What To Do If Your Dog Ate Used Tampon?

What should you do if your dog eats used tampons? 

Believe it or not, this is a common question people ask their veterinarians. 

The dog may have eaten the tampon by mistake, as they are sometimes left on tables and floors in bathrooms. 

Some dogs eat them because they smell like food! 

If your dog has swallowed a tampon, keep reading!

Why Do Dogs Eat Tampons?

Dogs are attracted to the smell of menstrual blood, which is often mistaken as smelling like a mammal’s prey.

Intense smells can be overpowering for animals, and they typically learn not to eat something after they’ve tried it once. 

If your dog has never tasted a tampon before and you’re worried that he’ll just start eating them indefinitely if you give him access to menstruation products – don’t worry! He won’t.

They may also enjoy the taste of cotton in particular, or the plastic in general. Dogs also like to chew on these items for fun. 

Is It Dangerous For Dogs To Eat Used Tampons?

picture of a used tampon on a level ground

Yes, it can be dangerous for dogs to slide a tampon or something similar into their mouth. 

The temptation to do so might be too tempting since the smell of menstrual blood is undoubtedly intriguing and inviting, but make sure you keep these items well out of reach from your pet. 

Tampons contain trace levels of toxins that can get into their intestines and can lead to tumor development. 

They also have string substances that sometimes unravel in the intestines and cause bowel obstructions. 

In addition, they also possess cotton fibers that absorb water in the animal’s stomach which leads to bloating, vomiting, and painful diarrhea.

Can Eating A Tampon Kill A Dog?

Dogs can die of tampon toxicosis for a number of reasons, but the main reason is that the material in tampons is made from dioxins which are highly poisonous and no animal should consume them. 

Dogs eating it by mistake may be at risk for death if their health declines.

Are Tampons Digestible For Dogs?

No, tampons are not digestible for dogs. They can irritate or damage the dog’s stomach and intestines. 

When they become too large or get pushed far enough back into the body, they can even cause blockages that require emergency surgery.

How To Recognize If Your Dog Ate A Tampon?

Dogs have a strong sense of curiosity and taste. You’ll soon notice signs that indeed they sampled your feminine product. 

Here are the symptoms to look for: one or more tampons will be missing from the box, brown staining in the toilet bowl after your dog went to the bathroom, or even smells like bleach in different parts of your house.

You should also take into consideration what might have led to this horrendous act – does your dog hide when you’re getting dressed? Does he follow you into the bathroom while using it? Has someone been feeding him tampons on purpose? 

Why Do Dogs Lick Period Blood?

The truth is that we can’t answer this question with absolute certainty until understanding how dogs interact with period blood. 

However, it seems that one major reason why dogs lick period blood is that it smells of pheromones. 

Pheromones are chemicals given off by animals that have been shown to induce social behavior through unknown mechanisms. 

This suggests that dogs might experience a response related to sexual attraction or aggression when they detect menstrual odors on a person’s breath and skin, as well as associated fluids such as saliva or semen.

What To Do If Dog Eats A Used Tampon?

Get the dog to a veterinarian as soon as you can. 

Tampons are made of cotton and could cause an intestinal blockage, so it’s best to be safe rather than sorry when dealing with tampon ingestion in dogs. 

For example, if your dog ate a tampon it may take a few hours before signs show up such as vomiting or diarrhea, but even this is considered too late. 

This is why we advise getting the vet examined right away!

Even if not experiencing lethargy or vomiting or diarrhea, you should find someone who can examine your pup for gastric problems right away – even two hours after ingestion is generally still too late for those who have ingested something like a used tampon. 

If nothing seems to be happening, the dog is completely fine.

A veterinarian will take an x-ray to see whether there’s anything in the dog’s intestines and can also give them medication if needed such as activated charcoal to absorb toxins from their intestinal tract. 

There are many cases of dogs that have eaten tampons and don’t show any signs of being harmed – some dogs just throw them up after eating.

How Long Does It Take A Dog To Pass A Tampon?

It can take anywhere between one hour and four days for a dog to pass a tamped tampon. 

The reason is that dogs do have an intestinal tract that runs from the stomach, through the small and large intestines, but they also have a cloaca where waste is stored in addition to urine which comes out in a different opening than feces does. 

When tampons are ingested it’s usually wrapped around fecal matter as opposed to being passed instead of it so when one passes their ways through this area, it takes longer because they’re always having to go back and forth on their way from the rectum up into the colon/intestines before passing again out of another region. 

This process can take up to 4 days.

Should I Make My Dog Vomit After Eating A Tampon?

You should not make your dog vomit.

The biggest danger of making a dog vomit is that it might then choke on the material, risking aspiration and death. 

The other potential problem is the possibility of inducing acid reflux in your pet, which can also be deadly very quickly.

And if a tampon did get stuck in your pup’s stomach, he will eventually shed most or all of it in his stool.

Experienced vets have been known to recommend syringing out the impacted object after checking for obstructions.

How To Know If The Dog Has Bowel Obstruction?

1) If the stomach, or bowel, is full of undigested material then this could be a bowel obstruction. The dog may stop eating, and vomit. 

2) A distended abdomen can also indicate a problem in the bowels. If you see your pet’s back end poking out from his/her underbelly, wrap him up and take him to your vet! 

3) Heaviness across the entire body is an indicator that there is fluid build-up occurring (most often in one area). High heart rate, panting with drooling also show possible problems within the abdomen. Your dog may avoid exercise because it hurts to move and walk normally – tight abdominal muscles may result from tense abdominal muscles.

Tips To Prevent Your Dog From Eating Tampons

Just be conscientious of where you dispose of your tampons. 

Most people dispose of them in the toilet. Instead, flush the end so it won’t return to a usable state should any contact fluids get near it. 

Dispose of used tampons in the trash can instead.

Another good tip is to keep feminine hygiene products somewhere that’s not easily accessible by your pooch – for instance on a high shelf or inside a bathroom cabinet when possible – as well as giving them chewing toys that will divert their attention away from anything else they might feel like eating!

Never leave an opened tampon lying around with your dog, even if you know it’s not bleeding at that moment. Dogs are natural scavengers and will want to see what treats might be hidden within an opened wrapper, you may soon find out why closed ones are better when your pet tears into one and rips open a bunch of tampons all over their bedding!


If your dog ate a used tampon, you’re probably freaking out. What should I do now? 

First and foremost, don’t panic! You’re not the first person to be in this situation and there’s no need for concern because it is safe to just give them some time after eating something like that. 

The good news is that dogs will typically pass any foreign object through their system without issue as long as they have enough water available. 

However, if your pet has an upset stomach or diarrhea due to consuming the used tampon, then seek medical attention immediately.

I know that this is a tricky situation and I want to help you as best I can. Have any questions? Please mention in the comments section below 🙂

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