Since dogs can eat foods made from flour, they should be able to eat raw flour, right? This article is specifically about dogs eating flour in its raw (unbaked) state. Although flour does not look or taste like the food products that dogs naturally eat, we know that dogs are curious animals. This can lead to them ingesting anything they find fascinating.
If you are a dog owner, you should know that most dogs prefer foods they can chew on. They will often jump at any opportunity to have something to chew on, be it edible or inedible. So your dog licking flour may seem strange to you. As strange as that may seem, the fact remains that licking flour is a possible occurrence in dogs, especially in puppies.
Could there be something attractive about flour that makes dogs want to lick it? Is flour dangerous to dogs? If your dog ate flour, I am sure you have many questions. Have no fear, we will discuss all you need to know and do in this situation.
Why Would a Dog Even Eat Flour?
The most common reasons for dogs eating flour are curiosity and extreme hunger. Some dogs may even be attracted by the neutral smell of flour. Their inquisitive nature, amongst other things, makes them do the unthinkable sometimes. This curiosity is heightened in puppies who are still getting used to the strange world around them, and if they see flour, they’re going to taste it.
One of the behavioral attributes of dogs is to sniff at almost anything that looks edible. If your dog sees a bag of flour somewhere in the house, it will be tempted to taste it out of curiosity. Also, the sight of flour poured out carelessly on the floor can be irresistible for curious dogs who do not want to miss out on a ”free” meal.
Some amount of flour lying carelessly on the floor or any reachable surface might also be irresistible for a hungry dog. As selective as dogs can be, they will not hesitate to consume anything that appears to be edible, including powdery substances, when hungry. You should avoid getting your dog in such a hungry state.
Is Flour Toxic to Dogs?
Flour is not toxic to dogs, whether in its raw or baked state. Your dog should not suffer any side effects after consuming flour if only a small amount was ingested. There could be side effects like diarrhea or constipation if your dog eats too much flour. The body’s reaction to flour depends mainly on your dog’s size relative to the amount of flour eaten and your dog’s food allergies.
Eating a lot of flour can have ill effects on dogs, including constipation. Excessive consumption of dry flour at once can result in several gastrointestinal problems. Sometimes, the effects of constipation can completely disappear in less than 24 hours, but in more serious cases, the condition could persist longer. Your dog will experience pain and discomfort if this happens.
If your dog is gluten intolerant or has a flour allergy, even a small amount of flour can cause health problems. You should look for signs of an allergic reaction if your dog accidentally eats flour. However, if your dog seems okay after consuming small flour, you might not need to worry. Some of the signs of an allergic reaction in dogs include coughing, sneezing, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Why Would My Dog Have Diarrhea After Eating Flour?
Your dog could have diarrhea after eating flour if it is allergic to flour or intolerant to gluten. Gluten is an important protein in flour, particularly wheat flour, and some dogs have been discovered to be allergic to this protein. Gluten allergy can cause several reactions in dogs, including itchiness, wheezy, sneezing, coughing, breathing difficulties, and runny discharges from the eyes and nose. There could also be gastrointestinal issues such as vomiting and diarrhea results.
Gluten-intolerant dogs can develop diarrhea as a result of an allergic reaction in the digestive system regardless of the quantity consumed. The resulting allergic reaction will be more serious if the quantity of flour consumed is excessive. However, even when only little quantity of flour is consumed, once the body senses the presence of gluten, an allergic reaction will be initiated. This is because the body’s immune system recognizes gluten as a threat to its health.
In a dog with gluten allergies, the immune system releases agents called antibodies that will attack the “offending” gluten. This triggers an allergic reaction that can further elicit inflammatory responses from the body. These inflammatory responses can have varying effects, as listed above.
What Should I Do if My Dog Ate Flour?
The first thing to do if your dog ate flour is to try as much as possible to determine how much flour was consumed. Knowing how much flour was consumed will be instrumental in determining the next line of action. If the amount of flour consumed is small, you might not need to worry. However, regardless of the quantity eaten, I will advise you to pay close attention to your dog for the next 24 hours.
Paying close attention to your dog after it has consumed flour is a safe option, especially if you are not sure whether your dog is gluten intolerant or not. For the next 24 hours, you should look out for signs of an allergic reaction. As soon as you notice any of the signs mentioned earlier, you should contact your veterinarian. During this watching period, keep your dog hydrated to soften the lump of dry flour he ate.
If you have successfully dealt with an allergic reaction in dogs before, you may not need to contact your veterinarian. For cases in which your dog consumed a large quantity of flour, make sure you look out for feelings of discomfort or pain which may be indicators of constipation. You should also contact your veterinarian if the symptoms of constipation persist longer than 24 hours.
If your dog ate flour, it is best to reach out to your vet. In the best-case scenario, your canine will have no problems or only mild stomach troubles. If he has a gluten allergy, immediate attention is required. Either way, if the situation is handled properly, your pet will be fine in no time.