Can Dogs Drink Alcohol?

Last Updated on March 8, 2023 by Woody Pet

Alcohol is something that most of us consume, whether we like it or not, so much so that it wouldn’t be a surprise if there’s at least one bottle or can of alcohol stored in your home. As much as we like drinking these, it’s not as safe for our dogs as it is for us – the consequences are actually way worse. 

Can Dogs Drink Alcohol?

Can dogs drink alcohol? The answer is a definite NO. It doesn’t matter if you’re giving them a can of beer, a glass of cocktail, or a shot of vodka. They’re all toxic and deadly to dogs whichever type of alcohol it may be. Ultimately, what matters, in the end, is the amount that they have consumed. 


Although dogs naturally turn away from food and beverages with alcohol, there are still instances where they might have a taste of it. Given that, they would actually tend more to fruit-based drinks and that includes cocktails, punches, and ciders to name a few. What makes these drinks even more dangerous is if it contains xylitol, which is an artificial sweetener. 

How much alcohol is too much?

can dogs drink alcohol
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Dogs are not as equipped as us people for their bodies to fully break down alcohol. Their livers are much smaller and, thus, not as functional as ours, making them more susceptible to alcohol poisoning.

Although alcohol in general is dangerous to dogs, the limit to a dog’s alcohol consumption still depends on a number of factors, such as their weight and breed. For instance, even small amounts of alcohol could be fatal to small dog breeds, as compared to larger ones.  However, given all of this, this shouldn’t be a concern if you prevent the dog from consuming alcohol as much as possible. 

What happens if my dog drinks alcohol?

can dogs drink alcohol
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Nothing good will come out of your dog consuming alcohol. It may also be difficult to determine if they have consumed some especially if it’s on accident. Listed below are some of the signs and symptoms you should look out for: 

  • Depression
  • Weakness and fatigue
  • Fever
  • Extreme dehydration
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Vomiting
  • Slowed reflexes and incoordination
  • Salivation
  • Sharp drop or rise in temperature
  • Seizures

How do I prevent my dog from drinking alcohol?

can dogs drink alcohol
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One of the most effective ways of preventing your dog from consuming alcohol is to train them. Teach them how to understand your gestures and ways of saying ‘no’ to something. It doesn’t even have to be for specific bottles of alcohol. Of course, it would be too difficult, or even impossible, for your dog to recognize every brand of alcohol and know how to avoid it. As a solution to this, train them that no means no. 

 Another method is, of course, to keep the alcohol out of their reach. For some of us, there may be a lot of bottles of alcohol in our homes that may be for display, are gifts from others, or may just like drinking from time to time

. Always take note that you have a dog who may suffer difficult consequences and complications should they take at least a drop of those alcoholic beverages. With that, keep them in a safe cabinet or anywhere that your dog will certainly not reach. 

What do I do if my dog drinks alcohol?

can dogs drink alcohol
Image From Berkay Gumustekin

Should there come a time that your dog still manages to consume alcohol despite your efforts and precautions, you should immediately call your veterinarian. From then on, you will receive more precise instructions and recommendations on how to treat your dog

. It is also possible that your veterinarian will instruct you to bring your dog to their clinic for a checkup, while others may have you wait for a while to observe your dog’s reaction to the alcohol. If at the moment the veterinarian or the clinic is not available, immediately go to the nearest emergency veterinarian center.  So, can dogs drink alcohol? Keep in mind that it will NEVER be okay for your dog to consume alcohol on any level.

The prospect of a dog getting drunk may seem funny to some but the consequences are definitely not. Be a responsible dog parent and keep alcohol out of your dog’s reach at all times. 


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