How to Spot the Signs to Put Your Dog to Sleep

Having a dog that is sick, old, failing or diagnosed with a chronic condition or cancer can be difficult. A common question posed to veterinarians is “what are the signs to put a dog to sleep”. Below we will review the quality of life and signs of when it is “time”.

Considering Quality of Life in Dogs

It can be difficult to consider the quality of life and know when it is time to let a pet go. Quality of life is a term used to describe the value of various facets of life that provide and allow for a good life. This can vary a lot from individual to individual and is influenced by prior experiences, cultural and social backgrounds, goals and values. What one person may define as an acceptable quality of life may not be acceptable to another person. Quality of life is a personal judgment.

When looking at the quality of life, it is important to consider the underlying problem that is leading to the question in the first place. There may be moments of a poor quality life but depending on the underlying problem, some problems can be treatable.  For example, a dog hit by a car may be in pain and have a poor quality of life at that moment. But with treatment, the prognosis may be good. On the other hand, a very old dog with cancer that isn’t eating, losing weight and having difficulty walking likely has a poor prognosis and quality of life that is unlikely to improve.

What are Signs of a Good Quality of Life

If you are considering the quality of life, some guidelines to consider as you evaluate your dog include:

  • Is your dog able to eat, drink and sleep comfortably without shortness of breath?
  • Is your dog interested in what’s going on around them?
  • Is your dog able to perform mild exercise?
  • Is your dog able to have control of their urine and bowel movements? (Unless the disease affects one of these organ systems)
  • Does your dog appear comfortable and free of moderate to severe pain?
  • Does your dog have a diagnosis and has been receiving treatment but is still failing?

There may be natural good days and bad days in dogs with chronic conditions. In general, if your dog has a diagnosis and is receiving treatment but is not able to do the things that they enjoy on a daily basis, that is not a good quality of life.

Signs of a Sick or Dying Dog

The signs of a sick dog can vary depending on the underlying illness. For example, dogs with heart disease will often have trouble breathing, lethargy, and weakness. Some general signs of a sick or dying dog include:

  • Bleeding
  • Coughing
  • Decreased or poor urine production
  • Diarrhea
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fast, slow or irregular heart rates
  • Hiding
  • Inability or difficulty walking
  • Lethargy
  • Low body temperature
  • Not eating
  • Pain
  • Pale gums
  • Unable to stand
  • Vomiting
  • Weakness
  • Weight loss

IMPORTANT: The signs listed above are vague. Generally, signs of a dying dog include a combination of signs. Only one sign can be normal in some dogs. For example, some dogs will hide when frightened. But when you combine a dog that is weak, not eating, vomiting, losing weight and hiding, then that is a problem.

Signs To Put Your Dog to Sleep

At some point, you may realize that your dog is no longer having a good quality of life and is not enjoying life. Sometimes signs can be obvious such as inability to walk or difficulty breathing.

Some guidelines to consider as signs to put a dog to sleep include:

  • Your dog is tired and seems to be exhausted with mild exercise or exertion. For example, your dog has difficulty walking from room to room or outside to go to the bathroom.
  • Inability to stand or walk without help.
  • Your dog is losing weight despite your best efforts to get them to eat.
  • Your dog is unable to control urination and defecation and having accidents.
  • Your dog sleeps all the time or seems restless and uncomfortable.
  • Your dog has difficulty breathing.
  • Your dog is not eating well despite you offering multiple foods and treats.
  • Crying or howling that may suggest pain or confusion.
  • Uncontrolled seizures.
  • Bleeding from the urine, bowels, skin, or vomiting.
  • Uncontrollable vomiting and/or diarrhea.
  • Any other signs that your pet has a poor quality of life.

If your dog is experiencing any of these signs, speak to your veterinarian. Medication may help or it may be time to either begin hospice care or consider euthanasia.

What If You Aren’t Sure If It Is Time?

If you aren’t sure about the quality of life please see your veterinarian. They can help you evaluate your pet’s condition and provide an opinion on the quality of life. The decision to euthanize is yours but if you aren’t trying to consider the ups and downs, prognosis or condition, a veterinarian’s educated assessment can be helpful. Speak with your veterinarian if you have any questions or concerns regarding the diagnosis or treatment of your pet’s disease.

Read other articles Related to Signs to Put Dog to Sleep

Why Your Dog Should Have Neuter Surgery

Many dog owners have questions about the neuter surgery, what is involved, when is the best time to do it, side effects of the surgery, what it costs, as well as many more questions. In this article, we will address some common questions about dog neuter surgery.

What is a neuter surgery?

The word “neuter” is from the Latin word neuter, meaning the removal of an animal’s reproductive organ. The term neuter refers to both male and female animals.  Other terms commonly used to describe neuter surgery are “castration” which refers to the removal of an animal’s reproductive organ in males, or the term “spay” or “spaying” for females.  Other terms used to refer to neutering is “de-sexing” and “fixing”.

What are the benefits of getting your dog neutered?

