My Dog Ate Paint

If you’re looking for a thrill, paintballing could be up your alley. It’s a great way to hang out with friends and meet new people. However, you should take extra safety precautions if you have a furry friend around. Paintballs can pose a health hazard if your dog decides to eat them. Paintball toxicity is uncommon, but the consequences of paint consumption can be life threatening.

Paintball Toxicity

Common active ingredients in paintballs include glycerol, propylene glycol, polyethylene glycol, wax, dye, gelatin, and more. Paintball components are osmotically active, meaning they pull free water into the intestinal tract. This results in severe electrolyte and salt imbalances that can be fatal if left untreated. It’s important to note that paintballs can cause a false positive blood test for the more life-threatening poison, antifreeze. If your dog ate paintballs, you must call your veterinarian and Pet Poison Helpline for advice. 

Paintball Poisoning Symptoms

Dogs could eat paintballs if a container was left open, if it’s not stored away properly, or if they decide to chew through the container to get to them. Paintball ingestion can result in severe poisoning in dogs. Common signs to watch out for include: 

  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Walking drunk
  • Tremors
  • Seizures
  • Decreased level of consciousness


If your dog has ingested paintballs or any type of paint, your first points of contact should be your veterinarian and Pet Poison Helpline at (855) 764-7661. If consumption was recent, your veterinarian may induce vomiting. Warm water enemas can help the chemicals in paint move through your dog’s system. Your veterinarian may provide IV fluids to balance electrolyte levels and monitor them. Medication will be given if your pup is experiencing seizures and tremors. Your dog should be able to make a full recovery with treatment. If your dog ingested a large amount of paintballs and treatment was not given, fatality can occur. To avoid paint poisoning, always store the containers away in a safe place where your pup cannot reach them.