Before you think about feeding your dog or cat a grape or its dried counterpart, the raisin, beware! Grapes and raisins are highly toxic to dogs and cats. These delicious fruits can poison and even kill your furry friends in the most extreme cases. In this article, a local veterinarian discusses grape and raisin poisoning in pets.
Why are grapes and raisins poisonous?
It isn’t quite known why grapes and raisins are toxic to pets. Some experts agree that mycotoxin, a fungal byproduct, is the culprit. Others believe that pesticides sprayed on the fruit could be responsible. Making matters even more confusing, some pets are able to eat the fruit without suffering any negative effects. But, even if you don’t know the cause, it’s just too risky to feed these fruits to your furry pals.
What are the symptoms of poisoning?
Grape or raisin poisoning symptoms usually appear within a few hours after your pet eats the fruit. Clinical signs include increased thirst, lethargy, diarrhea, and vomiting. Kidney failure, or renal failure, can occur without treatment. For this reason, always keep your veterinarian’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 local vet immediately.
What’s the treatment?
The goal of treatment is to get the toxin out of your pet’s system as quickly as possible. This may be done by inducing vomiting. Activated charcoal might also be given to absorb the leftover toxin in your pet’s stomach. When kidney failure occurs, your pet may require intravenous fluid therapy or even blood transfusions in the most extreme cases.
How do I prevent grape and raisin poisoning?
The best thing you can do for your pet is prevent grape or raisin poisoning before it happens. Always restrict your pet’s access to these foods at all times. Keep the fruit in the refrigerator, or closed cabinets or containers, and out of your pet’s reach. Also, be cautious of foods that contain grapes or raisins, like salads or desserts.
Do you want more information on foods your pet should avoid? Contact your local veterinarian in Carlisle, ON for more advice and tips!