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NancyH, Cat Health, Behavior, Care Expert
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 31958
Experience:  30+ years cat owner, rescue, breeding, study of behavior & health care
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My dog ate charcoal briquettes.

Resolved Question:

My dog ate charcoal briquettes.
I am not sure how many. It doesn't even appear that he consumed any whole ones, but that he "munched" on several. However, I am not sure. I looked up the kind of briquettes and they don't appear to have added chemical, the bag does not indicate any added chemicals nor does it contain any toxicity warnings. They are/were Kingsford Originals. I believe it was several hours ago. He's eaten food since then and does not seem to be exhibiting any adverse symptoms.

Should I be worried? Should I do anything in particular?
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  NancyH replied 9 years ago.
You may see some very oddly colored stools.
The possible ingredient that could be an issue is the Borax. You can see the ingredients list here
But it takes really high levels of borax to bother a dog so its pretty safe too.
Charcoal is added into some dog biscuits which gives you an indication its not too harmful.
I would watch for diarrhea, or constipation, or abdominal pain indicating what he ate is not passing through gracefully and may need vet attention.
I owuld be careful about leaving him full access to rugged areas as if he gets diarrhea it may not be something you'll easily get out of a rug.
Hope this helps you!
Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Reply to nholmes's Post: Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. Can you give me a little more detail about what to look for if what he ate isn't passing through his system nicely. Would there be bloating, vomiting, etc? He's not doing any of those things, I just want to know what to look for - I tend to be hypersensitive where my baby is concerned. :)
Expert:  NancyH replied 9 years ago.
I would watch for constipation, tucked up abdomen, signs of pain, attempts to go with nothing coming through, or alternatively diarrhea that doesn't slow down. And yes bloating and vomiting would be signs he might need help too.
I think you will get scary dark stool so don't panic its not from bleeding!
24-48 hours should see it out of the dog's system.
I meant to tell you this is in the cat forum but I also answer dog questions with over 30 years in raising, caring for, rescuing, training dogs so I have more than my share of experience with 'strange poop' from dogs eating things they shouldn't.
Good thing this wasn't the matchlight stuff though as that does have some chemicals you'd want out of the dog.
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