Can Dogs Eat Nyquil? – Is It Poisonous for Dogs?

Cold and flu are common problems of the modern age; thus, many people keep Nyquil in their homes. It helps relieve cold symptoms, including headache, cough, or fever. However, when you have a dog, you need to practice caution and store the medicines safely. Dogs are habitual of sneaking into restricted areas and want to taste every other thing. They may get their hands(paws) on drugs and taste them out of curiosity. Therefore, you may want to know, can dogs eat Nyquil?

Let’s learn about it!

Can dogs eat Nyquil?

No, dogs should not be given Nyquil at any cost as it is poisonous to canines. Acetaminophen is a common ingredient in many medicines to treat cold, flu, or fever and is also a constituent of Nyquil. Acetaminophen is not safe for dogs, and it can cause liver or red blood cells damage that can be fatal.

Nyquil is generally a part of everyone’s medication cabinet as it readily treats colds. As a pet parent, when you see your beloved animal sick, you want to give your dog relief in any possible way. Thus, you think of giving your dog Nyquil syrup or a capsule.

Don’t! It can cause severe health issues.

Besides, keep in mind that your pup may be a well-behaved animal, but it may sometimes go out of line. Despite training it well not to explore cabinets and drawers, you cannot be sure that your pup will always act as you wish. Store your medicines away from its reach and remove any chances of getting your fur baby’s hands on them, whether you are around or not. 

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It is evident that Nyquil is not for dogs; now, let’s read about what Nyquil is.

What is Nyquil?

Nyquil is an OTC medicine that treats flu, fever, cold, or other common allergies. People find it effective in relieving fever, treating runny nose, sneezing, cough, or scratchy throats. Nyquil starts reacting after 30 minutes and is safe to take unless you have a medical condition.

Nyquil has three active ingredients:


Acetaminophen is an ingredient found in many readily available medicines. While it may benefit humans, it can cause liver damage in dogs. Besides, acetaminophen may make dogs depressed or weak because of high heart rate and heavy breathing.

Dextromethorphan HBr

The formula sedates some animals. Also, it can cause nausea and other stomach problems in dogs.


Doxylamine may cause health problems such as, diarrhea, vomiting, severe sedation, hyperthermia or respiratory or cardiovascular issues. 

Nyquil comes in capsules and syrup. Plus, it has different formulas and can be taken as per patients’ medical conditions. While Nyquil is effective and generally safe, you need to consult a doctor if your condition persists.

What should I do if my dog licks Nyquil?

Seek vet’s assistance immediately. Nyquil is toxic for dogs, and if you leave it untreated, it may cause severe damage to dogs’ livers or the destruction of red blood cells.

Understand that panicking and worrying never solve problems; on the contrary, they make them more challenging. If your dog has taken matters into its own hands(paws) and taken Nyquil, do not panic. The reaction of Nyquil on pups depends on three factors:

  • the specific formula of Nyquil product
  • weight of the dog
  • Nyquil quantity that dog has consumed

If your dog has consumed a little Nyquil, it may not react badly. On the contrary, it may relieve fever, cough, or sneezing. Remember, it is not always possible to predict how a dog may respond to human medicines, consulting a vet is better.

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How do I avert my dog from eating Nyquil in the future?

If it has happened once, it can happen again unless you change something about it. Prevent your dog from putting prohibited things in its mouth.

  • Confine your pup in a safe place if you spill or drop medicines
  • Clean up spilled medicines without any delay
  • Keep all your medicines either locked or on high shelves
  • Avoid taking medication in front of your dear animal
  • Do not let any medication lie around carelessly.

Nyquil gel caps are greenish and appear like stones. Dogs fancy new things and usually like to put them in their mouths. If your Nyquil capsules are in your furry friend’s reach, it may try to swallow them. So, act like a responsible pet parent and keep your medicines somewhere where your pup cannot reach. 

What I must do if my dog suffers from a cold or fever?

Consult a vet. Fever and cold can be signs of some severe underlying health issues. It is better to rule out any possibility of any other problem instead of treating fever or cold at home.

Still, you can treat your pup’s mild fever or cold at home. Apply cool water around your dog’s paws and ears to bring down its body temperature. If your beloved animal has caught a cold, ensure that its environment is clean and it doesn’t come in contact with other dogs. Moreover, give it fluids and ensure that it takes proper rest.

Dogs fall sick often, and many times there is nothing serious. However, you need to monitor its condition and if you see its health deteriorating, take it to the vet.

Of course, you cannot give it Nyquil as it isn’t safe for dogs.

Recently FAQs to whether dogs can eat Nyquil

What common medicines can be fatal to a dog?

  • antidepressants
  • Sleeping pills
  • Blood pressure medicines
  • Tylenol
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Why does my dog fall sick very often?

Dogs fall ill because of various reasons, including

  • eating worms
  • Eating foreign objects
  • Overeating
  • Eating harmful edibles
  • Infections

Sometimes dogs have some underlying issue that makes them fall sick now and then.

Can dogs have Dayquil?

No, you cannot give Dayquil to your dogs. Dayquil contains Acetaminophen, which is poisonous to dogs. Also, it can damage dogs’ livers and their red blood cells. So do not give Dayquil to your dogs; instead, consult a vet.

Which cold medicines are safe for a dog?

  • Benadryl
  • loratadine
  • cetirizine

Does Nyquil help in sleeping?

Yes, it does, as it causes drowsiness. Although it is not a sleeping pill, instead a medicine to treat cold or fever, it helps you sleep. 

Concluding our thoughts on whether dogs can eat Nyquil

Dogs generally catch a cold quickly and, as a result, suffer from cold or fever. Since Nyquil is a go-to medicine for many people to treat colds, you may wonder if you can give the same to your pup. Dogs and Nyquil are a deadly combination, and you must avoid it. If your dog accidently swallows a Nyquil pill, or you give it to your pup in ignorance, seek a vet’s assistance without any delay.

Photo of author

Immad Amir

Immad has a black Labrador who is his first child. With no prior experience of how to take care of his pooch, Immad started researching about what dogs love to eat. This blog is a journal of all the research Immad has done regarding a pet's diet.
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