10 Surprising Things That Are Dangerous For Your Beloved Pet

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At times, it can be tempting to share some of our favorite foods with our beloved pets. The act is innocent and we might not see it as harmful to them. It however, turns out that some of the substances that we find to be harmless can actually cause irrevocable damage to our furry friends. It’s not just foods or crumbs that we drop on the floor that can be dangerous to them, but there are many other things that we would never imagine to have an effect on them. Here, we are listing 10 surprising things that are dangerous for your beloved pet.

1. Grapes and raisins

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For years, scientists have been studying to understand why dogs cannot ingest grapes or raisins. According to PETMD, the exact substance that causes the toxic reaction is not yet known, but even the smallest of amounts can be toxic when it comes to a dog. Grapes and raisins have been known to affect all breeds of dogs, despite the gender or age. When ingested, the grape/raisin toxicity can cause acute kidney failure, which can be extremely dangerous. So, next time you munch on a pack of dried fruits, take extra precaution since they are easy to drop on the floor. (source)

2. Avocado

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The unique fruit is incredibly nutritious and contains a wide variety of nutrients, including 20 different vitamins and minerals. They also do not contain any cholesterol or sodium and are low in saturated fat. Despite the fruit being extremely healthy for humans, it contains a substance called persin that can be toxic for cats as well as dogs. The side effects were also found in animals such as sheep, horses, rabbits and even in mice, when avocados were consumed repeatedly. Another study found that when cows consumed avocados, the amount of milk they produced went down by 75% within just 24 hours. (source)

3. Chocolate

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While dogs have similar tastes to humans, often seeking sweets, they cannot eat chocolate. Chocolate contains a stimulant called theobromine, which can be toxic to our canine friends. The amount of theobromine depends on the type of chocolate. The size of the dog and the amount of chocolate consumed should also be taken into account. According to Scientific American, a large dog can usually handle a small amount of chocolate but the same amount can cause problems in a smaller dog. Vets Now reports that theobromine mainly affects the guts, heart, central nervous system, and kidneys and that symptoms usually occur within 24 hours after chocolate consumption. Symptoms include, vomiting, restlessness, hyperactivity and seizures. (source 1, 2)

4. Caffeine

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Coffee is the most popular beverage in the world, with more than 400 billion cups consumed each year. The world literally runs on caffeine. While caffeine helps us get through the day, it can be toxic for dogs and cats, especially if consumed in large quantities. Caffeine is most commonly found in coffee, coffee grounds, tea, used tea bags, soda, and energy drinks. Theobromine, a cousin chemical to caffeine, is also found chocolate. Since your beloved pet is more sensitive to the effects of caffeine than you, extreme precaution should be taken. While small amounts don’t hurt them, a couple of tea bags or a handful of coffee beans can be toxic. Signs and symptoms are the same as that of chocolate. (source)

5. Macadamia nuts

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Macadamia nuts are also bad for dogs. If a dog consumes the nuts, it can have severe side effects. According to VetWest Animal Hospital, Australia, hundreds of cases involving dogs ingesting macadamia nuts occur every year. VetWest also explains that the exact reason as to why dogs suffer side effects after eating macadamia nuts is also unknown. Side effects can be observed within 12 hours after ingestion and it includes weakness of the muscles, fever, depression and more. There is no specific antidote available for this since more study is required to understand exactly what causes the symptoms. The good news however, is that it is generally treatable, and symptoms resolve within 12 to 48 hours. (source)

6. Tulips

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Tulips belong to the Liliaceae family and contain allergenic lactones that can be toxic for dogs. The pretty flowers bloom in your garden during spring and can make your landscape look amazing. At the same time, they can pose some serious health hazards for your beloved pet. If a dog eats any part of a tulip, it could experience immediate digestive problems, which can lead to dehydration. According to experts, ingesting tulips is also known to cause hypersalivation, or excessive drooling, as well as losing interest in food. They also lose interest in interacting with others. If this happens, call your veterinarian, since they can help clear the toxic elements from your dog’s system. (source)

7. Sweeteners

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Since dogs can’t have chocolate, some think that candy or other sweet foods are safe. It however, turns out that sugar-free candy, sweeteners, jellies, chewing gums and baked goods contain xylitol, which is a sugar substitute that is safe for human consumption but toxic for dogs. If dogs consume products that have xylitol in them, it can cause a massive release of insulin from the pancreas, which in turn causes dangerously low blood sugar levels. At higher doses, it can cause liver failure so it’s not always good to reward your pet with candy for doing tricks. (source)

8. Sago Palms

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Both cats and dogs are known for chewing on plants and unfortunately, some of them can be toxic. The sago palm is one such plant that can cause liver damage in dogs. Sago palms contain a toxin called cycasin, which turns into methylazoxymethanol or MAM, once inside the system. MAM is not only carcinogenic, but can also interfere with the liver’s ability to produce glucose. This is one of the main reasons why most pet owners prefer to plant regular palm trees over sago palms. (source)

9. Onions, garlic, and chives

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While the vegetables and herbs can be good for humans, they can cause gut irritation in dogs. Onions in particular are bad for cats and dogs since they can cause red blood cell damage and anaemia. While symptoms don’t show up right after consumption, they can occur a few days later. Dehydrated onions, raw onions, cooked onions and table scraps can also be toxic. According to a study, any food containing onion is bad for their health. Even if the food is prepared or left-over, it can still contain organic compounds that can be hazardous for your beloved pet. (source)

10. Bread dough

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Not only are human foods bad for your pets, but unbaked bread dough can also be toxic when ingested by dogs and cats. According to animal experts, when ingested, the bread dough expands in the warm, moist environment of the stomach, resulting in bloating. The bread dough can also cause gastric-dilatation volvulus (GDV). Additionally, unbaked bread dough contains yeast, which when it goes through the process of fermentation, releases carbon dioxide gas and ethanol byproduct, which will be absorbed by the bloodstream. (source)

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