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Silicon dioxide, also known as silica, is a substance that is found in sand, glass, and many other places.
It is made up of two atoms of silicon and one atom of oxygen, and it is one of the most abundant substances on Earth.
Silicon dioxide has many uses, including being a major component of glass and Portland cement.
It is also used in desiccants, semiconductor fabrication, and as an abrasive in polishing agents.
In its crystalline form, silicon dioxide is known as quartz, and it is the main ingredient in beach sand.
When silicon dioxide is heated, it can change into a variety of other forms, each with its unique properties.
As a result, this versatile substance plays an important role in a wide range of industries.
Is Silicon Dioxide Safe For Dogs?
Well, that depends on the type of silicon dioxide.
There are two broad categories of silicon dioxide:
- The amorphous form (found in everyday substances like glass and sand).
- The crystalline form (also known as quartz).
The amorphous form of silicon dioxide has been deemed safe for dogs to ingest in small amounts.
However, the crystalline form of silicon dioxide can be dangerous for dogs if ingested in large quantities or if inhaled in the form of dusty particles.
Inhaling crystalline silicon dioxide can cause respiratory issues in dogs, and ingesting large amounts can lead to gastrointestinal irritation or blockages.
It is, therefore, important to keep dogs away from quartz sand or crushed quartz products, such as those used in aquarium filtration systems.
Even though large quantities of crystalline silica is not safe for dogs, it may still be useful in small quantities.
For instance, when used in appropriate quantities, crystalline silica can be fused with other substances to form an earth-safe remedy for fleas, ticks, worms, and other pesky parasites.
That said, vets advise pet parents against using products that have crystalline (like diatomaceous Earth) for pest control.
This is because of the threat it poses to the dogs in case of accidental ingestion.
A dog that ingests such pesticides may suffer from lung complications as well as gastrointestinal tract diseases.
Overall, it is safe to say that the amorphous form of silicon dioxide is generally safe for dogs, but caution should be taken with the crystalline form.
As always, it is important to consult with a veterinarian before giving any substance to your pet.
Is Silicon Dioxide the Same As Silica Gel?
Silicon dioxide, also known as silica, is a chemical compound that is found in both sand and glass.
Silica gel is a man-made product that is derived from silicon dioxide.
Both silica dioxide and silica gel have a wide range of uses, but there are some key differences between the two.
For example, silicon dioxide is a hard substance, while silica gel is much softer.
In addition, silicon dioxide is not porous, while silica gel is highly porous.
As a result, silica gel can absorb large amounts of moisture, making it ideal for use in products like food packaging and shoe inserts.
In its solid form, silica gel is not harmful to dogs to ingest in small amounts.
However, silica gel packets often contain a moisture indicator that can release toxic chemicals if ingested.
According to the Animal Poison Control Center, silica gel poisoning is one of the commonest poisoning incidences in homes.
It is therefore important to dispose of any silica gel as soon as possible to prevent accidental ingestion.
If your dog accidentally consumes silica gel packets, seek veterinary attention immediately.
What Happens If My Dog Eats Or Inhales Silicon Dioxide?
As we have seen, silicon dioxide is a naturally occurring substance that is not toxic to dogs.
However, when inhaled or consumed in excessive quantities, it may present some health challenges for your furry friend.
Inhaled silicon dioxide will settle in the dog’s lungs and cause difficulty breathing.
When ingested, silicon dioxide is also dangerous for dogs. The substance can cause stomach upset and vomiting, and in large quantities can lead to intestinal blockages.
If you suspect that your dog has inhaled or eaten silicon dioxide, it is important to bring them to the vet immediately.
Prompt medical attention will help to alleviate any symptoms and prevent further health complications.
Silicon dioxide is naturally found in materials such as sand and quartz and as such, your dog will most likely come in contact with it quite often.
The good news is that it is not toxic—at least for the most part.
See, there are two types of silicon dioxide: crystalline and amorphous.
The amorphous form is safe for your dog, but caution should be taken with the crystalline form.
Additionally, silica gel, a man-made product derived from silicon dioxide, can also pose a risk to dogs if ingested in large quantities or if it contains moisture indicators.
As always, always consult with your vet if your dog starts showing signs of sickness.
You may also want to check:
Is Magnesium Stearate Safe For Dogs?
Is Potassium Sorbate Safe For Dogs?
Is Sodium Benzoate Safe For Dogs?
Sable McNeil is a canine chef, professional pet blogger, and proud owner of two male dogs. I have been an animal lover all my life, with dogs holding a special place in my heart. Initially, I created this blog to share recipes, tips, and any relevant information on healthy homemade dog treats. But because of my unrelenting passion to make a difference in the world of dogs, I have expanded the blog’s scope to include the best information and recommendations about everything dog lovers need to know about their canine friends’ health and wellbeing. My mission now is to find the most helpful content on anything related to dogs and share it with fellow hardworking hound lovers. While everything I share is in line with the latest evidence-based veterinarian health guidelines, nothing should be construed as veterinary advice. Please contact your vet in all matters regarding your Fido’s health.