Some of the most common benefits of neuter surgery include:

  • Help control the animal population. According to Wikipedia, “six to eight million animals are brought to shelters each year with an estimated three to four million subsequently euthanized, including 2.7 million considered healthy and adoptable”. Neutering can help avoid pet overpopulation. Accidental and unwanted litters commonly happen to even the most careful owners.
  • Control roaming. Intact dogs commonly roam and run away which can lead to fights, exposure to toxins, ingestion and exposure to garbage, being hit by a car, gunshot wounds, and much more. There is also a risk of your dog biting another dog or person, which can cause liability, expenses, and legal issues.
  • Eliminate pregnancy risks. There are several health problems and risks that can be associated with pregnancy that can be life-threatening and expensive to treat.
  • Eliminate medical problems and expenses associated with having puppies and the medical issues that commonly develop.
  • Decrease behavioral problems. There is an increased risk of behavioral issues including humping, territorial spraying and marking behavior, and/or aggression.
  • Decrease the risk of cancers. Neutering can remove the risk of testicular cancer, uterine cancer, and ovarian cancer.
  • Eliminates the risk of a life-threatening uterine infection (pyometra).
  • A large reduction in the risk of mammary (breast) cancer.

Neutering has many benefits but is not without controversy. For example, there can be an increase in obesity and potentially some types of cancer in dogs that are neutered. Learn more about some of this in this article by the Irreverent Veterinarian: To Neuter or Not to Neuter – What You Should Know.

Here is another good article – What Are the Benefits of Spaying and Neutering Your Pet?

What are the risks associated with neuter surgery? 

The major risks are those of general anesthesia, post-operative infection, bleeding, and wound breakdown over the incision. Overall the complication rate is very low, but serious complications can result in death or the need for additional surgery.

How long is a dog in the hospital after neuter surgery? 

Most dogs come to the veterinary hospital in the morning, have surgery and are released the same day or occasionally the day following surgery.

How do you take care of a dog after neuter surgery? 

After being neutered, your dog may feel tired or groggy that night and for the first 24 to 48 hours. Most dogs are back to a normal attitude and appetite in 1 to 2 days.

Care post-neuter surgery care for dogs include:

  • Give any prescribed pain medication or antibiotics.
  • Keep your dog quiet for approximately two weeks after he returns home from the hospital to allow him to heal. Leash walks only with no excessive running, jumping, or playing.
  • Give prescribed sedative medications such as Acepromazine and Trazodone to keep your dog quiet.
  • Monitor the skin sutures, if present. Look for abnormal signs of redness, swelling, or discharge.
  • See your vet for recommended suture removal. Sometimes sutures are absorbable.
  • Return to your vet for rechecks. Many veterinarians may want to check the incision one-week post-surgery to ensure it is healing normally.
  • Do not allow your dog to lick or chew at the incision. If your dog licks the incision line, prevent from licking by placing an e-collar on your dog or a t-shirt to prevent exposure to the incision line.

Learn more about What Happens When a Dog Gets Spayed and about post-op care or What to Expect After Neutering a Dog.

When do you neuter dogs? 

The best time to neuter is when your dog is young and healthy as opposed to when your dog is older and has life-threatening uterine infections (Pyometra) or prostate problems.

Neutering is most commonly recommended around six months of age. However, neutering is done in some situations as early as 6 to 8 weeks but can be done at any age.

Mobility Problems in Older Dogs: What You Can Do at Home

As dogs get older, many have trouble getting around. Due to a combination of age, muscle loss and several orthopedic and neurologic conditions, many older dogs lose some of their mobility. The severity of their problems can vary from minor lameness or difficulty standing up from a lying position to an inability to walk.

Some of the medical problems can include:

  • Hip Dysplasia – Hip dysplasia is a painful, crippling disease that causes a dog’s hip to weaken, deteriorate and become arthritic. It stems from the abnormal development of the hip joint – a ball-and-socket type joint – in which the head of the femur does not fit properly into the socket. Hip dysplasia can be mild and slightly disabling, or it can be severe and cause crippling arthritis.
  • Osteoarthritis – Degenerative joint disease (DJD), or arthritis, affects the smooth articular cartilage of the joint, which is the covering of bone in the joints that is responsible for the smooth, non-painful motion of joints. When it becomes worn, raw bone surfaces become exposed and rub together. DJD is the result, causing pain and a lack of joint mobility.
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) – IVDD is a condition that occurs when pressure is placed on the spinal cord by disc material that herniates beneath or adjacent to the cord. The condition may be acute (occurs suddenly) or chronic (slowly develops over time) condition in dogs. Depending on the location of the disease, the front or back legs (or both) can be affected to varying degrees.

What You Can Do at Home

Many pet owners question what they can do at home to help their dog.

