What Should I Do If My Dog Drank Blue Toilet Water?

What Should I Do If My Dog Drank Blue Toilet Water? Photo of a dog side by side with a toilet.

Did your dog drink blue toilet water? Of course, he did. Below is everything you need to know about when to worry and what to do about it!

To help dilute the chemical solution in the blue toilet water, give your dog a small amount of milk or fresh water. If your dog has anything more than a mildly upset stomach regarding symptoms or strange behavior, you’ll want to call your local vet, ASPA, or Animal Poison Control Center as soon as possible for an emergency visit or consult.

Is blue toilet water safe for dogs?

If you need to call the Animal Poison Control Center, the blue toilet water must be toxic, right? Not really. It depends on what is actually in the blue water! Let’s take a look.

Firstly, the water is this color to signal to humans that it’s been treated and clean. It’s a light dye that will fade away as the cleanliness does. The dye itself isn’t dangerous for dogs, assuming they are not allergic to dyes.

The cleaners in the blue water is where the danger lies. They are intended to be potent and dedicated cleaning agents. While they are diluted in water, and your dog isn’t going to sit there and drink the bowl dry, the chemicals can cause an issue for your dog. 

The blue toilet water doesn’t necessarily cause a toxic reaction with a few gulps before you catch him, but you’ll need to monitor him closely nonetheless.

What happens if a dog drinks toilet water with a cleaner in it?

Most likely, they’ll have a bad taste in their mouth and a slightly upset stomach. After all, the cleaning solution isn’t intended to be drunk by a human or dog!

The severity is going to depend on how much your dog drank. The smaller your dog is, the less of it is needed to cause a reaction. Also, some dogs have sensitive stomachs, which will make a negative reaction much more likely.

Another factor is the safety of the water itself. Is your water filtered? Does it come from a well or a treated municipal system? The water can sometimes be as dangerous, if not more so, than the chemicals!

Is toilet bowl cleaner toxic to dogs?

Toilet bowl cleaner is technically toxic to dogs, as it would be to humans. As mentioned, there are strong chemicals that make it dangerous for dogs. Simply lapping up a bit from the bowl is one thing, whereas eating or drinking directly from the bottle is another!

Dogs can quickly have severe stomach issues that can lead to dehydration. Chemical agents can also compound this dehydration, leading to organ failure. Again, it simply comes down to how much your dog has drunk on any given day!

What happens if a dog licks toilet bowl cleaner?

As hinted above, your dog will have a stronger reaction if they lick or drink straight toilet bowl cleaner. It hasn’t had a chance to dilute in the water yet, meaning the chemical cleaning agents are at their most potent.

Dogs can end up with mouth burns if they directly lick up toilet bowl cleaner. The chemical strength can burn their sensitive lips, tongue, gums, and general mouth area. Their throat can burn, too, if they swallow it down.

My dog drank toilet water with a bleach tablet: should I worry?

If your dog has drank toilet water treated with a bleach tablet, you’ll find its potential risks to be a bit more severe than the simple blue water. However, the dilution also works in your favor, so you may notice nothing more than a mildly upset stomach.

It takes less bleach to cause a gastric problem, so pay close attention to signs of distress (more on that later) so that you can intervene and get them medical attention sooner rather than later.

Remember that your dog drinking diluted bleach water is very different from a bleach tablet itself!

What happens if my dog drinks bleach water?

You’ll notice the same mild upset stomach and perhaps mild mouth burns, depending on how much your dog drank and how potent the mix was. Your dog may not be as attracted to bleach-treated water, of course, since bleach has a notoriously strong smell!

What are problem signs to watch for if my dog drinks treated toilet water?

Whether it is a classic blue tablet or a bleach tablet, the signs to look for that indicate a problem include:

  • Tummy rumbling
  • Vomiting and/or diarrhea
  • Inability to eat or drink
  • Showing distress or pain signs
  • Trembling and seizing
  • Disorientation and confusion
  • Loss of consciousness

The more of these you notice, the stronger the chance that the chemicals are causing a negative reaction in your dog. As mentioned above, immediately get your dog to help if you notice anything stronger than a mildly upset stomach. 

Dogs can quickly die from poisoning, so waiting until morning “to wait and see” isn’t a good idea! Organ failure sets in very quickly, and your vet will only be able to do so much once it does.

How can I treat my dog at home?

If your dog is only showing mild symptoms and you feel comfortable skipping the vet, you can focus on supporting your dog’s recovery! A great support is plenty of fresh water. Your dog will want to work the poison through their system as quickly as possible, so allow them to drink as much as possible.

You can also absorb the poison in a bland diet for your dog. It will help absorb some of the poison away from your dog’s organs and settle your dog’s stomach. The bulk will push the poison water out of your dog’s system faster and easier.

If your dog has no appetite, don’t force him to eat. Encourage him with a bland diet of boiled chicken, mashed pumpkin, white rice, or white bread. They tend to incentivize most dogs to eat, after all!

The other thing to do is stay calm. Dogs pick up on our energy a lot, so if you’re anxiously pacing and watching your dog every moment of the day, it’ll make them worry and fret, too. This can imitate some of the symptoms listed above. Be watchful, but stay as calm as you can!

Why do dogs drink toilet water?

Dogs drink and eat all sorts of weird things that don’t make sense to us humans! The most common reason dogs drink toilet water is because they perceive the toilet as running water. They are more likely to trust running water than standing water (such as what’s in their water bowl). That’s what makes so many pet parents switch to mini water fountains for their pets!

The other thing is that dogs explore with their mouth. Your dog simply is interested in what’s special about this kind of water, so they’re checking it out! Once they realize they don’t like the taste of the water itself, and it gives them a stomach ache, they may decide that enough is enough. Or not. 

How do I stop my dog from drinking the toilet water?

Just because your dog has learned his lesson doesn’t mean that he may not repeat the behavior, sadly. It really depends on the dog. To keep your dog safe and healthy — as well as out of trouble, generally — here are some tips to help.

Firstly, prioritize their obedience training. A dog who listens to “no” or “stop” will be much easier to control! Obedience training isn’t just about getting to “sit” or “go pee,” after all! Make this a priority, and it’ll work much better for these kinds of situations.

The next focal point is to keep the toilet closed. You don’t need to put a child’s lock on it since dogs haven’t figured out how to open lids yet, but a closed lid will deter them. They might even forget that it’s there!

If you can’t keep the toilet closed for whatever reason, you might want to keep the bathroom room door closed — at least while the cleaner is doing its job! That’s what this is all about, after all!

Conclusion

While drinking blue toilet water is certainly not good, it’s not an immediate reason for panic.

If your dog drinks blue toilet water or bleach-treated toilet water, watch for signs of concerns, including vomiting and diarrhea, lack of appetite, and lethargy, amongst others. The more diluted the cleaner is in the water, the safer it’ll be for your dog.

If your dog shows any symptoms other than a mildly upset stomach, you’ll want to take them to the vet as soon as possible for poison treatment!

Keep these reminders and tips in mind, and you and your dog can get through this not-so-fun adventure. Know someone who’s been in this situation before? Share this with them and help them get through it!

Sara Santos

Writer, Editor and member of the Council, I am a dog person and I thrive to get the answers that will help you provide the best care a dog can have. You can also find me on my personal blog here.