Can dogs eat grapes? The simple answer to this question is NO.
Most of us think that all fruits and vegetables are good and safe for dogs, but that is not the case. There are few fruits and vegetables that can cause serious health issues and even fatal for your dog, and the grape is one of them.
Grapes and raisins can be toxic to your dog. It is idiosyncratic toxicity meaning that you cannot predict who will be affected. Some dogs can eat grapes without any problems, while other dogs might consume a few grapes and end up with severe kidney injury or kidney failure. So, it is hard to tell which dog will have a reaction and which won’t, and in the worst cases, this can be fatal to dogs.
Why Grapes Are Bad for Dogs?
While snacking on grapes and raisins is an excellent way for humans to stay healthy and get a daily dose of nutrients, but grapes and raisins are toxic to dogs and can lead to severe health problems. You should avoid all foods containing grapes and raisins, including grape juice, raisin field cookies, trail mix, and even bagels, at all costs to prevent poisoning.
According to the clinical finding by the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center, the ingestion of grapes or raisins can be fatal for dogs. They found a steep rise in the levels of calcium, creatinine, and phosphorous in the dogs who consumed grapes. Doctors think that the probable reasons behind the toxic effect of grapes can be either pesticides, heavy metal like zinc and lead, or fungal contamination, etc.
How Do I Know If My Dog Ate Grapes?
Dogs who eat grapes or raisins may exhibit vomiting or diarrhea within just a few hours of consumption, and there may be signs of grapes or raisins in that diarrhea or vomit. The majority of the dogs also seemed hyperactive soon after consuming those raisins and grapes.
As the toxicity progresses, dogs may become lethargic, lose their appetites, experience abdominal pain, and show signs of dehydration. If the toxicity levels are high, the dog may eventually pass only a small amount of urine or stop producing urine altogether. If this happens, then the dog is in jeopardy of kidney failure.
Symptoms of Grape Poisoning In Dogs
If your dog accidentally eats a grape or raisin without you knowing it or just by accident, then it is important to know what symptoms to look out for grape poisoning.
- Loss of appetite
- Weakness or stiffness that seems out of the ordinary
- Vomiting or diarrhea which usually shows up a few hours to a few days after ingestion
- Pain around the abdominal area when touched
- Dehydration which could look like excessive panting
- A dry nose and tongue
If your dog is showing any of these symptoms, get them to a vet as soon as possible. While grapes and raisins are dangerous, they’re not the only threat to your pet’s health. It is always better to be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to your beloved pet.
What To Do If Your Dog Eats a Grape?
Dogs that are treated early have a reasonable chance of recovery. If the treatment is delayed, then the dogs will die of kidney failure. The recommendation is generally to act proactively in the early stages to minimize the risk of intoxication.
So what should you do if your dog consumes a grape or a raise? Should you overreact or wait and don’t do anything about it?
If your dog shows all the signs of grape poisoning, then take his immediately to a vet. If taking your dog to a vet is not an option, then the first step will be to make him vomit to get rid of the potential toxin. Do not induce vomiting if your dog is not conscious or having trouble breathing or exhibiting signs of severe distress or shock.
In terms of inducing vomiting, if you’re doing it at home, you will need hydrogen peroxide. In general, the dose of hydrogen peroxide in dogs is approximately 0.5 – 1 ml per pound weight. If your dog weighs 50 pounds, you can give 25 – 50 mls of fresh, non-expired hydrogen peroxide orally, once. Keep in mind that 15 mls = 1 tablespoon (or 5 mls = 1 teaspoon), so this would be approximately 1.5 – 3.5 TBSP.
Mix hydrogen peroxide with an equivalent amount of water in a bowl. Fill up a syringe with the mix, then lift your dog’s head, and put the syringe right to the back of his mouth over his tongue and gently squirt the mixture. Ensure that he swallows each amount of it.
Wait for ten minutes and if your dog doesn’t vomit within that time, then repeat the process. Even if you do get your dog to vomit shortly after consuming grapes or raisins, you should seek immediate veterinary treatment when possible.
Another thing that you could consider in terms of a grape or raisin toxicity is giving your dog activated charcoal. Activated charcoal binds to any of the toxins that your dog consumed and facilitates its excretion via the feces. It acts like a magnet and binds to those toxins in the stomach.
There are different doses for activated charcoal. The recommended dose of activated charcoal for all species of animals is 1-3 gm/kg body weight. You may repeat the doses every 4-8 hours at half the original dose.
You will need a large syringe to give it to your dog, orally. It is best to give your dog activated charcoal after you induced him to vomit, so he doesn’t vomit it out.
Can Grapes Kill Dogs?
In 1989 a computerized animal toxicity database showed that for a small percent of dogs after they had consumed grapes or raisins, developed acute kidney failures. It has been known actually for the last 25 years. To date, researchers still have not been able to pinpoint the exact substance in raisins and grapes that causes this toxic reaction in dogs. A small amount of grapes or raisins can be potentially fatal to some dogs, while others ingest vast quantities with no ill effect.
How to Protect Your Dog From Grape Poisoning?
The first obvious thing is, do not feed your dog grapes or raisins. Raisins can be found in all types of foods like trail mix, cookies, etc. So, make sure that your dog doesn’t have easy access to them. Never leave your dog unsupervised around grapes or raisins and make sure children and other house guests know not to offer grapes or raisins to your dog.
If your dog shoots you those puppy-dog eyes when you’re eating grapes or a snack that has raisins, it could be hard to tell them No, but you should never share them with your dog no matter how badly they might want it. Although toxicity from grapes and raisins isn’t all that common, the bottom line is don’t ever share grapes or raisins with your dog.