  • Exercise – Avoid strenuous exercise. Exercise your pet regularly but moderately. Swimming can be very beneficial when available; it helps to maintain good muscle mass and tone while keeping weight off the hip joints. Encourage a regular exercise routine to maintain good muscle mass. Exercise must be moderate and regular.
  • Medication – If your veterinarian has recommended medication, you will need to be aware of potential side effects.
  • Puppy selection – When buying a puppy, consider selecting a puppy whose parents are certified by the OFA (Orthopedic Foundation for Animals) with hips scored well to excellent.
  • Diets – Avoid high-energy diets in young, fast-growing large breed dogs. Switch young dogs on high-calorie high protein puppy diets to adult food.
  • Avoid obesity – Maintain weight to an ideal standard. If your dog is obese, consider a weight loss program.
  • Monitor urinations – If your dog is unable to urinate on his own, he will need help emptying his bladder. Talk to your veterinarian about how to express your dog’s bladder. Bladder emptying is usually done three to four times a day.
  • Observe closely – Observe your dog closely for any worsening of clinical signs. If you notice any deterioration in your dog’s condition, contact your veterinarian immediately.
  • Nail and paw care – Keep your dog’s nails trimmed. Long nails can cause dogs to slip. In addition, some dogs grow long hair on the bottoms of their feet between their paw pads. This can get wet and cause them to slip. In the winter, ice can adhere to this area causing additional difficulty getting traction.
  • Dry floors – Keep the floors dry because wet floors are especially slippery and a hazard. Dry areas with fans, towels or both.
  • Try mobility aids– there are various tools you can use to help your dog’s mobility.
    • Mobility slings are pieces of material with handles designed to go under your dog’s abdomen or chest with the handles over the back to help you get your pet up, walking, or for support going up or downstairs. These are commercially available or you can make your own.
    • Mobility harnesses are commercially available (example Canine Equipment) harnesses that have handles over the back. These are excellent for pets with neurological disease to help them get up or walk.
    • Strollers can help you take your dog on walks and provide some quality of life elements without relying on your dog to walk.
    • Area rugs can help your dog get better traction on slippery floors. Linoleum, tile and hardwood can make it very difficult for dogs to get up or get their footing. This is even worse then the floors are wet.
    • Nonslip booties are made commercially that have traction on the bottom that can help dogs get up from laying down position.
    • Toe grips are a product that is glued to your dog’s nails to provide traction. This works great for dogs that slip on slippery floors.
    • Paw traction is a commercial product (www.pawfriction.com). This product consists of glue and rubber granules. You apply the glue to the footpads allowing the granules to stick. This provides some extra traction.
    • Bath mats or yoga mats – Inexpensive bath mats or yoga mats are a great way to provide some traction for dogs. This can be great on grooming tables or for small kennels or crates.
    • Avoid blankets – Many times blankets move and can cause additional slipping.

We hope these tips help your dog get around better.

Additional Articles That May Be of Interest About Dog Mobility

How to Help a Dehydrated Cat

A dehydrated cat is a common clinical finding and can be caused by many problems. Dehydration is the result of either fluid loss or any issue that leads to decreased fluid intake. Dehydration is defined as when the “total body water is less than normal.” Before we look at how to treat and prevent dehydration in cats, we will review the causes.

Causes for a Dehydrated Cat

The body relies on both the intake of fluids and the excretion of fluids. Loss of fluids or decreased fluid intake both lead to dehydration.

Causes of dehydration in cats include:

Reduced Fluid Intake

  • Reduced intake – Cats that are ill and not eating or drinking have a reduced intake. This can be caused by many different diseases and is a very common symptom.
  • Deprivation of food and water – This can occur when a cat is neglected, looked in a room or garage, or not fed. Unsupervised pets (such as the owner goes on vacation and cat spills its water and is without for days) can lead to severe dehydration problems.

Increased Fluid Losses

  • Fluids can be lost through vomiting, diarrhea, blood loss, and urination. Causes of increased fluid losses include:
  • Kidney disease  – Any disease that affects the kidneys can cause increased urine production. Kidney disease or failure also commonly causes vomiting, diarrhea and decreased appetite (intake), which compounds the dehydration.
  • Vomiting – Any disease or problem that causes vomiting leads to fluid losses. Viral or bacterial infections, gastrointestinal foreign body, diabetes mellitus, kidney disease, cancer, liver disease, neurologic disease, and many more systemic problems can cause vomiting.
  • Diarrhea – Loose or watery bowel movements cause abnormal fluid losses and can be caused by intestinal parasites, viral or bacterial infections, gastrointestinal foreign body, heatstroke, cancer as well as other systemic problems.
  • Fever – Increased body temperature can cause fluid losses.
  • Burns or wound drainage – Any disruption in the skin that causes drainage can cause fluid loss. Large wounds can cause severe fluid losses.
  • Blood loss – Blood is fluid, and the loss of blood can cause dehydration, shock, anemia and lead to many other life-threatening problems.

Signs of a Dehydrated Cat

The clinical signs of dehydration in cats include lethargy, depression, dry sticky gums, sunken eyes, loss of skin elasticity, and/or increased pulse (heart rate).

