Misuse of disinfectants increases gastric problems in pets

The coronavirus has led to greater use of hydroalcoholic bleaches and gels that can harm dogs and cats

The misuse or abuse of disinfectant agents, bleaches, and hydroalcoholic gels is increasing the gastrointestinal and dermatological problems of pets, according to the European group of veterinarians and veterinary hospitals, Anicura.

Veterinarians warn that poisoning can occur in different ways, from when they go for a walk and sniff areas where these products have been used or because they are impregnated with these on the legs that are later licked.


For this reason, he recommends washing both the paws and the muzzle with water and pet shampoo or with already prepared disinfectant wipes, both products with a suitable pH for them.

The veterinarian at Anicura Velázquez Hospital Veterinario Teresa Megía has indicated that in recent months they have noticed an increase in cases of pets, especially dogs “due to the use of disinfectant products.”

Thus, he adds that at the hospital they received a poodle who arrived at the hospital with his tongue “scorched” because its owners had disinfected its legs with a household disinfectant cleaning spray.

“We treated the dog with corticosteroids and antibiotics, and after two days in hospital he began to improve and he was able to return home,” Megía says.


In addition, she adds that the continued use of hydroalcoholic solutions, bleach, or other disinfectants, even diluted in water, can cause irritation or abrasion on the pads of the feet, gastrointestinal problems that can lead to hemorrhagic diarrhea.


Likewise, they have observed an increase in the number of cases of pharyngitis not related to kennel cough, which is due to the inhalation of these products. “We must not only be careful with the products we use in our homes, but also with those used to disinfect the streets,” he says.

Regarding the mode of intoxication, he explains that it occurs well when they go for a walk and sniff the areas in which these products have been used or if their legs are impregnated with these products, which are later licked and ingested.

Another of the areas of very sensitive dogs are the interdigital areas, so the veterinarian adds that another alternative to avoid this type of products in those areas is the use of boots specifically indicated for pets every time they go for a walk, although This option can be a bit uncomfortable if the animal is not used to using this accessory.