It is common for pet parents to know that it is not a good idea to let your dog indulge in chocolate or to keep your cat away from the lilies. However, there are many other health hazards for your pet of which you may not have been aware.
#1 Grapes: There have been many reports of kidney failure attributed to the feeding of grapes. Ingestion by your dog of even a few grapes can be life threatening. The mechanism of action is not clearly understood, but if your pet has recently ingested grapes it is urgent to contact medical professionals. Grapes should not be fed as treats. Raisins are dried grapes and are likewise toxic to your pet.
#2 Onions: Oxidative damage to red blood cells is caused by eating onions in dogs and cats. This leads to destruction of red blood cells. At the right dose of onions, your pet could become life threateningly anemic. Garlic can affect your pet in the same way.
#3 Sugar Free Gum: This gum contains xylitol, an artificial sweetener toxic to dogs. While one piece of gum may not make your pet sick, a whole pack can be life threatening. It can cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) and liver failure.
#4 Tea Tree Oil: This oil is known for its antibacterial and antifungal effects and is thought to be useful for itching, parasites, and inflammation. However, it should never be used on pets. Just a few drops of oil can result in severe poisoning and even death. Concentrations of less than 1-2% are thought to be safe, but why risk it?
#5 Pennies: While no one intends for their pets to eat pennies, here is a good reason to be sure they are picked up. Pennies contain zinc at their core which is toxic to animals. Penny ingestion can lead to destruction of red blood cells, liver failure, and kidney failure. If eaten, these coins must be removed.
If your pet eats any of these toxic agents (or any not listed) call Country Critters Veterinary Clinic in Monrovia, Indiana during regular business hours. After hours, you should contact Airport Emergency Clinic for further instructions.