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Safe For You, Poison For Your Pet
Dangers Include Raisins, Coffee Grounds And Avocados
Nov 6, 2004 8:11 pm US/Eastern

Many substances kept in the average household are toxic to pets, reports resident veterinarian Debbye Turner on The Saturday Early Show.

Although it is common sense to store medications, cleaning agents, detergents and household chemicals out of reach of children and pets, there are other items that are extremely harmful to pets that we may not see as dangerous substances.

Listed below are some very harmful household hazards, accompanied by some information on why they are toxic and what effect they can have on your pets.

Dana Farbman, a licensed veterinary technician and senior manager of client and professional relations at the ASPCA, supplied this information.

DE-ICING SALTS:
De-icing salts are potentially hazardous to any pet, but particularly dangerous to dogs because they are frequently outdoors. It contains an ingredient called calcium carbonate and it acts as in irritant to the skin on a dog's paw pads. If the dog licks its pads and ingests the salt, one of the side effects is gastrointestinal irritation. Symptoms of this include vomiting, diarrhea and drooling. More serious side effects, depending on the level of ingestion, include excessive thirst, depression, weakness in blood pressure and disorientation. The most intense symptoms after a high level of ingestion are a decrease in muscle function, seizures, comas and even death. If you suspect exposure to de-icing salts, call your veterinarian or contact the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.

NONSTICK COOKING SPRAY:
Depending on the formulation, these aerosol sprays contain hydrocarbons, which are volatile substances. Some of the early signs of ingestion in your pet include an upset stomach. A high amount can lead to respiratory tract problems and a condition known as aspiration pneumonia (an inflammation of the lungs and bronchial tubes caused by inhaling foreign material).

One thing you don't want to do is induce vomiting if your pet has ingested cooking spray or fumes from a nonstick cooking surface, because you could double the risk by forcing your pet to bring these substances back up again.

Birds are very sensitive to cooking sprays because they have a unique respiratory tract that makes them very susceptible to irritation, so be really careful not only with cooking sprays but anything coming from an aerosol container when around birds.

YEAST DOUGH:
If yeast dough is ingested it can expand, rise in the stomach, and can present a dangerous risk to your pet's intestinal system, such as an intestinal rupture. Also, alcohol fermentation may take place in your pet's stomach and if there's enough ingested it can lead to alcohol poisoning. Any pet is at risk. Keep an eye out for signs of gastrointestinal irritation - vomiting, diarrhea and drooling.

COFFEE GROUNDS:
The harmful substances like theobromine and the caffeine found in coffee grounds are very similar to those in chocolate and often produce the same side effects. Look out for vomiting and diarrhea. In addition your pet may experience hyperactivity, increased heart rate, seizures, tremors and possibly even death, depending on the amount ingested.

MACADAMIA NUTS:
We've only seen a negative reaction from these nuts in dogs and we don't know all that much about why they are dangerous, but we would recommend keeping them away from all pets. It's an interesting phenomenon - if enough are ingested (and as little as a handful can be seen as dangerous), we see weakness in hind legs and can see the gastrointestinal effects - vomiting, diarrhea and drooling. These nuts can also affect the central nervous system and cause depression and muscle tremors. Generally signs resolve in 48 hours with proper care and treatment.

TOMATO AND POTATO:
The red, ripe fruit of the tomato is edible and may cause nothing more than stomach irritation to pets with sensitive stomachs. It's the green part of the tomato or a green unripe tomato and the plant part - the stem, the leaves, etc., that is hazardous. Tomatoes and potatoes are in the same family of plants, so both have similar side effects if the green part of the plant is ingested. Again, depending on the amount ingested you will see the common gastrointestinal effects - vomiting, diarrhea and drooling. In addition to these signs, look for decreased heart rate and drooling.

AVOCADOS:
The most common species of avocados is the species that is particularly hazardous for birds, rabbits and mice particularly, but also dangerous to other pets like dogs and cats. Ingestion usually leads to cardiovascular problems and can cause fluid accumulation around the heart and severe respiratory distress. Avocados contain a toxin known as persin and should be kept away from all pets.

RAHWIDE DOGGIE CHEWS:
The level of danger of these chews can depend on individual animal eating and chewing habits. Some dogs can handle these chews well, others can't. If your dog tends to eat in large chunks, then you should keep these chews away from them because they're liable to ingest a large chunk and it can get caught in your pet's digestive tract.

Also, a wet, gooey rawhide laying around can grow bacteria and that will cause GI effects. Whether or not you should keep rawhide doggie chews away from depends on each individual dog. Also, its probably smart to check on where the chew was manufactured - we don't know all that much about the ingredients contained in chews manufactured in foreign countries, but are pretty familiar with the ingredients in American-made chews.

DENTAL FLOSS:
Dental floss is particularly hazardous to cats and kittens because they love to play with stringy things. Be careful with this if your pet tends to get into the trash. Obviously, a foreign substance like floss can cause an obstruction of the digestive system.

