Did your German Shepherd just grab that grape that fell on the floor? You might be asking yourself, can German Shepherds eat grapes? Read our guide and how to handle the situation.
Can German Shepherds eat grapes?
Grapes are harmful to German Shepherds, so they should never be eaten. German Shepherds are unable to properly metabolize phenolic acid derivatives found in grapes. Only a small amount of grapes or grape products can be deadly.
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Consuming large amounts can lead to kidney failure and death in German Shepherd dogs while consuming smaller amounts can cause diarrhea. Grapes are not safe or healthy for your German Shepherd to eat.
The mechanism of grape toxicity is unknown. Grapes, despite being a nutritious and balanced food for humans, can be toxic in all forms and colors for dogs.
Grape seeds should also be avoided as they can cause discomfort. Grape-containing items and commercially prepared dog foods should be avoided, including juices, jellies, jams, and syrups.
What happens if a dog eats grapes?
It has already been mentioned that feeding grapes to a German Shepherd can result in toxic consequences. Upon consumption, a variety of clinical manifestations have been observed. These signs may vary depending on the number of grapes consumed, but they are generally similar.
Signs of grape poisoning in dogs
- Loss of cravings
- Visceral Pain
- Peritoneal pain
- Signs of dehydration
- Breathing difficulty
- Excessive salivation
- Polydipsia (Increase in thirst)
- The foul smell of breathing
- Urine disorder (Polyuria, Oliguria, Anuria)
- Ulcers in the oral cavity
- Chronic kidney failure
- Nervous disorders
- Brain Seizures
In the initial 24 hours, symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, and loss of appetite in the German Shepherd may be observed. If left untreated, the condition can worsen and severe symptoms may appear after 24 hours. The most obvious consequence after 48 hours of ingestion is chronic kidney failure.
What should you do if your dog eats grapes?
There are two ways to treat grape toxicity in dogs.
- Decontamination is the removal of all the toxins by vomiting. It can be performed by the owners and vets.
- Support is medicinal therapy either by charcoal or intravenous therapy. This is only performed by a veterinarian.
The best course of action in case of toxicity is to contact your nearest veterinarian. However, as a first aid measure, you can also take some steps. This type of toxicity is unusual and not well-known among most German Shepherd owners.
First, try to induce vomiting in your German Shepherd to remove the toxic material from their body. This will decrease the severity of the condition by reducing absorption.
If you are unable to induce vomiting, take your German Shepherd to the nearest vet or call for advice. You can use small meals and hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting. A veterinarian will assess the severity of the condition, and vomiting can help reduce the chances of chronic kidney failure and prevent lasting damage to the kidneys.
If your German Shepherd is showing nervous signs such as unconsciousness, seizures, coma, or tremors, do not induce vomiting. The veterinarian will perform gastric lavage to wash out the stomach, using one of three methods: activated charcoal, passing a tube through the nose or mouth (orogastric or nasogastric), or intravenous fluid therapy.
Charcoal helps bind toxic components and remove them from the body, while tubes remove stomach content, and intravenous fluid therapy flushes out toxins through urine.
What are the precautions?
The most concerning aspect of grape toxicity in dogs is that scientific researchers and health professionals are uncertain of the exact mechanism of intoxication. They suspect it may be caused by a fungus or pesticides used on grapes to prevent infestation, but they are not certain.
Another factor that increases the risk of grape toxicity is the dose. It is unclear how much of a dose is harmful to German Shepherds of different sizes. Even a small amount can be dangerous.
It is important to remember that there is no cure for grape poisoning. Prevention is always better than treatment. To prevent your German Shepherd from consuming grapes, the following are some precautions that you can take:
- Train your dog in such a way that he does not try to eat everything he watches.
- Treat him with his favorite meal after when he fulfills your order to appreciate him.
- Place the harmful things away from the approach of your German Shepherd.
- Always keep the floor or kitchen clean, so that your beloved pet does not eat grapes or any such thing that is poisonous.
- Keep the fruits in the cabinets or the freezers so that your German Shepherd may not approach them easily.