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The safety and effectiveness of inducing emesis at home varies based on several factors, including the agent used, the toxin ingested, the time since the toxin was ingested, the presence of other stomach contents, and the toxin's effect on the rate of stomach emptying. We strongly recommend to our clients that they do not attempt to make their pet vomit unless directed to by a veterinarian.
Studies have shown that emesis should be induced in less than an hour for it to be most effective. Inducing it after an hour may still be somewhat effective, and may still be recommended. Emesis induction after 4 hours is likely of no benefit unless the toxin is a large mass, such as a wad of gum, very large amounts of chocolate, grapes or raisins, iron tablets, blood or bone meal, or foreign objects.
Hydrogen peroxide is the appropriate choice for inducing vomiting at home. Please consider:
Because time is of the essence, if you do not have the correct concentration or amount of hydrogen peroxide at home, or if you are not completely confident that you can administer the peroxide, then your dog should come in to our office.
Only 3% hydrogen peroxide should be used, not a stronger concentration, and it should be in date.
The dose is 1/2 to 2 teaspoons (2.5 to 10 ml) per pound of dog weight, not to exceed 3 tablespoons per dog.
Vomiting usually occurs in 10 minutes. If it does not, a second dose may be administered. If emesis does not occur after a second dose your do should be brought to the veterinarian.
Hydrogen peroxide should not be used for cats; cats need to be seen by the veterinarian.
Other agents have been recommended for inducing vomiting, including syrup of ipecac, table salt, and liquid dish detergent, but we DO NOT recommend using anything other than hydrogen peroxide.
Yarmouth Veterinary Center
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