Things We Should Never Allow Our Dogs to Eat
By Leah Morse
This week I felt it important to talk about things you should never feed your dog. Some things might surprise you. I feed Prey Model Raw Diet to my own dogs and I try to give them the best variety that I can possibly get my hands on. It is important to know those things that we should never feed our dogs or allow them to get into. I have chosen a few very common ways that dogs are poisoned. Just like we should child proof our house the same is true for your dog. Knowing the dangers of Chocolate, Grapes and raisins, alcohol and antifreeze can save hundreds if not thousands of dollars in vet bills. Especially as busy as we are in today’s society it is easy to overlook simple actions that could save your pets life. If for any reason you ever suspect that your dog has ingested something dangerous, don’t wait, CALL YOUR VETERINARIAN!
CHOCOLATE: We have all heard that Chocolate is a bad thing. You should also know why. Chocolate has methylxanthines (caffeine and alkaloid theobromine). This chemical is not toxic to people in amounts found in chocolate and baked goods. However, it can be lethal to dogs. A dog that weighs 5-10 pounds could die after eating as little as 4 ounces of baking chocolate. According to the Dog Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook( by Debra M. Eldredge, DVM, Liisa D.Carlson DVM, Delbert G. Calson, DVM and James M. Giffin, MD), signs of chocolate toxicity occur within hours after the dog ingests the chocolate, including but not limited to hyper-excitability, vomiting, frequent urination, diarrhea, rapid breathing, weakness, seizures, and coma.
GRAPES AND RAISINS: There has even been a chain email about this one. You can give your dog acute renal (kidney) failure by allowing your dog to eat Grapes or Raisins. This can happen from just a few raisins or a pound of grapes! Keep them away from your dogs! For more information visit http://www.snopes.com/critters/crusader/raisins.asp
ALCOHOL: It never ceases to amaze me how many times I have heard people tell stories about their poor dog that was given alcohol either by accident or on purpose. This is neither funny nor amusing as it takes less to intoxicate a dog than a human, they don’t understand what is happening to them and it damages their liver and kidneys. Along with the lack of coordination, poor breathing also comes the possibility of abnormal acidity, coma or death. Want some entertainment for your party? Teach your dog some funny tricks and leave the alcohol for those that chose to consume it.
MARIJUANA: It has been featured on the news quite frequently lately. With all of the legalized medical marijuana available, more and more dogs are getting into it. The toxin Tetrahydrocannibinal, when ingested is absorbed quickly and causes symptoms of dilated pupils, glazed eyes, drop in body temperature, increase or decrease in heart rate, bizarre behavior, disorientation, depression, coma, excitation, drooling tremors, repertory depression or death. Once again, this is not a funny thing to do to your pet. For more information check our this link http://www.peteducation.com/article.cfm?c=2&aid=2254
ANTIFREEZE: We have all seen it spilled in our garages, on the driveway or in the gutters. Antifreeze is so deadly to animals and the worst part about it is that animals seem to like the taste of it. Some people put it in the toilets of vacation homes to prevent freezing. Dogs will drink it like cool aid. Less than three ounces is enough to poison a medium sized dog. Make sure to cleanup leaks and spills as soon as possible and always dog proof a new place before letting your dog in (especially vacation rentals).
Again if you suspect that your pet has ingested something it shouldn’t have. Don’t wait to call the vet! Here is a helpful link for poison control for animals http://www.pacc911.org/Poison_Control.html . Knowing more about the ingredients of what you feed your dog is very beneficial to their health and up keep. Also knowing what is dangerous will also help you keep your dog healthy and out of trouble. Make sure to follow the directions of your dogs health care provider if he/she has gotten into something bad. It is not always appropriate to induce vomiting and/or giving water. Let the professionals help you decided what the best course of action is in the event of an accidental ingestion of a harmful substance. Train Leave It! to also help prevent your dog from getting into items they shouldn’t.
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Leah Morse is a certified canine trainer and the owner of Rocky Mountain Classic Canine. Leah writes a weekly blog for Denver Dog Works and can be reached through our website http://www.denverdogworks.com