During the long pandemic lockdown, many people used the extra time to cultivate or improve skills. Unfortunately, while baking and painting were good for people, they created new pandemic poison dangers for dogs.
“Baker’s yeast and bread dough are in our top three types of cases that increased more than 200 percent during the pandemic,” said Dr. Ahna Brutlag, a board-certified veterinary toxicologist at Pet Poison Helpline.
“While that sourdough bread smells and tastes great, the yeast in the starter and raw dough can be toxic to your pet. When bread dough is rising, yeast ferments sugars in the dough into alcohol and carbon dioxide. The carbon dioxide forms bubbles in the dough making it rise. When ingested, the warm environment of the stomach acts like a proofing oven, allowing the dough to continue to rise and produce alcohol. This can lead to both stomach bloat and alcohol poisoning in cats or dogs, both of which can be life-threatening.”
Pandemic poison dangers
Here are the top 10 pandemic poison dangers for dogs between March 2020 and February 2021 compared to the same period a year earlier.
- Yeast: 222 percent increase
- Bread dough: 202 percent increase
- Brewed coffee: 207 percent increase
- Paint: 96 percent increase
- Art supplies: 113 percent increase
- Marijuana: 102 percent increase
- Cleaning products: 92 percent increase (hand sanitizer alone was up 413 percent)
- Cocktails: 92 percent increase
- Cholecalciferol (Vitamin D3): 85 percent increase
- Cocktails: 92 percent increase
- Wine: 77 percent increase
“Bread wasn’t the only thing getting baked during the pandemic,” Brutlag added. “We also saw a 102 percent increase in the number of marijuana poisoning cases referred to our veterinary toxicology experts. There was also a significant increase in the pets exposed to cocktails and wine.”
Yeast and raw bread dough
Dogs are scavengers and the smell of rising bread can be intoxicating, so be sure to keep it out of reach. The yeast in unbaked dough can be life-threatening.
The yeast continues to rise and expand, causing pain and blocking your dog’s intestinal tract. In the worst cases, it could twist your dog’s stomach or cause fatal stomach bloat.
The caffeine in coffee doesn’t just give you a jolt. It can cause your dog to experience abnormal heart rhythms, high blood pressure, and seizures.
Too much caffeine can cause a fever and in severe cases can cause your dog to collapse or even die.
Paint and art supplies
Keep paint and solvents out of your dog’s reach and paint in a well-ventilated area away from your pet. Ingesting them can be toxic because they contain chemicals your dog can’t digest. Even paint fumes can be dangerous and cause lung inflammation.
When dogs eat marijuana, it can cause ataxia, which makes them stumble and appear to be intoxicated. Inhaling second-hand marijuana smoke can cause dogs to get high.
Warning signs of marijuana intoxication include lethargy, rapid breathing or excessive panting, nausea, irregular or unusually rapid heartbeat, dizziness or loss of balance.
Although most dogs recover within 15 to 24 hours of exposure, it’s still a good idea to call your vet if your dog’s been exposed to marijuana.
Although marijuana is dangerous for dogs, Cannabidiol, known as CBD, an extract from cannabis or hemp plants, treats ailments including pain, anxiety, skin problems, epilepsy, cancer, and more. Products for dogs, like flawless CBD, can be oils, capsules, treats, creams, or sprays.
How can CBD work for dogs?
Cannabidiol can immensely help your dog in several situations. As per data given by scientists, CBD extracts can help dogs maintain body balance by interacting with the endocannabinoid that is located in the dogs’ central and peripheral nervous systems. The interaction also ensures that dogs remain healthy for longer and keep at bay common health threats.
Cocktails and wine
Drinking wine is dangerous because it’s made of grapes, which are toxic for dogs. Consuming alcohol can cause your dog to experience respiratory failure, central nervous system depression, abnormal blood acidity, kidney failure, coma, and even death.
Even a small amount of alcohol can cause alcohol/ethanol toxicity because most dogs have such small bodies. If you think your dog snuck a few sips of your wine or cocktail, watch for symptoms like nausea, vomiting, reduced appetite, diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
If possible, use non-toxic cleaning products to protect your dog. At a minimum, keep cleaning supplies in a cabinet so your dog can’t get into them.
While most dogs will avoid the vacuum cleaner, they less fussy about licking a freshly mopped floor.
Avoid using cleaning products with ingredients like chlorine, bleach, and ammonia, which could cause your dog to develop cancer, kidney damage, or anemia. Toxic cleaners pose health risks even when closed and put away because the vapors can be harmful.
Ammonia vapors from household cleaners are irritating to the skin. Chlorine is poisonous to breathe and can cause serious damage to the skin and eyes. Unfortunately, it’s commonly used in multipurpose cleaners, disinfecting wipes, mildew removers, tile scrubs, and laundry detergents.
While many vitamins can help boost your dog’s health, consuming Vitamin D3 can cause kidney failure or death. That’s because your dog’s body is unable to excrete the fat-soluble vitamin in his urine and it’s instead stored in the liver and fat tissue.
Warning signs of Vitamin D poisoning in dogs include depression, weakness, and a loss of appetite. Your dog also might experience vomiting, increased drinking and urination, constipation, or dehydration.
If you suspect your dog has eaten Vitamin D, contact your vet immediately. If you can treat your dog within six hours, your vet will be able to induce vomiting by administering activated charcoal. After six hours, your vet will need to use medications to block calcium absorption and increase calcium excretion through your dog’s urine. through the urine.
What to do if your dog gets into a pandemic poison
Call your vet or a service like Pet Poison Helpline immediately. The poison helpline, based in Minneapolis, is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for pet owners and vets who need help treating a potentially poisoned pet. Pet Poison Helpline’s $65 fee per incident includes follow-up consultations for the duration of the poison case. For help, call 800-213-6680 or visit petpoisonhelpline.com.
Sara B. Hansen has spent the past 20-plus years as a professional editor and writer. She’s also the author of The Complete Guide to Cocker Spaniels. She decided to create her dream job by launching Dog’s Best Life. Sara grew up with family dogs, and since she bought her first house, she’s had a furry companion or two to help make it a home. She shares her heart and home with Nutmeg, a Pembroke Welsh Corgi. Her previous dogs: Sydney (September 2008-April 2020), Finley (November 1993-January 2008), and Browning (May 1993-November 2007). You can reach Sara @ [email protected].