If you have ever had a dog, chances are you know that chocolate is poisonous to dogs. But do you know why? Do you know other foods that can be dangerous for dogs to consume?
Preventing Poisoning in Dogs
Dogs can manage to get into all kinds of things when humans aren’t looking, so you might not even see it happen if your dog decides to eat something forbidden, but often there are consequences.
Because dogs can become extremely ill or even die if they ingest certain foods that are otherwise harmless for humans, it’s important to understand the symptoms of food toxicity and familiarize yourself with foods that can be harmful to your pup. Becoming aware of which foods pose a threat is an important part of being a responsible dog owner, so if you ever eat any of these 5 foods, make sure to keep them sealed up and away from your dog.
Top 5 Foods that are Toxic to Dogs
1) Chocolate – Most people are aware that chocolate can be toxic for dogs; it’s just a matter of keeping it away from them. The compounds in chocolate that cause a reaction in dogs are both caffeine and theobromine. A general rule to guide the effect of chocolate on dogs is the darker the chocolate, the more dangerous it is. Symptoms of poisoning include a high body temperature, irregular heartbeat, vomiting, diarrhea, and seizures.
2) Onions – Though some people love adding shallots and garlic to every dish they cook, both foods are poisonous to dogs. Compounds in onions and garlic cause the destruction of red blood cells within the dog. The effect on red blood cells can lead to anemia, though symptoms can take between 3 to 5 days to manifest. If you think your dog has ingested either onion or garlic, keep an eye out and bring your dog to a vet if he or she seems unnaturally tired, weak, or has very dark urine.
3) Xylitol – This is an ingredient that many people are unaware of in the first place, let one cognizant of its harmful effect on dogs. Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that is found in candy and baked goods, but most commonly in sugar-free gum. It can cause liver damage in dogs and has the potential to cause an extreme drop in blood sugar, depending on how much was consumed. Symptoms of toxicity poisoning from xylitol include low blood sugar, vomiting, and loss of coordination. If you do choose to chew sugar-free gum, make sure you don’t leave any packs lying around that your dog can reach.
4) Grapes – Delicious and healthy snacks for humans, both grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure in dogs. Scientists haven’t figured out just how they cause that reaction, but they are sure of the connection. Lethargy, dehydration including increased thirst and urination, and vomiting are all signs of kidney failure in dogs.
5) Alcohol – Not surprisingly, alcohol is poisonous to dogs. Beverages like beer, wine, and cocktails can cause severe medical reactions in dogs, but those aren’t the only source of alcohol to monitor. Yeast dough can also cause alcohol intoxication in dogs. Because their stomachs are the perfect environmental host for yeast, the yeast multiplies rapidly, expanding within the dog’s stomach and increasing the production of alcohol, which leads to poisoning. If you work with yeast dough, never leave it out on the counter during the baking or cooking process.
Watch for Symptoms
These foods can be extraordinarily dangerous to dogs, so keep careful watch of the foods that you keep out around your canine companion. It’s not always possible to keep an eye on our faithful friends every second of every day, so if your dog seems to be acting strange or exhibiting any of the symptoms mentioned, take him or her to a veterinary immediately. Better safe than sorry.