Are Christmas tree pine needles toxic?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra – we took down our tree (finally) and there were pine needles on the floor. I didn't have time to vacuum – and when I got home from work today – my dog vomited some bile with pine needles. Are they toxic? What do you recommend? He is acting fine now and ate a little bit and has kept that food own.

Regards,

Nori V. – Tulsa, OK

Answer

Hi Nori– thanks for your email. Pine needles are not considered toxic but are irritating. they can be irritating to the mouth and stomachs of dogs as well as the feet and pads if they walk on the needles.

Many dogs will vomit after eating the needles. If your dog is acting fine now – everything will probably be okay. I'd recommend vacuuming up all needles to prevent further ingestion.

Best of luck!

Dr. Debra

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