Dog Ate Candle! What To Do If This Happens (Not Panic!)

Updated on September 25, 2022

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What To Do If Your Dog Ate Candle?

Many dogs enjoy rummaging through things around the house, and when they do so, they frequently chew on objects that are not intended to be consumed. Dogs and pups sometimes chew on things just because they are hungry or bored. This may include candles, particularly scented varieties of the latter. We often get confused in such situations and ask ourselves, “what to do now?”. We will answer your question.

When my dog consumes candles, what should I do?

Before assuming that your pet has consumed a burning wick, please take note of his behavior. Does he exhibit signs of distress or lethargy? Are you able to notice any wheezes or difficulty breathing? Have you observed any nausea or diarrhea? Speak with your vet about what you’ve noticed if you’re experiencing any illness-related issues.

Next, determine the type and quantity of candles your pet consumed. While causing a nuisance for you and sparing their stomachs from feeling nauseous, some pets will eat candles but not ingest them. Others will gobble down every last bit, occasionally including the metal candle bases and wicks. The best approach is to take your pet to the veterinarian if they ate a large metal base or an extended candle wick. Take any remaining wax and, if any, any packaging to your local animal hospital.

If your pet seems healthy but suspects they may have eaten some candles, keep an eye out for any signs of diarrhea or soft stools. Candles often cause these symptoms. If your pet develops any symptoms, contact your vet immediately.

Contact your veterinarian if your pet has trouble going for more than two consecutive nights without passing stool.

Contact your vet immediately if your dog shows any symptoms of illness. Never give over-the-counternarcotics without first consulting your vet. Check your dog’s stool for traces of candles; they should vanish within a day or two. You might not notice any effects if only a small amount were consumed.

It would help if you also read our article on whether scented candles are bad for dogs or not.

Why do dogs consume non-food products?

Our pets are so cute because they’re so silly and playful. Nothing is more enjoyable than watching them play and run around the house.

Your playful puppy can sometimes be confused by things he sees or hears, like eating your favorite pair of shoes or chewing a sofa cushion.

Some dogs eat weird stuff, and if you leave an unscented soap bar on your bathroom counter, you might soon discover it gone.

You must know what to do if your dog eats a candle. We explore just this issue so that you can be ready for anything.

Before we look into candle safety for dogs, we need to understand why they might be eating them in the first place.

Higher appetite

A natural desire for food could also cause the problem. Some breeds of dogs have certain genetic traits that cause them to crave food.

Research shows one example of this is Labrador Retrievers’ genetic makeup.

Hyperthyroidism may increase appetite and cause animals to eat toxic items.

Some studies suggest that pica could be a sign of a behavior disorder, some of which might stem from early life stresses such as lack of social interaction.

It’s also important not to forget about boredom and isolation. If your pet regularly consumes non-food household items when you’re away from the house, then he might suffer from anxiety due to his inability to cope with emergencies.


Eating non-food items is called pica.

Pica is a condition where women experience an overpowering desire to consume substances like soil, chalk, or even paper during pregnancy.

Nutritional deficiencies can cause pregnancy in dogs, and this is just one potential cause of the problem in cats as well. For instance, your cat might consume something not intended for them (like a piece of meat) to boost its iron intake.

Are candles harmful to dogs?

A few components of candles that, if ingested by a dog, could have negative health impacts.
Ingestion of candle wax should be avoided whenever it’s at all possible. But how concerned should you be if you came home to find them nibbling on something when you got there?

Moreover, you should also read our article in which we have discussed whether scented candles cause seizures in dogs or not.

Are candles poisonous?

Soy wax, paraffin, and beeswax are all safe for candles. They may also contain scents, colors, and other ingredients. You should check with your vet before giving any pet food to your cat. Also, ensure you know what ingredients are in your dog’s food.

4 Potential problems that can happen to your dog if he eats candles.

1. Candle-related bowel obstruction

One of the biggest risks of using candles is an increased risk of obstruction in your intestinal tract, i.e., the intestinal blockage caused by a part of the candle scents lodged inside your intestines. If you use candles containing metal or plastic components, be sure to avoid them.

Candles don’t pose any risk to dogs’ digestive tracts unless their size makes them vulnerable to experiencing a blockage. Tiny dogs may be more susceptible to experiencing a blockage from eating a candle.

The larger the piece of candle wax that has been swallowed, the greater the chance it could become lodged somewhere inside the dog’s digestive tract. Fortunately, most dogs don’t eat large pieces of wax, so it’s unlikely that any small pieces have been swallowed.