How to Tell if Your Cat is Dehydrated

Physical examination findings can help determine if dehydration is present in your cat. A common but inaccurate way to diagnose dehydration is based on skin elasticity. When the skin along the back of the neck is gently lifted, it should immediately return to the normal position. In a dehydrated cat, the skin does not return to normal quickly. The speed of return to a normal position can help determine the severity of the dehydration.

Other clinical signs of dehydration include sticky or dry gums, sunken eyes, and/or lethargy. A more accurate method to determine dehydration is by evaluating blood work for abnormal changes.

What You Can Do for a Dehydrated Cat

The treatment for dehydration in cats will depend on the underlying cause. Treatment for some of the possible causes may include:

  • Not eating– If your cat is not eating, it is important to do anything you can to stimulate their appetite. Every cat has different food preferences making it important to offer a variety of flavors and textures to find something appealing to your cat. You may start by offering fresh kibble or your cat’s favorite treats. You can also try feeding canned cat food. Heating up canned food can release food aromas and stimulate hunger. For some cats, fish flavors are especially appealing. Canned tuna, chicken, or chicken baby food are additional options that can be alluring to cats. Ultimately you may need to see your veterinarian to determine the underlying cause for the anorexia.
  • Not drinking – If your cat is not drinking, you can try the following:
    • Stimulate thirst with fresh clean water.
    • Some cats love to drink out of the sink, bathtub, or shower. Consider encouraging this if your cat is dehydrated.
    • Offer low sodium chicken, beef broth or tuna juice.
    • Some cats love running water and will drink more water from a fountain. There are many commercial cat fountains on the market.
    • Mix canned cat food with water to form a gravy.
    • Moisten dry food.
    • Come cats enjoy ice cubes in the water bowl. You can also make ice cubes out of chicken broth or tuna juice.
    • Some cats have various bowl substrate preferences. Offer water in different shapes or types of bowls. Some cats prefer to drink out of pottery and others out of stainless steel. There are also preferences for deep versus shallow water bowls.
    • As a last resort, you can squirt a small amount of water in your cat’s mouth with a syringe or baster. This needs to be done gently as you don’t want your cat to aspirate (get water in his lungs).
  • Vomiting – Cats that are vomiting can be difficult to treat at home. You can withhold food and water for a few hours then begin offering small amounts of water followed by small quantities of food. Here is a really good article about how you can try to get through this common problem with your cat. Go to: Home Care for the Vomiting Cat. If your cat does not eat, is lethargic, or the vomiting continues, please call your veterinarian.
  • Diarrhea – Loose stools are a common symptom in cats and when sustained can cause severe dehydration. It is important to consider the underlying cause and remove it if possible (such as exposure to trash or new treats). Feeding a bland diet can help some cats with diarrhea.  Ideally, have your cat evaluated by your veterinarian to help determine and treat the underlying problems.
  • Increased urination – If your cat is urinating more frequently, please see your veterinarian. Increased thirst with increased urination can be caused by diabetes or kidney disease.
  • Bleeding – The loss of blood is a problem for more reasons than just dehydration. If your cat is bleeding, please see your veterinarian immediately. Learn more with this article: How to Stop Cat Bleeding.

The treatment for dehydration is to supplement the body with fluids. It is often not possible for a sick cat to ingest enough water to adequately correct dehydration. Fluids are typically administered as an injection. The most efficient method of rehydration is through intravenous (IV) fluids. This requires hospitalization as well as an intravenous catheter. Fluid replacement is done slowly to allow the body to compensate and slowly replenish tissues starved of fluid.

How to Prepare for a Cat Emergency

Emergencies in cats are common and when they happen, it’s important to know the basic skills of what to do. Below we will cover what to do for some of the most common cat emergencies.

Know Your Veterinary Clinic “Emergency” Policy

Some veterinary clinics take emergencies calls 24/7 and others only during office hours. Other clinics don’t take emergency calls at all and only allow appointments.  It is important to know what your veterinary hospital does and doesn’t do so you can be efficient when you have an emergency with your cat.

Below is a template for veterinary emergency information. You can fill it out and place it on your refrigerator or with your cat’s medical information.

Pet Emergency Contact Information

My Vet Hospital Name_____________________________________

Phone Number___________________________________________

Emergency Hours_________________________________________

Closest Emergency Clinic Name _____________________________

ER Phone Number________________________________________

ER Clinic Address_________________________________________

Poison Control Phone Number (855) 764-7661

Poison Control Website https://www.petpoisonhelpline.com

What is a Veterinary Cat Emergency?

When a cat owner has a problem, they want to know if their problem is an emergency. So, what is a cat emergency? An emergency is best defined as anything that causes you concern about your cat. After all, you know your cat best.

If you are worried about your cat, the best thing to do is to call your veterinarian or local veterinary emergency clinic. Based on your conversation, they can often guide you about the severity of the problem and provide recommendations if you need to be seen immediately, if you can make an appointment for the next day, or if there is something you can do at home. Here is a very good article about the reasons you should worry – go to 21 Reasons to Take Your Cat To The Emergency Room. Another good resource is: When Should You Call the Emergency Vet Hotline.

