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Whether you go hunting with your dog, or have him in the vicinity of festivities involving fireworks (whether it is a public setting or your own backyard), you need to understand the dangers of having gunpowder around your canine friends.Most of the gunpowder in the market is made from just a few ingredients – sulfur, potassium nitrate and carbon. Fireworks also contain chlorates, copper, aluminium and barium salt. If your dog accidentally ingests gunpowder, it can make him seriously ill. Most cases of accidental ingestion are followed by diarrhea and vomiting. The potassium nitrate in the gunpowder is responsible for the abdominal issues.While ingestion is not usually lethal, it can cause other problems like low blood pressure. If your dog ingests gunpowder in large quantities, it can lead to methemoglobinemia, a condition where the blood gets oxidized and cannot carry the oxygen well. If your dog is vomiting, there is a high chance that he swallowed a shell casing, which can lead to blockages and other associated internal complications. Rush your dog to the vet if you think he is vomiting shell casings or gunpowder is to blame.What should you do in case your dog accidentally ingests gunpowder?
In most of the cases, dogs end up vomiting the gunpowder they ingest as their bodies have a way of getting rid of the toxins before they cause any serious harm. Still, we urge you to call a veterinarian for medial support.How to keep your dog safe?
When you shoot off fireworks, make sure that your dog is far away or inside the house. If you come across any ammunition or fireworks within your pet’s reach, whether it is while you are out walking or inside the house, place it away from his reach.It is worth noting that illegal fireworks tend to contain larger quantities of gunpowder and you should make sure that your dog gets nowhere near them. Also, make sure that you keep your dog away from fireworks shows. And please stay on the lookout for any leftover fireworks or crackers, even after the show’s over. For example, if municipal fireworks are being set off at the local park, then do not take your dog walking in that area immediately afterwards. The barium salts that are used to generate colors in the fireworks can lead to life threatening complications if ingested. Among the observed symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting, slow heart rate, drooling, muscle weakness at best, paralysis at worst, abnormal cardiac rhythms, high blood pressure and shock.Last, but not the least, if you are going to take Fido for a walk in an area where there was a display of fireworks recently, then wipe his paws with a wet rag to remove all the traces of gunpowder.