Is Lysol OK to Use Around Dogs?

by Jon Mohrman
Many chemical cleansers are harmful to pets.

Many chemical cleansers are harmful to pets.

Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images

Lysol is a phenol-based cleaning product generally not recommended for use in homes with dogs. Phenol can cause liver damage to pets, and Lysol gives off potentially harmful volatile organic compounds in its vapors. Additionally, if your dog licks or ingests Lysol, it can cause serious chemical burns, usually on the tongue and upper esophagus.

Poisoning

If you see your dog make mouth or tongue contact with Lysol, flush her mouth repeatedly with lots of water to minimize burns and ingestion. Contact your vet right away. If you've recently cleaned with Lysol or your dog has gained access to a bottle and you notice that she's excessively swallowing or drooling, lethargic, repeatedly pawing at the mouth, refusing to eat or showing other troubling potential signs of toxicity, seek emergency veterinary care immediately.

Alternatives

In general, avoid chemical commercial cleansers. Isopropyl alcohol and vinegar are effective dog-friendly disinfectant alternatives to Lysol; isopropyl alcohol needs to dry before allowing your dog access. Baking soda is cheap, nontoxic and easy to use as a cleaning product. Sprinkle it on straight or make a paste by mixing it with a little water. Scrub spots on hard surfaces, carpets, upholstery and other surfaces to clean and deodorize. Borax is a natural compound used in many laundry detergents that works like baking soda in many instances. Mineral oil is a pet-safe alternative to wood cleaners, and cornstarch works well on carpets, windows and many metals.

Photo Credits

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About the Author

Jon Mohrman has been a writer and editor for more than seven years. He specializes in food, travel and health topics. He attended the University of Pittsburgh for English literature and San Francisco State University for creative writing.

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