What happens if my dog licks bacitracin?

Answered by Robert Dupre

If your dog licks off Bacitracin from your skin, it’s important to assess the amount he has ingested. The good news is that if he has only licked a small amount, the antibiotic present in the Bacitracin is unlikely to cause any harm to your furry friend. However, if your dog has managed to ingest a larger quantity, such as by chewing on a tube of Bacitracin, there is a potential for adverse effects.

One of the main concerns when it comes to ingesting Bacitracin is the presence of zinc. Bacitracin ointments often contain zinc as an ingredient, and if your dog consumes a significant amount of it, it can lead to zinc toxicity. Zinc toxicity can cause various symptoms, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, lethargy, and abdominal pain. In severe cases, it can even result in anemia and damage to the liver and kidneys.

If you suspect that your dog has ingested a significant amount of Bacitracin or if he starts showing any concerning symptoms, it is vital to seek veterinary attention immediately. The veterinarian will be able to assess the situation and provide the necessary advice or treatment.

In some cases, inducing vomiting may be recommended if the ingestion has occurred recently and the amount ingested is deemed to be potentially harmful. However, it is crucial to consult with a veterinarian before attempting to induce vomiting, as it may not always be appropriate or safe for your dog.

Additionally, it’s worth noting that while Bacitracin is generally safe for use on the skin of humans, it is not formulated or tested for use on animals. Therefore, it is best to avoid applying Bacitracin or any other human medication to your dog’s skin without proper veterinary guidance.

To prevent accidental ingestion of Bacitracin or other medications, it’s important to keep them securely stored and out of your dog’s reach. This includes not only tubes of ointments but also any other medications or substances that could be harmful if ingested.

If your dog licks off a small amount of Bacitracin from your skin, there is typically no need to worry. However, if he has ingested a larger quantity, it is essential to monitor him closely for any symptoms and seek veterinary attention if necessary. Remember to always consult with a veterinarian for specific advice tailored to your dog’s situation.