If Your Vet is Closed

The best number to call when you have a cat emergency is your veterinarian. If your vet is available and open, they may see you immediately. If not, they may refer you to a local emergency clinic. If they are closed, most veterinary hospitals have their answering machine set to provide you with information about the best place to go in your area.

What If You Don’t Have a Vet for Your Cat?

It can be very scary when your cat has a medical problem or emergency and you don’t have a veterinarian.  If you don’t have a veterinarian, you can use Google or use your smartphone to find an “Emergency Veterinarian Near Me”. This should guide you to a veterinary hospital close to your location. You can also call a clinic near you and see if they can see you or offer their recommendation for a hospital or emergency clinic close to your location.

Three Most Common Veterinary Emergencies in Cats

The three most common veterinary emergencies in cats are vomiting, diarrhea and not eating. Below is some information about these three conditions and what you can do at home.

  • Vomiting is the most common cat emergency. It can be caused by infections, eating spoiled food, chewing on plants, hairballs, eating indigestible objects, parasites, and several different diseases including diabetes mellitus, liver disease, and kidney disease. Learn more about Vomiting in Cats. Also, this article is very good about how to care for your vomiting cat at home. Go to: Home Care of the Vomiting Cat.
  • Anorexia, also known as not eating, is the 2nd most common reason cats go to the veterinarian. Lack of appetite can be caused by fever, infections, cancer, as well as multiple other diseases such as liver disease, kidney disease, and diabetes.  Learn more about what you can do to treat not eating in cats.
  • Trouble urinating, also known by the medical term dysuria, is another very common reason cats will go to the vet.  Trouble urinating, straining to urinate, or urinating outside of the litter box can be caused by infections, bladder stones, urinary blockage, or by a urinary syndrome referred to by multiple names including Feline Urologic Syndrome or Feline Idiopathic Cystitis. Learn more about Trouble Urinating in Cats.

How to Prevent Common Cat Emergencies

  • Keep your cat inside if possible. This reduces the risk of catfights, animal attacks, being hit by a car, getting into the trash, and lacerations.
  • Prevent exposure to common toxins such as Rat Poison and Antifreeze.
  • Prevent exposure to common household items such as Gorilla Glue and cleaning chemicals such as Bathroom Cleaners, Bleach, and Lysol and Other Corrosives.
  • Do not give your cat any over-the-counter medications such as aspirin, Ibuprofen (Advil), or acetaminophen (Tylenol) without the approval of your veterinarian.
  • Prevent exposure to human vitamins and medications including blood pressure medications, amphetamines (commonly used diet pills or mood elevators), as well as Illicit drugs such as Cocaine, Ecstasy, Heroin, Marijuana, and any other drug. Keep them out of the reach of cats in sealed sturdy containers.
  • Keep all Nicotine out of reach including cigarettes, cigars, tobacco, nicotine gum, vape chemicals, and nicotine patches.
  • Keep your purse closed and out of reach of your cat. Purses can contain dangerous items such as dental floss or pennies that can become stuck in the gastrointestinal tract and cause life-threatening zinc toxicity.
  • Keep your pet’s regular medications out of reach. The overdose of a pet’s regular medication can be dangerous.
  • Be careful around the home with things such as liquid potpourri which can be very appealing yet caustic to the mouth. Also, be conscious of sources of lead such as lead-based paint chips.
  • Don’t feed your cat human foods that contain onions, garlic, or bones. Learn more about dangerous foods in this very good article.

Additional Articles that May be of Interest About a Cat Emergency:

Can Dogs Eat Pineapple?

Dog owners commonly ponder about the toxicity of foods. The questions about the safety of different foods increased after learning that certain foods were toxic which led to a lot of press coverage. The most important toxic foods to dogs are chocolate, Grapes and Raisins and Peanut Butter. Exposure to the dangers of these foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about other foods such as can dogs eat pineapple.

Learn more about what dogs can and can’t eat in this article: The Ultimate Guide to What Dogs Can’t Eat.

Can Dogs Eat Pineapple?

Pineapple is a tropical plant that grows 3 to 5 feet tall that contains an edible fruit.  Pineapples are indigenous to South America and have a history dating back to the 1300s and are extremely popular in most parts of the world with the world production being over 26 million ton in 2017.

The answer to the question “Can dogs eat pineapples?” is, “Yes.” Dogs can eat pineapple safely and often love the crunchy texture, sweet taste, and enjoy it as a healthy snack.

Pineapples are a good source of fiber, vitamin C and can help clean plaque from a dog’s teeth and freshen breath. Some believe that feeding pineapple can treat the behavioral problem of coprophagia (dogs that eat their own feces) however this treatment not been studied nor has it had consistent results.  Learn more about Coprophagia in Dogs.

