Dog Ate Garden Mulch – What to Do Next

Ingesting mulch can be dangerous to dogs, although the level of danger will vary depending on the type and amount of mulch the dog swallowed.

What happens to dogs that eat mulch

A lot will depend on the type of mulch the dog ate. Mulch comes in many varieties. It might consist of materials such as straw, compost, woodchips, rubber, gravel, and leaf mold. Dogs that eat the non-biodegradable type of mulch such as gravel and slate put themselves at risk of obstruction and choking. The mulch material may pile up and block certain parts of the dog’s digestive system, such as the stomach and intestinal tract.

Biodegradable mulch such as wood chippings and bark may introduce the same risk of intestinal obstruction. Dogs that suffer from this may show symptoms like a lack of appetite, vomiting, and diarrhea. These symptoms won’t always appear immediately after a dog eats mulch. Some of them may appear a few hours after so it’s important for dog owners to remain vigilant.

Aside from obstruction and choking, there are other dangers that mulch can introduce to dogs. Damp and moldy leaves, for example, can be a source of allergic reaction. The mold and the fungus that may grow within the mulch may also lead to poisoning. Dogs may end up with symptoms like tremors and seizures if they consume something “toxic” from the mulch.

What to do if your dog ate mulch

It’s best to take precaution and call the vet, even if the dog is acting normal. The effects of eating mulch aren’t always immediate. If identified at an early-enough time (within an hour or two of the dog ingesting the mulch), the vet might recommend going through with a vomit-inducing procedure to get the mulch content out from the dog’s body.

Leaving it too late might put your dog’s health at risk, especially if the dog ate mulch that can cause poisoning, such as cocoa mulch and leaf mold mulch. We wouldn’t recommend trying to induce vomiting on your own unless you have explicit instructions from the vet.

Disclaimer: The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional veterinarian advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a veterinarian when in doubt.


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