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Is This Weed Killer Safe For Pets

Category Weeds


Is the vinegar, salt and soap weed killer harmful to pets? I would like to try it on my paved area however my puppy is likely to lick the area. Should I apply and then keep her away for a week? Hose it in after a few days?


Stacey from Australia


The ASPCA lists salt as a food to avoid giving your pet. It has also been my personal experience that a lot of dogs (and some cats) enjoy the smell and taste of soap (although usually bar soap). None of these ingredients are likely to seriously hurt your pet in small quantities, but mild to severe digestive upsets are possible depending on the quantities ingested. I would feel comfortable telling you to apply it and then keep her away from the area for a week. That is more than enough time for it to work on weeds. If after that you notice that she starts licking the area, go ahead and wash it down with a hose. Here are some more food and household products the ASPCA deems unsafe for dogs and cats. For more information visit www.aspca.org



  • Alcohol
  • Avocado
  • Chocolate (all forms, including garden mulch made from cocoa shells)
  • Fatty foods
  • Macadamia nuts
  • Moldy or spoiled foods
  • Onions, onion powder
  • Raisin or grapes
  • Salt
  • Yeast dough
  • Garlic
  • Products sweetened with xylitol (a sweetener common in diabetic diets)

Warm Weather Garden Hazards

  • Animal toxins-toads, insects, spiders, snakes, and scorpions
  • Blue-green pond algae
  • Citronella candles
  • Cocoa mulch
  • Compost piles & Fertilizers
  • Certain outdoor plants and bulbs
  • Swimming pool chemicals
  • Fly baits containing methomyl
  • Slug and snail bait containing metaldehyde

Medications (even in small doses)

  • Pain killers
  • Cold medicines
  • Anti-cancer drugs
  • Antidepressants
  • Vitamins
  • Diet Pills

Cold Weather Hazards

  • Antifreeze
  • Liquid Potpourri
  • Ice melting products
  • Rat and mouse bait

Common Household Hazards

  • Fabric softener sheets

  • Mothballs
  • Post-1982 pennies (due to high zinc concentrations)

Holiday Hazards

  • Christmas tree water (may contain fertilizers and bacteria, which can cause digestive upsets).
  • Electrical cords
  • Ribbon and tinsel (can cause intestinal blockages. Most often occurs in kittens!)
  • Batteries
  • Glass ornaments

Non-toxic Substances for Dogs and Cats

These are considered non-toxic, although they can cause mild gastrointestinal upset in some animals:

  • Water-based paints
  • Toilet bowl water (unless treated with chemicals)
  • Silica gel
  • Poinsettia
  • Cat Litter
  • Glue traps
  • Glow jewelry

Good Luck!

About The Author: Ellen Brown is our Green Living and Gardening Expert. Click here to ask Ellen a question! Ellen Brown is an environmental writer and photographer and the owner of Sustainable Media, an environmental media company that specializes in helping businesses and organizations promote eco-friendly products and services. Contact her on the web at http://www.sustainable-media.com

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By guest (Guest Post)
October 16, 20060 found this helpful

I don't really think it would hurt your puppy, don't think he/ she would like the taste of the vinegar? But to be on the safe side call your critter dr and ask to be sure.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

January 15, 20070 found this helpful

What Ellen said. I think your puppy MIGHT get the runs from licking lots of this stuff, but he probably won't like the taste of vinegar. Otherwise it's not harmful.

Reply Was this helpful? Yes

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