While tinfoil is not poisonous or toxic to dogs per se, it can do a lot of damage to their digestive system if consumed.

If you notice your dog eats any of this material, it is important that you know which steps to take. This information could help save your pet’s life.

Possible Health Problems

There are numerous potential health problems that your dog could experience from ingesting aluminum tinfoil, including:

  • Intestinal blockage: Depending on how large the piece of tinfoil is, it could cause obstruct your dog’s large intestine. This type of blockage can be fatal, especially if it is not treated right away.
  • Choking: It is also possible that your dog could choke on the tinfoil, which could fatal as well. It can be very difficult to dislodge an object in a dog’s throat once it is stuck.
  • They become sick: If there is some food inside the foil that is poisonous to them, such as chocolate, they could become seriously ill. You might notice severe vomiting and/or diarrhea. Depending on the food they ingested, the reaction could prove fatal.
dog tinfoil hat

Steps to Take After Your Dog Eats Tinfoil

There are a series of steps that you’ll want to take after you notice your dog eat any amount of tinfoil.

1. Closely Monitor Their Condition

The first thing you’ll want to do is to closely monitor how your dog is doing. Look for any signs of a potentially serious reaction. This includes vomiting, diarrhea, choking and whining.

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If your dog seems like it is in pain at all, you’ll want to make your way to the vet immediately. 

You should keep a close eye on them for up to 24 hours after they have ingested the tinfoil. It might take a little while before you notice an adverse reaction. 

Make sure that you examine their droppings for the next day or two as well. If there is anything odd about the appearance of their feces, you might want to take them to the vet. This could be a sign of a serious problem that could grow worse if it isn’t treated soon.

2. Figure out how much your dog swallowed

Next, you’ll want to determine how much tinfoil your dog actually ingested. While you may not be able to know exactly how much, you should be able to get some idea by looking at what’s left on the roll. This will give you a better idea as to just how serious the situation is. The more tinfoil they consumed, the more likely it is that they will experience some negative reaction.

3. Induce Vomiting

You can try to induce vomiting in your dog if it has eaten tinfoil, though it might not be necessary.

The most effective way to get your dog to throw up is to give them a millimeter of three percent hydrogen peroxide per pound of bodyweight. You can deliver it orally through either a syringe or a spoon (whichever is easier). It can be difficult to get your dog to consume enough to throw up, but it does work well once ingested.

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4. Go to the Vet

If you see any strange behavior in your dog, you shouldn’t hesitate to see the vet immediately. While emergency veterinary care isn’t cheap, it could save your dog’s life.

There are a few signs that you should take your dog to the vet, including:

  • Repeated vomiting
  • Whining in pain
  • Panicked behavior
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Constipation
  • Severe bloating
  • Lethargic behavior that lasts more than a day
  • Lack of appetite that lasts more than a day
russel tinfoil

The sooner you get your dog to the vet, the more likely they are to make it through unscathed. 

If your dog ate any chocolate or other toxic foods with the tinfoil, you should head right to the vet. It is not necessary to monitor their condition in this situation—just head out the door immediately.

Some of the common symptoms of chocolate toxicity among dogs include increased heart rate, diarrhea, hyperactivity, increased urination, and repeated vomiting. All of these signs should make it clear that your dog needs medical attention right away.

Keep in mind that you don’t have to go right to the vet if your dog eats a little bit of tinfoil without any chocolate or other food inside. If they only ate a small amount, there is a good chance that it will just pass harmlessly through their body.

If you take your dog to the vet, they will most likely want to do an X-RAY or endoscopy, or both. This will provide the veterinarian with a better idea as to the current location of the tinfoil and whether or not it is likely to pass through your dog normally. There is a chance that they will give your dog laxatives to make pooping out the tinfoil easier. This could reduce the chances of unnecessary complications.

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Conclusion

  • While tinfoil is not inherently toxic to dogs, it can present a number of health problems if ingested.
  • If your dog consumes tinfoil with any amount of chocolate inside, you should take it to the veterinarian right away.
  • If the piece of tinfoil your dog ate is large enough, it could create an intestinal blockage, which is very serious.
  • First you’ll want to see how your dog is doing and keep a close eye on them for the next 24 hours.
  • If you notice any repeated vomiting or panicked behavior from your dog, go right to the vet.
  • You can try inducing vomiting after your dog eats tinfoil, which is a particularly good idea if there was chocolate inside.
  • If your dog appears to have any difficulty breathing, you’ll want to make an emergency trip to the vet.
  • Try to determine how much tinfoil your dog ate so you can get a better idea as to how serious the situation is.
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