Aside from their playfulness and friendly attitude, a distinctive trademark of dogs is their propensity to eat virtually any type of food you leave around the house. Unlike cats, dogs aren’t fussy and will happily gorge themselves on anything, from your pizza crusts to your couch pillows and even their own vomit.
Unfortunately, these eating habits could present a major hazard for their health. Some foods that humans eat on a regular basis and our bodies have no problem processing are potentially deadly for the canine organism. Let’s find out the top 8 foods to keep away from your pet.
1. Chocolate and caffeinated products
Okay, most pet owners are aware of the negative side effects of chocolate in dogs, but the lethal consequences of ingesting chocolate and caffeinated sweets or beverages cannot be stressed enough. The substances that make these ailments so harmful for canines are methyl-xanthines, and they are found preponderantly in darker chocolates. Ingestion leads to regurgitation (best case scenario), diarrhea, a state of agitation and tremors, irregular heart rates, and fever. Seizures and death are also potential outcomes.
2. Milk and milk by-products
Canines don’t possess the enzymes necessary to break down and assimilate the sugars and fatty compounds in milk, cheese and other by-products. Ingestion is not immediately lethal, but does lead to the development of harmful bacteria in the intestines and could trigger a severe gastrointestinal condition.
3. Onions and garlic
Both onions and garlic are known for deleterious effects on the canine red blood cells. The effects only become evident in a couple of days and comprise of fatigue, muscle weakness; garlic is more harmful for dogs and will also render their urine orange or red. Depending on the amount your dog ate, the only viable treatment to save his life could consist of a blood transfusion.
4. Macadamia nuts
Although there is no consensus in the vet community regarding the compounds in macadamia nuts that are toxic to dogs, their health-threatening effects are undeniable. Hypothermia, tremors, muscle weakness, fatigue, regurgitation and depression are the most prominent ones.
5. Grapes and raisins
Similar to macadamia nuts, it is not known why these fruits are hazardous to canines. It is also worth noting that not all dogs seem to react negatively to grapes and raisins, again for unknown reasons. However, the major risk in certain breeds is kidney failure, while in others symptoms like regurgitation, diarrhea, and lethargy are present. Regarding kidney failure, death installs in up to 4 days.
Avocado fruits contain persin, which is highly toxic for dogs and could lead to fluid buildups in the chest region, breathing problems and stomach disorders. At the same time, the pit is slippery and your dog could accidentally swallow it whole, obstructing his gastrointestinal tract.
7. Apples and particularly apple cores
Apples, particularly the cores, contain cyanogenic glycosides that for dogs will result in hyperventilation, breathing difficulties, toxic shock, seizure or coma. Definitely don’t leave the cores of the apples within reach of your dog.
8. Yeast dough
While raw yeast dough isn’t initially dangerous, it will ferment inside the canine’s stomach and/or intestines and turn toxic. As it continues to expand and produce alcohol, the canine’s intestines will harbor a lot of gas, which could lead to ruptures and severe pain, vomiting and discomfort.