Nicotine Ingestion in Pets

Nicotine products can be found almost anywhere. Nicotine products include cigarettes, vapes, chewing tobacco, cigars, or nicotine gum. Your pet can ingest nicotine either accidentally or intentionally. As a pet owner, you should know the signs of nicotine poisoning and how to best treat your pet for a fast recovery. Continue reading below to learn about the signs of nicotine ingestion and what to do if your pet is poisoned.

Signs of Nicotine Poisoning

Nicotine poisoning can occur quickly and with severe clinical signs. Within 15 to 60 minutes after ingestion, both cats and dogs may exhibit signs of poisoning. These symptoms can include:

  • Vomiting 
  • Diarrhea 
  • Agitation 
  • Elevations in heart rate  
  • Elevations in respiration rate 
  • Depression 
  • Tremors 
  • Ataxia 
  • Weakness  
  • Seizures  
  • Cyanosis  
  • Coma  
  • Cardiac arrest 


If you suspect that your pet may be experiencing nicotine poisoning, contact Pet Poison Helpline at (855) 764-7661 for first aid advice. These trained professionals will be able to answer your questions and concerns. Do not give your pet antacids, as the acid in the stomach naturally slows the absorption of nicotine. Next, take them to the veterinary clinic right away. Your veterinarian may have to induce vomiting and administer activated charcoal to prevent further absorption. Furthermore, IV fluids may be necessary to assist with excretion and stabilization.

It is a lot of responsibility to be a caring pet owner. You have to constantly watch out for things that can harm them. As a responsible pet owner, you must be aware of the effects of nicotine poisoning. If nicotine is used in the home, keep any and all products away from your pet. Instruct family and friends on the dangers of nicotine and how to keep your pet safe. If you suspect your pet has ingested nicotine, contact the trusted experts at Pet Poison Helpline right away.