Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Food Safety Lecture

Welcome everyone to my "Food Safety Informational Discussion" I researched the ASPCA for all information. You might notice that many of the foods mention dogs, but I did check and it also pertains to our precious kitty pals as well. I think it best to just avoid the following foods in general.

Thanks to  Top Cop Sidebite and Sarge for setting this very impawtant week up 

 My pals, I know how much we all like to nose through the trash or pick up a yummy foodable on our walks. This can be a wonderful thing, but we must learn to discriminate the good foodables from the bad. This is very impawtant to our health and well being.
Please take note of the following so you can avoid them in your healthy trash digging days.

Avocado leaves, fruit, seeds and bark may contain a toxic principle known as persin. The Guatemalan variety, a common one found in stores, appears to be the most problematic. Other varieties of avocado can have different degrees of toxic potential.
Birds, rabbits, and some large animals, including horses, are especially sensitive to avocados, as they can have respiratory distress, congestion, fluid accumulation around the heart, and even death from consuming avocado. While avocado is toxic to some animals, in dogs and cats, we do not expect to see serious signs of illness. In some dogs and cats, mild stomach upset may occur if the animal eats a significant amount of avocado flesh or peel. Ingestion of the pit can lead to obstruction in the gastrointestinal tract, which is a serious situation requiring urgent veterinary care.
Avocado is sometimes included in pet foods for nutritional benefit. We would generally not expect avocado meal or oil present in commercial pet foods to pose a hazard to dogs and cats.

Bread Dough
Raw bread dough made with live yeast can be hazardous if ingested by dogs. When raw dough is swallowed, the warm, moist environment of the stomach provides an ideal environment for the yeast to multiply, resulting in an expanding mass of dough in the stomach. Expansion of the stomach may be severe enough to decrease blood flow to the stomach wall, resulting in the death of tissue. Additionally, the expanding stomach may press on the diaphragm, resulting in breathing difficulty. Perhaps more importantly, as the yeast multiplies, it produces alcohols that can be absorbed, resulting in alcohol intoxication. Affected dogs may have distended abdomens and show signs such as a lack of coordination, disorientation, stupor and vomiting (or attempts to vomit). In extreme cases, coma or seizures may occur and could lead to death from alcohol intoxication. Dogs showing mild signs should be closely monitored, and dogs with severe abdominal distention or dogs who are so inebriated that they can’t stand up should be monitored by a veterinarian until they recover.


Chocolate intoxication is most commonly seen around certain holidays—like Easter, Christmas, Halloween and Valentine’s Day—but it can happen any time dogs have access to products that contain chocolate, such as chocolate candy, cookies, brownies, chocolate baking goods, cocoa powder and cocoa shell-based mulches. The compounds in chocolate that cause toxicosis are caffeine and theobromine, which belong to a group of chemicals called methylxanthines. The rule of thumb with chocolate is “the darker it is, the more dangerous it is.” White chocolate has very few methylxanthines and is of low toxicity. Dark baker’s chocolate has very high levels of methylxanthines, and plain, dry unsweetened cocoa powder contains the most concentrated levels of methylxanthines. Depending on the type and amount of chocolate ingested, the signs seen can range from vomiting, increased thirst, abdominal discomfort and restlessness to severe agitation, muscle tremors, irregular heart rhythm, high body temperature, seizures and death. Dogs showing more than mild restlessness should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

Grapes and Raisins
Grapes and raisins have recently been associated with the development of kidney failure in dogs. At this time, the exact cause of the kidney failure isn’t clear, nor is it clear why some dogs can eat these fruits without harm, while others develop life-threatening problems after eating even a few grapes or raisins. Some dogs eat these fruits and experience no ill effects—but then eat them later on and become very ill. Until the cause of the toxicosis is better identified, the safest course of action is to avoid feeding grapes or raisins to your dog. Dogs experiencing grape or raisin toxicosis usually develop vomiting, lethargy or diarrhea within 12 hours of ingestion. As signs progress, dogs become increasingly lethargic and dehydrated, refuse to eat and may show a transient increase in urinages. Death due to kidney failure may occur within three to four days, or long-term kidney disease may persist in dogs who survive the acute intoxication. Successful treatment requires prompt veterinary treatment to maintain good urine flow.

