Plaster is what we often use to form a solid barrier over our interior walls. We rely on it mainly to provide protection, but it can also serve as a sound barrier and insulation. Unfortunately, your pet dog may see it as something else.
Some dogs have a bad habit of chewing through plaster. You may be wondering if that habit can be damaging in more ways than one. Find out if plaster is a potentially toxic chew toy by continuing with the rest of this article.
What Happens if a Dog Eats Plaster?
Plaster is something you use to bolster your interior walls. They shouldn’t be bolstering your pet’s diet.
Still, some dogs will chew through plaster and they may even eat some of it. So, should you be worried if something like that happens?
To answer that question, you first need to understand what plaster is. Plaster is typically made using clay, gypsum, lime, and sand. Occasionally, you may also find plaster mixtures that contain animal hairs.
Those ingredients are not toxic to dogs. Your dog still shouldn’t be eating them, but they won’t get poisoned by those ingredients either.
Although the ingredients used to make plaster aren’t toxic, that doesn’t mean they are completely safe for your pet to consume. Your pet could still experience some consequences from their poor decision.
The most common side effect dogs experience from eating plaster is an upset stomach. After a while, your dog may start to feel uncomfortable. Not long after that, they may start to throw up the plaster they ate. They may also suffer from a bout of diarrhea caused by the plaster.
The More Serious Side Effects of Plaster Consumption
Your dog vomiting and experiencing a bout of diarrhea after eating plaster is obviously not something you want to see. However, it is still preferable to what could happen if your pet if they eat a large amount of plaster.
If your dog ate a lot of plaster, that material can start transforming into a large mass inside their gastrointestinal tract. The large clump of plaster can cause great discomfort as it grows inside your dog’s body. It could also effectively block any food from reaching your pet’s stomach.
Note that your dog could also have a more adverse reaction to eating plaster if they are allergic to it. If they start to have difficulty breathing, that could be because of an allergic reaction they are having to the plaster.
What to Do if My Dog Eats Plaster?
Upon coming home, you may find that a chunk of your wall is missing because your dog just ate it. As angry as you might be about your damaged wall, you are probably more concerned about your pet who just ate a lot of plaster.
What should you do if stumble upon that kind of situation? Go through the following section to find out.
Step 1: Watch Over Your Pet
Plaster is not a substance that typically poisons dogs. If your dog had a bite or two of plaster and stopped, they should turn out to be fine.
What you can do at first is simply watch over your dog. Observe how your dog is acting. Hopefully, they are still acting normally even if they did throw up once or had a liquid bowel movement.
You can stay at home if you don’t notice anything strange about your dog’s behavior.
Step 2: Avoid Feeding Your Dog for a Few Hours
If it looks like your dog is acting normally after eating plaster, you can probably hold off on visiting the veterinarian. Even so, you need to help your dog pass the plaster they ate. To do that, you should fast your dog for a while.
Avoid giving them food for about five hours or so. That should be enough time for them to pass the plaster through their system. You can also encourage your dog to drink more water during this time to facilitate the faster movement of the plaster.
Step 3: Take Your Dog to the Veterinarian
Staying at home with your dog is an option if they seem to be fine outside of some vomiting and diarrhea. Unfortunately, the situation will not always turn out that way. Your dog may have eaten too much plaster and that means they need immediate help.
Make the trip to the veterinary clinic as soon as possible to get your dog examined. The veterinarian will likely perform an X-ray examination to ascertain the size of the blockage. They may also do it to check if the blockage can be passed naturally.
At that point, the veterinarian can decide which method of treatment will be suitable for your pet. Heed their advice and your pet should turn out fine.
How to Stop My Dog from Eating Plaster off Walls?
Eating plaster is not the type of habit you want your pet dog to develop. So, how should you go about preventing that kind of thing from happening again?
The tips detailed below should prove quite useful.
Address the Underlying Issue
Dogs don’t eat plaster for no reason. More often than not, they engage in that kind of behavior because they are either bored or feeling anxious. The anxiety may stem from being separated from you.
You need to do something about those negative emotions that your dog feels if you want to be rid of this problem for good.
Speak to a canine behavior expert about that matter. They can give you tips for treating your pet and they may even conduct some training.
Once your pet gets over their boredom and/or separation anxiety, they should refrain from chewing through your walls.
Rearrange Your Furniture
Rearranging your furniture should also help if your dog has a habit of chewing through plaster. Try to block your dog’s access to the spot they chewed on by placing a couch or table there.
Spray the Wall with a Substance Your Dog Does Not Like
Another thing you can try is to spray your wall with a substance your dog does not like. Upon sniffing that substance, your dog may decide against chewing the plaster.
Give Your Dog Some Toys
Since boredom could be the reason why your dog likes to chew on your walls, why not give them something else to play around with? In this case, you can use toys to distract your dog.
Puzzle toys are especially good at keeping your dog occupied. With your pet fixated on the toys you provided, they won’t bother with your walls anymore.
Take Your Dog on a Long Walk
Taking your dog for a long walk can also stop them from chewing on plaster. After the long walk, your pet will likely be pretty tired. Your dog won’t be able to destroy your walls if they are asleep.