When you are sick with a cold or dealing with a sore throat, you’ll pop a cough drop in your mouth to find some sort of relief. As humans, we make mistakes, and you may accidentally leave the cough drop package open and vulnerable. Your dog sees that and steals a few without you watching. On the ingredients list it shows that menthol is in the cough drops. Is menthol dangerous and should you be concerned? Let’s find out.  

Is Menthol Dangerous for Dogs? 

A common ingredient in chewing gum or cough drops that could have harmful consequences is menthol. Because menthol irritates the oral and digestive system tissues, your dog may experience symptoms such as diarrhea, vomiting, or simply laying around with a stomach ache. Like with xylitol poisoning, get your dog to the vet right away if you see significant changes, such as difficulties staying awake or walking.  

What are Symptoms of Menthol Poisoning in Dogs? 

Symptoms of menthol poisoning often show up within an hour of consumption. Additionally, these symptoms are comparable to those of ethanol poisoning in animals. The nervous and digestive systems are most affected by menthol poisoning. Examples of symptoms include:  

  • Lethargy 
  • Loss of muscle control  
  • Depression  
  • Nausea  
  • Diarrhea  
  • Abdominal pain  

Preventative Steps to Take  

Dogs do not always learn their lesson after the first mistake and will attempt to eat something that could be harmful like cough drops. Cough drops should be kept in a sealed bag or container that is out of reach so your curious pup cannot get to it. If you carry cough drops in a handbag or travel bag, make sure they are hung up and out of the way when not in use. Make sure that any trash containers that are used to dispose of cough drop wrappers or uneaten food items are covered and located behind closed doors. 

What Should I Do If My Dog Ate Menthol?  

If your dog ate something containing menthol, call your vet and Pet Poison Helpline® at (855) 764-7661. Keep a close check on your dog to see if anything out of the ordinary occurs or they are exhibiting  any symptoms of poisoning. Take your dog to the vet clinic as soon as possible so a medical professional can examine them. Keep your pup safe and away from any harmful substances.