Valentine’s Day just passed, which means you either got chocolate or bought some on discount the day after.
You, of course, know to keep the chocolate away from your dog, but did you know there’s lots of things your four-legged bestie should not be ingesting?
Grapes/raisins are well documented bad guys to our dogs. Although what exactly causes it is still under speculation, dogs can go into sudden kidney failure from eating them!
Avocado contains a toxin called persin (similar to a fatty acid) which can upset your dogs stomach. The main thing to keep away from them is the pit, for obvious reasons. However, other animals like horses, cats, birds, rabbits all react much more negatively. All in all, best to use caution.
Nuts is something you wouldn’t think of. Let’s break that down: Almonds aren’t easily digested by dogs and can cause gastric intestinal problems and upset stomach. Walnuts make contain a toxin which causes seizures and other neurological issues. Pecans can cause upset stomachs and obstructions, and moldy pecans develop a toxin called juglone which can cause neurological issues and seizures.
While not all nuts are bad, and some only in a certain state, it’s best to choose a more dog-friendly treat.
Onions contain thiosulphate which is toxic to both cats and dogs. It causes a condition called hemolytic anemia, which is essentially damage to the red blood cells which can cause them to burst as they circulate through the body.
Xylitol is an ingredient I touched on before, as it can be used in peanut butter, but it is also found in cereals, jams, candies, baked goods, etc.
The effect on your dog after consumption is a massive release of insulin, resulting in dangerously low blood sugar which can manifest into weakness, seizures, collapse, or even death.
The long and short of it? Read your labels.
Raw bones are great for your dog, but did you know cooked bones are not? The leftovers from your last steak or the rib bones you asked the server to pack up for you can splinter easily and can cause choking or a puncture in your dog’s digestive system.
It’s also smart to avoid chicken or fish bones because they’re small and can cause choking.
While we’re here, we may as well break down why chocolate is a no-go.
Cocoa contains a compound called theobromine which is a stimulant, and dogs do not contain the enzyme to break it down.
This causes an overstimulation of the nervous system. Poisoning varies depending not only on the type of chocolate (milk vs. baking, for example) but the size of the dog.
So, before you let those puppy dog eyes bribe you to share your last slice of pizza, remember that the stuff we love might not be best for your dog.