However, candles made from metals, which are rigid and harder to bend, can pose a danger. They can also have sharp edges that could injure the intestines if they pass through them.

2. Puncture From the Wick

A problem can occur with the candle wicking. The string-type candle wicking normally used in most beeswax candles is not dangerous unless it is excessively lengthy. However, other contemporary beeswax candles have wooden candle wicking, which may be more hazardous. If you’ve inserted a wooden dowel into your dog’s stomach, let your vet know so they can take care of it properly.

3. Constipation

Candle wax may also nearly fully pass through, but it may later bind with regular stools in the rectum, which may cause your dog to have constipation. If you notice that your dog is having trouble going to the toilet, it is important that you tell your veterinarian as soon as possible since they may require assistance.

4. Attaching food to candles

If your pet chews up a scented candle, don’t assume it came from a birthday party. Tell your vet immediately if your aromatic candle was made with real or fake ingredients.

Both chocolate and other artificial sweeteners, such as xylitol, are harmful to dogs. Additionally, certain cakes may contain hazardous nuts like macadamia nuts. In this instance, the dangerous item may be linked to the candle rather than the candle itself.

What happens when dogs eat candles?

Now that your dog has eaten a birthday cake candle, you should know that certain non-edible food items can cause an emergency.

It will help if you determine whether your dog is choking immediately. If so, you should get him medical help right away.

If your dog requires immediate aid, you can also do the Heimlich technique.

If you see that your dog is not choking, you should check for indications that there is a blockage in his digestive tract. After eating a piece of flaming wax, the individual may develop a condition known as a pyloric block, particularly if they have ingested some significant chunks of the substance.

The little space between the stomach and the duodenum is called the pylorus.

You may experience continuous vomiting, stomach discomfort, and agitation if a blockage arises. Additionally, after the blockage forms, fever may be present.

Fortunately, a chunk of candle wax is soft, so it shouldn’t cause any problems passing through the pylorus.

However, the wax must pass through the entire digestive system, and a blockage might happen at any moment as it passes through the small and large intestines.

Moreover, you should also read our article about how to fix a broken candle in glass jar.

Are essential oils in candles a problem?

Although some scents contain essential oils, they’re not necessarily safe for pets. According to Dr. Charlotte Finch, certain essential oils are toxic to pets.

Because essential oil isn’t used in large amounts in modern candles, it won’t upset your dog, so don’t worry too much about it. However, call your vet immediately if you think your pet has ingested the oil.

If you’re having trouble figuring out whether something is safe for your pet, talk to your vet or call the Pet Poison Helplines at 855-766-77

Burning lips and tongue, drowsiness, vomiting, drooling and difficulty breathing are some symptoms of essential oils toxicity.

You should also check to ensure that the wicks and the wick holders are still present in half-used food-scented candles.

The metal wicks are the most troublesome because they tend to clog up easily, but the wicks can also get stuck inside the digestive tract.

Pursuing Care

Even if you don’t have any immediate concerns regarding the wicking material, the metal holder, or the essential oil, it’s still advisable to visit your vet if your pet consumes a candle.

X-rays can help an expert identify, locate, and track pieces of candles as they descend into the stomach.

If your dog ate more than just the candlewax substance, the veterinarian would also check for any metal wick holders.

If your vet is aware of the stressful situation, they can take immediate steps to help.

If there is any sign of an obstructing tumor, an exploratory laparotomy or an endoscopic (endoscope) removal can be scheduled.


If your vet thinks your pet needs a laxative, they might give them one.

Fluid therapy can move wax along, while intravenous fluid therapy can prevent dehydration in puppies who vomit.

Your vet may diagnose the problem and release you in some instances. If there is a small chance of obstruction, this happens.

After 48 hours, check to see if any candles have been removed from your dog.

It’s good that the situation is at its worst here because the wax has emerged from the other side!


If your dog swallows a burning object, you must immediately take him to the nearest veterinary clinic. It may not be too late to save his life, but you’ll want to act fast.

Depending on how long it takes for you to notice what he did, the type of treatment required will vary. If he obstructs his digestive system, this could involve just waiting until it passes before treating him. However, if you talk to your vet immediately after noticing what he did, you have the best chance of successfully treating him.

Moreover, we have also written an article about bath & body candles, whether they are safe for your dogs or not.

Smell is one of the human senses which can flow through the whole body. I am the Founder of where we talk all about scented candles. Known as Candace the Candle Girl, I know pretty much all there is to know about scented candles. I make and sell them on Etsy and Ebay - so be sure to ask if you have any burning questions :) (pun intended ;) )

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