Our pets are like part of the family, but should you feed them that way? We’ve all felt the stares and the longing looks from our cats and dogs as we prepare a delicious meal for ourselves. They’re just so cute! Just one little scrap won’t hurt, right?
In some cases, wrong! While our pets may feel like just another member of the family, their digestive systems are very much unique to them. They cannot tolerate certain foods that would otherwise be seen as healthy foods for humans.
Here’s a rundown of the top 10 foods that are toxic to dogs and cats.
Chocolate is toxic to both dogs and cats. Toxic amounts can cause irregular heartbeat, kidney failure and even death. Baking chocolate is the most toxic form. Dark chocolate, which has recently risen in popularity, is far more toxic than milk chocolate. The less your pet weighs, the smaller the dose of chocolate is needed to have a toxic effect.
Did you know many cats are lactose intolerant? This may come as a surprise, but some cats actually lack the enzymes to break down milk sugars. Milk consumption in both cats and dogs can cause stomach distress and diarrhea if they can’t tolerate lactose. If your pet is lactose intolerant and consumes milk, you will notice symptoms within a day.
Ingesting onions, whether cooked or raw, can result in life threatening anemia in both dogs and cats. Just a small amount of onion can cause toxicity.
4. Grapes and Raisins
Grapes and raisins have been shown to cause kidney failure in some animals. Not all animals seem to be equally susceptible, but it is still recommended to keep these away from your pet, as kidney failure can be permanent and/or life threatening.
The ethanol found in alcohol is absorbed very quickly by the body and can cause damage to the heart and nervous system.
While a great, healthy fat for us humans, avocados can cause vomiting and diarrhea, especially if the seeds, leaves or skin are consumed.
Even in very small amounts, xylitol can cause seizures, liver failure and death. Xylitol can commonly be found in gums and many sugar free candies and snacks these days.
8. Yeast Dough
Just like alcohol, yeast dough contains ethanol, which can cause great damage to the heart and nervous systems of your pet.
9. Macadamia Nuts
While not life threatening, macadamia nuts can cause severe lethargy, vomiting and joint stiffness in pets.
A large dose of caffeine is usually fatal to a cat. Small amounts can still cause restlessness, heart palpitations and tremors in both species, so it is best to keep all caffeinated drinks out of their reach.