APPLE SEEDS:
Apple seeds are in the same category as other fruits like apples, cherries, peaches and apricots. The stems, leaves and seeds contain cyanogenic glycosides, and depending on the dose, you will see not only the common gastrointestinal effects but weakness in coordination and difficulty breathing. In some extreme cases, animals can go into shock or coma and can even result in death. The toxic ingredients are contained in the center of the seeds, so be sure keep your pet from chewing or crushing the seeds with their teeth. Another interesting thing to point out is that the level of toxicity can depend on growing conditions. If it's a stressful growing environment for an apple tree, the level of toxicity may be less than if the tree was growing in a healthy environment. This makes it difficult to gauge how much is a dangerous level.

ONIONS AND ONION POWDER:
Onions, garlic and chives are all part of the allium species. Any of plants can produce similar effects. Look for the common gastrointestinal effects and trouble breathing. In addition, these substances can see significant damage to a pet's red blood cells. Cats can be particularly sensitive but it is dangerous to cats, dogs and birds.

RAISINS:
Although we don't know much about why grapes and raisins are dangerous, we do know ingestion can harm the kidney. We don't know much about the dangers with regards to ingestion levels either, so its best to keep grapes and raisins away from your pets, period.

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR PET INGESTS ANY HAZARDOUS ITEMS:
First thing to do would be to call your veterinarian and let him or her know the situation. They can offer up some direction. Also, the ASPCA has an Animal Poison Control Center, which operates a hotline open 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 888-426-4435 for a fee of $45 per case. If you call, you should be prepared with the following information: the name of the poison your animal was exposed to, the amount and how long ago, the species, breed, age, sex, and weight of your pet, and the symptoms the animal is displaying.
 

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Thanks!

Before you call that number and get charged, ask your vet if there's someone you can call for free. I got this brochure from my Vet about P.E.T.S, an after hrs clinic or something. They're open when the normal vet offices close and also open on holidays.
 

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Great article, I have heard about most of those, but it is always a great reminder as it is easy to get lazy on safe guarding for our babies....(at least I speak for myself-I get complacent).....
 

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Discussion Starter #5
actually my friend gives her toy poodle california shushi alot
that has avacado in it , the only think i knew on the list was
onions and the ice salt everything else i had no clue
 

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question... i see apple seed is listed... does that mean the whole apple can be bad? I fed Kodie alittle bit of apple just the other day... please help!! Did I poison Kodie??
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Originally posted by Kodie@Nov 8 2004, 02:38 PM
question... i see apple seed is listed... does that mean the whole apple can be bad?  I fed Kodie alittle bit of apple just the other day... please help!!  Did I poison Kodie?? 
 

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the way i am reading it i think it means no apples, i guess what this is trying o tell us is that we need to stick to strictly dog food
i really only feed maxi dog food with roasted chicken but sometimes when he is with my friend and her aby toy poodle i know she gives him stuff even though she knows i flip out about that Because maxi has a weak stomach
 

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Originally posted by Kodie@Nov 8 2004, 01:38 PM
question... i see apple seed is listed... does that mean the whole apple can be bad?  I fed Kodie alittle bit of apple just the other day... please help!!  Did I poison Kodie?? 
 

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I think it means apple seeds, so Kodie is probably fine. To be on the safe side I would try to avoid giving him apples.
 

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Not all dogs are alike. Some dogs won't have any reaction to these. These lists are common food that will make them allergic. One of my friend's dog had a HORRIBLE HORRIBLE reaction to turkey. I heard ppl here give their babies turkey. So if your baby's fine, then it's all good
.
 

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Originally posted by DMZ dogs@Nov 8 2004, 06:34 PM
Apple seeds are dangerous for any animal as they contain trace amounts of cyanide.  Apples themselves are not dangerous unless your dog happens to have an allergy for them.  A lot of "human" food is perfectly safe.  Think about it.  A couple hundred years ago and longer ago, were people going to the store to buy commerical, packaged dog food for their dogs??  Commerical dog food is a very new thing, relatively speaking.

That article seems alarmist to me.  It puts tomato and potato up in big capital letters and it's easy to miss the part where it explains that it is only the vines and leaves and unripe portions that are actually poisonous.

The grape thing really surprised me as Noodle has always eaten grapes with me and we are both rather pigs about them.  But, he tends to eat mainly the skins, so maybe that's why.
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I would discontinue the grapes. The ASPCA has several articles about their toxicity. Here is one:
http://www.aspca.org/site/News2?page=NewsA...news_iv_ctrl=-1
 

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One thing that wasn't on the list that can be very toxic to dogs is chocolate:

Chocolate toxicity

Chocolate contains a xanthine compound, theobromine, that is toxic in sufficient quantities. Examples of other xanthine compounds are caffeine and theophylline. The toxicity from all of these compounds is similar.

