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Foods That Could Make Your Pet Sick

September 16th, 2011 Pets

There's a reason why dog and cat foods exist. Animals often can't tolerate the same ingredients that humans can. Next time you consider giving in to your pet's begging behavior, think twice before offering the following foods. Seek advice from your veterinarian if you're unsure or suspect that Fluffy's been prowling your counter.

1. Chocolate. You may have known this was on the list, and indeed, it's dangerous for all types of animals because it overstimulates their heart and nervous system. Dogs are the most likely culprits of inhaling large amounts, so keep your treats hidden in areas Spot can't reach.

2. Grapes and raisins. This fruit is poisonous to cats and dogs because it can damage their kidneys. If your pet gets a hold of some, you may notice that he's thirsty, throwing up, urinating more than usual or acting lethargic.

3. Onions and garlic. These are toxic for both felines and canines. They can cause anemia by damaging your pet's red blood cells. Keep these vegetables stored properly and avoid letting your animal eat foods with garlic or onions listed as ingredients.

4. Sugarless gum. Dogs can get into your purse and snatch a pack of gum, but if you have a sugarless brand with xylitol listed under ingredients, keep Fido away. Xylitol can increase insulin secretion, which can dangerously lower your dog's blood sugar levels.

5. Alcohol. Alcohol depresses the nervous system, which makes it pretty dangerous for all species of animals. Just like when a person gets drunk, animals can face similar symptoms and end up vomiting, having difficulty breathing and experiencing a lack of coordination. Keep your drinks out of reach.