The Dangers of Pineapple to Dogs

When researching the safety and danger of pineapples for dogs, there are a couple of different considerations. They include:

  • First is the potential for gastrointestinal upset from eating pineapple. Although pineapple is not toxic, any food can cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs. What may not bother one dog can cause severe vomiting and diarrhea in another dog. The same can happen in people. Some foods can bother one person and upset their gastrointestinal tract but not bother another person.
  • Second is the risk of choking when eating large pieces of pineapple. This is more common in small dogs that do not chew their food well.
  • Lastly is the risk of a gastrointestinal foreign body from eating the poorly digestible core, outer peel, stems, and/or leaves.

Do Dogs Need Pineapple?

There is nothing in pineapple that dogs require. What dogs do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved dog food. Learn more about Nutrition in Dogs.

The Safest Way to Give Pineapple to Dogs

The safest way to give pineapple to your dog is to give small pieces or slices fresh sliced pineapple. The core, skin, and stock should not be given to dogs.

Additional Articles that May be of Interest About Can Dogs Eat Pineapple

Can Dogs Eat Celery?

Dog owners commonly wonder about the toxicity of foods both before and after they feed human foods to their dogs. The questions about the safety of different foods increased after learning that particular foods are toxic which has received a lot of press coverage. The most important foods are chocolate, grapes and raisins, and peanut butter. Exposure to the dangers of these foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about vegetables such as celery.

Learn more about what dogs can and can’t eat in this article: The Ultimate Guide to What Dogs Can’t Eat.

Can Dogs Eat Celery?

Dogs often love the crunchy texture of celery and can enjoy this as a healthy snack. Celery is low in calories and has approximately 94 to 95% water and known for its long green crunchy stalks. Celery is a good source of fiber, folate, vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, vitamin A, and other antioxidants. Many human nutritionists highly regard celery for its touted anti-inflammatory benefits.

Celery has been cultivated as a vegetable for centuries. In fact, there is documentation of celery garlands in the tomb of Pharaoh Tutankhamun (King Tut who died 1323 B.C.). There are different types of celery including wild celery, celery root, and leaf celery. Depending on the type, the stalk, leaves, or base may be eaten or used in cooking.

Celery became popular in the United States in the mid-1850s. In North America, the most common celery is primarily the cultivar called Pascal celery.  The stalk can be eaten raw or included in many stews, soups, salads and as a common ingredient in dressing (also known as stuffing).  Celery seeds are used in herbal medicine and to make celery salt. Celery salt is used in seasonings such as Bloody Mary cocktails or in Old Bay Seasoning.

To answer the question, “Can dogs eat celery?” The answer is, “Yes.” Celery can make a very good low-calorie treat for overweight dogs.

Please note: Any food can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs. What may not bother one dog may bother another dog. The same can happen in people. Some foods can bother some people and not others.

The Dangers of Celery to Dogs 

When researching the safety of celery for dogs, there are three considerations that impact the danger.

  1. Risk of choking from eating large prices of Celery or the very stemmy parts. This is more common in small dogs but can occur in any dog.  Some dogs are not good at “chewing” their food and the danger of choking can occur.
  2. Pancreatitis or gastrointestinal upset can occur in dogs that aren’t used to celery, including celery that is cooked with seasonings and butter.  Too much oil, fat, or seasoning can lead to gastrointestinal upset or pancreatitis in some dogs.
  3. Toxicity can occur when celery is fed to dogs with peanut butter that contains the toxic ingredient xylitol. Learn more about Peanut Butter Toxicity in Dogs.

However, be aware that just because your dog can eat an occasional small piece of celery, doesn’t suggest it is safe to give him your leftover salad or meal.  For example, salads or chicken salad that includes celery may also include additional ingredients, such as onions, garlic or even raisins, which can be toxic. However, it is generally okay to give your dog a piece of celery.

Do Dogs Need Celery?

There is nothing in Celery that dogs require. What dogs do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved dog food. Learn more about what dogs require in their diet with this article: Nutrition in Dogs.

The Safest Way to Give Celery to Dogs 

The safest and healthiest way to give celery to your dog is to give small pieces of fresh cut or cooked celery. Make sure the celery is washed thoroughly to remove pesticides, fertilizers and potential contaminates such as E. coli or listeria.  Cooked celery is a healthy option and best when unseasoned and steamed. Excess butter or seasoning can cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs.

If your dog shows any sign of illness after eating celery, please call your veterinarian or closest veterinary emergency clinic immediately.

Can Dogs Be Allergic to Celery?

Although uncommon, dogs can be allergic to celery. In humans, celery allergies can cause severe allergic reactions that can be fatal. It appears that the allergen in celery is not destroyed by cooking. Other food allergies are more common in dogs such as to chicken and beef. Food allergies in dogs can cause skin infections and/or gastrointestinal problems.

Additional Articles that May be of Interest About Can Dogs Eat Celery:

Can Dogs Eat Broccoli?