Cultivated hops used for brewing beer have been associated with potentially life-threatening signs in dogs who have ingested them. Both fresh and spent (cooked) hops have been implicated in poisoning dogs. Affected dogs develop an uncontrollably high body temperature (often greater than 108 degrees Fahrenheit), which results in damage to and failure of multiple organ systems. Dogs poisoned by hops become restless, pant excessively, and may have muscle tremors and seizures. Prompt veterinary intervention is necessary to prevent death in these dogs.

Ethanol (Also Known as Ethyl Alcohol, Grain Alcohol or Drinking Alcohol)
Dogs are far more sensitive to ethanol than humans are. Even ingesting a small amount of a product containing alcohol can cause significant intoxication. Dogs may be exposed to alcohol through drinking alcoholic drinks, such as beer, wine or mixed drinks (those with milk, like White Russians and “fortified” egg nog, are especially appealing to dogs), alcohol-containing elixirs and syrups, and raw yeast bread dough (please see the above section on bread dough). Alcohol intoxication commonly causes vomiting, loss of coordination, disorientation and stupor. In severe cases, coma, seizures and death may occur. Dogs showing mild signs of alcohol intoxication should be closely monitored, and dogs who are so inebriated that they can’t stand up should be monitored by a veterinarian until they recover.

Macadamia Nuts
 Although up to 48 hours macadamia nut toxicosis is unlikely to be fatal in dogs, it can cause very uncomfortable symptoms that may persist . Affected dogs develop weakness in their rear legs, appear to be in pain, may have tremors and may develop a low grade fever. Fortunately, these signs will gradually subside over 48 hours, but dogs experiencing more than mild symptoms can benefit from veterinary care, which may include intravenous fluid therapy and pain control.

Moldy Foods
A wide variety of molds grow on food. Some produce toxins called tremorgenic mycotoxins, which can cause serious or even life-threatening problems if ingested by dogs. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to determine whether a particular mold is producing tremorgenic mycotoxins, so the safest rule of thumb is to avoid feeding dogs moldy food. In other words, if you wouldn’t eat it, neither should your dog. Promptly remove any trash or moldy debris (road-kill, fallen walnuts or fruit, etc.) from your dog’s environment to prevent him from eating it. The signs of tremorgenic mycotoxin poisoning generally begin as fine muscle tremors that progress to very coarse total-body tremors and, finally, convulsions that can lead to death in severe cases. Left untreated, these tremors can last for several weeks. Fortunately, they usually respond well to appropriate veterinary treatment.

Onions and Garlic
All close members of the onion family (shallots, onions, garlic, scallions, etc.) contain compounds that can damage dogs’ red blood cells if ingested in sufficient quantities. A rule of thumb is “the stronger it is, the more toxic it is.” Garlic tends to be more toxic than onions, on an ounce-for-ounce basis. While it’s uncommon for dogs to eat enough raw onions and garlic to cause serious problems, exposure to concentrated forms of onion or garlic, such as dehydrated onions, onion soup mix or garlic powder, may put dogs at risk of toxicosis. The damage to the red blood cells caused by onions and garlic generally doesn’t become apparent until three to five days after a dog eats these vegetables. Affected dogs may seem weak or reluctant to move, or they may appear to tire easily after mild exercise. Their urine may be orange-tinged to dark red in color. These dogs should be examined by a veterinarian immediately. In severe cases, blood transfusions may be needed.

Xylitol is a non-caloric sweetener that is widely used in sugar-free gum, as well as in sugar-free baked products. In humans, xylitol does not affect blood sugar levels, but in dogs, ingestion of xylitol can lead to a rapid and severe drop in blood sugar levels. Dogs may develop disorientation and seizures within 30 minutes of ingesting xylitol-containing products, or signs may be delayed for several hours. Some dogs who ingest large amounts of xylitol develop liver failure, which can be fatal. All dogs ingesting xylitol-containing products should be examined by a veterinarian immediately.

 Coffee, Tea, Energy Drinks.
 These and other caffeinated drinks and foods can cause your cat or dog to become restless, have rapid breathing, heart palpitations, muscle tremors.

