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lidocaine used in lidocaine patches

My Dog Chewed a Lidocaine Patch. Should I Be Worried?

Lidocaine patches are fairly common in households. Here’s what to do if your dog chewed a lidocaine patch or licked lidocaine.

Sometimes it can be easy to leave things around the house, sparking your pet’s curiosity. But, unfortunately, these things can sometimes be harmful, such as medications. 

Your dog may quickly think a lidocaine patch is a toy or something edible. However, it’s critical to know what to do if the dog chewed a lidocaine patch since lidocaine is toxic and can cause your dog serious harm. 

So let’s look at what to do if your dog eats a lidocaine patch, and what are the potential risks of ingesting lidocaine to the dog.

What Is Lidocaine? 

Lidocaine is a local anesthetic that has a numbing effect and helps relieve relief. According to the WHO, it’s an amino acid that functions as an essential medicine. 

Lidocaine has proved to be highly effective in treating heart problems such as tachycardia and other heart conditions. There are three ways you can administer lidocaine:

  1. As a cream
  2. Intravenously 
  3. As a patch 

How Does Lidocaine Work?

Lidocaine first only worked to use and treat humans, but veterinarians also use it. Vets use it for dogs intravenously before small surgeries. They also prescribe it if they are under treatment for heart conditions such as cardiac arrhythmia or abnormal heart rhythms.   

There are several other conditions in which lidocaine can provide pain relief for your dog in a medical setting. 

Is Lidocaine Dangerous for Dogs?  

Lidocaine, along with any pain medications, can be potentially fatal for dogs, according to the FDA. These medicines, even if they aren’t fatal, can also likely cause severe health issues for your dog. 

There is evidence that these medications could cause health problems or be deadly. 

Unfortunately, there have been instances where cats have consumed pain medicine and become severely sick. Consuming painkillers led to toxic reactions, which caused the pets to lose their lives. 

The cats gained exposure initially after their owners used creams to manage their pain. It’s important to note that specific medications need to be kept away from your pets. 

Any medicine that contains flurbiprofen, gabapentin, prilocaine, lidocaine, and muscle relaxants such as cyclobenzaprine should be out of reach for pets.  

Although the FDA has not specified that lidocaine patches should be out of your dog’s reach, you should not have them lying around the house. 

What Happens If a Dog Chews on a Lidocaine Patch? 

It’s important to note that lidocaine is safe for dogs. However, that’s only when applied under supervision. 

The severity of symptoms depends on how much your dog has ingested. Hypothetically speaking, if it’s a large amount they have consumed, these are the symptoms that could potentially follow:

  • Paranoia
  • Dizziness
  • Agitation and restlessness 
  • Numbness on the tongue
  • Blurred vision
  • Nervousness 
  • Ringing in their ears, aka tinnitus 
  • Muscle twitches  

Other Symptoms 

Other symptoms that your dog can experience after licking or chewing a lidocaine patch include the following.

They Drool  

Normally, drooling isn’t a concern as it’s natural for dogs to drool. However, you should be concerned if it’s coupled with other symptoms. In this case, if your dog consumes lidocaine and they don’t stop drooling, contact your vet right away. 

They Have Diarrhea 

Ingesting lidocaine or any medicine aggravates your dog’s stomach. So, upon first noticing it, it’s best to reach out to your vet. 

They Vomit 

If you notice them vomiting and they won’t stop, it’s best to contact your vet or take them to an emergency pet clinic. Vomiting usually happens after ingesting toxic medications like lidocaine. 

What To Do If Your Dog Eats a Lidocaine Patch

If your dog has chewed on a lidocaine patch or ingested it in any manner, you should first call the vet. The next thing you need to do is keep a close eye on them. 

You want to make sure you take note of any symptoms they are having.  If they are becoming very sick, it’s best to take them to the veterinarian clinic instead of waiting.

If you notice they are disoriented, throwing up, or experiencing anxiety, take them in straight away.   

However, the symptoms can also be mild; in such cases, you should still contact a vet. They may direct you to keep a close eye on your dog.

If they experience mild symptoms, they must rest and remain hydrated. Getting rest will help them to recoup, and staying hydrated will assist their body in metabolizing the medicine while they sleep.  

Should I Be Worried If My Dog Licked Lidocaine?

Once your dog has been treated, you must continue to assist them and provide aftercare. Typically your vet will give instructions on how to do this. Be sure to follow the instructions precisely, as you don’t want to cause any other potential problems. 

  • Ensure you’re providing your dog with a healthy diet. Only give them quality healthy foods, as these can help further strengthen them during the healing process. 
  • Remember to put away any medicine and keep it away from your pet. Ensure they are locked and secured away for future prevention.
  • Follow all your vet’s instructions. 
  • Make sure your dog stays hydrated. Hydration is essential daily but especially when their bodies need to heal.  

Lastly, you want to keep a close eye on their progress. Don’t hesitate to contact your vet if anything new appears regarding symptoms. 

Preventing a Dog from Eating a Lidocaine Patch

It’s crucial to exercise proper prevention to keep your dog safe. This prevention especially applies when it comes to their health.  

Although lidocaine is safe for providing your dog relief, it’s not safe for them if the dog chewed a lidocaine patch. Even the tiniest amount can have serious consequences for your dog. 

Here are some ways you can properly keep your dog safe. 

  • If your dog is wearing a lidocaine patch, it may be best to put a bandage over it to help keep it in place. 
  • If you decide to use lidocaine cream instead of a patch, it may be good to make sure that it’s adequately covered. Otherwise, your dog will be tempted to lick it off. 
  • Make sure you keep unused patches in a safe and secure area. Putting them away will decrease the risk of your dog finding them and chewing on them. 
  • If you use an application tool, then it’s best to wipe off any residue. Wiping it off will ensure your dog won’t go behind you and eat it. 
  • If you have any medications, you must keep them locked away from your dog, especially if they contain lidocaine and other painkillers. 

Final Thoughts

A lidocaine patch can cause serious health effects if your dog chews, eats, licks, or otherwise ingests it. Do your best to keep lidocaine patches away from your dog, but if they do chew one, call your vet and monitor your dog closely for symptoms.

Superb Dog Editor

Superb Dog Editor