Any dog owner has their best friend’s best interest in mind. Families treat their four-legged pooch as another member of the pack to the point that it’s common to give them whatever you consume in the kitchen yourself.
But what is not known to many is that this seemingly harmless act, done out of love, can often lead to unexpected, even fatal, consequences.
The truth is, plenty of household items you regularly use or eat are toxic for dogs. Nuts, candy, and chocolate, for instance, can all lead to severe cases of poisoning. Approximately 214,000 cases of pet poisoning caused by common household articles are reported every year. This is why knowing which items are safe and which ones aren’t is extremely important when it’s your beloved pooch’s health and safety on the line.
The following graphic shares, in brief, the most dangerous food items that should be off-limits to your dog. Some of these may be surprising to you, such as milk, your cup of tea, rock salt and condiments, and even fat trimmings and bones that your favorite childhood cartoon shows probably told you otherwise.
These common substances often contain ingredients that are either overall harmful to your dog’s system or present in significant amounts that your dog, owing to its smaller size, is incapable of handling.
When ingested, these food items can cause anywhere from an upset stomach to full-blown diarrhea with vomiting, which, in some cases, leads to death. Depending on the amount of toxic substances your dog has ingested, the symptoms can appear immediately or after a few hours of consumption. Eventually, you will notice a change in normal behavior.
For example, your dogs typically go running to the kitchen when they hear the rustling of bowls on the counter but then suddenly don’t. Maybe they try to avoid you and hide in closets, in corners, or under beds. These changes suggest that your dogs may be dealing with pain or aren’t feeling well.
In this case, it’s most recommended to take them to the vet immediately.
If you suspect that your dog has been poisoned, make sure she doesn’t get access to more of the offending food item. It’s also important that you don’t give her anything unless you have been instructed to by an animal health professional.
It’s wise to keep the veterinarian’s number handy for emergencies like these. If you don’t have the local vet’s number, dial the following pet emergency hotlines for guidance:
- ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center: (888) 426-4435
- Animal Poison Control Center: (855) 764-7661
- American Association of Poison Control Centers: find a list of control centers per state here.
Prevention is always the best guard against these disasters. Make sure you educate your family about feeding Fido. Although you want to share your favorite meals, good intentions become irrelevant when you see your pets in agony over a simple packet of dark chocolate.
Feel free to share this information with your community, and promote household safety for pooches everywhere.