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Dr. Marcia
Dr. Marcia, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
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Experience:  I am a Companion Animal Veterinarian with 15 years of medical and surgical experience
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My dog just ate a dried starfish, probably around 2 full legs

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My dog just ate a dried starfish, probably around 2 full legs is this poisonous, what should i do? an hour nd 15 min since i posted question, my dog is drinking alot of water
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Dog
Expert:  Dr. Marcia replied 5 years ago.

Hello, Heidi, and thank you for your question!

 

I did a quick search on my online vet resource and found some posts regarding dogs eating dried starfish, so apparently they like to do this!

What I found is that usually you will just be dealing with upset stomach signs--vomiting, diarrhea, etc. This is not because of a toxin or poison, but because of the rough outer coating of dried starfish which can be very irritating to the gut. If your dog ate 2 legs hopefully this will not be as irritating at this quantity.

What I would like you to do is try and induce vomiting, if the emergency clinic did not already advise you to do so. You may still be able to get your dog to vomit this up, it's worth a try. You can give a few tablespoons of hydrogen peroxide orally and they will usually vomit within 5-15 minutes. This can be repeated once. You may get some of the starfish pieces out this way.

 

I found that in more unusual cases there can be a neurologic toxin called tetrodotoxin, depending on where the starfish originated. Starfish that came from waters around the US do not usually have this toxin. But it can lead to neurologic signs (brain related). So you would see things like disorientation, seizures, etc. I would not be too concerned about this but did want to mention it.

 

In any case, if your dog has severe GI upset signs or any neurologic signs that develop, you will want to seek vet care for supportive care (fluids, medications, etc.) I suspect that your dog will do just fine, though.

 

Good luck and thanks again for your question.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

i dont have peroxide in the house, he seems to be fine, its been an hour and1/2 since it hqppened, he has drank alot of water. he is sleeping now and doesnt seem like there is too much discomfort. must i induce vomitting? if i must how do i get him to drink two or 3 tablespoons? thank you

heidi

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
i already did, must i induce vomiting he seem fine. i live in florida and bought the starfish in walgreens.
Expert:  Dr. Marcia replied 5 years ago.

Heidi, it is probably a "local starfish" then and probably nothing to worry about in terms of toxins.

If he seems fine, I would not worry and at this point inducing vomiting may not be very helpful anyway. You can just observe him and don't be surprised if he seems to have a bit of an upset tummy today. That should pass on its own, but again talk to a vet if he develops any severe signs.

Thank you!

Dr. Marcia, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 577
Experience: I am a Companion Animal Veterinarian with 15 years of medical and surgical experience
Dr. Marcia and 5 other Dog Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

marcia

 

thank you very very much for all your help

 

heidi

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