My Dog Ate NyQuil! Should I Be Worried?

(Last Updated On: April 5, 2023)

Do you not just dislike it that your pet decides with no rhyme or reason to put the matter in it’s own hands (paws)?

For example when I was feeling nervous prior to fireworks night… And then took several drinks of Xanax.

And then, it took a couple of Nyquil capsules due to getting a little under the weather.

A snooty puppy.

Your dog just ate Nyquil What’s the next thing that’s going to occur? You are in any danger? 

There are numerous variants of NyQuil and even though there are small differences but they all have identical active ingredients.

Unfortunately, certain substances are poisonous to dogs. Dogs who have eaten an excessive amount of the medication may exhibit diverse symptoms, including diarrhea, vomiting as well as pale gums, and trouble breathing. In more serious instances, it may be suffering from damage to the red blood cells and liver.

Fortunately, the margin of security of human medication is extremely large and even includes dogs. A dog will either need to be very small or consume an extremely massive amount of capsules for them to be susceptible to serious or moderate poisoning.

You may feel sleepy following the ingestion of the medication, but this is a common adverse effect that should fade off by itself.

If you are still concerned about the health of your dog it could be a good idea to cause vomiting or give activated charcoal, though both of these require prompt action. If not, just visit the vet for a thorough examination to put your confidence in your pet!

 How NyQuil Hurt My Dog?

If the NyQuil the dog consumed could be harmful is dependent on three primary factors that include the type of NyQuil in question as well as the amount consumed as well as the weight and size of your dog.

There are numerous types, formulations, and even varieties of NyQuil that are all geared towards an entirely different goal or market.

NyQuil “Severe Cold and Influenza It is exactly what its name implies- created for people who have severe symptoms of flu and cold.

And NyQuil The ‘Berry’ and “Honey flavors were designed for people who cannot consume cold medications without tasting “honeylicious” (Editor’s note: it’s a crime! ).

Although there are more than 15 distinct products within the range overall They all contain the following three ingredients that are active:

  • Doxylamine succinate
  • Dextromethorphan
  • Acetaminophen

Certain versions also include additional ingredients of guaifenesin as well as phenyleph. Each of these chemical compounds has the possibility of being toxic to dogs, contingent on the amount consumed.

It is essential to examine the label of the product you have that you own to find the ingredients that are in play. This will enable you u understand and be prepared for the particular symptoms that could be present.

In the next part, we’ll explore the ingredients in each and the quantity of each included in a capsule, le and what it can mean in terms of your dog’s wellbeing, and overall wellbeing.

So… What Happens If My Dog Ate NyQuil?

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It’s not a good idea for dogs to ingest medication not intended to be taken by them, in this instance, they have with a high chance of being okay, so it’s only some or two capsules, and not the entire packet.

Furthermore the possibility that NyQuil can cause harm will depend heavily (no joke intended) on the dog’s weight and size.

Here’s how the ingredients contained in a capsule break down, starting from the most concentrated to the lowest:

Acetaminophen (325 Mili gram)

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Acetaminophen also known as paracetamol is a non-steroidal drug that has anti-inflammatory properties. It is widely used in humans to treat of moderate fever and pain.

Dogs generally do not react well to acetaminophen since it is absorbed quickly by the GI tract, and can cause kidney, liver and red blood cells to be damaged. But, as with all chemicals, there is a limit to the quantity that must be consumed before it can become toxic.

In dogs, signs of toxicity can be observed at doses of 40 mg per pound body weight.

So, should your dog consume just one capsule that t must weigh only 8.125 pounds in order to suffer any harmful consequences? If you have a dog with a tiny size, breeds, such as Chihuahuas or PomeraniansBeware.

After ingesting in the bloodstream, acetaminophen is absorbed within 30 minutes, and the chemicals that are produced through chemical breakdown begin to harm both red and liver cells By adhering to them.

A severe liver injury could lead to an eventual loss of liver function, and damaged red blood cells mean that the blood isn’t in a position to carry sufficient quantities of oxygen to the vital organs.

Some of the most common symptoms of Acetaminophen poisoning, liver damage as well as red blood cell damage are:
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Trouble breathing
  • Brown, blue, or pale gums
  • Lethargy and weakness
  • Face and paws swelling
  • Dry eye (keratoconjunctivitis)
  • Urine is  dark and brown
  • Affliction or shock

Acetaminophen is most likely to be the most harmful ingredient in Nyquil which is something as a dog’s owner, must know about.

In all that, keep in mind there is a safe dose and if your dog isn’t able to reach it, there isn’t any danger of being poisoned from the chemical.

Dextromethorphan (15 Mili gram)

Dextromethorphan is a drug that acts to reduce coughs in humans and in dogs.

It is generally safe when used in dogs. It is typically given in a dosage in the range of 0.5mgs per pound of body weight to ease irritation to the bronchial tubes.

Doxylamine succinate (6.25 Mili gram)

Red and blue capsules, as well as blue capsules.

Doxylamine succinate acts as an antihistamine utilized to treat cold and allergy-related symptoms. Also, the substance has antiseptic effects especially when it is used with painkillers, such as Acetaminophen.