Dog owners commonly ponder about the toxicity of foods. The questions about the safety of different foods increased after various news and press covered the toxicity in them. The most important foods are chocolate, grapes and raisins, and peanut butter. Exposure to the dangers of these foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about the safety of other foods such as broccoli.

Learn more about what dogs can and can’t eat in this article: The Ultimate Guide to What Dogs Can’t Eat.

Can Dogs Eat Broccoli?

The answer to the question, “Can dogs eat broccoli?” The answer is, “Yes.” Dogs often love the crunchy texture of broccoli and can enjoy this as a healthy snack.

Broccoli also makes a good low-calorie treat for overweight dogs. Not only is broccoli low in calories, but it has approximately 91 to 95% water and is a good source of vitamin K and vitamin C.

Broccoli (Daucus carota) dates back to the 6th century B.C. in Europe. It is in the cabbage family and grows as a green plant with a large head and stalk that is eaten. The word broccoli is Italian and comes from the Italian plural of broccoli, meaning flowering cabbage. Broccoli can be eaten raw or cooked and is commonly boiled, steamed, microwaved or stir-fried.

Please note: Any food can cause gastrointestinal upset in dogs. What may not bother one dog may bother another dog. The same can happen in people. Some foods can bother some people and not others.

The Dangers of Broccoli to Dogs

When researching the safety of broccoli for dogs, there are two considerations that impact the danger.

  1. Pancreatitis or gastrointestinal upset in dogs that aren’t used to broccoli or broccoli cooked with seasonings and butter.  Too much oil, fat, or seasoning can lead to gastrointestinal upset or pancreatitis.
  2. Risk of choking from eating large pieces of Broccoli or very the stemmy parts. This is more common in small dogs but can occur in any dog.  Some dogs are not good at “chewing” their food and the danger of choking can occur.

However, be aware that just because your dog can eat an occasional small piece of broccoli, doesn’t suggest it is safe to give him your leftover salad or meal.  For example, salads often include additional ingredients, such as onions, garlic or even raisins, which can be toxic. However, it is generally okay to give your dog a piece of broccoli.  Learn more about Grape and Raisin Toxicity in dogs.

Do Dogs Need Broccoli

There is nothing in broccoli that dogs require. What dogs do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved dog food. Learn more about what dogs require in their diet with this article: Nutrition in Dogs.

The Safest Way to Give Broccoli to Dogs

The safest and healthiest way to give broccoli to your dog is to give small pieces of fresh cut or cooked broccoli. Make sure the broccoli is washed thoroughly to remove pesticides, fertilizers and potential contaminates such as E. coli or listeria.  Cooked broccoli is a healthy option and best when unseasoned and steamed. Excess butter or seasoning can cause gastrointestinal upset in some dogs.

If your dog shows any sign of illness after eating broccoli, please call your veterinarian or closest veterinary emergency clinic immediately.

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Can Dogs Eat Blueberries?

Dog owners commonly ponder about the toxicity of foods. There was an increase in questions about the safety of different foods after learning that certain ones were toxic which led to a lot of press coverage. The most important toxic foods to know are Grapes and Raisins, Peanut Butter, and Chocolate. Exposure to the dangers of these foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about the effects other human foods have on dogs, such as blueberries. Learn more about what dogs can and can’t eat in the article: The Ultimate Guide to What Dogs Can’t Eat.

Can Dogs Eat Blueberries?   

A blueberry is a round shaped sweet soft blue to purple fruit native to North America. Blueberries are grown from a blueberry bush or shrub. The blueberry bush is a low bush in the wild that gets taller when cultivated. They are classified within the genus Vaccinium which also includes cranberries and huckleberries. The berry is generated from a bell-shaped pale flower and when the fruit grows in, it starts as green and then changes color to a dark blue-purple color when ripe. Blueberries are most commonly in season between May and August.

Blueberries are commonly eaten by themselves or prepared in foods such as pies, ice cream, milkshakes, preserves, candy, wine, or enjoyed covered in chocolate. The flavors and aromas are common in candy, perfume, cosmetics, and many more products.

The answer to the question, “Can dogs eat blueberries?” is, “Yes.”

Dogs can eat blueberries but in moderation. Dogs often love the soft moist texture and many enjoy this as a healthy snack. Blueberries are a good source of antioxidants, fiber, vitamin C, vitamin K, and manganese. They are approximately 84% water, 14% carbohydrate with minuscule amounts of protein and fat.

The Dangers of Blueberries to Dogs 

Ingestion of large amounts of blueberries can cause gastrointestinal upset or diarrhea. Ingestion of blueberry stems and plants can cause gastrointestinal obstruction. The leaves and plants, while not toxic, are very difficult to digest. Signs of problems include vomiting, diarrhea, lethargy, abdominal pain, straining to defecate, and/or a decreased appetite.

Please be careful if your dog eats anything blueberry flavored that contains the sweetener xylitol. This can be an ingredient in diet or low-calorie pastries, especially those created for people with diabetes.  Learn more about Xylitol Toxicity in Dogs.

