Neodymium Magnets are a Real Danger to Dogs

Neodymium Magnets are a Real Danger to Dogs

Health & Safety

If you share your home with a canine companion you may want to reconsider having any neodymium magnets around the place. The reason being that if your pooch swallows any of these extremely powerful magnets by mistake, you may have to take them to the vet as a matter of urgency or it could prove fatal.

Magnets come in all shapes and sizes with most homes having a couple or many of them sitting prettily on a fridge door. Although these particular magnets are relatively weak, they still pose a bit of a danger to our canine friends if they swallow one, although they are not as dangerous or as lethal as some other more powerful neodymium magnets.

These magnets are extremely powerful and are commonly found in many kid's toys. They've been around for twenty years or so and are so powerful they stick together to form a virtually unbreakable chain. Although, neodymium magnets are not particularly toxic on their own and if a dog accidentally swallow one, it might even pass through their systems without causing any serious blockage or problem.

However, should a dog swallow one or more of them, they could cause a very serious problem which may well require surgery as a matter of urgency and if action is not taken, it may well prove fatal to the dog.

Several Magnets Would Cause an Obstruction

The reason these magnets are so dangerous when more than one is swallowed by your canine friend is that they are more likely join together as they pass through a dog's intestinal tract. The worse case scenario being they form a loop in your dog's abdomen which is disastrous and could even prove fatal. The walls of the intestines would not prevent these magnets from binding together which then causes all the problems.

However, it is not only the obstruction that would be the main concern because these powerful magnets would put a tremendous amount of pressure on the intestinal walls preventing blood from flowing to the affected areas. This causes the areas to die off and ultimately to break apart causing bacteria, intestinal fluids and food to enter into the dog's abdomen.

It Could Cause Intestinal Perforation

This is a condition which is known as intestinal perforation and should it happen, they if nothing is done as a matter of urgency, it would prove fatal to the dog because the bacterial infection that occurs in the dog's abdomen is referred to as septic peritonitis and sadly, most dogs do not survive the condition unless emergency surgery is performed on them and even then the prognosis is never that good.

Should a dog swallow the neodymium magnets when they are already bound together in a chain, the magnets may pass through the dog's system without causing any problems, or they might not which means it is never worth having any of these magnets whether in a chain or not, around the house just in case your dog does get hold of them. The old adage of it's better to be safe than sorry could not be truer in this instance. You should check any toys that are lying around the house to make sure they don't contain any neodymium magnets in them and if they do, it's best to throw them away making sure you do so responsibly.

If you suspect your dog may have swallowed one of more neodymium magnets, you need to take them along to see the vet as a matter of urgency. The vet would be able to perform an endoscopy before removing the magnets, but this needs to be within a few hours of them having swallowed them or the prognosis might not be that good. As with most things, the earlier a condition is caught and correctly diagnosed, the sooner a treatment or surgery can be performed which means your dog has a better chance of making a full recovery.


The majority of dog owners know that chocolate and other types of food as well as many household products commonly found in the home are toxic to their pets. However, neodymium magnets too are incredibly dangerous should your dog have the misfortune of swallowing one or more of them. If you suspect your dog may have eaten and swallowed anything that could be harmful to them, you need to seek veterinary advice as a matter of urgency.

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