Why are grapes bad for dogs? Dogs and grapes do not mix because of the fruit’s unidentified toxic compound in canines. The lack of information makes it difficult to assess how much grapes can seriously harm pooches.
However, one thing’s for sure; ingesting grapes is potentially fatal to any dog regardless of breed, size, or age.
The Unknown Culprit
For a long time, veterinarians were stumped as to what makes grapes toxic to dogs. It was speculated that mycotoxins, naturally produced toxic substances by fungus or mould, could be the cause.
Others suggested that the dangerous compound might be salicylate. This is a natural aspirin-like chemical produced by the fruit. Ingesting salicylate can hinder blood circulation to the kidneys in dogs.
A New Possible Breakthrough
Not long ago, experts posited another possible theory. This time, tartaric acid is believed to be the culprit. The speculation was made after a dog became ill after consuming homemade playdough.
The vets discovered that the leading cause of the dog’s poisoning was tartaric acid, which is also present in grapes in varying concentrations.
Hence, they made the connection, pointing out that this substance could be the toxic principle in the fruit they have long been looking for.
However, up to now, no definitive confirmation has been provided for any of these theories. Pawrents remain in the dark as to what is the root cause of grapes’ toxicity.
No Types of Grapes Are Safe for Dogs
All grapes, including currants and sultanas, can cause dog poisoning. Foods containing any of these fruits, such as wine, trail mix, and grape juice, pose dangers of toxicity too.
With that in mind, let us answer these frequently asked questions about the fruit:
Are green grapes bad for dogs?
Yes, green grapes are bad for dogs since they naturally produce an unknown toxic substance. It does not matter whether they are served peeled or seedless; the risk they carry remains the same.
Are black grapes bad for dogs?
Yes, black grapes are bad for dogs, just like green ones, for the same reason. White, red, yellow, pink, purple, and other grape varieties are also poisonous to dogs.
Are grape stems bad for dogs?
Yes, even grape stems are bad for dogs. They also carry the toxic element that is present in the fruit.
Are frozen grapes bad for dogs?
Yes. Not only are frozen grapes poisonous to dogs, but they can also cause choking. Their hard texture makes them difficult to chew.
Your pooch may accidentally swallow frozen grapes, which can get stuck in his windpipe.
Can dogs eat raisins?
No, dried grapes or raisins are highly poisonous to dogs. They contain a higher concentration of the toxic agent. A small number of raisins can easily give rise to toxicity.
Is raisin bread bad for dogs?
Yes, raisin bread and other baked goods containing grapes are bad for dogs. Keep these types of food to yourself and never share them with your pooch.
How Much Grapes Can Cause Poisoning in Dogs
Many worried dog owners ask: “Will a single grape harm a dog?” There is no way to tell if ingesting a single grape will harm a dog.
Depending on their sensitivity, each canine reacts differently to the poisonous compound. A single grape may not cause toxicity in some pooches but could induce poisoning in others.
How many grapes would be toxic to a dog? It is uncertain how many grapes it would take to prompt toxicity in a dog.
Generally, 1–2 grapes are believed to be enough to trigger poisoning in 10-pound (4.5-kilo) pooches. For dogs weighing 20 pounds (9 kilos) or more, it would take around 3–4 grapes.
On the other hand, it may only take a few raisins to induce poisoning in dogs. Here are the toxic doses of dried grapes according to a dog’s weight:
- 10-pound (4.5-kilo) dog: 0.7 ounces of raisins
- 20-pound (9-kilo) dog: 1.4 ounces of raisins
- 30-pound (13.6-kilo) dog: 2.1 ounces of raisins
- 40-pound (18.1-kilo) or heavier dog: 2.8 ounces of raisins
However, keep in mind that all of this information is merely anecdotal. There is no well-established toxic dose for grapes yet.
Any amount of the fruit could set off mild to severe poisoning. Thus, never feed your dog grapes and raisins, even in small amounts.
Grape and Raisin Toxicity Symptoms
“What happens if my dog eats grapes?” is often asked by dog owners. A dog that has eaten grapes will exhibit initial signs of poisoning, including weakness, inappetence, and vomiting in dogs.
“How long after eating grapes will a dog get sick?” The early symptoms of grape toxicity in dogs that we have mentioned tend to manifest within 24 hours.
The lack of timely treatment could result in more serious clinical signs that can lead to kidney damage, such as:
- Abdominal pain
- Foul breath
- Increased thirst
- Increased urination
What Should You Do If Your Dog Eats Grapes?
If you catch your dog eating grapes, call the vet and inform them of the situation immediately. They may advise you to induce vomiting to prevent your pet’s body from absorbing more toxins from the ingested fruit.
Do not perform this procedure without the vet’s guidance. Failure to perform it properly could put your dog at risk of pulmonary aspiration due to inhaling his own vomit.
Another important step you need to take is to note down crucial information about the emergency, such as:
- The time when the incident occurred
- The type of grapes ingested
- The estimated amount of grapes consumed
- Symptoms of poisoning exhibited, if any
Once done, bring your dog to the vet clinic as fast as possible. The earlier your dog is diagnosed and treated, the better his prognosis will be.
If your dog ate grapes, inform the Animal Poison Control Center and take him to the vet right away. In situations where you are uncertain if he has ingested the fruit, do the same regardless.
It is always better to be safe than sorry. Grape poisoning in dogs can cause sudden kidney failure without prompt medical care.
