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How Does Second-hand Smoke Affect Your Dog?

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We’re not here to boast about the benefits of quitting smoking. If you’re a smoker, you’ve already heard it all. But, you should consider the effects your habit may have on your dog if he/she is exposed. So, can second-hand smoke affect your dog? Sure can!

A Brief Overview

Second-hand smoke, also known as Environmental Tobacco Smoke or ETS basically comes from anything that is smoked such as cigars, cigarettes, and pipes. ETS is a carcinogen that causes cancer not just in humans but animals as well.

Aside from cancer, second-hand smoke is also associated with respiratory and cardiovascular diseases, asthma, chronic lung infections, and eye problems. ETS has been thoroughly studied where humans are concerned, but not as much research has been done for companion animals. Studies show that tobacco smoke comprises up to 20 different carcinogens that can be readily inhaled by non-smokers. ETS contains the smoke that is released by a burning cigarette, pipe, or cigar, as well as those that are exhaled by the smoker themselves. There are more than 4,000 chemicals found in second-hand smoke including carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, arsenic, benzene, chromium, nickel, and vinyl chloride.

Related Findings

In dogs, second-hand smoke has been found to be greatly associated with nasal sinus cancer and also linked with lung cancer. A study conducted at the State of Colorado reveals that there is a higher incidence of nasal cavity tumors in dogs that were exposed to ETS as compared to dogs that live in households with non-smoking members. This conclusion was particularly found amongst breeds with long noses such as Collies. There were no significant nasal tumors amongst dogs with short to medium noses exposed to second-hand smoke.

Experts indicate that long-nosed breeds are more at risk because their nasal passages consist of greater surface area on which the carcinogens can be deposited before it reaches the lungs. Also, they pointed out that because their nasal passages have more cells, there is a greater chance that some of these cells get mutated by carcinogens into cancer cells.

The same study mentioned that despite the fact that dogs with short to medium noses exposed to ETS do not have a great nasal tumor risk as compared to those unexposed, they, nonetheless, have a slightly greater incidence of lung cancer. This is likely because their shorter nasal passages tend to be less effective at filtering the said carcinogens out of breathed-in air before it enters the lungs. Unlike human beings who can develop bladder cancer as a result of second-hand smoke exposure, dogs generally do not run a higher risk of bladder cancer when exposed to these harmful elements.

As a pet owners’ bond with their four-legged companions become stronger, they share more of their lives, their leisure time and their living space with their pets, thereby exposing them to the same environmental hazards that they do. Many human habits, including smoking, can affect animals just as they can affect the other members of the household. By designating a separate room in the house or smoking only outside, you can minimize exposure for your pooch as well as the other non-smoking members of the family.

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  1. Avatar Of Glenn



    of course smoking causes health issues for pets but smokers dont give a rats ass who they pollute with there poison

  2. Avatar Of Carrie Vitale

    Carrie Vitale


    I believe it. We now have our sons dog. Our son is a smoker and this dog can only play for a minute before he starts coughing and needs to stop.

  3. You are right. Smoking is not good for health. Even secondhand smoker are also affected in equivalent as smokers. The smoke also effect our pet animals.

  4. Avatar Of Hipnosis hipnosis says:

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  5. Avatar Of Alvin



    Smokers are legal addicts to nicotine and can’t quit even if they want to. They are in the minority and in this country, the majority still runs it the last time I checked. Smokers have the right to smoke, but don’t have the right to pollute the clean air that our pets breathes.

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  8. Avatar Of Abigail



    Hi! I’m a student and am looking into the issue of the impact of smoking on companion animals. I noticed an article by Brandy Arnold on your site (dogingtonpost.com/how-does-second-hand-smoke-affect-your-dog/#.Ux1cEIVssZ1) and would like to know if you have any information about the research behind it so I can look at the original article/s myself.


  9. Avatar Of Barbara Witterman



    I do smoke. I do not smoke around my animal’s. Sad enough that I inhale such garbage. I dont want my fur babies exposed to it….Just saying.

  10. Avatar Of Heather Williams

    heather williams


    heyy im a social worker and i think i will be coming to take your dog into the care of the local authority mr pothead you are not capable of having a dog, suck my balls you flea bag

  11. Avatar Of Off My Rockerr

    off my rockerr


    hey harry you piece of sh*t dont you care about your dog, do you want it to live a short life, your an ar*e hole maan

  12. Avatar Of Harry Pothead

    harry pothead


    i blaze this sh*t every day mern and i get so high with my pitbull its just like so awesome

    • Avatar Of Barbara Witterman



      I’m not judging you. But , since you are a real piece of work. please take your pets health into consideration. Please. any drug no matter what it is will kill you . sadly your pet also . I really hope the social worker does go to your house and save the pit bull..

    • Avatar Of Pkev4



      First, get an education. Second, you’re the kind of person that makes the rest of us pit owners look bad. You are the kind of person that is the reason I can’t find a new place to rent. Pit owners like you are the reason why when I tell people I own a pit, they look at me funny. Seriously, give your dogs to a shelter. Having a pit just because it looks cool, is the dumbest thing ever.

  13. Avatar Of Rex Rex says:

    That is so bad because my sister smokes around my good dog bailey!!!

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  15. Avatar Of Nonameshop nonameshop says:

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  16. Avatar Of Nicole



    My brother smokes inside the house, and even though I’ve managed to get him to smoke nowhere else but his room, he often leaves the door open and the smoke goes all over. I just want him to stop so that my Labrador, Molly, won’t breathe in any more smoke! He refuses to go outside. He’s so stubborn and doesn’t realize what his dirty habit is doing to the rest of us. And for what? Just so he can get a tiny, almost unnoticeable buzz? If my dog gets cancer I will never speak to my brother again. I love my dog so much and I want to prolong her life. Please pray for us so that my dog will be safe and my brother will stop smoking. 🙁 I’m at my wit’s end…

    • Avatar Of Jan



      Who’s house is it? If it’s yours then tell your selfish brother to smoke outside or he can go live outside

    • Avatar Of Tom



      You really need to be strong and tell your brother that if he don’t smoke outside he’s welcome to leave “your” humble abode.

  17. Avatar Of Vicki



    EGADS…One of my dogs I owned during the years I smoked had a nasal tumor that was cancerous. I’d quit smoking several years before she became ill and died, but I guess it was too late. She had a nice long nose. So, if any of y’all still smoke and have a dog with a long nose, pease don’t brush this off as insignificant/ I probably didn’t smoke a lot longer period of time than I did smoke around this dog.

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