It takes a fairly large amount of chocolate to cause problems. In "The Handbook of Small Animal Practice" by Dr. Rhea Morgan, the following data is given:

The toxic dose of theobromine is about 100 to 150mg/kg

Milk chocolate contains 6mg of theobromine per ounce. Semi-sweet chocolate contains about 22mg/oz. and baking chocolate about 35 to 45mg/oz.

From this it is pretty easy to see that milk chocolate poses only a minor threat while the other forms of chocolate can be a bigger problem.

Xanthines affect primarily the central nervous system, the cardiovascular system and peripheral nerves. There is a diuretic effect as well. So the sign seen with toxicity include hyperexitablility, hyper irritability, increased heart rate, restlessness, increased urination, vomiting and muscular tremors or tenseness. Under some circumstances these signs can lead to secondary problems like hyperthermia. In severe cases, seizures or cardiac arrest can occur. Death can result from severe intoxication.

There is no specific antidote for this poisoning. Inducing vomiting can help if the ingestion is known and has occurred within one to two hours. Administration of activated charcoal may inhibit absorption of the toxin from the digestive tract. It may be necessary to use medications to control the effects of the poisoning, especially seizure control medications, oxygen therapy, intravenous fluids, and medications to control the effects on the heart.

With ingestion of milk chocolate, diarrhea is a common secondary problem. This may require therapy and often occurs 12 to 24 hours after eating the chocolate.

If you suspect chocolate poisoning and your dog or cat is showing clinical signs of the problem, it is important to contact your vet.

Michael Richards, DVM
 

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:D i feed my dogs apples.....its actually listed in some dog food.
so dont worry about that. just the seeds are bad.
 

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Originally posted by DMZ dogs@Nov 9 2004, 08:34 AM
Sure enough, he had dragged away an entire Ghana chocolate bar, unwrapped it, and eaten it.  No ill effects afterwards, though I was posed to rush him to the vet to get his stomach pumped.  Then, a couple years later, in America, I made the mistake of setting my shopping bags just inside and then leaving to go and get my mail.  By the time I got back, Noodle had eaten half the box of $1 store thin mints.
You know, we have to be so careful ..... On Sunday a friend came over for lunch. We were eating in the breakfast room. Catcher was in his play pen and Kallie was out and about. She was unusually quiet and I went in to the dining room to check on her and she was chewing on my friend's sunglasses! My friend had left her large purse on the floor. It was the tote style and the top was open and stuff was sort of hanging out. If she would have had chocolate in there, Kallie would have surely gotten it. I was sort of surprised that my friend would have left a purse on the floor with a dog running loose but I guess those who don't have dogs who get in to things don't think of things like that.

I was lucky that the sunglasses were not prescription or outrageously expensive and lucky that Kallie didn't eat up her expensive purse.... if it wasn't for the sunglasss to occupy her, she probably would have chowed down on the purse. So, it was a good lesson for me to make sure in the future that no one puts stuff on the floor.... Luckily, no harm was done...except to the glasses, of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Originally posted by Gizmosmom@Nov 9 2004, 03:11 PM
I also have the tote style purse and my husband has on occasion left Gizmo to rummage through.  Last night was one of thos times.  I found Gizmo chewing on my bottle of anti-deppressants.  If he had managed to chew through he would have been a very sick happy little dog!


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Thank god he didnt lol although a happy pup makes a happy home
as for the list , my friend shares her california sushi with her baby and she said he eats plenty of it and it has avacado so i wonder how true all this is , i will follow it because i dont want to take any chances
 

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Great thread! Can anyone find an article about the toxicity of plants during the Christmas season. Aren't poinsettias supposed to be toxic? Jolie has never bothered them, but now with Sadie, I might have to change my decorating plans.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
After telling my friend about this article ( she is the one that has the toy poodle diggy which is maxis best friend) Diggy eats last night baked ziti ( she feeds him alot of table food) i purposely told her no garlic ( now here is a person that is totally even more nutso when it comes to her baby than me if thats possible) she lets him eat ziti and now she is on her way to the animal hospital he has been throwing up and doing watery number 2 all morning, he threw up the ziti this morning whole so he is definetly sick from it...Thats why i stick to 96% dog food with only giving maxi the white of chicken because he loves that, and sometimes when she watches maxi i know she gives him the same stuff she gives diggy which gets me mad because he comes back with stomach aches, iknow maxi and he can not eat outside of his regular routine he has a weak stomach
i hope diggy is ok and im glad she is rushing him to the vet
ill let you all knwo what happens
 

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I was reading an article in a home magazine and it listed Turkey among the other things listed???? What is up with the turkey thing? I did not know anything about that and our dogs have eaten turkey,,any information on this? I saw it mentioned earlier in the post that someone's friends dog had a reaction to it?
 
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