Most pet parents believe there’s no other place safer for their pets than the home. But do you know that some of the riskiest causes of injury or health problems are also found in the household?
Knowing what these high-risk items are will help you pet-proof your home better and ensure that your dogs don’t get into trouble whenever left on their own.
Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that is naturally found in some plants. Commercially, xylitol is used as a natural sweetener because it is sweet as sugar but contains 40 percent fewer calories. You can find xylitol in chewing gums, mints, foods labeled as diabetes-friendly, candies, toothpaste, and other oral products.
While xylitol is safe in humans, it is extremely toxic in dogs, even in small amounts. It can cause hypoglycemia, liver failure, seizures, and even death.
Chocolate is toxic to dogs because of the substance called theobromine. Humans can process theobromine without a problem, and in fact, dogs can too. But dogs process this substance slower than humans do, allowing it to build up into toxic levels.
Chocolate’s level of toxicity in dogs depends on the dog’s size and the amount of chocolate he consumes. The larger the dog, the more chocolates he can consume before he gets sick from it. If your dog only consumed a small amount of chocolate, he is most likely only going to experience stomach upset or vomiting and diarrhea.
However, if your dog consumes chocolate in large quantities, it can cause seizures, irregular heartbeat, internal bleeding, and in extreme cases, death.
Whether garlic is toxic for dogs or not has been the cause of much contention between raw feeders and the scientific community. However, there is one thing that both are in consensus about: consumption of large amounts of garlic is definitely toxic to dogs.
As a general rule, avoid giving your meals to your dog. When preparing homemade meals for your pooch, stay away from using spices.
If anybody in the household maintains some kind of prescription medications, see to it that you keep those out of your dog’s reach. Most common human medications such as antidepressants and anti-inflammatory medications can cause intoxication, vomiting, stomach upset, and abdominal pain.
Before taking a potted plant home, make sure the species doesn’t pose potential harm to the furry members of the household. Seasonal plant species, for example, can cause a range of gastric distress from simple abdominal pain to full-blown allergies, indigestion, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Here is a comprehensive list of plant species that are toxic to dogs.
Grapes and Raisins
Other common grocery items that are a big no-no for your dogs are grapes and raisins. Although the substance in these fruits that causes health trouble in dogs is yet to be known, incidences of fatal kidney failure have been reported among unfortunate dogs who have ingested it.
Toxic ingestion of grapes and raisins can lead to common symptoms of food poisoning, like loss of appetite, lethargy, dehydration, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Laundry pods, detergent, antifreeze, and toilet-cleaning chemicals should all be kept in a secure place out of your dog’s curious probing. The concentrated nature of these chemicals is toxic enough to cause a myriad of injuries and serious poisoning in your dog.
What to Do When You Notice Signs of Poisoning
Learn to recognize signs of poisoning. Depending on the amount of offending ingredient they’ve ingested, your dog can start to show symptoms within minutes to several hours.
Subtle behavior changes such as getting withdrawn, hiding under the bed, whining, or excessive grooming may all indicate that your dog is in pain. Keep your vet’s number handy, or call or the Animal Poison Control hotline at (888) 426-4435.