What To Do If Your Dog Drinks Alcohol: Immediate Steps to Take

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what to do if your dog drinks alcohol
Humorous photograph of English Bulldog resting in a black leather chair with a cigar and glass of cognac.

I think one of the topmost prohibited things for dogs is alcohol, with so many fur parents fearful of their dogs taking the substance. Fortunately, not many animals actually like the taste of alcohol anyway, so there’s no worry about them actively looking for it in your glass. Plus, no dog owner in the right mind would actually try feeding alcohol to their pets deliberately!

But of course, some things can happen during parties and your dog can get to it, being the curious one he is. If you find them drinking some spiked punch, what’s the next step? Read on as I show you what to do if your dog drinks alcohol.

Are Your Dogs Allowed Alcohol?

Obviously, dogs are NOT allowed alcohol because its main ingredients are toxic to dogs. Grapes in wines, hops in beer, strong alcohol like scotch or vodka… This can all be detrimental to your dog’s health.

Just like us humans, alcohol can destroy a dogs’ liver, especially if ingested in huge amounts. And because dogs have less tolerance, their insides won’t be able to take the amount of alcohol we usually pour in.

But with that being said, ingesting a bit of alcohol accidentally isn’t the end of the world. A little bit is safe, though let’s look into the following factors before you scratch out taking your dog to the vet after alcohol ingestion.

To further answer your question about dogs drinking alcohol, here’s an informative video:

How Much Alcohol and What Kind?

Before looking into the type of alcohol your dog consumed, you have to check exactly how much they drank. Because pets are smaller than us, smaller doses of alcohol are more dangerous.

They can’t break down alcohol as well as we do, and it can lead to dire consequences if left untreated. So a lick of alcohol won’t be deadly, but drinking a whole glass of beer or wine, or shots of hard alcohol unnoticed is!

As for the type of alcohol ingested, it doesn’t make much of a difference because the effects are similar and the ingredients are just as bad for a dog.

  • Beer is bad even with weak amounts of alcohol because dogs are allergic to hops.
  • Wine is bad because of the grape content.
  • Strong liquors are bad because of the extremely high alcohol levels.

What To Do If Your Dog Drinks Alcohol

Dog holding a bottle of red wine and wineglass
Dog holding a bottle of red wine and wineglass.

With all this in mind, what do you do if your dog drinks alcohol?

Obviously, the first thing to do is to NOT panic and assess the situation. How much did he drink and what kind of alcohol did he ingest? If it was just a bit of a lick, then there’s no need to worry. An extremely small amount of alcohol (a few sips) won’t harm him.

However, if it was a big amount (even just a glass is big enough), then I recommend that you stop reading this article and take him to the vet for emergency help immediately. He is at high risk of alcohol poisoning, which is very serious.

Pretend that your dog is like a child, small and curious without the capacity to digest alcohol properly. Of course, you would take him to emergency if he ingested even just a few sips of your drink!

You should also watch out for signs of alcohol poisoning, which can come within an hour of ingesting the drinks. He will show the following signs:

  • Vomiting
  • Disorientation or inebriation
  • Loss of body controls
  • Hypersalivation
  • Diarrhea
  • Excitement and depression
  • Hard to breathe
  • Dehydration
  • Fainting
  • Slow heart rate or heart rhythm problems
  • Seizures

If ever any of these symptoms show, this is NOT funny at all and your dog needs to be taken to emergency services as soon as possible to avoid dire consequences such as death or aspiration pneumonia.

That’s why it’s extremely important to keep alcohol away from your pets at all times. Like children, they do not know the consequences of it. Because of that, make sure that alcohol is out of reach and that if you’re having a party, you monitor all drinks on the table, keeping it away from the dog.

See also:

»My Dog Is Drooling Excessively and Has Diarrhea: What To Do?
»Horner’s Syndrome in Dogs: Everything You Need to Know About

Wrapping It Up

We see dogs eat paper towels but rarely do we see dogs drinking alcohol. Even then, it’s important to know what to do in case it does happen. As long as you take the proper precautions and also make sure he’s fine if he drinks any, you won’t have to worry about his overall health.

I hope this article on what to do if your dog drinks alcohol helped you out. So don’t wait any longer and begin taking the necessary steps to prevent your dog from getting into any form of alcohol now.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Your sweet featured image is what brought me here to read this article. I love it. Bulldogs are so picture-worthy. As for a dog drinking alcohol. I agree it’s a very dangerous thing, and never understood how people could think it’s funny to see a dog stumbling around drunk. Thanks so much for setting the record straight. Peace

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