Dear Daisy Dog
Our dog, Missy, ate a month’s supply of my birth control pills. Our veterinarian told me to induce vomiting, and the pills came right up. Why would my pills be toxic to a female dog?
I know better than to eat non-food items, but not every dog is as particular as I am.
Birth control pills sometimes upset our canine stomachs, making us drool or vomit.
Worse, they contain estrogen, which can be toxic at high doses. Estrogen at levels above 0.5 mg per pound of body weight suppresses the bone marrow’s production of red blood cells.
So overdoses, whether taken by a male dog or one of us girls, can cause anemia.
Some oral contraceptives also contain iron, which causes stomach upset at levels above 10 mg per pound of body weight – and can damage the liver at even higher doses.
Fortunately, the progesterone in birth control pills is rarely a problem.
If you do the calculations, you’ll realize that oral contraceptives are rarely a problem for large dogs.
Nevertheless, they should be stored safely away from family pets.