I hope you have learned something and found this interesting. I realize that some of our pals(Puddles, Ruby, Goose,Angel Pip just to name a few) seem to have a resistance to the alcohol and hops related items. But in general, we need to keep these things in mind before our next trash binge or our next pawty. 

Ask yourself..."Would my human eat this?"

Well ok, that might not be true, since many of us enjoy a lot of poop delicacies that our humans don't seem to understand. Please just be careful and separate the bad trash from the good and then dig in and enjoy as usual.

 Now please don't forget to check on more "Safety Week" events at Sarge or Top Cop Sidebite

I hope you have learned something today.

I will be set up with free and " safe" refreshments. 

Stop by and I will be happy to answer any questions you might have.

Here are apples for all the great teachers this week!!

 Loveys and Be Safe, Chef Sasha


Bella Roxy & Macdui said...

we'll be careful, Sasha. We didn't know about the bread dough....but SHE doesn't make bread, so we're safe.

Dui eats ANYTHING, but so far it's mostly bugs and duck poo.

Unknown said...

Nice one Sasha. Funnily the one we always forget about is the humble avocado. Great to go through the list again and remind us. Have a wonderful Wednesday.
Best wishes Molly

Duke said...

What a great post with so much wonderful information, Sasha! Could we have an apple - pretty please?

Love ya lots♥
Mitch and Molly

Cowspotdog said...

What a totally pawsome post - you need an amazing job on giving us the information we all need to keep in mind. Well done Miss Sasha :)

My Mind's Eye said...

CHEF SASHA!! ONCE AGAIN YOU HAVE OUTDONE YOURSELF!!! WHAT AN EXCELLENT POST. OMDs I had no idea about raw dough (not that I'd eat raw dough) but WOW!!! MOL MOL Puddles, Ruby, Goose and Angel Pip
have tummys of steel.
Hugs madi your bfff

bichonpawz said...

Thanks for all this very informative info Sasha!

Anonymous said...

Wow what a great post, Sasha! Now I know what food I have to avoid... I sometimes borrow a bubble gum from mom's purse and I'm afraid there was that xylitol thingy inside.... better mom hides that stuff on a better place. I rather stay with Pizza pawmade by Sasha :o)

Lassiter Chase and Benjamin said...

Great research! Thanks Sasha for the informative post!

Frank The Tank said...

Hi Sasha,
What a wonderful post with so much impawtant information, I really love how much information you have on delicious foodables and also what us dogs and kitties CAN NOT eat, My Momma is really crazy careful on what she feeds me and would never feed me anything harmful, such a great Health and Safety Lesson Sasha! I will have an apple ... thank you ... you can have my heart! Love, Licks and Kisses from your furiend Frank xxxxx

Frankie Furter and Ernie said...

THANK YOU Chef Sasha. THIS is very much VALUABLE and LIFE SAVING information fur SURE.

That was so nice of you to give all the Safety Week Teachers an APPLE. Hope you remembered that YOU are a teacher ALSO and kept ONE fur YOUR snack.

BRAVO.... WELL taught Class. We took lots of NOTES so we will be safe around foods.
THANK YOU again, Chef Sasha.
YOU are the bestest Cooker in all of Blogville. We can't wait until Saturday... we want some of your AWESOME POSSUM PIZZA.

stellaroselong said...

We sure did not know about the avocado's thanks for sharing this wif us. Mom gets really really mad at dad when he gives us a sip of his sweet tea also. She is going to make him read this.
stella rose

Sweet William The Scot said...

Very Informative Sasha. Thank goodness apples are safe. Lee always gives me bites of apples before I go to bed. So you are now telling me that the brand playground ready chewed gum is not safe for me. That is just not right but I gotcha, no more playground ready chewed gum.
Thanks for being a friend
Sweet William The Scot

Matilda the Boxer said...

OMD, I was just begging Momma for some grapes last night! I almost wore her down too. I'm glad I read this before begging anymore. Thanks for a very informative post!

♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥ said...

Awesome post, Sasha - so informative and so much great safety warnings. We did not know about bread dough, but luckily the Momster doesn't make her own bread. But we are going to file that.

Mom often wonders if Ciara's seizures started when she was eating those moldy black walnuts that those darn pesky squirrels buried in our yard. We will never know for sure, but we do hope she doesn't find any more.