Treatment for Grape Poisoning in Dogs
When treating grape toxicity, the main goal is to minimise the damage to dogs’ kidney function. The type of treatment will depend on the severity of the poisoning and the timeliness of the hospitalisation.
Here are the most common treatments given to canines with grape toxicity:
Driving Out Toxins
If the poisoning is caught early, typically within 2 hours after the ingestion, the vet will induce vomiting. This helps in removing any grapes that are yet to be digested in his stomach.
Activated charcoal will also be administered. This substance binds with the toxin, preventing it from getting absorbed and metabolised in your dog’s system.
In some cases of mild grape poisoning, these are the only types of treatment that need to be carried out.
Kidney Supportive Care
Fluid therapy in the form of IV fluids will be done for at least 48 hours. This is necessary to protect your dog’s kidneys from further deterioration.
Severe grape poisoning can stop urination, which requires more intensive care. The vet may prescribe medications that will stimulate the kidneys. Dialysis might also be suggested to increase the organ’s chances of recovery.
Monitoring of Condition
Depending on the severity of your dog’s poisoning, he may need to be hospitalised for about 2–7 days. The vet will check his kidney function levels daily to ensure the treatment is effective.
Moreover, blood work might be required 1–2 days after your dog is released from the clinic. This test helps in monitoring if his kidney function levels have stabilised.
Prognosis of Grape Toxicity in Dogs
Many factors come into play in a dog’s recovery from grape poisoning. These include the number of grapes eaten, the toxicity’s severity, and the treatment’s promptness.
Pooches that suffered mild poisoning and received immediate treatment are likely to survive. On the other hand, the prognosis is grim for dogs with severe toxicity and late medical care.
Their kidneys are highly at risk of shutting down, which can cause serious health complications like internal bleeding, seizures, and coma.
If no treatment can reverse the toxicity effects, the vet may request dog owners consider euthanising their dogs.
How Do I Prevent Grape Poisoning in My Dog?
Avoid losing your beloved dog to grape poisoning by following these preventive measures:
- Do not leave grapes, raisins, currants, and sultanas anywhere in your home. Instead of haphazardly placing them on countertops or the kitchen table put them in a securely locked cabinet or inside the fridge.
- Check the ingredients list of snacks before sharing them with your dog. Products containing grapes and any other forms are prohibited for him.
- Regularly remind guests and family members, especially children, to avoid handing out grapes or grape products to Fido.
- Teach your dog commands that will keep him from picking up and ingesting grapes, such as “leave it” or “drop it.”
- If you grow grapes in the garden, surround them with sturdy and high fences to make them inaccessible to your dog. Pick up any fallen fruits and plant material since he might get his paws on them.
FAQs Grape Toxicity in Dogs
Can a Single Grape Kill a Dog?
There is no definite way to tell if a single grape can kill a dog because the fruit’s toxicity has no predisposing factor.
Just remember that some dogs are more sensitive to grapes’ poisonous compounds than others. A single grape might not induce signs of poisoning in certain dogs, but it could be enough to cause severe toxicity in other dogs.
With this in mind, do not risk letting your pet ingest even a small amount of grape.
Why Are Grapes Toxic to Dogs but Not Humans?
Grapes are toxic to dogs but not humans because their bodies process certain chemicals differently than ours. Although the poisonous agent of the fruit is unknown, it is safe to assume that they are unable to properly metabolise it, unlike we do.
How Common Is Grape Toxicity in Dogs?
Grape toxicity in dogs is uncommon. However, due to the fruit’s increasing popularity, there is a possibility that more cases of poisoning of this nature will happen in the future.
Prevent your dog from becoming part of the statistics by taking the necessary precautionary measures to keep grapes away from him.
How Long Does It Take to Show Grape or Raisin Toxicity In Dogs?
Early symptoms of grape toxicity typically appear within 12 to 24 hours after ingestion. Severe clinical symptoms will begin to manifest within 24 to 48 hours. Acute kidney failure can take place within 72 hours.
Because of the quick-acting toxins of the fruit, bringing your dog to the vet after ingesting grapes is critical for his survival.
Other Dangerous Human Foods to Dogs
What foods are toxic to dogs? Several foods you have at home are toxic to dogs, including chocolate, onions, garlic, and coffee. Let us take a look at what makes them dangerous:
Chocolate contains two toxic properties, namely theobromine, and caffeine. The worst case of chocolate poisoning can result in heart failure.
Onions and Garlic
Onions and garlic produce N-propyl disulfide, a compound that damages red blood cell membranes. It causes them to burst, which could lead dogs to experience haemolytic anaemia.
The caffeine in coffee intoxicates dogs, causing them to become restless and hyperactive. Cardiovascular symptoms such as rapid heart rate and abnormal heart rhythm may also arise.
Grapes have an unknown compound, speculated to be tartaric acid, that causes poisoning in dogs. The risk factors for the fruit’s toxicity are ambiguous, so any canine could be at risk of its life-threatening side effects.
Thus, ensure your dog does not ingest grapes, even in small quantities. Carry out safety precautions to keep him safe from the fruit’s toxic dangers.
Some fruits are not entirely toxic to dogs, unlike grapes. However, they contain poisonous parts that are dangerous for your pet. Know which fruits to feed him with caution by reading our articles in the Fruits & Veggies section.