My Dog Ate Insulation – What Should I Do Now?

If your dog ate insulation, you need to know what to do.

This is a serious situation that can lead to some very serious health problems for your pup. It’s important that you take care of this quickly and correctly.

While quick action can save your dog from the unfortunate aftermath of fiberglass ingestion, it can still be problematic even if your dog is treated in time. 

Dogs with swallowed fiberglass particles inside of them typically have a difficult time moving this material through their digestive tract and may develop ulcers and other internal problems such as inflammation which could last for some time. 

Your vet will likely recommend surgery to take out whatever has been consumed or else they may use laxatives to flush the walls of your pet himself. 

Know that not all dogs respond positively to laxatives so only your veterinarian can help you decide what is best for your pooch.

How Can A Dog Eat Insulation?

Your dog has a good chance of swallowing insulation if it is made from glass fiber, which is found in most modern types of residential insulation. 

If you’re unsure what kind of insulation your home has, call an electrician to find out. 

Fiberglass can be found in many different places including attic areas where people may have left it exposed and on the ground underneath certain homes and buildings that have had remodeling performed recently (you’ll likely notice small piles of glass fibers strewn about). 

They may also be chewed by rodents who are known for putting anything and everything in their mouths including this type of material.

The above points are especially true if you live in an older home that is being remodeled or if you have a pet with an insatiable desire to eat everything they can get their teeth on.

Will Insulation Kill A Dog?

Unfortunately, yes. Dog’s aren’t built to consume such materials and it can cause some gruesome health problems for them if they do.

Insulation is made up of a mixture of polystyrene foam chips and polyester fibers. 

When consumed by dogs or cats, these become stuck together in the throat and stomach, forming a mass. This can lead to an obstruction of the digestive tract which will need emergency surgery to remove.

Is Spray Foam Insulation Toxic To Dogs?

Yes. Polystyrene foam chips are toxic when swallowed by dogs and cats; they become stuck in the throat or stomach and cause an obstruction of the digestive tract which will need emergency surgery to remove. 

If a mass formed that could not be removed, it would also be fatal.

Insulation is considered a foreign body, meaning that if your dog decides to eat it he will require surgical removal.

While this seems like an odd situation that may never happen to you, it is actually quite common for dogs (and even more commonly for cats) to ingest some pretty unusual things like rubber bands, sticks, balls of string, and other materials that can get lodged inside their digestive tract and cause a blockage. 

While most of these situations resolve themselves, it is always important that you contact your vet immediately.

In addition to just removing the foreign body, if your dog has ingested styrofoam there could be some chemical contamination as well. 

Foam insulation contains chemicals such as chloroprene and other hydrocarbons which can cause stomach ulcers or inflammation of the digestive tract in pets. 

Just like many human foods are toxic for dogs, so are many materials used to insulate homes.

What Happens When A Dog Eats Insulation?

dog in bed feeling sick

If the insured dog is not treated in time, the obstruction will cause serious health complications including:

  • Sharp abdominal pain will be increased when the stomach is touched
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea (along with blood and/or mucus)
  • Dehydration (from vomiting and diarrhea)
  • Shock (due to a lack of proper blood circulation)

In severe cases where surgery wasn’t performed on time, dogs can die. 

However, this doesn’t happen often because most pet owners realize something is wrong when their dog starts vomiting foam insulation and rush him to see a vet. 

The obstruction may also shift its shape due to the stomach acid, causing the walls of the stomach or intestines to rupture. This can cause even more damage to your pet.

What To Do If Your Dog Ate Insulation

If you think your dog has eaten insulation do not wait or delay getting him help! 

Even if he is acting fine now, this does not mean that there are no problems brewing inside his body. Take action immediately so that you can avoid any health issues from arising down the road.

Insulation Removal Tips & At-Home Treatment Options

The first thing that needs to be done for a dog that’s eaten insulation is trips to the veterinarian! 

But before heading out, collect some vomit samples for testing purposes and put them in sealable bags.

If your veterinarian is not available or you are just too far away, here are some tips for at-home treatment. 

These include Ice packs to the abdomen and throat area to reduce discomfort and inflammation (if there’s been vomiting). 

DO NOT give your dog any food or water! Fiber supplements should be given. They help with digestion so that the body can clear out whatever it is trying to digest (i.e., insulation). 

You should also add chicken broth into their diet. While this might not sound appetizing, fluids, in general, will help keep things moving along properly through the digestive tract. 

If your dog has eaten a lot of insulation, your vet may suggest using laxatives as well as enemas to flush everything out quickly. They may even recommend an anti-vomiting medication.

Insulation has long been used as a protective cover for cables within walls and floors, and it’s also used to fill the voids in your walls after you have removed that wall molding. 

It is also possible for insulation to be found underneath carpets where it was previously installed before the carpet was laid down, or if someone has recently added extra thickness under there. 

Your dog might seem perfectly fine following ingestion of some fiberglass insulation but this doesn’t mean you should let things ride. 

Fiberglass is known to cause serious damage internally to pets if they do not receive immediate medical attention. 

You should call your veterinarian immediately if you see signs of vomiting or just take him to the vet if you can. 

Your veterinarian will likely take some x-rays of your dog’s stomach to ensure that there isn’t a blockage and if he or she doesn’t see anything they may suggest an ultrasound so that they can get a better idea of what is going on in there.

Treatment Options

dog with first aid

Endoscopy is often recommended to get a better image so that the doctor can see what all is going on inside of your dog, but if he or she doesn’t recommend this you will likely be given medication for your dog and told to keep him as still as possible. 

If there’s damage it can happen in as little as 24 hours, so they are trying to prevent anything from happening any faster than it already has. 

The vet may also give medications for pain along with IV fluids.

If your dog seems to be getting worse despite these treatments then surgery might become necessary, but hopefully, things won’t come to that point. 

Keep a close eye on how he responds and don’t hesitate to call the vet if his condition deteriorates even further! 

Fiberglass injury can be treated but it all depends on how sick your dog gets and how badly he is affected internally.

How To Prevent Your Dog From Eating Insulation

The best way to prevent your dog from eating insulation is to make sure that there aren’t any lying around for him to get into. 

Dogs like the challenge of chewing on things and will even seem addicted sometimes if some fiberglass gets stuck in their teeth or gums, so it’s important not to leave any exposed wiring behind or allow them access inside a crawl space where they can find a loose bundle. 

Make sure that you promptly clean up any messes that may occur while installation is going on. 

This is an easy task compared to cleaning up after your pet has been sick all over the floor, but it’s also something that needs attention before fiberglass makes its way into your dog’s digestive tract.

Insulation from high-voltage wires or one that comes into contact with these wires should never be used around pets since it can cause electrical shock and also burns. 

If you suspect that your pet has chewed on some electrical wires, it’s important to get them checked by a veterinarian right away. 

Electrical shock can cause cardiac arrest in dogs and is something that needs to be attended to immediately if they become unresponsive or are staggering around like drunkards.

Insulation should be kept out of reach from pets for their safety and also for yours as well! 

This product may not be so dangerous for you but it could seriously harm your dog so make sure that you keep anything with the word ‘fiberglass’ on it away from Fido if at all possible. 

Check under carpets and rugs before allowing your dog near these areas and where possible keep him off of worksites where installation is taking place since you are the one who has to clean up after him if he decides to chew on something he shouldn’t.


If you do find yourself with a chewed-up dog that is suffering from fiberglass consumption, call your vet right away or go in and get him taken care of. 

If there’s been a recent installation at your house then this may be the cause of his discomfort so try and figure out what happened and make sure that it doesn’t happen again.

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