20 May Toothpaste & Your Pet
Whilst calls to the Animal Poisons Centre regarding toothpaste ingestion are not particularly common, it can potentially be a concern if large enough amounts are ingested. Most toothpastes contain some form of fluoride such as sodium fluoride or sodium monofluorophosphate. Whilst fluoride is great for our teeth, the ingestion of large amounts can result in poisoning. Signs of poisoning in dogs can include significant gastrointestinal upset and with large amounts, a lowering of the calcium levels in the blood which can affect the heart.
Some toothpastes also contain xylitol which is highly toxic for dogs. Even small ingestions can potentially result in life-threatening low blood sugar levels. Larger ingestions of xylitol have been associated with liver damage.
If your dog ate toothpaste, the risk of poisoning will depend on the concentration of fluoride compounds and xylitol in the product, the amount ingested and of course the weight of your dog.
If your pet has ingested toothpaste or any other dental products, please call the Animal Poisons Centre on 1300 869 738 (Australia) or 0800 869 738 (New Zealand) for advice. Our service is free for all pet owners.