We love our dogs like family, but feeding them as such can be risky business. In fact, there are some foods that our canine friends should never be given. Do you know what these are, and what you should do if they get their paws on these forbidden snacks?
Here are five dangerous foods that your bestie should never eat, and what you can do if you discover that they have done just that!
“Pets have different dietary requirements and metabolize things differently (than people),” says Tina Wismer, the medical director at the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center. “Dogs have amazing noses and when it comes to food, they can get themselves in trouble.”
Never give your dogs grapes or raisins says Dr. Wismer. These can cause kidney failure in canines, and symptoms of poisoning include increased urination and thirst, as well as vomiting.
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Xylitol is another product that is safe for human consumption but poses a serious threat to dogs. It is an artificial sweetener common in sugarless candy, gum, and baked goods, but should never be given to your dog. Canine consumption has been known to result in life-threatening decreases in blood sugar, as well as liver damage. Just one piece of sugar-free gum can result in toxic poisoning in a 10-pound dog, according to the Pet Poison Helpline. Loss of coordination and vomiting are symptoms of xylitol poisoning in canines.
While some of us can never get enough chocolate, even a small amount of the sweet stuff can be deadly for your dog. The type and amount of chocolate that your pooch eats determines the level of toxicity he’s exposed to. Keep in mind that darker chocolate presents a greater danger, with baker’s chocolate and cocoa powder potentially more harmful than milk chocolate. Chocolate poisoning symptoms include vomiting, seizures, and diarrhea.
Lots of dogs come into contact with onions and garlic that may cling to meat or other foods we toss them, but consumption of each can lead to the destruction of red blood cells, and ultimately result in canine anemia. Symptoms of poisoning with either food includes lethargy and a reduced appetite.
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Even a small amount of alcohol can be deadly to dogs. Symptoms of alcohol poisoning include seizures and Dr. Wismer recommends calling your vet immediately if you suspect he has ingested any amount of alcohol.
Alternately, you can call the Pet Poison Hotline at 855-213-6680 or the ASPCA animal poison control center at 888-426-4435 if you suspect that your dog has ingested a deadly substance. Both numbers are answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week.