The usual dosage is 1 mg per pound of body weight every eight hours.

Some side effects include a loss of balance, and coordination, as well as stomach upsets A toxic overdose can cause symptoms that indicate central nervous system dysfunction like ataxia (walking like a drunk) or excitement. Other symptoms include seizures.

Guaifenesin (200 Mili gram)

Guaifenesin, also known as Mucinex is an expectorant that assists users to eliminate the phlegm that is accumulating in their airways. It is a good choice for dogs with doses of up to 50mg for every pound of weight.

It is generally secure to use, but when doses are higher, side reactions can be mild GI disturbance, stomach pain, and diarrhea. The signs of an overdose of guaifenesin include irregular breathing patterns, low blood pressure, uncontrollable eyes, shaking, and muscle spasms.

Phenylephrine (5 Mili gram)

Phenylephrine, a drug, is typically employed to treat constipation and works by reducing blood vessels in the body.

Be cautious with phenylephrine in dogs since they typically do not take decongestants effectively even in small doses. The doses that cause harm range from 0.1 up to 0.15mg per pound of body weight.

The most frequently observed symptoms of phenylephrine poisoning are:

  • Heavy panting
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Hyperactivity
  • Tremors
  • Agitation
  • Ataxia
  • A heart rate that is inconsistent
  • Body temperature fluctuation
  • Seizures.

If your dog consumed a Nyquil product containing Phenylephrine, be sure to keep a check for these symptoms. But, dextromethorphan is also in the formulation and has the capacity to counterbalance any stimulant effect of this decongestant.

What Happens I Do If My Dog Ate NyQuil?

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If your dog has swallowed a handful of capsules of NyQuil There are various ways you can take to ensure that your pet is well-behaved and safe.

The first thing to remember is don’t be afraid!

Be calm and assess the situation. Then answer the following questions.

Do you know how many capsules think your dog may have taken?

What are the exact components in the ingredients in your NyQuil product?

How long since your dog was last bitten by the medication?

How much does your dog weigh approximately?

By answering these questions you’ll be able to determine immediately if your dog is in danger by using the above toxic dosage guidelines.

If it’s not had the minimum amount of toxic threshold for its size and weight, it will be okay! It could be tired for a time however, it will soon return to normal.

Immediately the Following Ingestion

If less than 30 minutes have passed, you’ll be able to induce vomiting within your dog in order to flush all of the medication as possible from its stomach before it gets absorption. The speed of your intervention is vital in this case, as the drug (acetaminophen particularly) is extremely quick-acting.

You can attempt to induce your dog to vomit by using 3 percent hydrogen peroxide. The recommended dosage for one teaspoon for each 10 pounds bodyweight. It is administered via a syringe or turkey baster or even by mixing it into food items such as bread or milk.


If you prefer the turkey baster method it’s simpler to place the tool on the dog’s side mouth, rather than the front. In this way, the liquid will easily flow through the throat.

Once your dog has taken the hydrogen peroxide solution, give it a few hours to move about. The solution will bubble up in its stomach and then make it throw up.

After vomiting check to see if you can find any trace of the capsules. If there aren’t any capsules or your dog doesn’t vomit in any way, give it a second amount of hydrogen peroxide.

Activated charcoal is able to attract toxic chemicals into its pores. This is why it is a highly efficient first-line treatment. Once the toxins have been bound, they are able to move through the intestines, without being absorbed into the bloodstream.

Activated charcoal is available in doses of between 1 and 5 grams per kilogram of weight of the dog. For it to be efficient, it must be administered prior to the chemicals are able to be digested, which is why it is recommended to give it immediately following the discovery of the accidental consumption.

 in The Vet’s Office

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If you bring your pet to the vet to check for NyQuil poisoning the treatment is likely to comprise:

The body is decontaminated

Testing the value of liver and blood

Guarding the liver against future damage, and

Providing IV fluids.

How Do I Prevent My Dog From Eating NyQuil In The Future?

To safeguard your pet It is crucial to stop it from ever having a chance to eat NyQuil once more.

It is possible to do this using:

Make sure you keep all of your medication stored on high shelves or closed cupboards, where it’s entirely away from reach.

Don’t leave any medications left unattended on the counter or on the bedside table.

Restrict your dog to the safety of a secure area first in case you do drop an empty pill on the floor. Make sure you locate the medication before letting your dog run in freedom again.

Clean up any spilled medications promptly and put the residue in a closed bin.

Do not give your dog any human medication without consulting a vet.

Related Article:

6 Best Indestructible Dog Toys for Toughest Chewers

In Summary:

If your dog did take a bite of NyQuil the possibility that it’s harmful and causes negative consequences is contingent on the precise form consumed and the amount consumed, and the total size and weight of the dog.

The majority of dogs will be well after having eaten NyQuil (albeit slightly asleep and possibly with a hint of stomach pain). If your pet is a toy or small breed or consumed a significant amount of capsules, you might need to be extra careful in relation to the possibility of poisoning.

When any of the signs of the above symptoms occur it is recommended to bring your dog to the closest vet.

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