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Can I Put Vicks on My Dog?

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Vicks VapoRub is an item commonly used for pain relief. People use it all the time if they need to address some nagging aches and pains. Because of how well Vicks works for us, it’s only natural for us to wonder if they can benefit our pets too.

Can you also use Vicks to alleviate the discomfort your pain is dealing with? Find out the answer to that question and other important topics by reading on.

Can I Put Vicks on My Dog?

Let’s get to the heart of the matter right away. Can you use Vicks on your dog? Unfortunately, no, Vicks is not something you should spread on your pet’s body.

The number one reason why you cannot use Vicks on your dog is because it contains camphor. Camphor is a substance that can be extracted from the bark of the camphor tree. These days, you’ll find manufacturers that produce a synthetic type of camphor.

Although we know camphor as an ingredient commonly used in pain-relieving products, it can still be poisonous. Ingesting it is highly dangerous for that exact reason.

Common household pets such as dogs are very susceptible to the toxic effects of camphor. Your dog doesn’t even have to ingest the camphor to fall victim to its toxic effects. They can still absorb it through their skin and fall ill that way.

So, what will happen if your pet dog is exposed to a poisonous amount of Vicks VapoRub? In all likelihood, your pet will display symptoms of camphor poisoning that are consistent with their level of exposure. The common symptoms of camphor poisoning are detailed below.

Skin Irritation

Irritated skin is one of the indicators that your dog is suffering from camphor poisoning. In the case of camphor poisoning, the irritation will be localized to the area where you applied the Vicks.

The problem with irritated skin is that your pet won’t be able to leave it alone. They will probably scratch or bite at the irritated area constantly. You want to avoid that as much as possible because your pet’s condition could get worse from ingesting the ointment.


Your pet may also develop a case of diarrhea after being exposed to Vicks VapoRub. They may start pooping all over the place not long after the ointment was on their skin.

Dealing with diarrhea immediately is a must if you are a pet owner. If you ignore it or wait too long to do something about it, your pet may end up getting dehydrated. Treat your pet’s camphor poisoning as soon as possible so you can avoid that potential problem.


Diarrhea is not the only symptom of camphor poisoning that could potentially cause your pet to become dehydrated. While dealing with camphor poisoning, your dog may also experience a bout of vomiting.

A spell of vomiting can take a significant physical toll on your pet. You will need to secure treatment for your pet immediately so you can ease the effects of vomiting on them.


Depression is another symptom that has been linked to camphor poisoning. A dog suffering from depression will not be very active. They may also be averse to doing anything, even activities they previously enjoyed.

You may also notice that your dog’s habits have changed. They may be eating or sleeping at unusual times. Those changes are additional indicators that your pet is indeed depressed.


We’re now getting to the most serious complications of camphor poisoning for dogs. Among those complications are seizures.

Not long after the camphor enters your dog’s body, they may start to seize up. You may see them fall to the ground at that point.

Seizures aren’t just frightening to look at. They can also be very dangerous. Your pet could sustain serious injuries while they are in the midst of experiencing seizures.

Head to the veterinarian as soon as possible if your dog is suffering from seizures brought about by camphor poisoning. Treating them right away will be crucial to their survival.

It is also worth noting that your pet would have to either ingest or absorb a significant amount of Vicks VapoRub for them to have seizures. As long as you are able to quickly wipe away the ointment on your dog’s skin after it gets there, you can save them from those troubling symptoms.

Respiratory Depression

Lastly, a dog suffering through a case of camphor poisoning may also develop a case of respiratory depression. If your dog is affected by respiratory depression, that means they are not breathing properly. Their rate of breathing may be so slow that they cannot inhale enough oxygen.

Respiratory depression can be fatal for your dog if it persists. It is especially dangerous if it is accompanied by other symptoms such as seizures. Rush to the veterinary clinic if you notice that your pet’s breathing has changed.

Can I Put Vicks on My Dog for Fleas?

Fleas can be harmful to dogs so getting rid of those pests should be a priority for you. However, you shouldn’t resort to using Vicks VapoRub to eliminate those fleas.

Remember that your dog can quickly absorb Vicks VapoRub through their skin. They don’t have to ingest it to suffer from its ill effects. No matter how effective Vicks is at repelling fleas, you should never use it on your dog’s skin.

Instead of applying Vicks, you can try out other methods of removing your dog’s fleas. For instance, you can use a special comb to remove the fleas clinging to your pet’s fur. Regularly bathing your pet will also be helpful if you are trying to keep the fleas away.

Can I Put My Vicks on My Dog’s Nose?

Putting Vicks on your dog’s nose is not something you should ever consider. Applying Vicks on your pet’s skin is already pretty dangerous. If you place the ointment on a spot your dog can easily lick, they are more likely to ingest it and suffer from severe camphor poisoning.

Odds are you won’t even get the ointment on your dog’s nose in the first place. Dogs absolutely hate that stuff so they will likely back away the second they get a whiff of it.