Thanks again for a wonderful post.

Woos - Phantom, Ciara, and Lightning

Unknown said...

What a super informative post, Sasha! It is very wise to stay away from all those foods that could make us sick. I think it is great you added moldy foods too...though I don't know who would feed those to their dogs and if any dogs would eat that....but best to be in the know!

Angels Amber and Max DaWeenie and Mom said...

Sure was nice getting a refresher course in what not to eat! Mommy is really good about watching stuff like this BUTT Daddy Furgets sometimes. Mommy dropped a potato chip with onion salt in it and almost had a heart attack!


Sue said...

That was a great and very important post. We all need to think before we grab food off the street or when we counter surf.
Fudge and the Portie Pack

Sully said...

I can stay away from everything except the alcohol.

Aroo to you,

Scooter said...

Hey Sasha!
Wow, brava to you, my sweet furiend! Great post for today. OMD I didn't know that about avoncalldo's or bread dough. Hmmm. Now, I admit I once at a dark chocolate candy bar-wrapper and all. BWAR HAR HAR I was okay, but my Mom was furious. BOL I got lucky I didn't get sick. Gee, this was pawesome. Thanks so much for hosting and giving such great info. BTW: You look adorable studying your books.
Grr and Woof,
Sarge, Police Commish

Idaho PugRanch said...

Sasha, what a great informative post. We had heard of most of these but did really know how they could affect us. Mom & Dad try to be very careful with what we eat. Once Mom dropped a breath mint (xylitol) in the car and about turned herself inside out to find it so one of us did not
Mr Bailey, Hazel & Greta

Two French Bulldogs said...

What would we do without you Chef! This is very important information
Lily & Edward

The Adventures of the LLB Gang said...

OMD...we made Mama take lots of notes on your lecture Sasha, what a great job!!! Mama and Daddy have to be careful about there sugar free gum...cause Jakey will search it our and eat it!!

Dory, Jakey, Arty & Bilbo

Hailey and Zaphod and their Lady said...

We didn't know about bread dough and avocado were not safe for us. We will make sure to stay away. LeeLee is thrilled poop wasn't on your list!
Thanks for a great talk Sasha!

Ruby said...

BRAVO!!!! BRAVO!!!!! OMD, my Sweet Pal, this is the bestest postie!!!! I learned so much!
When Ma was a wee lass, her and her brudder used to give her Wirehaired Fox Terrier grapes all the time! We gots lucky, cause we never knew they could be dangerous!! Phew!!
Nows, I have to say, my lead tummy can handle like, 87 margaritas, butts it's not for every pup fursure!! I have worked VERY hard to build up my tolerance, and it's a long process that takes lots of practice..hehehehe
OMD, I heard you were havin' Water Balloonies at the Picnic!!!!! OMD! Ya knows what??? You should fill some with margaritas!!! BOL!!!
Okays, I'm off to puts the final touches on the drinkies for the Picnic!!
Ruby ♥

M. K. Clinton said...

We promise not to eat any of those bad foods. Smelling chocolate won't hurt though, right? Mmmm ♥

Ranger said...

Thank you Chef. Dar were a few items on your DO NOT list dat I didn't know about.
Great job on your safety postie.

Murphy said...

This is an excellent post with most valuable information. Thank you!!

Your pals,

Murphy & Stanley
Mayorz For All Paws

KB said...

What an incredibly informative post. I didn't know about some of that stuff.

I found one brand of fat-free yogurt that has xylitol in it. Can you believe that? I almost always share my yogurt with my dogs... but now I always check the label first.

Thanks, Sasha! I bet you saved some lives with this post.

Tweedles -- that's me said...

Wow Sashy
you really did some investigation in finding out the facts to keep us all safe!
Thank you so much!

Unknown said...

An excellent and very, very impawtant post - thank you Miss Sasha!
Wally & Sammy

Anonymous said...

Oh WOW, didn't know about most of that, we are printing that off and posting in the kitchen for Mom to check ingredients before it goes in our pupper dish.

Thanks Sasha for being a part of Safety week, it's so good to get info out like this

Top Cop Bites
Pees; Da Sus has something special for Friday, just for gals!