Do Dogs Need Blueberries?

There is nothing in blueberries that dogs require on a regular basis. What dogs do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved dog food. Learn more about Nutrition in Dogs.

The Safest Way to Give Blueberries to Dogs

The safest way to give blueberries to your dog is to give a few clean fresh blueberries. Dogs should never be fed the blueberry stem or leaves.

How Many Blueberries Can You Give a Dog?

One or two medium-sized blueberries is plenty for a small dog, three to four for a medium-sized dog, and five to six blueberries for a large dog.

Can Dogs Be Allergic to Blueberries?

While it is possible for a dog to be allergic to anything, dog allergies to blueberries are rare.

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Can Cats Eat Yogurt?

Cat owners commonly contemplate about the toxicity of human foods. The questions about the safety of different foods increased after learning that certain foods were toxic which yielded a lot of press coverage. The most important toxic foods for cats are onions, garlic, chocolate, alcohol, and excessive amounts of fish. In dogs, Grapes and Raisins, and Peanut Butter are commonly discussed as dangerous foods.

Knowledge of dangerous foods has encouraged pet owners to ask about other human foods such as can cats eat yogurt. Learn more about what cats can and can’t eat in this article: The Ultimate Guide to What Cats Can’t Eat.

Can Cats Eat Yogurt?  

Yogurt is a food product made from milk. It is formed by bacterial fermentation with yogurt cultures. Milk is heated then allowed to cool and mixed with the bacterial culture. The lactose fermentation gives yogurt its unique texture and flavor. Yogurt can be made from the milk of cows, sheep, goats, yaks, camels, and buffalo and created into a large variety of textures and flavors.  Each type of milk produces different flavors. The milk used to make yogurt can be homogenized, pasteurized, or raw.

When researching the safety and dangers of yogurt for cats, while yogurt is not considered toxic or dangerous, it is not necessarily good for your cat. It can be fed to some cats in very small amounts.

Why is yogurt not good for cats? The answer is that most cats are considered to be lactose-intolerant. This is contrary to popular belief. After all, many children’s books contain iconic photos of adorable kittens lapping up saucers of milk.

Lactose intolerance is a normal part of being an adult cat. Kittens produce an enzyme called lactase to break down lactose which is the milk sugar.  As kittens age and are weaned, they produce less and less lactase and therefore are unable to digest most dairy products.

When lactose is ingested and not broken down by the lactase, the lactose continues through the intestinal system and is not digested. Water is drawn into the intestine and bacteria ferment the undigested milk sugars. This results in symptoms that may include gas, discomfort, and diarrhea in 8 to 12 hours.

The Dangers of Yogurt to Cats

As discussed above, cats naturally have an inability to digest lactose. This can affect some cats more than others. Ingestion of any type of yogurt or dairy product can produce severe symptoms in some cats.

Flavored yogurts, such as those with garlic, onion, or garlic/onion powders can cause severe problems in cats. Cats lack the enzyme to appropriately digest onions that can cause flatulence (gas), vomiting, diarrhea, or severe gastrointestinal distress. Regular ingestion of onion or garlic products can cause life-threatening red blood cell damage.

However, some cats appear to be more lactose intolerant than others. I’ve seen cats on dairy farms seem to tolerate milk ingestion. I personally have a cat that begs for various dairy products including cheese, milk, and yogurt and he loves it. I only feed a small amount the size of a pea and he seems to consistently tolerate this without any signs of problems. In general, dairy products are not recommended for most cats.

NOTE: Any food can cause gastrointestinal upset in cats. What may not bother some cats may cause signs of illness in another cat. The same can happen in people. Some foods can bother some people and not others.  Overfeeding can cause gastrointestinal upset and/or obesity.

How Can You Tell if Your Cat is Lactose Intolerant?

You can test your cat’s ability to digest lactose by offering a small amount of milk such as a tablespoon of milk or yogurt and look for abnormal symptoms.

There are differing amounts of lactose in various dairy products. For example, goat’s milk commonly contains less lactose than cow’s milk. Therefore, some cats may digest yogurt made with goat’s milk better than yogurt made with cow’s milk. Milk, cream, butter, yogurt, yogurt, ice cream all have different amounts. Some dairy products may agree with your cat more than another.

With that being said, there is nothing in yogurt that your cat requires. It is safest to choose a treat that is without yogurt. There are some lactose-free products available on the market that could be options. They also make some lactose free products specifically for cats that are available in some pet stores.

Do Cats Like Yogurt?

Some cats love yogurt (as well as other dairy products) and other cats don’t.  This really varies from cat to cat. Some cats often love the flavor of yogurt’s soft creamy texture and enjoy this as a healthy snack. Yogurt is a good source of protein, calcium, and Vitamin B12. In fact, I personally have one cat that loves yogurt and begs for it on every occasion.

Do Cats Need Yogurt?

There is nothing in yogurt that cats require. What cats do need is a high-quality AAFCO approved cat food. Learn more about Nutrition in Cats.