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Is it Safe for Dogs to Lick Your Hands After You’ve Used Hand Sanitizer?


21 April 2020



If you’ve been following the recommendations of any healthcare professional, you’ve probably been sanitizing your hands more than usual lately. But what does this mean for man’s best friend? Let’s find out if it’s safe for our dogs to lick our hands after we’ve used hand sanitizer.

According to McGill’s Office for Science and Society:

“There is a ‘warning’ making the rounds that hand sanitizer “has the same ingredients as antifreeze” and that you should not let dogs lick your hands. This warning is based on chemical ignorance. What they are talking about is propylene glycol which is used here as a humectant, meaning it holds in moisture to prevent the hands from drying out. Propylene glycol is indeed found in some antifreeze, particularly in ones that are promoted as being environmentally friendly and having a low toxicity. It replaces ethylene glycol, the usual active ingredient in antifreeze, which is indeed toxic to dogs as well as humans. But propylene glycol is not toxic. That extra carbon atom in propylene glycol makes all the difference! So, there is no worry for your dog if he licks your hand after you have used a hand sanitizer. There may be an issue for you, depending on what else the dog has been licking.”

Stay safe furriends

Therefore, there is no harm in petting, feeding or otherwise handling our dogs after we’ve used hand sanitizer. To be extra cautious, it is always recommended to wash our hands before and after having our dogs lick them. Dogs, like humans, harbor a lot of bacteria in their mouths. With that, we hope this article has helped keep you and your furriend safe! 





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