Barium chloride is soluble in water. At room temperature, it is 26.4 percent soluble, and a solution between the two contains up to 26.4 percent barium chloride. It is insoluble in ethanol.
Water-soluble barium salts are toxic to humans. Potassium sulfate and magnesium sulfate are used as emergency treatments for barium chloride poisoning. These work by reacting with the barium chloride to form barium sulfate. Barium sulfate is less dangerous due to its insolubility in water.
Despite its toxicity, barium chloride is a useful laboratory reagent. It is also a coloring agent in fireworks displays because it produces a bright green color when burned.