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Is It Dangerous If Your Dog Eats Waterproof Glue Like Gorilla Glue?

There are very few foods that dogs will turn down if offered or given an opportunity to help themselves, but some dogs are much worse than others when it comes to their propensity to eat anything and everything. 

Some dogs also seem to have no concept about what is and is not food and this can cause all sorts of problems, as not only are some substances directly poisonous, but they can also cause other types of problems if ingested too.

Additionally, dogs can sometimes ingest dangerous things even when they didn’t mean to, as dogs use their mouths much like we do our hands; to pick things up, get a feel for them, and generally interact with the world around them.

There is an almost limitless range of things that dogs might eat or explore with their mouths resulting in accidental ingestion, ranging from the harmless to the potentially very dangerous – and one thing that falls into the latter category is waterproof glue, like Gorilla Glue and other generic equivalents.

Glue and other substances that aren’t meant for your dog should always be kept well out of your dog’s reach, even if they don’t seem like obvious targets for a dog to get into trouble with! However, accidents happen and dogs can be opportunistic, which means that every year, there are a number of incidents reported by vets of dogs eating waterproof glues and becoming very ill as a result.

In this article we’ll discuss why waterproof glue is dangerous to dogs, how dogs might come to eat glue, what happens if a dog eats Gorilla Glue and generic alternatives, and the symptoms that can let you know something is wrong. Read on to learn if waterproof glue is dangerous to dogs.

What types of glues are waterproof glues?

When we talk about waterproof glues, the best known of these is the brand name Gorilla Glue, although there are a large number of other brands and generic alternatives made of the same or similar materials and designed for the same uses.

Waterproof glues are sometimes known by their scientific name of diisocyanate glues, and contain active ingredients like polyurethane. They’re usually sold for DIY and home improvements rather than crafting or for children, as they’re very strong, high strength glues that need to be treated with the appropriate level of respect.

Are waterproof glues like Gorilla Glue toxic to dogs?

Gorilla Glue and other polyurethane or waterproof glues can be harmful to dogs (and people) if inhaled, as the fumes irritate the respiratory system, and it can also irritate the skin and of course, eyes if it comes into direct contact with them.

As you might expect, if Gorilla Glue is swallowed it is also toxic, once more both to dogs and humans. However, it is not strictly the toxicity itself that makes waterproof glues so dangerous to dogs, which is what we will look at next.

Are waterproof glues like Gorilla Glue dangerous to dogs in other ways?

The most acute and immediate risk posed to your dog if they eat waterproof glue like Gorilla Glue is that this type of glue is designed to activate upon contact with water (or other moisture), in order to enable it to expand and stick firmly to the surface it is intended for.

Waterproof glues are not only irritating to the digestive tract because of their toxicity, but also, when the glue activates it can swell up to 50 times its original size, and if this happens in your dog’s stomach, it can cause an acute blockage or obstruction. This might be an immediate problem, or not even become apparent for several days.

How might a dog come to eat glue anyway?

Whilst dogs will eat most foods put in front of them, glue neither looks nor smells palatable, so it is not something that your dog is likely to target deliberately as a meal! However, dogs like to chew things and play with things that they find, and there is a very real chance that a dog that discovers a bottle of waterproof glue might chew it or bite into it and so, ingest some of the contents.

Waterproof glues come in flexible squeezy bottles, which makes them quite appealing for dogs to chew and easy to puncture with their teeth.

What signs might indicate that a dog has eaten glue?

Signs of distress and internal discomfort might develop quickly if your dog eats waterproof glue as it will irritate their digestive tract, but this is not necessarily the case if the glue expands and goes on to cause a blockage.

This might happen within a few hours of ingestion or may take days; and given that waterproof glue swells up to 50 times its size and sets hard, even if your dog only ate a pea-sized amount of the glue, this would form a very large, hard mass in their stomach.

The symptoms of a dog eating waterproof glue and developing a blockage may include a distended, hard or taut stomach, signs of pain from the stomach, and the absence of any normal digestive sounds.

It may also result in constipation, vomiting or nausea, loss of appetite, lethargy, and general signs of discomfort and distress.

If you know or even suspect that your dog has eaten waterproof glue, it is really important to contact your vet immediately as this is an emergency situation, even if your dog appears to be fine initially.


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