Dogs and Mince Pies – Keep Your Dog Safe This Christmas.
These yummy treats are always a big hit with people over the festive season. For us, eating too many may simply mean piling on a few extra pounds. For dogs, however, they are highly toxic. Read on to find out more about why dogs and mince pies don’t go together.
Last year, hundreds of dogs were taken to out-of-hours veterinary surgeries across the UK due to eating fruits contained in mince pies, Christmas pudding and cake.
There is often a significant rise in veterinary patients over the Christmas period. Many people buy lots of Christmas goodies, particularly those containing fruit, but these can make dogs really poorly if eaten.
Grapes, raisins, currants and sultanas are all toxic to dogs, (as well as cats) and can lead to serious illness and kidney failure. Dried fruits can cause particularly severe symptoms and should always be kept out of reach of family pets.
Although science cannot explain completely why raisins are so poisonous to dogs, the fact remains, that even a single grape or currant can cause toxic side effects.
Experts believe one possible cause is intermittent mycotoxin. This is a poison produced by moulds which develop on the grapes when they become damp during harvest time.
Smaller dogs are at more risk than larger breeds, but many readers may be thinking, how much is too much?
Veterinary guidelines suggest that if a dog weighing around 5 kg consumes 20 grapes or raisins, or a 30 kg dog eats 120 grapes, there is risk of serious problems. Therefore, if you think your dog may have eaten even half these quantities it would be advisable to seek veterinary attention immediately.
Common symptoms associated with the digestion of mince pies, Christmas puddings and Christmas cake;-
- Pain in the abdomen.
Symptoms may develop from around 6 to 24 hours after the dog has ingested these foods. The prognosis is usually positive if treatment begins early. However, it is still imperative to keep these goodies away from dogs. If you suspect your dog has eaten mince pies or Christmas cake, take him to the vet immediately – even if this means Christmas day itself. This will give your dog the best chance of recovery.
Of course, prevention is better than cure. Remember to keep all these food items out of reach of pet dogs.
If you’re leaving goodies out for Father Christmas, make sure you put them high up, out of the way on a table, or counter-top.
If you would like to treat your dog, why not have a go at some home made festive dog treats?