Toilet Bowl Water: The Dangers Aren’t Crystal Clear
It’s a mystery to us why pets often find toilet bowl water so delicious, but the “yuck!” factor aside, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center points out that there may be cause for concern. Here are the problem areas:
Water treated with cleaning discs
These discs are intended for home use and can be placed in the basin of the toilet, stick to the inner rim or clip onto the side.
As these products sit and are exposed to water, each flush dilutes them and disperses the chemicals in the water. When the water alone is ingested, mild vomiting and diarrhea can be seen. Mild GI signs are generally expected within two to four hours.
Some pets may have a mild—but immediate—taste reaction, which can easily be remedied with something tasty to eat or drink.
Physical sprays or discs
The discs themselves and sprays can be a bit more serious. These products may have chemicals that are caustic and could irritate the orophanyx when licked or swallowed.
Physical irritation can be seen; raised, erythematous mucosa or sores in the mouth. This type of irritation can take up to 18 hours to develop.
Less obvious signs could include chewing gingerly, difficulty swallowing, drooling or general discomfort in the mouth. When less than two hours has passed since the exposure, milk or water can be given at home by the pet owner to dilute.
In more severe cases, GI protectants like sucralfate may be needed, as well as nutritional and pain support.
The good news? In most cases, systemic toxicity is not expected with either exposure, with the exception of industrial urinal cakes.
We have lots more on this subject:
Featured Tools & TipsSee All
Room-By-Room Household Pet Poison Checklist
Help your clients keep their pets safe by sharing this room-by-room pet poison checklist with them.
What Is Ivermectin?
Discover how ivermectin is used in veterinary medicine and the potentially harmful side effects caused by accidental exposure in pets.
Ice Melt Toxicity in Pets
Learn the symptoms and treatments for ice melt ingestion in pets. Plus, discover pet-friendly alternatives to melting snow and ice.
Latest NewsSee All
Maddie’s Fund Awards Dr. Lila Miller the 2021 Avanzino Leadership Award
Discover how Dr. Lila Miller championed the field of shelter medicine and received a leadership award from a prominent animal welfare organization.