbles as it moves through your dog. That’s going to add to the discomfort that your dog is feeling throughout this process.
Altogether, the soap might make it challenging for your dog to keep its appetite, so you may notice it not eating for quite a while.
Take a closer look at your soap’s ingredients. Some specialized soaps might have corrosive elements included in them, which might pose a danger to your dog’s digestive system.
Mention these things when you call your vet to tell them your dog ate a bar of soap!
How Do I Stop My Dog From Eating Soap Again?
Hopefully, your dog will be smart enough to learn from its mistakes after eating soap. If that’s not the case, then you’ll have to get a little bit creative. Like hiding cookies from a child, you’ll need to make sure that non-food items like soaps are kept out of your dog’s reach.
For instance, you can invest in a hanging soap holder in your shower, so that only you can reach your bar of soap. Or, another way to do it is to switch over to liquid soaps.
When the soap is in liquid form and stored in a bottle, dogs might not be tempted to bite on it. Even if they do, the chances of them ingesting the soap are a lot lower than with a soap bar that’s just left out by the side of the tub or something.
Remember: in a way, taking care of dogs is almost like raising small children; half the time, they don’t know any better. So, as responsible ‘parents’, we have to go the extra mile to dog-proof our homes and make sure that they’re safe at all times.
Just the same as how some parents ‘baby-proof’ their house or apartment, we should also do the same for our little furkids by keeping soaps and other dangerous items out of their reach.