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Poisonous Foods Dogs Beg For

Don’t let the puppy eyes fool you - poisonous foods dogs beg for are everywhere, and many are probably in your kitchen right now. In fact each year human food accounts for roughly 5% of the total 180,000 pet poisoning cases according to the ASPCA. While 5% may not sound like a lot, that still means nearly 10,000 each year suffer from an otherwise preventable issue.

Human foods that are poisonous to dogs include:

•  Alcoholic beverages
    Impairs the nervous system and respiratory system, leading to hypothermia, coma and/or death
•  Avocado (skin, leaves and pit)
    Chemical persin causes upset stomach; also has very high fat content

poisonous foods dogs

•  Caffeine (in chocolate, coffee, tea and sodas)
    Related to chocolate poisoning, can cause heart and nervous system problems

•  Chocolate
    Contains theobromide, which impairs the lungs, kidney, heart and nervous system

•  Grapes and raisins

    Specific toxin is unknown, can cause kidney damage and death
•  Hops and yeast
    Imagine the gases and processes that make bread rise; now imagine that happening in your dog’s stomach.  Similar effects as alcoholic beverages, can also cause stomach rupture
•  Leaves and stems of potatoes, tomatoes and rhubarb
    Contain oxalates which disrupt the digestive and urinary systems, as well as the nervous system
•  Macadamia nuts and walnuts
    Science is not sure what makes it poisonous to dogs, but can cause weakness, joint pain and swelling
•  Onions and garlic
    Causes anemia, sometimes leading to kidney problems
•  Pits and seeds from fruit
    Contains cyanide, causing vomiting and diarrhea

•  Rosemary oil/extract
    Has been connected to seizures in dogs

•  Xylitol (a common ingredient in human candy and gum)
    Increases insulin production, which causes low blood sugar and can lead to liver failure

The most common symptoms a dog will have after eating these foods are diarrhea and vomiting.  That’s their body’s natural reaction to get these poisons out of their system ASAP.  Other symptoms of poisoning from human foods include muscle pain and weakness (resulting in drunken-like stumbling), seizures, coma and organ failure.  It’s serious stuff when your dog’s heart stops beating or lungs stop taking in oxygen.  Ultimately, poisonous foods can kill your dog.

If your big dog eats any of these foods or shows signs of poisoning, get help immediately.  Call your vet or the Animal Poison Control Center.  The Animal Poison Control Center hotline is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.  So if your vet is not available, call them at (866) 426-4435.  (A consultation fee may apply.) 

The best way to keep your dog safe is not to give him any human food and to keep poisonous foods out of dogs’ reach.  It’s not worth the risk, no matter how sad the puppy eyes get.

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