Paws For Thought
Your pet is a beloved member of the family so it can be a tough call when it comes to food. Your four-legged friend gazes longingly at what you’re eating and, no doubt, you’re tempted to share with them. But the chances are that, if you do, you won’t be doing your pet any favours. In fact, food that may be find for humans can unfortunately be hazardous for our furry friends.
Foods that can harm dogs, cats and other pets:
- Avocado contains persin, which causes respiratory distress and fluid build-up around the heart in birds. It also causes mastitis and heart problems in rabbits and other rodents. In dogs it can cause an upset stomach.
- Caffeine found in tea, coffee, soft drinks and chocolate stimulate an animal’s nervous system and can damage the heart, lungs and kidneys.
- Chocolate abounds around the Easter season. It contains both caffeine and theobromine, a chemical compound that makes humans feel good but which causes sickness in dogs and cats. Even small amounts cause dogs to vomit and have diarrhoea, in larger doses it can be fatal
- .Cooked Bones splinter and are very sharp. They can puncture the digestive tract anywhere from the mouth onward, or get stuck and cause an intestinal blockage.
- Grapes, Raisins and Sultanas can cause vomiting, lethargy and depression in dogs.
- Macadamia Nuts contain a chemical that in some dogs causes muscle weakness, joint swelling and paralysis.
- Onions and garlic damage red blood cells in dogs, producing a sort of anaemia that can lead to vomiting, diarrhoea and lethargy.
- Stonefruit, especially apricots have seeds that are just the right size to get stuck in a dog’s gut. Corn cobs are also notorious for getting stuck.
- Sugar free products may contain xylitol which is an artificial sweetener that stimulates a dog’s pancreas to produce extra insulin. This can lead to seriously low blood sugar and liver damage in dogs within just 30 minutes. Ferrets are also susceptible to adverse reactions from xylitol.
- Easter Lilies are deadly for cats. The leaves, flowers, stems and even the pollen of plants in the Liliaceae family lilies cause life-threatening kidney failure in cats. If you have a cat, the best idea is to ban lilies from your home and garden. If you think your cat has mouthed or eaten a lily, go straight to the vet as your cat will need intravenous fluids and other support.
So when you get the puppy dog eyes, offer your pet a toy or a liver treat while you indulge in “human” food. Keep the whole family happy and healthy, fur-babies and human babies!