Have you ever thought about feeding your dog or cat grapes or its dried counterpart, raisins? It should be completely avoided. After all, grapes and raisins are toxic to our animal pals. These delicious fruits can poison and even kill Fido and Fluffy in the most extreme cases. Here, your local vet discusses grape and raisin poisoning in pets.
It may come as a surprise to find out that it isn’t exactly known why grapes and raisins are poisonous to pets. Some experts believe that mycotoxin, a fungal byproduct, is responsible. Others believe that pesticides sprayed on the fruit are to blame. Making matters even more confusing, some pets are able to eat the fruit without suffering any toxic effects. But whatever the cause, it’s just too risky to feed grapes and raisins to your pet.
Usually appearing within a few hours after ingestion by your pet, clinical symptoms include increased thirst, lethargy, diarrhea, and vomiting. Without proper treatment, kidney failure, also called renal failure, can occur. That’s why it’s critical to keep your vet’s phone number on hand to call in the event of an emergency. If you know or suspect that your pet has eaten grapes or raisins, take him to your vet’s office immediately.
The goal of treatment is to get the toxin out of your pet’s body as quickly as possible. This may be done by inducing vomiting, or giving him activated charcoal to absorb the toxin in his stomach. In the most serious cases, where animals have progressed to kidney failure, it may be required to administer intravenous fluid therapy or even blood transfusions.
Prevention is key. You’ll want to prevent grape or raisin poisoning rather than deal with it once it’s happened. Fortunately, that can easily be done by restricting your pet’s access to the fruit at all times. Keep it in the refrigerator, or closed cabinets or containers, and out of your pet’s reach. Also, watch out for foods that contain grapes or raisins, such as salads or desserts.
Do you want more information on foods your pets should avoid? Give your local pet clinic a call today!