Most people generally know that tobacco use, like smoking or dipping, is harmful to their health. But, have you ever thought about how tobacco use could affect you pets? Dogs are particularly harmed by second-hand smoke, also known as “passive smoking,” and residue left behind from cigarette butts and spit tobacco. This means that your pet could be inhaling or ingesting many of the known carcinogens and chemicals found in cigarettes and dip. Below are some of the specific health effects that dogs face when they are exposed to tobacco use:

Passive Smoking

  • Increased incidence of nasal tumors in dogs exposed to secondhand smoke, especially among the long-nosed breeds.
  • Short-nosed breeds of dogs have higher rates of lung cancer because they have less surface area in which the carcinogens build up and so more reach the lungs.
  • Dogs who live with a smoker are more likely to gain more weight after neutering than dogs who come from a smoke-free home.  

Residue & Products

  • Discarded cigarette butts or spit residue left within reach of pets can cause gastrointestinal problems or even nicotine toxicity if a pet finds and eats them.
  • Dogs can eat the liquid nicotine in e-cigarette or vape pen cartridges which are often highly-concentrated. Rechargeable batteries are also small enough to ingest, which may cause burns. The number of pet poisoning calls because of e-cigarettes has risen dramatically in recent years.

Tobacco use can have serious consequences beyond just the tobacco user and one of the most important ways to keep pets safe is to quit tobacco for good. The Semper Fit Health Promotion Program is here to help you lead a healthier life by quitting tobacco. The Health Promotion team will guide you on your quit journey and can provide you with many resources along the way. To learn more, contact the Semper Fit Health Promotion Program via the information below.